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Our Executive Director: Timothy Purnell, EdD

Tim Purnell

Dr. Timothy Purnell joined AMS as our executive director on August 1, 2017. Tim is an inspirational leader, strategic planner, and educator, who is eager to hear from you: our Montessori community. Whether you are teaching in a classroom, working in school administration, looking to pursue a career in Montessori, researching the latest Montessori trends, caring for child as a parent, or doing the vital work of training the next generation of Montessori educators, Tim and AMS are here to serve your needs.

You can connect with Tim on LinkedIn and Twitter, or visit our Contact Us page to find the right AMS staff member to help you with your needs.

Join the conversation on social media using #MontessoriNow.

About Tim

Tim most recently served as superintendent for Somerville public school district in New Jersey. There, he had oversight of a $44 million dollar budget as well as the educational services, stakeholder communications, and personnel management for the district’s schools.

As a superintendent, he and his team designed and launched a non-traditional high school with a focus on reaching academically at-risk students and students disenfranchised with the traditional high school educational experience. They also designed and launched a Medical Sciences Academy, an Associate’s Degree Academy, a Public Relations Academy, and an online best-practice repository through a private video channel.

Throughout his career in education, Tim has filled many roles: part-time faculty at several colleges and universities, school principal, vice principal, science teacher, and summer camp guide at an AMS-accredited school. He served as a member of the New Jersey State Board of Examiners for over 6 years, where he was deeply involved in matters relating to teacher certification.

Dr. Purnell’s honors are numerous. For example, he was one of just 100 educators selected to attend President Obama’s ConnectED Initiative at the White House, he was selected as the 2016 NASS National Superintendent of the Year, and honored as the 2015 Highest Rated Professor in the nation. In addition, he is the recipient of many awards, including a Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation School Leadership Award (for studying public education in Italy).

His passion to make the world a better place is palpable. Tim holds a strong belief that children must have a voice in their own educational journey and a conviction that collaboration and strategic communications are critical components of transformation and advancement. He is enthusiastic about Montessori education, an overview of which he routinely includes in the university education courses that he teaches, and is looking forward to pursuing Montessori training.

Tim is eager to hear from you and to meet you as he listens, learns, and leads.

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