Roxbury, MA December 2, 2019 – Nurtury, Greater Boston’s trusted provider of early education and care for over 140 years, announced today that Laura Perille has been named the organization’s new Chief Executive Officer. The former Interim Superintendent of Boston Public Schools will begin her new role at Nurtury on January 2, 2020.
Nurtury is a true pioneer in early childhood education and has played an integral role during its 140-year history in shaping public policy to raise standards in the field of early education nationally and locally. The $20M nonprofit organization operates six early education centers serving infants, toddlers, and preschoolers in the Boston neighborhoods of Roxbury, Mission Hill, Dorchester, Jamaica Plain, and in Cambridge. It also supports a network of 130 family child care providers across Boston, Chelsea, Everett, Revere, Somerville, Milton, and Dedham. Together, Nurtury serves more than 1,200 children and families annually.
With over 30 years of experience across the nonprofit, philanthropic and public sectors, Perille will lead Nurtury in providing Greater Boston's youngest children in need - from birth to age five - the opportunity to reach their full potential by investing in school readiness, promoting healthy development and strengthening families.
As the founding and longtime CEO of EdVestors, a Boston-based education nonprofit that partners with philanthropic donors and education leaders, Perille helped lead its growth to a respected and high-impact organization within Boston’s education landscape. She and her team served as the driving force behind mu ltiple reform initiatives in urban public schools to level the playing field of opportunity and achievement for Boston's students, notably in arts education and middle grades math instruction.
Prior to joining Nurtury, Perille served as Interim Superintendent of Boston Public Schools during its recent leadership transition. For over a year, she led the $1.3B city agency with nearly 10,000 employees serving 55,000 students, and advised the Boston School Committee and Mayor Martin J. Walsh on district management and long-term strategy. “Laura is an extraordinary civic leader and problem-solver who has always stepped up on behalf of this city’s most vulnerable children, from the earliest days of EdVestors to her time leading the Boston Public Schools,” said Mayor Walsh. “She will do that once again for Nurtury, and that is good for children and families in Boston and beyond.”
“Laura’s experience makes her an invaluable resource to Nurtury as the new CEO at a pivotal point in this organization’s history,” said Harriet Tolpin, chair of Nurtury’s Board of Directors. “Laura will guide Nurtury on a strategic path for continued growth while ensuring the families of the 1,200 children served each year have the resources they need to succeed.”
Mike Durkin, longstanding President & CEO for United Way of Massachusetts Bay & Merrimack Valley, in a statement said, “Since 1952, United Way has been a proud partner and funder of Nurtury. Now more than ever, access to quality early education is vital for the health and wellbeing of the families in Boston and surrounding neighborhoods. I am confident that Nurtury is in excellent hands with a strong leader like Laura helping to ensure the children served receive the foundation needed for their future educational success.”
Jeri Robinson, an early childhood expert and member of the Boston School Committee, added: “Early education is a complicated landscape, and it is urgent that we get it right for children, families, and communities. Laura is a fierce advocate for children, but she is also a listener and thoughtful collaborator. I am thrilled to see her leading an important organization like Nurtury.”
>In previous roles, Perille oversaw a wide array of programs including early childhood education, alternative high school education, job training, and school-based case management. At Crittenton Hastings House, now known as EMPath, she led an NAEYC-accredited early education center and a childcare teacher training program that boasted an 80% job placement rate.
“It is an honor and privilege to become the new CEO of Nurtury,” said Laura Perille “I am inspired by the organization’s commitment to our youngest and most vulnerable children and families in Greater Boston. I am excited to support the work of our educators, staff, and family providers. Together we will help the families and children we serve build a strong foundation for a lifetime of learning.”
Laura Perille succeeds Mary Kay Leonard, who has served as interim CEO since Wayne Ysaguirre left Nurtury in 2018 following a 30-year tenure.
Nurtury is a pioneer in early childhood education and has played an integral role during its 140-year history in shaping public early education policy to raise standards in the field of education nationally and in New England. Nurtury’s mission is to help Greater Boston’s youngest children reach their full potential by investing in school readiness, promoting healthy development, and strengthening families.
Bonnie Taylor for Nurtury