Karen Farmer White of Pittsburgh named new Pa. Board of Education chair

December 23, 2017 GMT

Gov. Tom Wolf on Friday appointed Karen Farmer White of Pittsburgh as chair of the Pennsylvania Board of Education.

White, a two-term member of the state Board of Education and the board’s Council of Basic Education, will be the first African-American chair of the board.

She is also a former vice president of education at WQED Pittsburgh Multimedia and executive director of the Program to Aid Citizen Enterprise.

“Karen Farmer White is one of Pennsylvania’s most respected educational leaders and I look forward to her contributions to the board as we continue to make progress to ensure our young people are career ready to become the leaders of tomorrow,” Wolf said in a statement.

White will replace Larry Wittig, who joined the board in 2001. Wittig resigned Thursday amid allegations of sexual misconduct.

White has served on community boards at Seton Hill University, Point Park University, the FISA Foundation and the Community College of Allegheny County Foundation. She is a former member of The August Wilson Center board and is a current and founding member of the Pennsylvania Conference for Women. She also serves as co-chair of the Woodland Hills School District Commission on Youth Development and Learning.

White is a graduate of The Leadership Pittsburgh Program and received her doctorate from the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pittsburgh.

Jamie Martines is a Tribune-Review staff writer. Reach her at jmartines@tribweb.com, 724-850-2867 or on Twitter @Jamie_Martines.