Amber Arellano oversees research and policy, public engagement, technical assistance and operations at The Education Trust-Midwest. Founded in 2010, today Ed Trust-Midwest is widely recognized as a leading voice for non-partisan data, research, and policy expertise about Michigan P-12 education. Under her leadership, Ed Trust-Midwest led the statewide coalition of more than 146 organizations committed to implementing college- and career-readiness for all students, and the cross-sector development of Michigan’s first statewide educator support and evaluation system which is credited with making Tennessee one of the leading education states in the U.S. today. In partnership with the Steelcase Foundation, Arellano also founded the Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning to bring proven best practices from leading education states to Michigan’s high-poverty schools. That work has blossomed into CETL schools becoming among Michigan’s fastest-improving, high-poverty schools for many subjects including third-grade reading.
Arellano started her career as a public high school teacher, and later became an award-winning education journalist known for her work on behalf of vulnerable students. In the policy sector, she has served in the executive office of Ireland’s former President Mary Robinson at the High Commissioner for Human Rights at the UN, and at the National Poverty Center where she focused on qualitative research work. Arellano bleeds both blue and green: she earned her Master of Public Policy at the University of Michigan’s Ford School of Public Policy, and her Bachelor’s in secondary education from Michigan State University. She serves on the board of the Detroit Regional Chamber Foundation and the University of Michigan’s Ford School of Public Policy Alumni Board.