NC business leaders, united for education, name CEO of nonpartisan advocacy group BEST NC
CARY, NC (DEC. 18, 2013) -- Public education advocate and entrepreneur Brenda Berg has been named President and CEO of Business for Educational Success and Transformation in North Carolina (BEST NC). Founded this year, BEST NC has a rapidly growing membership of more than 60 politically and geographically diverse North Carolina business leaders committed to improving the state’s public education system at all levels.
By supporting early childhood and K-12 education, community colleges, and the University of North Carolina system, BEST NC members contend that stronger outcomes in public education will accelerate job growth, narrow the skills gap and support a strong economy. BEST NC Chairman Walter McDowell believes Berg’s experience makes her a great fit to lead the organization.
“Brenda's passion for public education, academic credentials, and experience as the founder and CEO of a private company prepare her well to be the President and CEO of BEST NC,” said McDowell.
In 2002, Berg founded Scandinavian Child, a premium distributor and manufacturer of high-quality, safe juvenile products. She holds a master’s degree in public policy from Georgetown, and has served as a consultant to the US Department of Education and other public education agencies.
Berg has served on the Greater Raleigh Chamber of Commerce Education Committee since 2010 and is a member of America’s Edge, a national education advocacy group that emphasizes the importance of students learning skills most relevant to today’s workforce.
She has worked with Habitat for Humanity of Wake County, Communities in Schools of Wake County, the PTA, the Wake County Schools Business Alliance, and other volunteer organizations. She has a vested interest in the success of North Carolina public schools, which her two children attend.
“As a business owner, I am a passionate advocate for education because I understand its importance in supporting educated and productive citizens, creating a strong workforce, and attracting new business and talent to our state,” said Berg. “BEST NC puts politics to the side and unites a diverse group of business leaders who believe public education must be the first priority in policy and budget decisions.”
BEST NC leadership includes:
David Darnell, COO of Bank of America; Jim Goodmon, President and CEO of Capitol Broadcasting Co.; Ann Goodnight, Director of Community Relations for SAS; Venessa Harrison, President of AT&T North Carolina; Walter McDowell, Chairman of BEST NC and former CEO of Carolinas Banking Wachovia; Robert Niblock, CEO of Lowe’s Companies; Pat Riley, President and COO of Allen Tate Co.; Paul Wiles, former CEO of Novant Health; and Brad Wilson, President and CEO of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina.
About BEST NC
BEST NC (Business for Educational Success and Transformation) is a non-profit organization created by business leaders who believe the future of our state’s economy is inseparable from the quality of our public education. North Carolina’s education system must keep pace with the rapidly changing economic landscape of the 21st century. BEST NC supports the creation of the boldest education success story in America, one that nurtures the talents of every student, from early learning to post-graduate, by investing in principals, teachers and technology and establishing high standards of success for all.