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Biden appoints Lamont advisor to US Education Department role

Nick Simmons was selected to serve as senior advisor to the Secretary of Education for School Reopening and Recovery.
Credit: Office of Gov. Ned Lamont

HARTFORD, Conn. — One of Gov. Ned Lamont’s policy advisors has been tapped by the Biden administration for a role in the U.S. Department of Education.

Nick Simmons, who most recently served as director of strategic initiatives for the State of Connecticut and policy advisor to Lamont, was selected to serve as senior advisor to the Secretary of Education for School Reopening and Recovery.

“I am humbled by the opportunity to support Secretary (Miguel) Cardona and the Biden administration with the critical work of safely reopening schools across the nation and supporting these school communities with the difficult task of recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic,” Simmons said in a statement.

In Connecticut, Simmons designed, led, and coordinated key policy initiatives for the Lamont administration with a focus on education equity, workforce development, and economic development.

During the COVID-19 pandemic, Simmons helped coordinate with the state's Department of Education and the Department of Public Health the safe reopening of K-12 schools, close the digital divide, and support students with remote learning.

“Connecticut was only able to achieve its educational results this year because of the terrific leadership of Governor Lamont, Secretary Cardona, Acting Commissioner Russell-Tucker, countless others across state agencies, and the courageous teachers and school leaders all across the state,” Simmons said. “It has been a pleasure to serve alongside them and I look forward to leveraging the lessons learned from Connecticut at the national level.”

In a statement Friday, Lamont applauded the announcement and said Simmons’ leadership during the pandemic helped coordinate the state’s response.

“I appreciate the time and energy he has contributed on behalf of the students of Connecticut,” he said. “The Biden administration has made a good choice, and I’m excited that Connecticut will have another one of our residents representing our state on a national scale.”

Simmons, a resident of Stamford, began his educational career serving as a seventh-grade math teacher, assistant principal, and acting school leader in Harlem, N.Y.

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