Dennis Walcott

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Dennis M. Walcott
Dennis Walcott at the YMA Final Party.jpg
Walcott at the YMA Finals party
New York City Schools Chancellor
In office
April 17, 2011 – December 31, 2013
Appointed by Michael Bloomberg
Preceded by Cathie Black
Succeeded by Carmen Fariña
Deputy Mayor of New York City for Education
In office
January 2002 – April 17, 2011
Mayor Michael Bloomberg
Personal details
Born September 7, 1951
Queens, New York
Nationality United States
Spouse(s) Denise St. Hill
Alma mater University of Bridgeport (B.Ed., M.Ed.)
Fordham University (MSW)

Dennis M. Walcott (born September 7, 1951) was the Chancellor of the New York City Department of Education. He succeeded Cathie Black, who resigned in April 2011 after only three months on the job.[1] The current Chancellor (2014) is Carmen Fariña.[2]

Although Walcott lacks training as a schools administrator[3] and requires a waiver from the New York State Education Department under Education Commissioner David M. Steiner, he is a former employee at Amistad Day Care Center,[4][5] holds a master's degrees in the education field and is a former member of the New York City Board of Education. He also served nine years as New York City Deputy Mayor for Education.

Prior to joining Mayor Michael Bloomberg in 2002 as Deputy Mayor for Education, he headed the New York chapter of the Urban League.[3][6]

Early life and education[edit]

Walcott is the son of immigrants from Barbados, and also St. Croix of the United States Virgin Islands.[3][7] He is a native of Queens, New York. He attended Francis Lewis High School, and earned a Bachelor's degree in 1973 and a Master's degree in 1974 from the University of Bridgeport in Connecticut. He earned a Master's in Social Work from Fordham University in 1980.[8]

His early employment was in counseling.[6] In 1974 he began a one and a half year tenure at the privately run pre-kindergarten Amistad Child Care and Family Center in South Jamaica, Queens.[9]

Public service work[edit]

In 1975, Walcott founded the Frederick Douglass Brother-to-Brother mentoring program. He went on to become President and Chief Executive of the New York Urban League for 12 years, where he expanded educational and youth service programs. He also served as Executive Director of the Harlem Dowling Westside Center, expanding services to children and families in need. In 1993 Mayor David Dinkins appointed him to the predecessor agency to the Department of Education, the New York City Board of Education. His term extended into the mayoral term of previous mayor Rudy Giuliani.[3] He also taught as an adjunct professor of Social Work at York College, and was a talk show radio host on community issues.[citation needed] [10]

Personal life[edit]

Walcott and his wife Denise have four children and two grandchildren, who have attended New York City Public Schools.


  1. ^ "Walcott on New York Times". Last updated: April 7, 2011. New York Times. Retrieved April 7, 2012. 
  2. ^
  3. ^ a b c d Daniel Massey, "Meet the new guy: Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott", "Crain's New York Business," April 7, 2011
  4. ^
  5. ^ Amistad Day Care Center - Jamaica, New York - NY - School overview. Retrieved on 2013-08-16.
  6. ^ a b New York City Department of Education website, February 2009, "Q+A with Deputy Mayor Dennis Walcott"
  7. ^ Springer, Bevan (5 August 2010). "Mayor Bloomberg to host West Indians at Gracie Mansion". Caribbean360. Retrieved 8 April 2011. 
  8. ^ Retrieved on 2013-08-16.
  9. ^ Dennis Walcott Waiver Letter. (2013-07-22). Retrieved on 2013-08-16.
  10. ^ "Dennis M. Walcott". Office of the Mayor. Retrieved 8 April 2011. 
Educational offices
Preceded by
Cathie Black
New York City
Schools Chancellor

April 17, 2011-December 31, 2013
Succeeded by
Carmen Fariña