Knowles Elects Science Education Scholar & Prominent Physician and Researcher as Trustees

MOORESTOWN, N.J., Sept. 12, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — The Knowles Teacher Initiative announced the appointment of Dr. Melissa Braaten and Dr. Steve Emerson to its Board of Trustees. Dr. Braaten and Dr. Emerson were elected at the May 13 annual meeting of its board.

“Both Dr. Braaten and Dr. Emerson are highly accomplished in the fields of science and education,” said Lawrence Tint, Knowles Board of Trustees Chairman. “As trustees, they will draw upon their extensive experience to provide invaluable guidance as we strive to improve math and science teaching and learning in the U.S.”

Dr. Braaten is an associate professor of science education and co-chair of the elementary teacher education program at the University of Colorado, Boulder, where she’s been since 2016. Previously, she worked as an assistant professor and director of the secondary science education program at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. Dr. Braaten has authored or co-authored over 20 journal articles and book chapters. Notably, she co-authored a widely read and influential book, Ambitious Science Teaching (2018), through Harvard Education Press. Dr. Braaten holds a B.S. in microbiology and an M.S. in education, both from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and a Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction and science education from the University of Washington. Before earning her doctorate, she taught upper elementary, middle, and high school science for 13 years in Texas and in South Seattle.

“The Knowles Teacher Initiative invests not only in teachers’ learning but also in teacher leadership to transform math and science education for each and every student. That investment is a game changer for teachers and their students—it’s the reason why I am committed to serving on the Board of Trustees,” stated Dr. Braaten.

Dr. Emerson graduated summa cum laude from Haverford College in 1974 with a double major in philosophy and chemistry. He earned an M.S. in molecular biophysics, a Ph.D. in cell biology and immunology, and an M.D. from Yale University. After graduating from Yale, Steve served on the faculties of University of Michigan and Harvard University, before joining the faculty of the University of Pennsylvania. There, he held the Francis C. Wood Professorship in Medicine, Pathology and Pediatrics, and served as Chief of Hematology/Oncology and as Associate Director for Clinical/Translational Research of the Abramson Center. Dr. Emerson served as President of Haverford College from 2007 to 2011, after which he served as Director of the Herbert Irving Comprehensive Cancer Center at New –Presbyterian Hospital/Columbia University Medical Center. Now in semi-retirement, he teaches middle school mathematics at Friends Central School in Wynnewood, Pennsylvania.

“From my life’s experience as a scientist, physician, teacher and parent, I know how important inspirational teachers are for young students of mathematics and sciences,” said Dr. Emerson. “They can make all the difference in the future lives and careers of our children, their happiness and their abilities to contribute to our society. I am delighted and honored to be working with the leaders of the Knowles Teacher Initiative on the Board of Directors in support of the scores of present and future Knowles Teacher Fellows whose lives and careers they so directly support.”

About the Knowles Teacher Initiative

The Knowles Teacher Initiative is a nonprofit organization that supports a national network of mathematics and science teachers who are collaborative, innovative leaders improving education for all students in the United States. We strive to create an educational system that is led by teachers who are equipped to solve difficult problems and respond to local challenges in order to serve all of our nation’s students. For more information, visit

Media Contact
Ebony Freeman
Knowles Teacher Initiative

SOURCE Knowles Teacher Initiative