Providing leadership, voice and resources to help individuals and groups along their character journey.


Inspiring and empowering ethical, engaged and compassionate citizens worldwide.

Our History

In 1993, a group of educators, business leaders and researchers came together and decided there needed to be a national organization devoted to fostering character development in communities. Over the course of the next 25 years, Character.org has validated and certified character initiatives in schools across the country and internationally through the 11 Principles of Effective Character. We have provided the voice, visibility and resources for educators to build and sustain stronger communities.

With the help of our growing network of passionate character leaders, Character.org is poised to continue mentoring educators, but we can also reach people in the workplaces, in families and in sports. By meeting people in every avenue of life, we have a stronger chance of creating more holistic Communities of Character in which every individual thrives.

Our Team

National Office

Arthur Schwartz

Arthur Schwartz

Acting President & CEO

Dean D'Ambrosi, Character.org

Dean D'Ambrosi

Vice President

Rayna, Character.org

Rayna Smith

Chief of Staff

Lori Soifer, Character.org

Lori Soifer

Director of Schools of Character

Heather Cazad, Character.org

Heather Cazad

Director of Communications

Tamra Nast, Character.org

Tamra Nast

Director of Exchange

Nanette Nathan

Nanette Nathan

Certification Administrator

Board of Directors

Dr. Arthur Schwartz
Founding Executive Director
Oskin Leadership Institute

Governor Frank Keating
Holland & Knight LLP

Mr. Joseph Carvin
One World

Mr. Christopher Krell
Cassaday & Company, Inc.

Mr. Rich Bagin
Executive Director
National School Public Relations Association

Mrs. Linda J. McKay
National Advocate for CE in America’s Schools

Dr. Michele Borba
Educational Psychologist and Author

Ms. Shannon Anderson
Medical Student
Howard University

Ms. Joan Duffell
Executive Director
Committee for Children

Dr. Nora K. Carr
Chief of Staff
Guilford County Schools

Mr. Michael Dutton
Senior Communications Manager
The Executive Leadership Council

Mr. Glenn Wilke
Executive Director
Midtown Educational Foundation

Mr. Clay W. Hamlin, III
CEO, LBCW Investments

Mr. Charlie H. Greenwood
Bucknell University

Dr. Jack P. London
Executive Chairman and Chairman of the Board
CACI International, Inc.

Harry Pilson II
Senior Vice President
Private Financial Advisor
Suntrust Investment Services, Inc.

Scarlett Lewis
Founder and Chief Movement Officer
The Jesse Lewis Choose Love Movement

Dr. Susan Sclafani
Education Consultant

Mr. Scott Sillers
Former Partner
Levensohn Venture Partners

Education Advisory Council

Dr. Susan Sclafani
Education Consultant

Kathy Beland
Executive Director

Dr. Marvin W. Berkowitz
Sanford N. McDonnell Endowed Professor of Character Education
University of Missouri-St. Louis

Dr. Philip Brown
Fellow, Graduate School of Applied and Professional Psychology
Rutgers University

Dr. Jonathan Cohen
Teachers College
Columbia University

Charles Elbot
Leadership Coach
Denver Public Schools

Dr. Maurice Elias
Rutgers University

Dr. Ann Higgins-D’Alessandro
Associate Chair for Graduate Studies
Fordham University

Kristie Fink
Lecturer & ARL Program Coordinator
Utah State University

Dr. Karen Geller
Associate Professor
Immaculata University

Dr. Darcia Narvaez
Notre Dame’s Collaborative for Ethical Education

Dr. Clark Power
Program of Liberal Studies, University of Notre Dame

Captain Rick Rubel
Distinguished Military Professor of Ethics
U.S. Naval Academy

Dr. Scott Seider
Associate Professor
School of Education, Boston University

Dr. Andrew Sokatch
Director of Research,
Character Lab

Clifton L. Taulbert
The Building Community Institute and The Freemount Corporation

Dr. David Wangaard
School for Ethical Education

Dr. Rick Weissbourd
Harvard Graduate School of Education

State Coordinators

Kent Fahrenbruck
Character First

Val Gallina
Florida Character.org

Madonna Murphy
University of St. Francis

Pam Green

Allie Gardner

Noalee McDonald
Kansas State Dept. of Education

Jacqueline Schmucki
Character Council of Greater Cincinnati & Northern Kentucky

Vickie Muir

Barb Bergseth
Synergy & Leadership Exchange

Mary Reinhold
New Jersey

New Jersey Alliance for Social Emotional Character Development
New Jersey

Phil Fusco
Academy for Character Education at the Sage Colleges
New York

Justyn Knox
North Carolina Department of Public Instruction
North Carolina

Madison Tomlinson

Brendan Petersen

Diana Dodson

Elaine Gehring


Ean Ainsworth

Jason Matlon

Kent Fahrenbruck

Val Gallina

Pam Green

Laura Mason

Matt Klosterman

Mary Beth Mersch

Madonna Murphy

Chrystal Long

Linda Martin-Seng

Tamra Nast

Lori Soifer

Debbie Brandt

Nicole Diehl

Lisa Dierking

Kevin Helton

Carol Hoorman

Amy Johnston

Nicole Langston

Wanda LeFlore

Amy Richards

Erin Steinkamp

Barb Bergseth

Becky Sipos

Donna Baratta

Cecelia Bonner

Phil Fusco

Margaret Goodman

Marie Horowitz

Elissa Lesser

Meghann Persenaire

Phyllis Bloom

Phil Brown

Laurie Anne Coletti

Cindy Dacey

Eileen Dachnowitz

Kathleen Hoeker

Nina Kemps

Carla Kokoszka

Courtney Lowery

Elizabeth McLaughlin

Mona Noyes

Cassandra Pedrosa

Jason Pesamoska

Ed Porowski

Mary Reinhold

Kirk Rickansrud

Jocelyn Rodriquez

Juliette Smith

William Trusheim

Maryann Villegas

Lynne Vosbiakian

Angela Ziemba

Madison Tomlinson

Brendan Petersen

Kimmie Etheridge

Deborah Johnson

Dave Keller

Jennifer McAffrey

Pam Mitchell

Kelly Mooney

Brenda Sweeney

Vickie Muir

Ringnolda Tremain

Tessa Hobbs-Curley

Doug Knott

Jo Ann Britton

Umit Alpaslan

Bonnie Misch

Sadie Fischer

Janet Carlson

Bridget Jantscher

Justyn Knox

Elaine Gehring