Tom Benton has dedicated his career to education and is determined to make a difference for all students in Wake County. Tom’s 40+ years in public education have focused on school level work. He was a high school social studies teacher for nine years and a middle and high school principal for twenty-four years. Since “retiring” in 2005, he has worked for the state turnaround effort as a leadership facilitator/ turnaround coach in two high schools and three middle schools. He has also worked as a leadership facilitator for NC New Schools by helping in the planning and opening of two Early Colleges and a New Tech high school. He continues to serve as a leadership coach to 12 schools in the network. He has served as a coach/ mentor to principals in several LEAs and as a state trainer for the Principal evaluation process. He is currently serving as a trainer for NCPAPA’s Distinguished Leaders Practices program and as the Coordinator of the Future Ready Leadership for Assistant Principals across the state. He was appointed to fill a vacant seat on the Wake County Board of Education in February, 2013. He presently lives with his wife of 41 years and a dog and a cat. His two daughters are pursuing careers as a high school media coordinator and practicing Psychologist. In his spare time, he renovates old houses and hangs out at Surf City.