Thalia Nawi
Senior Consultant

Through more than 20 years in the public education sector, Thalia has extensive experience in schools, districts and state departments of education with a proven track record of results. At Education First Thalia supports states, districts and systems of schools in designing, supporting and evaluating systems and programs to meet the needs of all students.

Thalia holds an unwavering belief that an effective public education system is the essential for a healthy democracy. This conviction has motivated her throughout her career, from classroom teaching to the principalship.   Prior to joining Education First Thalia led strategic planning with the Delaware Department of Education as a senior policy adviser and previously served as a fellow with the New York State Education Department. Thalia was the founding director of the Denver Teacher Residency, a nationally competitive urban teacher residency uniquely designed to meet the needs of Denver’s students. Through her work in Delaware and Colorado she developed key strategies designed to align human capital systems and integrate assessment, support and accountability at both the district and the state level, and she is thrilled to be putting these skills to work at Education First.

Thalia earned a bachelor’s degree in sociology from the University of California–Santa Barbara, a master’s degree in leadership and policy studies from the University of Washington and a doctorate in education leadership from Harvard University. She lives in Denver, Colorado.

Thalia's expertise

  • Teaching and Learning Strategy
  • Capacity Building and Sustainability
  • Educator Preparation, Strategic Hiring, and Retention
  • Planning and Problem Solving for Successful Implementation
  • Research, Program Analysis, and Program Strategy

Recent clients

  • Helmsley Trust
  • Office of the State Superintendent, District of Columbia

Education Influences

  • Anthony Bryk
  • Herbert Kohl
  • Vivian Paley
  • Richard Elmore
  • Ben Levin

Thalia likes


  • Thalia served as an education volunteer in The Gambia, ’98-00

  • Thalia is a member of Denver’s Museum of Contemporary Art