San Joaquin County Office of Education (SJCOE) Superintendent Mick Founts has announced the selection of Kirk Brown to serve as Director of Science and Special Projects. His appointment becomes effective July 1.
Brown comes to SJCOE from Tracy Unified School District where he has served as the Chair of the Science department and teacher of International Baccalaureate Biology and Biotechnology at Tracy High School.
A graduate of Manteca High, Brown is the son of the late Jim Brown, former East Union High teacher and coach at Manteca High, and Jan Brown who owned the former Allen’s Jewelry in Manteca for many years.
“I am excited to have Kirk as the newest member of our SJCOE team,” said Founts. “He brings not only an expertise in science education that is second to none, but also an infectious personality that inspires all who hear him speak about the importance of science education. Most of all, Kirk is committed to all students.”
As Director of Science and Special Projects, Brown will be responsible for the day-to-day operation of the largest Science and Special Projects department found at a County Office within the State. Duties will include working with colleges and universities to promote science as a core subject, implement California Science Academic Standards and Science Frameworks within the classroom, run grant-funded projects and student events such as the Science Fair, serve as a liaison to the California Department of Education, and oversee the science education, professional development, and teacher leadership within San Joaquin County.
While working with LLNL, Brown worked with other teachers to develop the Biotechnology Education Program, Laser Science and Optics for the Classroom, Student Research Academy, Teacher Research Academy, Biophotonics Research Academy, and most recently the Master Teacher for the Academies Creating Teacher Scientists program from the Department of Energy. Currently, Brown is one of the lead instructors at the Edward Teller Education Center specializing in program development.
He is on the advisory board for the College of Natural Science at California State University, Chico as well as several other advisory boards. Brown has won numerous awards including the Milken National Educator Award, California’s Outstanding Biology Teacher in 2003 by the National Association of Biology Teachers, Carlston Family Foundation Outstanding Teachers of America Award, DiNA Biotechnology Educator Award from BayBio at the 2007 Pantheon Awards, Teacher of the Year for the Western Junior Science and Humanities Symposia, Cortopassi Family Foundation Outstanding Science Teacher Award, and most recently San Joaquin County Teacher of the year for the 2011-12 school year.
Brown is the author of “Biotechnology: A Lab Skills Course” textbook that went to print in 2011.