Nelson Smith is senior advisor to the National Association of Charter School Authorizers. He served as the first president and CEO of the National Alliance for Public Charter Schools; executive director of the District of Columbia Public Charter School Board; vice president for Education and Workforce Development at the New York City Partnership; and director of programs for the Improvement of Practice at the U.S. Department of Education. He has taught at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and in 2010 was given a Career Achievement Award from New Schools Venture Fund. In June 2015, he was inducted into the National Charter Schools Hall of Fame. A graduate of Georgetown University, he lives in Shepherdstown, West Virginia.