Dr. Verenice Gutierrez is a first generation Mexican-American born and raised in El Paso, TX. A graduate of the El Paso Independent School District Dr. Gutierrez was exposed early in her own childhood to the subtractive schooling experiences that considered her Spanish speaking abilities, blue collar background and immigrant parents reasons to label her an "at risk" student. Numerous marginalizing experiences throughout her K-16 educational experience led Dr. Gutierrez to a vocation and career as an educator.
Dr. Gutierrez has engaged in racial equity work and been committed to creating inclusive educational spaces for marginalized communities since 2007. As a principal of a K- 8 school in Portland, OR, Dr. Gutierrez's equity work received national attention as she worked to disrupt systemic racism. She transitioned from doing equity work as a principal to engaging with school districts across the country as an Educational Transformation Specialist with Pacific Educational Group, the parent company for Courageous Conversations.
Dr. Gutierrez received her B.A. and M.A. from the University of Texas, El Paso and her Ph.D. from New Mexico State University. She received postgraduate training in Women’s Leadership Development from Harvard University, Kennedy School of Government. Dr. Verenice Gutiérrez is a Racial Equity & Healing Fellow, W.K. Kellogg Foundation. As an aspiring Superintendent, Dr. Gutierrez has participated in the AASA's Urban Superintendent Academy and the Association of Latino Administrators & Superintendents' Superintendent Leadership Academy.Dr. Gutierrez currently serves in the Salt Lake City School District as the Director of Educational Equity & Access in Salt Lake City, Utah.