Kris Havens Vice President of External Affairs

As a military brat, Kris was raised in Germany, Arizona, New York and Florida, attending public schools and recognizing the quality differences in her education depended on her address. Kris was a first-generation college graduate who worked full time while obtaining her bachelor’s in business at the Johns Hopkins University.

From 2006 to 2014, Kris was with the American Federation of Teachers as its director of communications and then director of special projects. There she pioneered and directed all communications strategies, projects, events and campaigns for the 1.6 million-member union and its 3,000+ affiliates nationwide. Kris integrated communications, digital, community outreach and advocacy to engage and inform key stakeholders, resulting in a substantial increase in general public supporters and member activism. Prior to the AFT, Kris was co-founder and strategic marketing principal of CleverSpin, a brand and design firm in Chicago. In addition to developing the brand and performing an in-depth communications audit for the AFT as a consultant, Kris provided communications services for a range of clients, including Chicago Theatre, National Council of La Raza, Lees Carpets and the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago.

Through her oversight of Educators for Excellence’s communications, digital, policy, partnerships and advocacy, Kris enjoys each day that current teachers have a voice in the policies that impact their classrooms, their schools and their communities.

"I wake up every morning charged with one mission: Ensure current classroom teachers have a seat at the table."