Dr. Cila Chavez earned a degree in social science and mathematics at Northwestern State in 1963, a master’s degree in educational administration at the University of New Orleans in 1967 and a doctorate in curriculum and instruction from the University of Northern Colorado in 1980. She began her career as a teacher in Orleans Parish. Prior to beginning her own consulting business, she was a teacher and administrator at the middle, high school and university level. During her career, she served as superintendent of Littleton Public Schools, director of the North Central Accreditation for Colorado and assistant dean of the University of Colorado’s College of Education, among other education enterprises.

The honoree has lived in Colorado for more than 40 years. She has served in leadership positions in numerous community organizations and earned the Phi Delta Kappa Leadership Award twice. She was named one of the top 100 educators in the United States and was a finalist for the Colorado Superintendent of the Year. She also authored a book, “Spirit Moves: Attributes for Transforming Leadership.” Chavez has three children and two grandchildren.