Joshua P. Cole, Ph.D.

Executive Director, Office of Strategic Engagement

Joshua P. Cole, Ph.D.


  • Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, Virginia Commonwealth University
  • M.Ed. in PreK-12 Administration, Wayne State University
  • B.S. in Elementary Education, Central Michigan University

Research interests

Equity in education, culturally relevant pedagogy, social emotional learning teaching strategies, and school- and community-based partnerships.

Career highlights

  • Milken Family Foundation National Educator
  • National School Change Educator
  • National Title I Distinguished School Educator
  • Teacher of the Year

Selected publications/presentations

  • Be Intentional: Enhance School Culture with Teamwork, Empowerment, and Innovation, blog with The Collaborative Classroom, 2018.
  • A Profile of a Graduate Through an Equity Lens, Caroline County Public Schools, keynote, Caroline County, Va., 2018.
  • Teaching Character, Leadership Metro Richmond, 2018.
  • A NEW Angle for Creating Equity in Education, Virginia School Board Association, Chesterfield, Va., keynote, 2018.
  • Creating Equity in Education through Social Emotional Learning, webinar with Consortium for Educational Change, 2018.
  • The Positive Impact of Social Emotional Learning on School Culture and Student Achievement, Virginia Department of Education, Classrooms Not Courtrooms Conference, Richmond, Va., presentation, 2017.
  • Equity and Social Barriers of Culturally Diverse Students, Virginia State University, presentation, 2017.
  • The Character Club, children’s book, A NEW Angle Publishing, 2017.
  • The Empowerment Zone: A Parent Resource Center, PTA Annual Leadership Conference, Richmond, Va., presentation, 2017.
  • A New Angle: Creating Equity in Education, article in Diversity in Ed magazine, Spring 2017, pp. 46-49.
  • Cultural Sensitivity in the Community, Institute for Public Health Innovation, Chesterfield, Va., training, 2017.
  • Social Emotional Learning Institute, VASCD, Fredericksburg, Va., presentation and panelist, 2017.
  • Opportunities in Black Education, Chesterfield Public Libraries, presentation, 2017.
  • A New Angle to Create Equity in Education, 10th Annual Equity and Social Justice Conference, Virginia Commonwealth University, presentation, 2017.
  • How to Support Equity in Education, San Juan Unified School District, Sacramento, Calif., presentation, 2016.
  • The Principalship, University of Virginia, principal Panel, 2016.
  • High Performance Leadership, Virginia House Education Committee Summit, principal panel, Charlottesville, Va., 2016.
  • Race & Equity in Education, Washington, D.C. Prep Academy, seminar, 2015.
  • What Does Equity Look Like in Schools? National Summit for Excellence through Equity, Richmond, Va., presentation, 2015.
  • Cultural Inheritance of Schools, Virginia Commonwealth University, lecture, 2014.
  • Education in the Richmond Region, Richmond Regionalism Project, Virginia Commonwealth University, consultation, 2013.
  • Looking Back Moving Forward, University of Richmond, principal panel, 2013.
  • Igniting Interaction with Engagement, National Summit for Courageous Conversations, Baltimore, Md., presentation, 2012.
  • Resegregation of the Richmond Region, University of Richmond, lecture, 2011.
  • Dissertation: Richmond Public Schools: Post-Court Mandated School Desegregation (1986-2006), 2009.


Dr. Joshua Cole is a recipient of the Milken Family Foundation National Educator Award for Excellence in Education. He has taught in rural Michigan, inner-city Detroit, suburban Richmond, as well as internationally in Australia. These diverse experiences have equipped him with a local-to-global perspective of people and the communities where they learn, live and work. His nearly 20 years of experience in public schools include positions as a teacher, assistant principal and principal.

Most recently, Cole served as the principal at Ecoff Elementary School in Chesterfield, Virginia. He also taught the course "Equity and Leadership" as an adjunct professor at Virginia Commonwealth University in the fall of 2018 and teaches an online course, "Leading Without Bias," in affiliation with Epoch Education, Inc. He proudly serves on the board of directors for The Teachers of Promise Foundation that recognizes and celebrates the best prospective teachers in America.

Cole is the founder of "A NEW Angle," an educational resource to help equip and empower other leaders with a new perspective on improving school culture. He is also author of "The Character Club," a children's book focused on creating equity in education through social emotional learning strategies for students and educators. He enjoys consulting, facilitating and presenting about leveraging success in schools through creating and sustaining equity in education.

Cole is married to his wife, Heather, and they have two sons, Silas and Levi.

(804) 828-6727