**FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE, MARCH 30, 2020***
Liz Baker, 646-904-4200
Ann Powell, 646-894-6407
New York, NY — Today, Success Academy announced that veteran music industry executive David Ellner would step into the newly created position of chief operating officer. Reporting directly to founder and CEO, Eva Moskowitz, Ellner will lead strategic planning, growth and transformation, and oversee enterprise-wide initiatives such as SA’s continuous improvement program (“Edge”) and business functions, including operations, facilities, and technology. He will drive innovation and operational efficiency and ensure that Success has the proper structures, systems, and controls to effectively scale to 100 schools.
“So much is in flux right now, as COVID-19 ravages our beloved city,” said Eva Moskowitz, founder and CEO of Success Academy. “At the same time, we must stay focused on the future, and on kids — we run our lottery next week with thousands of new students to welcome and hundreds of new teacher to hire, as we prepare to expand and open new schools next year. I am confident that David’s experience and strategic vision will help us meet these challenges.”
Success Academy launched its remote learning to 18,000 scholars on March 19, and was cited as “proactive and forward-thinking” in a Washington Post editorial last week: “Success Academy, which operates 45 charter schools in New York City, is now in its second week of distance learning, and its program, stressing simplicity, reading and individual contact with students, is setting an example that others are following.”
“Success Academy stands out as a courageous, innovative organization that truly makes a difference to the lives of the children and communities it serves,” said Ellner. “Especially during these times, I’m thrilled to be working with Eva and the whole team to further the vision of such a critical mission.”
Ellner comes to Success with 25 years experience in the entertainment industry, most recently as founder and CEO of Panna, a video cooking magazine featuring master chefs, which he successfully sold to Discovery Communications. Prior to Panna, Ellner was president of Digital and Business Development for 19 Entertainment, home to American Idol, So You Think You Can Dance, Elvis and Ali. His role at 19 Entertainment was to cultivate new ideas into successful business ventures, as well as, to continue to push the digital boundaries on core assets. Previously, Ellner spent 12 years at Universal Music Group as the executive vice president of Global Digital Initiatives (GDI), COO of Universal Motown Records, and CFO of Universal Motown Records.
A graduate of SUNY Albany, Ellner earned his MBA from New York University Stern School of Business, where he has been an adjunct professor of marketing since 2000.
ABOUT SUCCESS ACADEMY CHARTER SCHOOLS
Founded in 2006, Success Academy Charter Schools are free public K-12 schools open to all children in the state through a random lottery. With 45 schools across Brooklyn, the Bronx, Manhattan, and Queens, Success Academy enrolls 18,000 students, primarily children of color from low-income households in disadvantaged neighborhoods: 74% receive free or reduced-price lunch, 94% are students of color, 16% have disabilities, and 8% are English language learners. Success Academy schools received more than 17,000 applications for about 4,000 open seats for the 2019-20 academic year.
For more information about Success Academy, go to successacademies.org.