Ann Marie Kent-Willette

Dr. Annmarie Kent-Willette

Dr. Annmarie Kent-Willette, an award-winning educator and communications expert, recently served as the City of Jacksonville’s Education Commissioner. Appointed as an executive-on-loan from Jacksonville University for a term of two years, she reported directly to Mayor Brown serving as his senior policy advisor for all matters pertaining to education.

Widely honored for her work in education, Dr. Kent-Willette was selected as the 2008 Jacksonville University Woman of the Year, and has received numerous honors and recognition for her community and university service. Dr. Kent-Willette teaches a variety of communications and service-learning classes domestically and internationally. She has led the development of multiple award winning student television productions and served as an active leader in JU’s shared governance and Faculty Assembly.

Dr. Kent-Willette serves as on a variety of local, state, and national boards, including the National League of Cities Education Policy Advisors Network and the College Policy Network Advisors. She has been an active participate in the U.S. Conference of Mayors serving on the Education Excellence Task Force and the Florida College Access Network where she has lead panels and given regional and national presentations. Her work as Education Commissioner garnered national attention, including an invitation from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation to lead a fireside chat and interview with Bill Gates for the U.S. Conference of Mayors. Recently, Dr. Kent-Willette was selected to represent the state of Florida and participate in a White House Convening on improving college access and attainment.

A graduate of The Catholic High School of Baltimore, Dr. Kent-Willette completed her B.A. and M.A. in Communications at the University of South Florida in Tampa and her doctorate in Educational Leadership at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville.