Frances Messano

Chief Executive Officer

As CEO of NewSchools, Frances Messano brings her longstanding commitment to excellence and equity in education to life. Throughout her nine-year tenure at NewSchools, Frances has had a broad set of responsibilities, including serving as President, creating the Diverse Leaders investment strategy, and leading the Innovative Schools team. 

Before joining NewSchools in 2015, Frances was a Vice President at Teach for America, where she led the development of the organization’s long-term national strategy. Prior to that, she was an Associate Partner at Monitor Institute, an arm of Monitor Deloitte known for its social impact consulting, where she used her expertise in strategy, organizational design, leadership and program development to help scale the impact of education-focused organizations. She started her career working at Morgan Stanley in sales and trading. 

Frances, a first-generation college graduate, earned an MBA from Harvard Business School and A.B. from Harvard College. Her journey was profoundly influenced by nonprofit organizations such as Prep for Prep, Management Leadership for Tomorrow, and Sponsors for Educational Opportunity. She credits these organizations with providing her access to educational opportunities, which have deepened her personal connection to NewSchools’ mission. Frances actively serves on the boards of Unidos US, Stand for Children, and Pahara Institute. Additionally, she contributes her insights and leadership to the Tipping Point community and is recognized as a Pahara-Aspen Education Fellow. 

Frances lives in San Francisco with her husband and their three children who attend a NewSchools portfolio school. Frances loves singing and will always say yes to a karaoke night out.