Mary Kay Shields
President, CS Partners
As president of CS Partners, Mary Kay Shields continues her lifelong vision of providing better education choices for all children. Shields began her career as a special education teacher, and worked on school finance and policy reform through her service with the Michigan House and Senate fiscal agencies. During that time, she was instrumental in passage of the Michigan School Improvement Act and several school finance reform ballot proposals. She later served as former Gov. John Engler’s Special Advisor for Charter Schools Development. In 1999, Shields joined Central Michigan University, where she worked with the Center for Charter Schools and was Special Advisor to the President for Capitol Relations. In 2001, she left CMU to serve as the founding President and Chief Executive Officer of the National Charter Schools Institute. Shields also served as founding Executive Director of the Michigan Public Educational Facilities Authority, where she successfully helped charter schools gain access to facility financing funds.