Mt. Pleasant, MI - Central Michigan University (CMU) today announced the appointment of Cindy Schumacher as the executive director of The Center for Charter Schools, effective today. Schumacher previously served as the Center's chief deputy director.
"I feel honored and eager to take on this new role with the Center," said Schumacher. "We have such a dedicated and talented staff, and I look forward to working with them to raise the bar for all of Michigan's public school students."
Schumacher began her career as an accountant and earned her CPA. She was recruited by CMU to join the Office of Internal Audit and quickly assumed a leadership role as an auditor for the University, propelling many campus departments forward in the development of internal controls and business processes. This dedication to improvement led her to The Center for Charter Schools, and in 1999, following the successful completion of an internal audit of the Center, she was tapped to join the organization and lead the Fiscal Performance and Accountability team. After setting the Center on a course to build systems and develop sound business processes, Schumacher was recognized as having the talent and skills needed to become a deputy director.
Schumacher's impact can be seen throughout the community and state. In 2010, she was asked to participate as a member of University President George Ross's transition team when he assumed the presidency at CMU. She has twice been honored by University leadership as a recipient of the Staff Excellence Award, and she was recognized as a 2009 graduate of the Michigan Chamber Foundation's Leadership Program. Schumacher is well known for her business experience and routinely called upon by the Michigan Department of Education, other authorizing agencies and industry associations to share best practices.
The Center's executive leadership team will be rounded out by Mary Kay Shields and Barbara Zeile. Shields, who has served as the Center's executive director on an interim basis since 2010, is optimistic about Schumacher's capabilities in her new role. "Cindy's combination of experience and passion make her the perfect fit for this position," said Shields. "She will do an outstanding job."
CMU is a state and national leader in charter school authorizing, with 17 years of experience launching, supporting and overseeing charter public schools. CMU currently authorizes 59 schools serving more than 30,000 students in the state.