MARY ELIZABETH DAVIS
Superintendent, Henry County SchoolsGeorgia
Mary Elizabeth Davis was appointed superintendent of Henry County Schools, just south of Atlanta, in November 2017. Henry County is the eighth-largest district in Georgia, serving more than 43,000 students across 50 schools. Under Davis’ leadership, Henry County has seen an 11-point growth in state accountability measures, moved all “F” rated schools off the governor’s failing schools list, and made significant progress toward meeting targets set by the Georgia Department of Education for closing achievement gaps. Student performance continued to climb while Davis led the district through disruptions caused by the COVID pandemic. There was an eight-point increase in Algebra 1 performance from pre- to post-pandemic and continued growth in reading proficiency. Davis has an unwavering commitment to students and student outcomes. She approaches the work by embracing student, family, staff, and community perspectives to help generate a belief in young people and unity around excellence in public education.
Prior to joining Henry County, Davis was the chief academic officer for Cobb County School District in Marietta, Ga., the 23rd-largest school district in the United States. Before that, she was assistant superintendent for curriculum and instruction in Gwinnett County, Ga., the nation’s 13th-largest district. Davis was a part of the team when Gwinnett County received the Broad Prize for advancing student performance and closing achievement gaps. She began her professional career as a chemistry teacher in Fairfax County, Va.
Davis completed a Ph.D. in educational policy, a master’s in public administration, and a specialist in educational leadership, all from Georgia State University. She also holds a bachelor’s in chemistry from Messiah College in Pennsylvania.