Virgel Hammonds


Virgel Hammonds, a nationally recognized leader in education innovation, joined the Aurora Institute as CEO in 2023 with over two decades of experience working alongside young people, educators, communities, districts, and policymakers as they endeavor to become more learner-centered. Having most recently served as Chief Learning Officer at KnowledgeWorks, Virgel has forged partnerships with national policymakers and local learning communities across the country to redesign learning systems to become more learner-centered.

Virgel previously served as the superintendent of RSU 2 School district in Maine. There, he collaborated with five communities to develop and implement a curriculum designed to ensure mastery of standards by all students. Before serving as superintendent, Virgel was a high school principal at Lindsay Unified School District in California. 100 percent of the district’s 4,100 K-12 students qualified for free and reduced lunch. There, Virgel helped implement a personalized learning model where “learners” didn’t earn letter grades, but rather are awarded mastery for subjects in which they’ve proven to be proficient.

Currently, Virgel also serves on multiple boards and leadership councils: Innovation Lab Network Leadership Advisory Council; Jobs for Maine Graduates Executive Board; Maine Academic Decathlon Executive Committee; Maine Healthy Communities Board; CompetencyWorks Advisory Board; Mastery Transcript Consortium Advisory Council and International Association for K-12 Online Learning (iNACOL) Board. He is also a Deeper Learning Equity Mentor.

Virgel earned his Bachelor’s from the University of Massachusetts Lowell and his Master of Education from Fresno Pacific University.