Avis Williams


New Orleans Public Schools

Dr. Avis Williams is the superintendent of NOLA Public Schools and the first woman to serve permanently in the role. She leads through equity, excellence and joy, her core values. A native of Salisbury, NC, she has served in leadership positions in the U.S. Army, as an entrepreneur, and a school administrator. She received her undergraduate degree from Athens State University, her master’s from Alabama A&M and Jacksonville State Universities, an education specialist degree and her doctorate from the University of Alabama.Dr. Williams has been an elementary, middle, and high school principal. She was executive director of curriculum and instruction in North Carolina where she led instruction for more than 60 schools and an assistant superintendent in Tuscaloosa City Schools. Prior to her historic appointment to lead NOLA Public Schools, Dr. Williams served as superintendent of Historic Selma City Schools in Selma, AL for five years.An award-winning leader and sought after speaker, she grew up in poverty and is passionate about improving outcomes for all children in the community in which she serves. Her joy comes from spending time with her daughter Briahna, running, writing and being a “dog mom” to her standard poodles, Coco and Butterscotch. Dr. Williams also enjoys running, writing and giving back to her community. She has served on numerous non-profit boards, is a Rotarian, a member of the Links, Inc. and of Delta Sigma Theta, Inc.