Rhian Evans Allvin serves as the chief executive officer of NAEYC. She is responsible for guiding the strategic direction of the organization as well as leading implementation. During Rhian’s tenure, NAEYC has gone through a dramatic structural transformation to reverse 15 years of membership decline, better serve members nationally and at the state and local levels, exert strong policy and advocacy leadership, provide thought leadership and unequivocal guidance through the development of position statements and streamline the early childhood program accreditation system to decisively and accessibly define early childhood program quality. Also during this time, NAEYC conceptualized and convened Power to the Profession, a national collaborative between 15 organizations representing the early childhood field which resulted in the release of a Unifying Framework to create an aligned professional field of practice for early childhood educators.
Before joining NAEYC, Evans Allvin was a guiding force in Arizona’s early childhood movement for more than 15 years. In 2006 she co-wrote the citizen’s ballot initiative that created First Things First (FTF) which set aside $130 million in annual Arizona tobacco tax monies for children birth to five and created a state agency whose purpose is to ensure all Arizona children start kindergarten prepared to be successful in school and in life. Governor Janet Napolitano appointed her to FTF’s inaugural state board, where she served for three years before resigning to become the organization’s chief executive officer (CEO).
Rhian is a relied upon source for broadcast and print media including, Good Morning America, The New York Times, Washington Post, Wall Street Journal and National Public Radio. She is a Trustee of the Institute for Citizens & Scholars and has received various honors and recognition for her work on behalf of children.