As director of the Center for Digital Education, one of my favorite programs is when we identify the Top 30 movers, shakers and innovators in education technology. This annual award recognizes people and organizations who are moving the needle in K-12 and higher education thanks to their commitment to ensuring today’s students are armed with the necessary tools for learning. Our award winners are visionaries who are going against the grain to increase funding, bandwidth, privacy protocols and predictive analytics, and to improve the personalization of learning.

With technology as their catalyst, they are dedicated to transforming education at the local, state and national levels in ways that have a positive impact on student success.

Our awardees are leaders from across the country who are affiliated with nonprofits, school districts, universities, community colleges and state education departments. They have worked tirelessly to communicate the importance of technology in schools and on student learning. One of those advocates is Kim Clemmons, who has done pioneering work at Wilson County Schools in Lebanon, Tenn. Another is Dallas Dance, superintendent of Baltimore County Public Schools, who is transforming his school system through a calculated and intentional plan of action.

We are recognizing Kara Van Dam, vice provost for the Learner and Faculty Experience at the University of Maryland University College, for her efforts to reach all learners in a unique and innovative way. Then there’s the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative, under the direction of Jim Shelton, which is committed to expanding students’ access to personalized learning opportunities through rich technology experiences.

We have a unique blend of award-winning leaders who have captivated our attention, and we hope they do the same for you. Read their profiles and learn more about their impactful work. Our honorees have demonstrated that you can make a difference when you have a plan, a great team of people surrounding you, grit and dedication to a cause. Our winners are models for all educators who believe in the possibilities that technology brings to education. Let’s follow their lead! I look forward to seeing your nominations for next year’s Top 30.