Welcoming Deanna East as the Foundation’s New Executive Director

We are pleased to announce that after an extensive search, we have hired a new Executive Director, Deanna East. East will begin on August 1, 2023. 


Deanna East is a highly experienced professional with 20 years of experience in public education and a steadfast commitment to improving educational outcomes. Her impact extends beyond the classroom, making a profound difference in the lives of students and families.


While working as a Health Room Assistant at Timberline High School in 2005, Deanna became aware of the presence of homeless students within the system. This discovery ignited her passion to address their needs, leading her to establish programs that provided essential resources and support. Deanna’s dedication extended further as she actively served on the executive boards of nonprofits dedicated to supporting students and homeless populations.


Deanna’s impact extended beyond Timberline High School. Raising her two children who attended North Thurston Public Schools from Kindergarten through 12th grade, she was a frequent volunteer at not only each of their schools but in many other support organizations as well. Her boys both graduated from Timberline High School. Through her active involvement as a parent, Deanna strengthened her personal connection to the community and deepened her commitment to fostering educational success for all students.


For over a decade, Deanna’s powerful advocacy and inspiring stories have reached a wide audience. As a keynote speaker for Homeless Backpack (now All Kids Win) and through her active involvement with the North Thurston Education Foundation, Deanna has tirelessly advocated for students facing challenges. She consistently seeks out opportunities to raise awareness and secure new resources to support their needs. Her unwavering dedication to empowering students is a driving force behind her advocacy efforts.


In 2017, Deanna seized the opportunity to serve as a McKinney Vento Homeless Student Navigator at the NTPS district office. Over the next five years, she dedicated herself to providing unwavering support to homeless students and their families, guiding them through available programs and ensuring their success in school. Deanna’s efforts not only improved graduation rates for McKinney Vento students but also inspired many to pursue post-secondary education.


In March 2022, Deanna joined Capital Region ESD113 as a Coordinator for the Attendance and Reengagement Project. Collaborating with OSPI and 8 other ESD Coordinators across Washington, Deanna leveraged research and best practices to train districts on building effective Attendance Teams. Her role involved working closely with district and school teams to enhance proactive approaches to attendance, develop re-engagement systems, and utilize real-time attendance data for structured support, all aimed at improving attendance and engagement.


Now, as the Executive Director of the North Thurston Education Foundation, Deanna’s vast experience and unwavering dedication continue to transform the lives of countless young individuals in the community.

Deanna East, (360) 628-3281

[email protected]