NAESP Welcomes New Professional Learning Staff

The National Association of Elementary School Principals is pleased to announce the following strategic additions to the headquarters staff.

Dr. Gracie Branch, Associate Executive Director, Professional Learning

For the past eight years, Dr. Branch has served as the Executive Director of the Oklahoma Association of Elementary School Principals (OAESP). In this position, she worked with educators statewide to foster a sense of community, promote leadership development, and mentor school administrators. She also directed daily operations for the Cooperative Council of Oklahoma School Administration (CCOSA) and OAESP, which included professional learning, project management, budgeting, communication, and technology implementation.  Dr. Gracie Branch

During her 39-year educational career, Dr. Branch served as a teacher, assistant principal, and principal. Additionally, she coordinated the Education Leadership Oklahoma Program for the state of Oklahoma for National Board Certification at the Oklahoma Commission for Teacher Preparation.

“We are thrilled to have Dr. Branch join the NAESP staff in this important role. Her extensive experience as an elementary educator, coupled with her successful tenure as a state school leader association executive, provides a valuable addition to the NAESP organization and the members we serve,” states NAESP executive director Dr. L. Earl Franks, CAE.

Dr. Branch will officially join the NAESP staff Oct. 7, 2019.

Danielle Mazzuchi, Professional Learning Administrator

Danielle Mazzuchi joined the NAESP team as Professional Learning Administrator in late August. Her prior work experiences include serving as a Project Coordinator with the National Society of Black Engineers where she was responsible for member volunteer programs; Regional Program Manager for Today’s Students Tomorrow’s Teachers where she assisted school district administrators and teachers with the recruitment and selection of prospective students and conducted essential training workshops for high school and college students, teachers, mentors, and parents; and National Voices for Equality, Education, and Enlightenment where she served as the national spokesperson for the program aimed at preventing youth bullying, violence, and suicide.

Ms. Mazzuchi’s responsibilities at NAESP include assisting with professional learning activities and conference events as well as supporting the overall execution of professional learning deliverables, trainings, and management systems for NAESP program growth.

Katie Earley, Manager, Professional Learning Projects


Katie Earley joined the NAESP staff in April 2019 in the position of Manager, Professional Learning Projects. In this role, Ms. Earley manages professional learning programs in collaboration with the professional learning leadership team. She also provides support for virtual professional learning programming to include webinars and online learning. Additionally, Katie coordinates program evaluation, special projects for the NAESP website and assists in crafting and design of promotional and marketing materials for professional learning. 

Ms. Earley was previously a project manager for an association management group that specialized in providing high-level customer service and efficient operational and project management support for all assigned client services. She also was responsible for managing advance and on-site logistical arrangements for various educational conferences and seminars as well as leading the organization and execution of association webinar programs.

“We are fortunate to have Ms. Mazzuchi and Ms. Earley join us in these important roles. They bring a highly competent skill set to the NAESP Professional Learning Team that translates to higher quality services for NAESP members. We are excited about the innovations they have made since joining our staff,” states Dr. L. Earl Franks, CAE, NAESP executive director.

*In addition to these new additions to the Professional Learning Team, Honor Fede will continue her role as Coordinator, Professional Learning, and Deborah Young will continue as Assistant Executive Director, Conference & Exhibitor Services.