Angel Rhodes, Ph.D., Director for Early Childhood Initiatives

Angel Rhodes, Ph.D., is the Director for Early Childhood Initiatives at Future Ready Columbus in which she leads all work that focuses on children prenatal to kindergarten entry and their families. Dr. Rhodes completed her Ph.D. at the Ohio State University with a focus on both Clinical Counseling and School Counseling, and she specialized in child development. In 2003, Dr. Rhodes became a Professor and Director of the School Counseling Graduate Program for the University of Dayton.  During her years of training graduate students to meet the diverse needs of children in the K-12 system, she realized that most problems that become evident during the k-12 years actually originate several years before a child steps into a kindergarten building. She further came to understand that the achievement gap starts well before kindergarten and must be addressed during those early years.

Dr. Rhodes was appointed to Ohio Governor John Kasich’s Office in 2012 as Ohio’s first Officer of Early Childhood Education and Development in which she coordinated all state work for early childhood in the Ohio Departments of Education, Health, Job and Family Services, Mental Health and Addiction Services and Developmental Disabilities and involved a budget of over $760 million each year. She also led the implementation of the $70 million Early Learning Challenge Grant in which Ohio met all its goals, which included improving quality in early childhood services, creating state-wide Early Learning and Development Standards, developing Ohio’s 5-Star Quality rating system, increasing access to high quality services, implementing a cross-agency governance model, and creating an holistic instrument to assess kindergarten readiness for all children.

Dr. Rhodes joined Future Ready in August of 2018. She brings passion and determination each day to her work, where she strives to see that EACH child in Franklin County receives a solid foundation for success in school and life.