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Saxon Nelson

Director of Community Engagement

Pronouns: He/Him


  • B.A. in Marketing: Chestnut Hill College

About Saxon Nelson

Saxon Nelson serves as RFA’s Director of Community Engagement where he provides leadership, strategic planning, and visioning for RFA to expand meaningful and deep community engagement within RFA’s research portfolio and projects.

Prior to joining RFA, Nelson was a Contractor for Special Projects for the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE), Office of Postsecondary and Higher Education where he focused on efforts to diversify Pennsylvania’s teacher workforce, convening counselors, and managing PDE grants and scholarships. Nelson also served as a Technical Assistance and Capacity Coordinator for the Mayor’s Office of Education and its Community Schools Initiative. Nelson previously worked for the United Way of Greater Philadelphia and Southern New Jersey (UWGPSNJ) where he managed the quality improvement system for out-of-school time programs, and developed a local/regional/national early warning response system.

A Philadelphia native, Nelson his Bachelor’s Degree at Chestnut Hill College. He is currently board president of Youth United for Change and on the Board of Greensgrow.

  • I'm a real nerd about...

    The Philadelphia 76ers!

  • Can't stop listening to...

    Album: Try a Little Tenderness By: Gloria Lynne

  • A fun fact about me is....

    I actively played the cello for 15 years.

Key Projects by Saxon Nelson

Allegheny County Educator Diversity Project

Read More K-12

Recent Publications by Saxon Nelson


The Need for More Teachers of Color

This booklet, The Need for More Teachers of Color, was released as part of a Teach-In hosted by Research for Action on April 23, 2022, in FDR Park in Philadelphia. The booklet provides highlights of…


FAQ: Superintendents in Pennsylvania School Districts

Superintendent leadership plays an important role in charting the trajectory of school district operations and ultimately of student learning. Meanwhile, several school districts undergo a superintendent transition each year, yet relatively little is known about…