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Tonya Coston

Co-Director National ECE Workforce Center


oversee and direct the National ECE Workforce Center TA activities, setting the vision and providing substantive guidance to the TA team.

I do this work because…

I want to be part of the solution that creates an early care and education system that ensures equitable service delivery for all families to ensure that no mater where our children start, they get to determine their finish line. I also want to ensure the system honors families regardless of race, religion, family makeup, or immigration status to ensure a solid foundation for life’s success.

I am most proud of…

during my time in state government, helping to build and grow a preschool program that I believed in and that my children attend. The quality experience positively impacted their capabilities.

Work History

New Jersey Department of Education, May 1998 – Jan 2023

  • Deputy Assistant Commissioner, July 2018 – Jan 2023
  • Acting Assistant Commissioner July 2021 – July 2022
  • Director, Early Learning Office, Executive Director, Race to the Top-Early Learning Challenge Grant and Acting Chair, Governor’s Council for Young Children, July 2017 – June 2018
  • Manager, November 2001 – June 2017
  • Educational Program Development Specialist, May 1998 – November 2001


  • Ed.D. Candidate in Organizational Leadership, School of Education, Stockton University
  • M.S., Counselor Education, School of Education, Syracuse University
  • B.S., Education, Pennsylvania State University