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Deputy Superintendent of Administration and Supports Receives Champion for Youth Leadership Award from Teen Empowerment

(May 14, 2024) The Rochester City School District congratulates Ruth B. Turner as the recipient of a Champion for Leadership Award from Teen Empowerment.  Ms. Turner, the RCSD’s Deputy Superintendent for Administration and Supports, was given this award for her uncompromising voice, loving advocacy, and wise, steady leadership in Rochester. 

Teen Empowerment held its annual luncheon fundraiser on Thursday, May 9, 2024, where Ms. Turner received her award.  She immigrated to the United States as a political refugee from Eritrea, and for more than 16 years, she has worked to support all students and families in the RCSD.  Ms. Turner has served as a social worker, Executive Director for Student Support Services, and Chief for Student Support and Social-Emotional Learning.  She has led the District in adopting restorative practices and helped guide antiracism work to end racial disparities in student discipline and outcomes. 

The first in her family to earn a college degree, Ms. Turner commits to the intersection of social work, social welfare, and education.  She first started partnering with Teen Empowerment in 2013, when youth organizers were developing a community task force on school climate to change the RCSD Code of Conduct.  Ms. Turner has set up help zones throughout the District, increased the number of mental health counselors, and built a team of RocRestorative coaches.  She has also recruited Teen Empowerment youth to train students and educators. 

Since returning to the RCSD after serving as a New York State Regent, Ms. Turner has established the RocRestorative H.U.B. as a resource to both schools and the community. 

Teen Empowerment Rochester provides life-changing opportunities to hundreds of youth in the City of Rochester.  Through their involvement, these individuals have mobilized thousands of their peers, adults, and community leaders to participate in youth-led initiatives that drive change. 

Please join us in congratulating Ms. Turner on this well-deserved honor.