About Heidi

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Support Heidi's Re-Election to the Palo Alto Unified School District School Board in 2016!

It has been a great honor to serve the Palo Alto community since 2012 as an elected Trustee of the Palo Alto Unified School District.  Over the past four years I've consistently been impressed with the district's commitment to providing the highest quality education to every student, every day.  

Born and raised in California, I am a product of California’s public schools from kindergarten through graduate school.  I am also a proud parent of two children in PAUSD schools and I work as a teacher and parent educator at Parents Place (a parent resource center) supporting both families and teachers with the most current child development research and best practices in the early learning community.

Like many families, we moved to Palo Alto because of the excellent reputation of its schools.  I got involved locally, serving as PTA President and Chair of the School Site Council at Juana Briones Elementary School, then joined the Board of our education foundation, Palo Alto Partners in Education (PiE).  I also serve on the Palo Alto Advisory Committee on Early Care and Education and during the past two years, I served on both the City of Palo Alto's Housing Element Committee and as School Board Liaison to the City of Palo Alto's Comprehensive Plan 2030 Committee. 

As I serve this community in a variety of ways, I am impressed with the number of engaged, motivated students, remarkable teachers, and dedicated parents and community members I’ve met.  Palo Alto truly values education, as evidenced by the widespread support for our bond measures, construction bonds, and local parcel taxes.  We must ensure that our students are benefitting from the high standards we’ve set.  With my unique skills and experience, I am prepared and energized to serve on the Palo Alto School Board; ready to collaborate as we build a strong educational foundation for every student in our district.

Palo Alto Unified School District:

Palo Alto is passionate about education.  Just come to any School Board meeting and you’ll find committed parents, teachers, and community members discussing hot-button issues from student achievement and student stress, to enrollment issues and innovative curricula.

H_KidsGrass4x3.jpgI share that passion and have dedicated the last ten years to working in the field of education while also raising my two children. As a teacher, parent, and educational advocate, I have learned how diverse and underfunded our educational system is in the State of California. 

PAUSD needs experienced School Board members who understand trends in education reform, complexities of educational funding, and how to tackle difficult issues around enrollment fluctuations, educational finance and fiscally-responsible bond management, and the ongoing challenge of integrating high academic achievement with social, intellectual, and ethical learning.

I invite you to join me in creating a vision for Palo Alto as a model school district in California: one that values inclusivity and diversity, collaboration and individual achievement.  Together, we can nurture the next generation of great thinkers, innovators, and leaders.     

With your help, I will continue to work hard on behalf of families, teachers, and, most importantly, the remarkable students in our community. 

Related Experience:

PAUSD School Board Trustee, 2012-2016 (Current President)

Parenting Educator/Child Development Specialist, Parents Place
Teacher-Trainer and workshop leader in more than 50 early learning centers in the Bay Area
Palo Alto Advisory Committee on Early Care and Education (PAACECE)

City of Palo Alto Comprehensive Plan 2030 Committee
City of Palo Alto Housing Element Committee
City/Schools Liaison Committee

Stanford/PAUSD Liaison Committee
Los Altos Hills Town Council Liaison
PAUSD Board Policy Review Committee

PTA President, Juana Briones Elementary School
Chair, School Site Council, Juana Briones Elementary School
Board Member, Palo Alto Partners in Education (PiE)

Project Safety Net Collaborative
Education Committee, Congregation Etz Chayim
Graduate, Palo Alto Ambassador Program

Volunteer Coordinator, Palo Alto Black & White Ball
Friends of the Palo Alto Junior Museum and Zoo
Advisory Board Member, Camp Galileo (Developed Teacher-Trainer Program for Counselors)
Chair, Community Advisory Committee, First 5 San Mateo County

Producer, Writer, Editor (Emmy-nominated) for 12 years (www.newday.com)
House Manager, Huckleberry House (the nation’s premier runaway shelter for teens), Youth Advocates
Suicide Prevention Hotline Volunteer
Project Read Tutor


Master's Degree in Education, Specialty in Early Childhood Education, San Francisco State University
Master's Degree in Journalism, University of California, Berkeley
Bachelor of Arts Degree in Language Studies, University of California, Santa Cruz

Heidi Emberling, Trustee, Palo Alto Unified School District, 650.308.4702, hemberling(at)pausd.org


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