Dena Simmons Ed.D.
Dena Simmons, Ed.D., is Assistant Director of the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence. She writes and speaks nationally about social justice and culturally responsive pedagogy, education reform, emotional intelligence, bullying, and how to create emotionally intelligent and safe classrooms within the context of equity. She grew up in a one-bedroom apartment in the Bronx with her two sisters and immigrant mother, and learned firsthand about the violence of injustice and inequity. Prior to her work at Yale, Simmons served as an educator, teacher educator, diversity facilitator, and curriculum developer. She has been a leading voice on teacher education and has spoken at the White House, the United Nations, and several TED forums. Simmons is a recipient of a Harry S. Truman Scholarship, a J. William Fulbright Fellowship, an Education Pioneers Fellowship, a Paul and Daisy Soros Fellowship, a Phillips Exeter Academy Dissertation Fellowship, a Pahara Fellowship, and an Arthur Vining Davis Aspen Fellowship among others. She earned her doctorate degree from Teachers College, Columbia University. Simmons’s research interests include teacher preparedness to address bullying in the K-12 school setting and social and emotional learning (SEL) interventions, all in an effort to ensure and foster justice and safe spaces for all.