​Pat Heinrich for Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools

Board of Education

BS Chemical Engineering NCSU
BS Biochemistry NCSU
MSc Management Universitat
​           Pompeu Fabra (Spain)

Occupation: IT Consultant

Information Technology, Strategic Planning, and Executive Leadership with Cisco, Honeywell, Aspen Technology, and Sirius Computing

Why It's Important

I've spent the past two decades helping organizations improve. I've helped hospitals plan for disaster. I've helped construction firms build new facilities. I've helped manufacturers be more efficient. I've worked as a manufacturing consultant with workers on the factory floor and I've been an executive faced with making difficult choices. Throughout all of these experiences there are three consistent elements; unwavering integrity, honest communication and the willingness to make bold choices.    

I have a passion for education and an understanding of the difficulty of realizing change and building consensus. I have a strong bias for consensus, not compromise. I foster a sense of inclusion and being heard and considered (consensus), not a sense of making sacrifices or giving up on ideas (compromise). This is important because of the increasing diversity of our community. Consensus, inclusion, and transparency are more necessary than ever to foster and maintain trust in the community. That trust is paramount to developing and maintaining a strong partnership between the schools, parents and the community.

I spent several years living and studying in Spain, and I've worked and lived in several countries around the globe. I've experienced the challenge of not being able to blend in and not speaking the native language. I've struggled to communicate in languages I didn't understand, and I've experienced the warmth and kindness of individuals that have accepted me for who I am. Having been one of the more diverse elements of a community, I understand the challenge of cultural and language barriers that individuals sometimes feel in our own community. I understand the empathy required to bridge the diversity between within our own community. 

For several years I taught math to a classroom of GED students. These adults spent three hours a day, four days a week in class working toward their GED while holding a job and raising a family. I’ve seen what happens when students experience an undesired outcome from our schools. And I’ve seen how difficult it is for adult students to make up for this later in life. My four year old daughter will be attending CHCCS schools next year. I want to be part of the Board of Education because I refuse to accept that our schools can fail our children.