About Us

Since 1993, Conscious Teaching’s books, workshops and online courses have been providing new and veteran K-12 teachers with “stuff they can use” to engage their students and structure safe, respectful learning environments. Take a look around to find out more about who we are, what we offer, and how we can help teachers and school leaders improve their craft and meet the ever-changing needs of their students.

Rick Smith

Founder | Education Consultant

Over the past twenty years, Rick Smith has shared practical strategies to over a hundred thousand teachers and teacher trainers in fifteen countries on five continents. He is the author of the book, “Conscious Classroom Management,” which is now in the hands of over half a million educators. Rick was a classroom teacher for over fourteen years, focusing primarily on students-at-risk. He’s been a mentor and mentor coordinator for many years, and has taught in both elementary and secondary credential programs in Northern California.

Rick loves to dance and to play ultimate frisbee (not usually at the same time). He also teaches workshops internationally on personal growth and development.

Grace Dearborn

Executive Director | Education Consultant

Grace Dearborn is an author, instructional coach, award winning teacher, and international presenter on classroom management, student engagement, and trauma-informed teaching. She has been in education for 20+ years and for most of it she taught disadvantaged students in elementary and secondary schools in the San Francisco Bay Area. In addition to being a veteran classroom teacher, Grace has worked as a school-site mentor teacher, literacy coach, curriculum developer, and professional development coordinator. Currently, Grace is the Executive Director of Conscious Teaching, where she runs herself ragged facilitating workshops for teachers across the United States and internationally… but she loves every minute of it!

In her free time Grace volunteers at local schools, reads voraciously, bakes emotionally, plays tennis and poker competently (or so she likes to believe), and spends as much time as possible with her family, where her skills at motivating and managing youth are daily put to their truest test by her two sons.

Katie Anderson

Social Media Director | Teaching & Learning Consultant

Katie Anderson is an award-winning National Board Certified Teacher and 15-year classroom veteran, teaching all grades K-12 through her work with the Wake County Public School System in North Carolina and Duke University’s Talent Identification Program. She has also served as a mentor teacher, teacher trainer, and curriculum designer within her state and district, including collaborations with NC State University and the NC Governor’s Teacher Network.

As an educational consultant with Conscious Teaching, Katie brings her passion and enthusiasm for education and educators to schools and districts across the country. She specializes in providing teachers with research-based, easy-to-implement strategies that they can use to reach all students and improve the effectiveness of their teaching.

When she’s not on the road, Katie can be found taking part in her favorite dare-devil hobbies, including blade-smithing, fire-eating, (yes, really!), and raising her two children.

Scott Sturgeon

Educational Leadership Consultant

Dr. Scott Sturgeon is an Associate Professor of Practice in Educational Administration at the University of Nebraska Lincoln. Prior to his recent move to higher education, Scott spent more than 20 years in public education working in an urban, high poverty K-12 school district in the Midwest. During these two decades Scott held many positions including, but not limited to, paraprofessional, classroom teacher, school-site principal, and district administrator. In his district role as a Principal’s Supervisor, Scott directly supported a wide variety of elementary and secondary school settings, providing guidance to new and veteran principals and their leadership teams on all aspects of running their schools.

As a consultant for Conscious Teaching, Scott leads workshops with administrators at schools across the country on leadership and school-wide change. He also does 1-on-1 and small group mentoring with school-site administrators and advises district administrators on implementing new discipline systems and making policy changes that lead to sustainable long-term change.

In his free moments, Scott enjoys time with his two sons, his wife, his wife’s dogs, and every soccer game and practice that can be fit into a busy family’s life.