Dr. Chris Bigelow was born and raised in Burlington, North Carolina. After graduating from High School in 1981 he enlisted and served four years in the United State Army. While serving in the military at Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Dr. Bigelow started his college career at nearby Steilacoom Community College (now Pierce Community College) before transferring to Central Washington University (CWU) to pursue BA in Education. After graduating from CWU in 1989. Dr. Bigelow began his teaching career as a Social Studies teacher. He taught and coached various sports at the high school and junior high level. Dr. Bigelow earned his master’s degree in Administrative Leadership in 1996 and has worked as a building principal at the high school and junior high level in the Kent, Northshore, and Seattle school districts. Shortly after earning his Doctorate (Ed.D) in Education Leadership in 2006, Dr. Bigelow accepted a position as the Director of Student Services in Northshore School District. Dr. Bigelow continues to work in the Northshore School District and currently holds the position as the Executive Director of Race and Educational Justice Department for the district.
Since assuming the role of Executive Director of Race and Educational Justice Department, Dr. Bigelow has established a framework that has advanced the social justice work of the district. This includes district policies and procedures as well as classroom practices. Dr. Bigelow provides leadership in developing, implementing, and evaluating the progress of equity, inclusion, and social justice initiatives throughout the school’s curriculum, instruction, and community. He acts as a resource, guide, and strategic planner, helping the district and the school to be a community that values a diversity of people, perspectives, and ideas. Northshore Race and Educational Justice Department has been sought after and recognized by school districts throughout the country for its work in helping district leadership, school leadership, teachers, all staff to be deliberate in addressing and strengthen efforts in recognizing systemic racism, unconscious or implicit bias and how they are built into the organization in innocuous beliefs and practices. Dr. Bigelow strongly believes we all need to think about our work through the lens of dismantling systems that perpetuate inequity. Sometimes the difficulty begins in getting people to understand why we must continue to focus on social justice and race issues. Dr. Bigelow believes when we grow accustomed to something we tend not to feel or see a need for change, this is the larger of the problems we face when it comes to getting people who already feel part of our school system to see the absence of people who are not.
Dr. Bigelow has spent over three decades in various teaching and administrative positions and has held membership in various professional associations to include; Member of the Professional Educators Advisory Board (PEAB) for City University, Board Member for the Northshore/Shoreline Community Network, Chair and Board Member of King-Co Athletic Eligibility Committee, Executive Board Member of the Washington Interscholastic Activities Association (WIAA).
Dr. Bigelow and his wife Teresa are both Central Washington University graduates and were married in 1987. Teresa graduated with a Mechanical Engineering BS and is a past recipient of the Central Washington University Distinguish Alumni 2019. They live in Seattle, Washington and have two wonderful children a son, Talon, who is a graduate from Portland State University and a daughter, Sina who is also a graduate of Central Washington University. Both are currently living and employed in Oregon. Chris brings his wisdom and many years of experience working on diversity and social justice issues to the position.