The Long Beach Unified School District Board of Education has approved the hiring of Justin Grayson as Chief Communications and Community Engagement Officer. The Board’s unanimous vote took place at its regular meeting today.
The newly created, cabinet-level position comes after LBUSD commissioned a thorough audit of its communications and community engagement efforts. The audit was conducted by the National School Public Relations Association.
Grayson is an award-winning communications leader with experience in journalism, corporate communications and public school systems.
“We’re excited to welcome Mr. Grayson to the Long Beach Unified Family,” LBUSD Superintendent Jill A. Baker said. “The pandemic and engagement challenges of the past year have shown that our school district must invest wisely and strategically in its communications systems. Justin brings invaluable experience to help guide our talented team as we renew our commitment to excellence, equity, language accessibility and genuine community engagement.”
Grayson is a public relations manager for Amazon and is founder of The Grayson Agency, a public relations and marketing firm. He served as director of Communications and Public Information for the Riverside Unified School District from 2015 to 2019. Prior to that, he was a communications analyst at Fresno Unified School District, a grant manager at The School District of Philadelphia, and an associate producer for ABC News – World News Tonight and Nightline.
Grayson’s numerous awards include 2018 School District Administrator of the Year by the Association of California School Administrators (ACSA) Region 19, 2018 Classified Leader of the Year by the Riverside Association of School Managers, and national finalist for PR News’ Non-Profit Awards. He is also the winner of multiple National School Public Relations Association awards.
“I'm truly humbled by this opportunity, and I'm honored to be able to serve as the Chief Communications and Community Engagement Officer role in such a forward-thinking district like Long Beach Unified,” Grayson said. “I'm extremely passionate about all things public education, and I look forward to working with teams across the District to build strong communications norms and leverage new and existing community partnerships to positively impact the most pressing needs of our students, families, staff and community."
Grayson earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Florida A&M University. He will begin working at LBUSD on Aug. 17.