President & CEO,
Tejano Center for Community Concerns
Superintendent of Schools,
Raul Yzaguirre Schools for Success
Ed.D., University of Texas at Austin
M.Ed., University of Houston
B.S., University of Houston
Dr. Adriana Tamez grew up in the Denver Harbor area of Houston, Texas. Seeing the poverty and need around her convinced her at an early age that she would have to make a difference in the community. Her calling was guided by education, knowing that furthering your education was a good way to empower yourself and help others. This was also the impetus for her joining forces with other community-minded individuals to create the Raul Yzaguirre Schools for Success. Instead of looking around and making excuses, Tamez has used her experiences to create an opportunity to be able to look at the needs of the community through their eyes and effectively provide what is needed for the community.
Tamez is a career educator and community leader, dedicated to the success and empowerment of students and families, with a special interest and commitment to those challenged by life circumstances. She concurrently serves as President/CEO of the Tejano Center for Community Concerns (TCCC) and superintendent of its charter school system, the Raul Yzaguirre Schools for Success (RYSS). As the Tejano Center president/CEO, Tamez has been instrumental in guiding the organization to much needed financial stability. Under her leadership, the center offers a menu of intergenerational programs and services that are designed to empower families and transform lives. Her involvement in the Greater Houston community has allowed her to develop relationships with federal, state, local and business leaders, which form the basis of enriching partnerships to benefit Tejano Center.
Prior to her appointment as superintendent, Tamez was engaged as a consultant to begin the implementation of organizational systems and structures. To-date, she has developed partnerships with social service and educational agencies to most efficiently and effectively meet the needs of all RYSS students; securing the schools financial foundation. Ultimately, Dr. Tamez is dedicated to ensuring that all students are prepared to live and work in an ever-changing, complex global society; graduate from RYSS; enter a four-year college/university; embark on successful careers; and be productive, responsible citizens.
Dr. Tamez began her educational career as a bilingual teacher at Mario Gallegos Elementary School in the Houston Independent School District. Following her work as an associate director of development at the University of Houston College of Education, she resumed her career at HISD, where she served as principal at Rufus Cage Elementary School, Project Chrysalis Middle School, and Thomas Edison Middle School. In 2005, she was appointed superintendent of HISD’s Central Region, where she supervised 54 schools, 97 percent of which earned the state’s highest accountability ratings of “Recognized” or “Exemplary.” In the Central Region, she oversaw the instructional programs and all other support services for more than 35,000 students.
In 2010, Dr. Tamez joined the Region 4 Education Service Center as Assistant Executive Director, where she supported more than 50 public school districts and 50 public charter schools that represented more than 1.1 million students, 84,000 educators, and 1,400 school campuses.
Dr. Tamez is a founding board member of the Tejano Center for Community Concerns and the Raul Yzaguirre Schools for Success. She was the first director of education at the Raul Yzaguirre Middle Charter School for Success. Throughout her career challenging the status quo and successfully developing best educational practices, she has remained committed to the neighborhood and community served by RYSS and its parent organization.
Dr. Tamez earned a bachelor’s degree in interdisciplinary studies and a master’s degree in educational administration and supervision at the University of Houston. She earned her doctorate in educational administration at the University of Texas at Austin as a Fellow in the university’s nationally acclaimed Cooperative Superintendency Program.
Dr. Tamez has received several awards and recognitions of her work. Examples of awards she has won include: the 2020 Solo Mujeres Woman of Year for Education Programs award; Ford Motors Mujeres Legendarias, 2017; The White House Initiative—Servant Leader in Education Service Award, 2016; The University of Texas at Austin—Dr. Nolan Estes Leadership Ascension Award, 2010; Tejano Center for Community Concerns—Willie Velasquez Hispanic Excellence Award, 2009; Association of Hispanic School Administrators—Outstanding Principal of the Year Award, 2004; Houston Independent School District, East District—Principal of the Year Award, 2003; Tejano Center for Community Concerns—President’s Award, 1999; Willie Velasquez Excellence Achievement Award Educational Award, 1999. Tamez is or has been affiliated with several other nonprofits, including Harris County Housing Authority Board, Effective June 25, 2019; Houston Community College Board of Trustees, District III Trustee and Former Board Chair; Keep Houston Beautiful Commission, Commissioner; and Houston READ Commission, Advisory Board.