Lea Crusey is CEO of Optimality, a consulting firm that advises early stage start-ups and education-focused organizations. Clients to-date have included The Beans, Cartemo, The National Council on Teacher Quality, G3MS, and the National Association of Counties.
Her career started in the classroom as an educator through Teach For America, teaching 4th, 6th, 7th, and 8th graders in East Palo Alto, California. In the twenty years since, she has crossed geographies and sectors in pursuit of impact in service to improving lives, in practice and in policy.
In the non-profit sectors Lea led advocacy work in policy and politics to increase access to and quality of public education. In the private sector, Lea's work applied innovative initiatives designed to improve economic activity and transportation flow. As an entrepreneur, Lea built and ran a first-in-kind political action committee funded by peers across the country and designed an insurance product to reduce risk for college matriculants accepting student loans. As an appointed official, Lea has served on the DC Public Charter School Board since 2018 and as Chair of that body since 2021. She lives in Washington, DC with her husband and two school aged children.