SEL Founders

Twenty five years ago, CASEL was an entirely volunteer group of educators and researchers committed to advancing social and emotional learning. With support from the Fetzer Institute and Surdna Foundation, the group met periodically to discuss new directions in the field of social and emotional learning and ways to build and strengthen CASEL as an organization. Many of the original members still work closely with CASEL and as leaders in the SEL field.

Leadership Team

The identifications below refer to the professional involvements of members at the time when they met regularly.


  • Daniel Goleman, CASEL co-founder, author of Emotional Intelligence
  • Mark T. Greenberg, Prevention Research Center for the Promotion of Human Development, Penn State University
  • Eileen R. Growald, Venture Philanthropist
  • Linda Lantieri, Director, Inner Resilience Program
  • Timothy P. Shriver, Chair, Special Olympics
  • David J. Sluyter, Senior Advisor, Fetzer Institute


  • Sheldon Berman, Superintendent of Schools, Hudson, MA
  • Patricia Caesar, President and CEO, Caesar Consulting Group
  • Maurice Elias, Professor of Psychology, Rutgers University
  • Norris M. Haynes, Professor of Counseling and School Psychology, Southern Connecticut State University
  • Janice Jackson, Assistant Professor, Lynch School of Education, Boston College
  • Beverly Benson Long, Immediate Past President, World Federation for Mental Health
  • JoAnn B. Manning, Vice President of Program Implementation, Platform Learning
  • Janet Patti, Professor, Department of Curriculum and Teaching, Hunter College
  • Terry Pickeral, Executive Director, National Center for Learning and Citizenship, Education Commission of the States
  • Mary Utne O’Brien, Research Professor of Psychology and Education, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Herbert J. Walberg, Professor Emeritus, Education and Psychology, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Roger P. Weissberg, Professor of Psychology and Education, University of Illinois at Chicago
  • Joseph E. Zins, Professor, College of Education, University of Cincinnati

Learn more about CASEL’s history here and important milestones here.