The Dallas Morning News congratulates Linz Award recipients Abby & Todd Williams

Todd Williams

Chief Executive Officer
The Commit Partnership

Highly committed to public education, Todd is the founding Chairman and CEO of The Commit Partnership, the nation’s largest educational collective impact organization with over 200 institutions and educating more than 790,000 students. The Commit Partnership is focused on improving post-secondary completion and economic mobility levels across the North Texas region.

Todd is a senior trustee and former board chair for Austin College, one of the region’s leading liberal arts institutions. With his wife Abby, Todd was the founding chair for the regional advisory board for Teach for America in Dallas/Ft. Worth. In 2019 Todd was appointed by Governor Greg Abbott to serve on the five-member State Land Board, responsible for overseeing the investment of a $12 billion fund supporting Texas’ K-12 public education system. Todd currently serves as an advisory board member of Educate Texas, an educational initiative of Communities Foundation of Texas. He is the former Chair of the Citizen Budget Review Commission for Dallas ISD ($1.7 billion budget for educating 155,000 students) and the former Vice-Chair of the Board of Trustees for Uplift Education, a public charter school management organization serving almost 20,000 students across the D/FW area. He is the former chairman of both the Real Estate Finance and Investment Center and the Real Estate Council of Dallas. Todd also served for eight years as the Education Policy Advisor to former Dallas Mayor Mike Rawlings.

Prior to dedicating his efforts full time as a volunteer to public education, Todd served as both a partner and as global co-head of Goldman Sachsreal estate private equity investment area, retiring in 2009 following a 20-year career with the firm in their New York, Los Angeles, and Dallas offices.

Abigail (“Abby”) Williams

Founder and Chief Executive Officer
United to Learn

An unwavering education advocate, Abby has been dedicated to eliminating inequities in the educational system for the past two decades. Abby was raised by a single-parent mother who worked as many as three jobs to make a better life for her children. Her mother’s steadfast determination left an impression on Abby about the value of education. Abby went on to earn a full academic scholarship at Southern Methodist University and graduate summa cum laude.

Abby believes that a strong public education is the key to lifting up today’s children and tomorrow’s communities. As the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of United to Learn, she works to live out the mission of transforming relationships between school and community in pursuit of her vision of accelerating student achievement and developing purposeful leaders.

In 2007, Abby and her husband, Todd, helped found the Uplift Williams Preparatory School, a K-12 free tuition public charter school operated by Uplift Education that educates 1,500 primarily low-income children in northwest Dallas. Together the couple also served as the founding chairs of Teach for America DFW’s Regional Advisory Board.

Abby currently serves on the Board of the Perot Museum of Nature and Science, the Dallas Holocaust and Human Rights Museum as well as SMU’s Cox School of Business Executive Council. She and her husband, Todd, are lead sponsors of the Commit Partnership. She has also served as a board member for Dallas CASA, Dallas Women’s Foundation and the North Dallas High School Community Board, as well as other organizations.

Before launching United to Learn, Abby served as Vice President and Director of Charitable Services for Goldman Sachs & Co. where she was responsible for the development and implementation of the firm’s annual giving efforts totaling $25 million worldwide.

From The Dallas Morning News

Dallas philanthropists Abby and Todd Williams receive 92nd Linz Award for contributions to education

The award is one of the city’s most prestigious civic honors, celebrating people whose community involvement has made a significant impact on Dallas in the last decade.