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About Catalpa

Who is Catalpa?

Principal Partner

Tom WilsonWhile my oldest friend calls me Willie, almost everyone else calls me Tom. My formal name is Thomas A. Wilson.

I founded Catalpa in 1996 after finishing my book on English school inspection. Some say "you should not go it alone unless you have to." I had to. I could not think of any other way I could devote my full professional energy to what I knew I had to do, figuring out how to build a new legitimate methodology for assessing schools that was based on English inspection. Most people working in American education research were interested in school reform, that is that schools should reform, but they were not interested in building new paradigms about what made their research research.

My dotorial training at Harvard was as a researcher in human development, school organizations, social psychology and anthropology. I have worked in or at American school reform since 1963. Click here for my resume.


Catalpa relies on the advice and work of a spirited group of associates whose experience ranges across a number of academic fields, practitioner experience and national borders. Some are past or present clients.

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