Ralph Arza is a natural leader and skilled consultant living in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.
Ralph Arza was born in Santiago de Cuba. He and his family then moved to Miami where Ralph attended public school and ultimately graduated from Miami Senior High School in 1978. From there, Ralph went on to play football at Beloit College in Wisconsin and eventually graduated from Miami-Dade Community College. Following graduation, Ralph Arza attended Florida International University and went on to become a teacher at his alma mater, Miami High, teaching Government courses.
The influence of his own coaches and his passion for football led Ralph Arza to accept the position of Head Football Coach for the high school in 1985. Not only was Ralph the youngest head coach in the county, he also turned a losing program around and led the team to their first winning season in eighteen years. Under Ralph’s coaching and guidance, five players went on to have NFL careers while many others attended Division I schools on a football scholarship!
Ralph enjoyed working with young people and impacting their lives so much that in 1996, he teamed up with local law enforcement and High Intensity Drug Trafficking Area officials to help create Top Performance overnight camps for disadvantaged youths. This program provided team-building activities to teens from troubled neighborhoods and allowed them to see the potential for positive change in their communities and lives.
After a nearly twenty year teaching career, Ralph Arza pursued a career in public service, in the hopes that he could have a larger influence on educational reform in Florida. He ran unsuccessfully for the Miami-Dade County school Board in 1996 but was later appointed to Chairman of the Doral City Council. During his time in the role, Ralph achieved several notable accomplishments. One of his passions was pushing for educational accountability, which he achieved through drafting legislation.
One of the most impactful experiences in Ralph’s career was when he served for a length of time as a Florida state representative between 2000 and 2006, working to improve education as the Chair of the PreK – 12 Education Committee as well as the Vice Chair of the Education Council. With his coaching experience in tow, Ralph has continually aimed to ensure that students in the state of Florida have opportunities for quality education as well as personal growth.
In addition to that, Ralph Arza worked with Jeb Bush to create Florida’s A+ program. This program was aimed at improving the standards in both middle and high schools within Florida’s counties. In 2002, Ralph was appointed to the South Regional Education Board (SREB), and from there was appointed to their Executive Committee. Ralph’s commitment to education reform inspired another former Florida Governor to remark, “Ralph Arza is an educational expert.”
Ralph Arza now lives in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida, with his wife and five children. He upholds his lifelong commitment to education and supporting the students of Florida. Ralph believes in the power of education and has shown so throughout his years of service in the field. Ralph Arza continues to be a leader in the field of educational reform.
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