skip navigation
Home About Academics Sports Locations Tuition Register Contact

Academic Leadership

Dr. Shawn Black - President

Dr. Shawn Black is President of Northern Educate Sports Academy with a strong background in executive leadership, academics, and character development. Dr. Black is a highly qualified and educated leader, having served as a University Dean, an elected School Board member, and in a variety of leadership positions as an officer in the United States Air Force and Pilot-in-Command with over 100 combat hours.  He is a graduate of the United States Air Force Academy, one of the nation’s most highly selective universities, known for its rigorous academics and sharp focus on leadership and character development.   

Dr. Black served as Dean of the School of Management for a fully accredited online university before leaving to run Northern Educate full-time.  As Dean, Dr. Black directed a school serving over 20,000 of the University’s 100,000 plus students.  He led five Directors of Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programs within his School and oversaw the course and instructor evaluation process to ensure quality.  Dr. Black was a key player in helping the University earn its 5-year reaccreditation from the Higher Learning Commission and served as Chair of the Curriculum Committee for the Schools of Business, Management, and Science and Technology.

Prior to that, Dr. Black earned his stripes in higher education as a curriculum developer and instructor for a variety of Organization and Management Courses, and then Instructor of the Year. He quickly became a Program Director and then Dean.  In the meantime, Dr. Black was also elected to the School Board in Northport, Washington, where he helped guide a variety of initiatives.


As an Air Force officer, Dr. Black served as Chief of Information Operations, Scott Air Force Base, Illinois, where he was responsible for the strategic education development of the Command’s 40,000 members, including education on classified operations and programs. While an instructor at the highly selective Mobility Weapons School, he taught Master’s level courses on Mission Employment, Command and Control, Flight Tactics, and Aircraft Systems. He also developed and wrote academic curriculum for the school’s entire flight program, including syllabus, course materials, slides, and tests covering fifteen different lessons.  By teaching with passion and knowledge, Dr. Black twice earned “Top Instructor” honors.   


In the air, Dr. Black flew as a fully qualified KC-135 instructor and evaluator pilot with nearly 3,000 flight hours spanning thirty-five countries, including over 100 combat hours.  He served as Command pilot on 19 Operation Enduring Freedom (Afghanistan) and 13 Southern Watch (Iraq) missions.  He led the 12-ship formation that refueled the first B-2 stealth bombers to strike Afghanistan after the attacks of September 11th, 2001.  Earlier, as a young Captain, he helped establish operations in England and Bahrain in support of Operation Allied Force (Bosnia), when he flew 43 combat missions in Southwest Asia.

Dr. Black earned his Ph.D. in Organization and Management from Capella University in Minneapolis, Minnesota.  He received his Master’s Degree in Military Studies from American Military University and his Bachelor of Science Degree from the United States Air Force Academy where he also served as Squadron Commander.    

Dr. Black has been married for over 20 years and has five children, ages 6 through 18.  His wife, Kathy, is a fellow Air Force Academy graduate, and their four youngest children attend the Academy.

Kathy Black - Director of Academics

Kathy Black is the Director of Academics for Northern Educate Sports Academy. She holds a Master’s degree in Management from Webster University and earned her Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the United States Air Force Academy in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Mrs. Black has extensive experience in both the traditional school and computer-based environments. Mrs. Black taught American Government, American History, and World History at Bloomingdale High School in Valrico, Florida, before moving to the college level. She then became an instructor at a fully accredited online institution. While in that capacity, she taught nearly 2,000 college students over four years in a variety of courses from Introduction to Online Learning and American Government to Leadership, Human Resources, Logistics, and Management.

Prior to that, Mrs. Black served as an officer in the United States Air Force. There, she developed and-or managed all quality programs within the 2,200-member Logistics Group, including human resource development, strategic planning, and performance measurement. As an aircraft maintenance officer, she was the Officer-in-Charge of a C-5 Aircraft Maintenance Unit, where she was directly responsible for the technical supervision, administration, and maintenance production of ten of the Air Force’s largest aircraft, valued in excess of 1.25 billion dollars. She also directly led and managed staff and technical personnel as Maintenance Operations Flight Commander for the 97th Logistics Group and ran all personnel and administrative programs as a Squadron Executive Officer.