Pedro Rivera is the tenth president of Thaddeus Stevens College of Technology. He joined the College on October 1, 2020. Prior to joining the College, he served as Pennsylvania Secretary of Education.
He was appointed to the Pennsylvania State Board of Education in 2022 and serves as Chair of the Board’s Council of Higher Education.
Rivera is a lifelong educator, as a practitioner and a leader, with a focus on ensuring equitable access and funding for education. In September 2014, Rivera was honored by the White House as a Champion of Change for his efforts to transform urban education with his holistic approach to student success. He also served as president of the board of directors for the Council of Chief State School Officers (CCSSO), and was a member of President Elect Joseph Biden’s educational transition team.
"My whole career has been focused on serving students from underrepresented communities and providing opportunities for first generation college graduates, high school graduates. Being able to engage firsthand with an institution and to engage with faculty and staff and students who are focused on the same things that I believe in made me think, ‘This was an opportunity of a lifetime.’ And being able to do so from my home in Lancaster was the icing on the cake."
– Pedro Rivera
He currently serves on the board of directors for the Aspen Institute K12 Climate Action and The Hunt Institute, and is a member of the Science of Learning & Development (SoLD) Alliance. He demonstrates his commitment to his local community by serving on the boards of Community First Credit Union; Economic Development Corporation of Lancaster County; Lancaster County Community Foundation; Lancaster County STEM Alliance; Penn Medicine Lancaster General Health; and WITF Public Broadcasting.
Rivera is a native of Philadelphia (and all things Philadelphia sports fan) who calls Lancaster home with his wife Erika, son Lucas, and daughter Elena.
A first-generation college graduate, Rivera earned a Bachelor of Science degree from The Pennsylvania State University, a Master’s degree in Education Administration from Cheyney University and his Superintendent’s letter of eligibility from Arcadia University.
Prior to becoming president of Thaddeus Stevens College, Rivera served as the Secretary of the Pennsylvania Department of Education. He was appointed by Governor Wolf and confirmed unanimously by the state Senate in 2015.
President Rivera has also served as the superintendent of the School District of Lancaster, as well as a classroom teacher, assistant principal, principal, and executive director for the School District of Philadelphia.
Office of the President: Mellor Building, First Floor
Executive Assistant to the President: Stacy Thornwall-Rogers
Director of Communications - all media inquiries: Holly White
Board of Trustees