Akira Gutierrez Renzulli, senior training and technical assistance associate, brings 15 years of experience in promoting positive youth development in educational and community settings. She has extensive expertise in early childhood, school readiness, social and emotional learning (SEL), resilience, and trauma-informed practices—especially for children and families living in high-adversity and other marginalized communities.

For EDC’s First 10 initiative, Gutierrez collaborates with states and communities to implement the First 10 model to establish high-quality, cohesive educational, parenting, and community supports. She also provides subject matter expertise for the Massachusetts Social, Emotional, and Behavior Academy.

Previously, Gutierrez was a child mental health provider and conducted research on SEL and development, adverse childhood events, resilience, trauma-informed approaches, and student well-being. She has published papers about this work, including a mindfulness project featured in U.S. News & World Report.

Gutierrez holds an MS in Child and Adolescent Clinical Psychology from Florida International University, where she is completing her PhD in Psychology. She also has an MA in Applied Child Development from Tufts University. She is fluent in English and Spanish.