Ray Simon is the head of Simon Consulting, where he provides independent consulting services at the national, state and local levels on topics relating to education policy and practice. Prior to his current practice, he served at the U.S. Department of Education in the capacity of deputy secretary, the second-highest ranking official at the agency. He had previously served as the assistant secretary for elementary and secondary education. Ray was the chief state school officer for Arkansas for six years. He also served as superintendent of the Conway (Arkansas) School District from 1991 to 1997. Simon received a bachelor's and master's degree in mathematics from the University of Central Arkansas, and holds an educational specialist degree in school administration from the University of Arkansas.