Executive Leadership Team
Damon Carson, JD
General Manager of Education, Instruction, and Operations
Damon often mentions that his career in early childhood education began in 1974 with the San Diego County Head Start program as a preschooler whose favorite time of the day was playing outside! It is also a place where he made many lifelong friendships and learned the importance of education from many diverse role models. From his Head Start beginnings, Damon has spent his career gaining experiences that have steered him towards becoming an effective leader and advocate.
Damon has been with the Neighborhood House Association in San Diego, CA since 2000. He joined the organization as a Compliance Analyst and has spent the last 15 years increasing his areas of responsibility within the organization. Currently, he serves as the Executive Vice President General Manager of Education, Instruction and Operations. He leads a team of 1,200 employees and manages a budget in excess of $85 million annually. He is known for being an innovative and thoughtful leader with a passion for advocating for the country’s less fortunate children and families. Under his leadership, NHA’s Head Start program secured one billion dollars in federal funding for early childhood education to support some of San Diego County’s most vulnerable residents.
Damon is active on the advocacy fronts at the regional and national level; serving as the Chair of the National Head Start Association, Board Member of the Region IX Head Start Association, and as a founding member and Treasurer of the National Head Start Alumni Network.
Prior to joining NHA and while in law school, Damon worked two jobs to pay for his educational expenses, one with Arthur Andersen, LLP in the Audit, Tax and Legal division and performing legal research with Powers and Frost, LLP.
Damon holds a Juris Doctorate degree from the Thurgood Marshall School of Law at Texas Southern University and Bachelor of Arts degree in Public Administration from San Diego State University. In his down time, he enjoys fishing, coaching football, track and field, and most importantly, spending time traveling with his family.