Principal of Early Intel
Rick Mockler serves as Principal of Early Intel, a firm specializing in performance data and quality
improvement for early childhood providers. He previously served as Chief Quality Improvement Officer for
the National Head Start Association, where he staffed the Monitoring Redesign Task Force which informed
the current federal monitoring system. While at NHSA, he partnered with the University of Chicago to
develop an assessment for family engagement, and oversaw planning and content for the Early Childhood
Innovation Summit and Manager & Director Academy.
Rick previously served as Executive Director for the California Head Start Association, where he oversaw
professional development, launched a Family Development Credential and championed legislative
initiatives that streamlined assessment and licensing requirements. He began his career developing local
youth and family programs in Oakland, California, went on to lead Catholic Charities of California and
along the way helped create a community development
company, CoHousing Partners. Rick was introduced to child development theory while helping his daughter
learn baby signs as part of the first research on the subject, by UC Davis. He holds an MPA focused on
organization change and an MA focused on liberation theology.