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Leadership Team

LiFT Academy lois
LiFT University Transition Program Director

LiFT University Project Manager

A Florida native, Lois Mays was born and raised in St. Petersburg by passionate public servants: a schoolteacher and a firefighter. A graduate of Pinellas County Schools, she continued her education at the University of South Florida. As President of Kappa Delta Pi Honor Society, Mrs. Mays led the charge for inclusivity in opposition to self-contained learning. She graduated from USF in 1994 with a degree in Elementary Education and spent the next 11 years teaching reading and language arts to middle school children. In 2005, she earned her Masters’ Degree in Educational Leadership and left the classroom to become a middle school administrator.  Mrs. Mays has served as a school principal in FL, TN, and AL, specializing in turning around failing schools. Much of her success has come from overhauling the special education programs within the schools she has led.  Since 2017, Lois Mays has served as the Director of LiFT University, working both to propel her own institution and work alongside other organizations across the country to advocate for more and better opportunities for children and young adults with neuro-diversities.  

Lois Mays believes every young person can be a flourishing part of their community and devotes her days to making it happen.