Headshot of Aj Crabill

Airick Journey Crabill, known to his colleagues and readers as AJ, has always been a transformative figure in the field of educational reform. His latest book, Great on Their Behalf: Why School Boards Fail,Copy of the book cover for Great on Their Behalf by Airick Journey Crabill How Yours Can Become Effective, has become a cornerstone resource for school board members across the United States, inspiring and enabling them to drive positive outcomes in student education.

AJ’s book provides a transformative journey for its readers, emphasizing the need for a mindset shift among school system leaders. It challenges them to reevaluate their roles and adopt a more effective approach to governance that focuses squarely on student outcomes, rather than adult conveniences.

Overcoming Challenges

AJ’s journey to publishing was fraught with challenges. While he had strong ideas about how to share the message in person, he was struggling to find a way to translate that into written form. Half way through the writing of the book, he actually almost gave up. “I was so frustrated and hated what I had so far, that I talked myself into just walking away from the project entirely.” Despite these frustrations, AJ’s commitment to sharing his message about student outcomes was strong. He believed in his mission so deeply that he pushed forward, convinced of the impact his work could have. As he states, “I’m definitely an impact-focused author. There is a specific difference I want to make in the world—improving student outcomes—and this book is a physical manifestation of that devotion.”

The Impact of the Book

Since its release, Great on Their Behalf has sold over 10,000 copies, including e-books, paperbacks, hardcovers, and a recently released audiobook. Before releasing the book, AJ would frequently do one or two keynote addresses per quarter; that number has since doubled after the book’s release. For the first time, this year AJ will host two coach certification cohorts rather than just one to accommodate the interest that school board members have in becoming certified coaches. All of this has positioned him as a sought-after speaker, packed his calendar full with keynotes and coaching requests from educational institutions looking to adopt his innovative approaches, and grown the number of school board coaches certified to make a difference with school system leaders and the students they serve.

The Role of Scribe Media

Scribe Media played a crucial role in AJ’s success. The collaboration allowed AJ to focus on his message while Scribe handled the intricacies of publishing and distribution. Reflecting on the partnership, AJ notes, “This is why Scribe matters. Without having my own author coach, I might actually have given up. I know there are others out there with a message the world needs who just need the nudge and support Scribe offers to turn ideas to reality. Scribe helped me make a difference for children all across the nation that I otherwise might not have made.”

Looking to the Future

After the success of his first book, AJ is already planning his next projects with Scribe. His ongoing mission to reshape American education continues to drive him, and he remains dedicated to spreading his transformative message as widely as possible. “This book was about a student outcomes-focused approach to school system governance. The next book, which I’m almost finished writing, is about a student-led approach to restorative practices. As adults, we often miss or actively ignore the leadership that students can bring to our schools, which also deprives students of the opportunity to develop critical skills. I can’t wait to share this book with the world.”

AJ’s story is a powerful testament to the impact that dedicated individuals can have on education and governance. It serves as an inspiration not only to current and aspiring school board members but also to anyone facing significant challenges in pursuit of making a meaningful difference in the world.

“In my work, I preach about the importance of school system leaders having a coach to help them with improving student outcomes. Now I share similar advice to my colleagues thinking about writing their first book: authors need coaches too.” – AJ Crabill. Luckily, Scribe Media is here to help.

To learn more about AJ’s work with school boards, visit
To learn more about AJ’s work with restorative practices, visit