Dr. Zaharis is a faculty member of the Department of Educational Leadership and teaches in the Principal Preparation and Superintendent Preparation Programs at CUC.

She teaches face-to-face and online master's and doctoral courses in supervision and evaluation, organizational change, curriculum and assessment, instructional leadership, supervisory theory and practice, school finance and ethics. Dr. Zaharis is a program leader and is also a member of doctoral faculty overseeing doctoral students engaged in the dissertation process. She has been a school principal in both public and private school systems in three different states for 16 years and has been an educator for 25 years. 


  • PhD, Educational Leadership - Concordia University Chicago; River Forest, IL
  • MS, Educational Leadership - University of Georgia; Athens, GA
  • BS, Elementary Education - University of Nebraska; Omaha, NE

Academic and Professional Highlights


  • Assistant Marshall - CUC Graduate Commencement (2017-2018)
  • CUC Graduate Student Commencement Speaker (2014)
  • Patriarch Athenagoras Award for Distinguished Metropolis Service
  • Outstanding Teacher of the Year Finalist - Gwinnett County Public Schools, Lawrenceville, GA
  • Student Teacher of the Year - University of Nebraska
  • Athenagoras Award for Distinguished Metropolis Service - Atlanta, GA (2004)
  • Principal Evaluator (PERA) Certified State of Illinois
  • Teacher Evaluator (PERA) Certified State of Illinois
  • Professional Memberships: ICPEA, Phi Delta Kappa, ASCD, NAESP, NASSP, AMLE, DKG

Professional Affiliations

  • Association of Curriculum Development (ASCD)
  • International Council of Professors of Educational Administration (ICPEA)
  • National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP)
  • National Association of Secondary School Principals (NASSP)
  • Association of Middle Level Educators (AMLE)
  • Delta Kappa Gamma Society International (DKG)
  • Metropolis of Chicago Greek Orthodox Church Music Federation

Prior Positions

  • School Leader, Principal - 16 years in public and private schools


  • Albright, J., Safer, A., Sims, P., Tagaris, A., Glasgow, D., Sekulich, K, Zaharis, M. "What Factors Impact Why Novice Middle School Teachers in a Large Midwestern Urban School District Leave After Their Initial Year of Teaching." NCPEA Education Leadership Review, International Journal of Educational Leadership Preparation, V12, Spring, 2017.

  • Zaharis, M., Sims, P., Safer, A., Tagaris, A., Hendricks, A., Sekulich, K., Glasgow, D. "The Impact of Spirituality on School Leadership." NCPEA Education Leadership Review. National Council of Educational Leadership. V18:1, Fall 2017.


  • "Reflecting on the Danielson Framework to Improve Teaching and Learning." CUC, River Forest, IL (October 2018).

  • "Is There a Gender Gap in How Women and Men Make Ethical Decisions in Their Leadership Roles?". Inaugural Gender and Gerontology Summit at CUC, River Forest, IL (April 2018).

  • "PERA - Review Sessions for Principal Preparation Students." CUC, River Forest, IL (July 2017, July 2018).

  • "The Impact of Spirituality on School Leadership." California Lutheran University, Thousand Oaks, CA (September 2017).

  • ILTS Test Preparation Session for Graduate Students in the Principal Preparation Program, CUC, River Forest, IL (July 2017).

  • "The impact of spirituality on school leadership." Paper presented at 2017 Annual Conference Association of Lutheran Colleges Faculties, Thousand Oaks, CA (2017).

  • PERA Training Graduate Seminars (July 2016; July 2017).

  • ILTS Training Graduate Seminar (July 2017).