Byron Donalds Wife, Know Everything About Byron Donalds & His Wife!

Erika Lees Donalds, a prominent figure in the world of education and politics, is not just known for her advocacy but also for her role as the wife of Florida Congressman Byron Donalds. With a rich background in finance and a strong commitment to school choice, Erika’s journey is a testament to her dedication and passion. Here’s a closer look at her life, career, and family.

Who Is Erika Lees Donalds?

Born and raised in Tampa, Florida, Erika Lees Donalds has built a career that spans finance, education, and politics. She attended Chamberlain Senior High School and later graduated from Florida State University with a degree in accounting in 2002. Erika furthered her education by earning a master’s degree in accounting from Florida Atlantic University in 2006.

Erika’s professional journey began in finance. She worked for almost 20 years at DGHM, an investment management firm, where she held roles including Chief Financial Officer and Chief Compliance Officer. Her responsibilities ranged from managing the company’s finances to overseeing compliance and operations. Her impressive work earned her a spot on Gulfshore Business magazine’s 40-Under-40 list in 2014.

How Did Erika Transition Into Education?

Erika’s shift from finance to education was driven by personal experience. When her middle son faced challenges in public school and was unable to secure a spot in a charter school, Erika became a fervent advocate for school choice. In 2014, she ran for and won a seat on the Collier County School Board as a Republican.

During her tenure on the school board from 2014 to 2018, Erika championed educational reforms and became a leading voice for school choice in Florida. Her work didn’t stop there; she also served on Florida’s 2017-2018 Constitution Revision Commission and Governor DeSantis’ Advisory Committee on Education and Workforce Development.

What Is OptimaEd and How Did Erika Found It?

In 2017, Erika founded OptimaEd, an education company focused on running charter schools in Florida under The Optima Foundation. The organization aims to provide high-quality educational options for students and their families. Erika’s vision for OptimaEd is to use time-tested methods to prepare students to think critically and face future challenges with knowledge and virtue.

As CEO of OptimaEd, Erika oversees the creation and management of several charter schools. Her leadership reflects her commitment to giving parents the power to choose the best educational environment for their children. Under her guidance, OptimaEd has become a forward-thinking force in the education sector.

What Are Erika’s Other Roles and Contributions?

Erika Donalds’ influence extends beyond her role at OptimaEd. She serves on various advisory boards, including the Florida Gulf Coast University Board of Trustees, the Classical Learning Test, Moms for Liberty, and the Independent Women’s Forum Education Freedom Center. These roles allow her to contribute to shaping educational policies and promoting school choice at both state and national levels.

How Has Erika Supported Her Husband, Byron Donalds?

Erika’s support for her husband, Byron Donalds, is evident in both his personal and political life. Byron, a Florida Congressman representing the 19th District, has been nominated by a group of Republicans as a candidate for Speaker of the House. Throughout his political career, Erika has been a steadfast partner, providing encouragement and support.

The couple, both graduates of Florida State University, have been married since March 15, 2003. They share a deep bond, often expressing their love and appreciation for each other publicly. In March 2022, Erika celebrated their 19th anniversary with a heartfelt message on social media, describing Byron as her hero and soulmate.

How Do Erika and Byron Manage Their Family Life?

Erika and Byron Donalds are proud parents to three sons: Damon, Darin, and Mason. The family’s life is rooted in faith and strong values, with Erika often sharing moments of family joy and togetherness on her social media. Their eldest son, Damon, is a sophomore defensive lineman for the Holy Cross Crusaders in Massachusetts.

Despite their busy professional lives, Erika and Byron prioritize their family. They ensure that their children are supported and loved, balancing their demanding careers with their roles as parents. Erika’s Instagram posts frequently reflect her pride and joy in her family, especially during significant milestones and holidays.

What Drives Erika’s Passion for Education?

Erika’s passion for education is deeply personal and driven by her desire to make a difference. Her advocacy for school choice stems from her own experiences as a mother seeking the best for her children. She believes that every child deserves access to high-quality education and that parents should have the ability to choose the right school for their needs.

Her work with OptimaEd and her involvement in educational policy highlight her dedication to creating positive change. Erika’s goal is to empower parents and ensure that all students receive an education that prepares them for future success.

What’s Next for Erika Donalds?

Looking forward, Erika Donalds continues to expand her influence in education and politics. Her leadership at OptimaEd and her advocacy for school choice remain central to her mission. As she supports her husband’s political career and manages her own professional endeavors, Erika’s future is filled with opportunities to make a lasting impact.


Erika Lees Donalds is a dynamic leader whose contributions to education and politics are making a significant difference. From her work with OptimaEd to her support of school choice and her role as a devoted wife and mother, Erika’s journey is inspiring. As she continues to advocate for educational freedom and support her family, Erika’s impact is set to grow even further.


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