Max Schachter is a national school safety advocate. His son Alex is one of the 17 victims murdered in the Parkland school shooting on Valentine’s Day 2018. Max is the founder and executive director of Safe Schools for Alex 501(c)(3). Their mission is to provide most current school safety best practices and resources to students, parents, school districts and law enforcement so that all children can learn in a safe environment.
Since the heartbreaking day that changed Max’s life forever, he has been advocating for policy change at the highest levels of the United States government. He has worked alongside members of congress, leaders of all major federal agencies, and Presidents of the United States to make schools safer. Max has testified as a subject matter expert before the United States House and Senate and multiple state legislatures. In August 2018 he advocated for the creation of a federal agency to house national school safety best practices. In June 2019, Max’s vision became a reality when President Trump created the Federal School Safety Clearinghouse at SchoolSafety.gov. In July 2022 Max attended the White House ceremony where President Biden announced the most significant gun safety legislation in 27 years, the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act, which made SchoolSafety.gov permanent and law.
Max has also worked to improve the safety and security of Florida’s 2.4 million students through his appointment to the Marjory Stoneman Douglas (MSD) High School Public Safety Commission. The MSD commission, established by former Governor Rick Scott, was tasked with leading the statewide investigation into the Parkland school shooting and developing recommendations to protect Florida’s children.
Max has advised the Federal Bureau of Investigation Behavioral Threat Assessment Center, the U.S. Secret Service National Threat Assessment Center, and the Ohio Attorney General’s Office on threat assessment policies and procedures. He is a member of the National Sheriffs’ Association School Safety and Security Committee and the International Association of Chiefs of Police Mass Violence Peer-to-Peer Advisory Team. In June 2019, Max was awarded the U.S. Department of Justice Attorney General Citizen Volunteer Service Award by Attorney General William Barr.
Max has been interviewed by many local and national media outlets including CNN, MSNBC, Fox, ABC, NBC, CBS, and Dr. Phil. He has given keynote presentations to many school districts, law enforcement organizations, and local, state, and federal agencies detailing the lessons learned and best practices developed in the aftermath of the Parkland school shooting along with his journey from anguish to advocacy.