This report documents how education “quarterbacks” (formerly known as harbormasters) have supported governance reform in three cities, and why and how they were effective. This exploration of why districts need governance reform and how to catalyze and implement it focuses on the following questions: (1) Why did the education quarterbacks in these cities take the steps they did? (2) How did those actions ultimately lead to and support a new governance structure? (3) What lessons can other city-based education organizations take from their pioneering experiences? The report identifies eight actions consistently observed among the three profiled quarterbacks: The Mind Trust (Indianapolis), Empower Schools (Springfield), and New Schools for New Orleans. Although the conditions, people, and steps are specific to each city, all three education quarterbacks performed most, if not all, of these actions to catalyze governance reform and support successful implementation.