PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] — Wendy Kopp, CEO and founder of Teach For America, and Hillary Salmons, executive director of the Providence After School Alliance, will be honored with the Leadership for Change through Education Award, presented by the Pembroke Center for Teaching and Research on Women at Brown University on Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2009. The ceremony will begin at 8 p.m. in the Salomon Center for Teaching, De Ciccio Family Auditorium. As the national recipient of the award, Kopp will deliver the keynote address, titled “Realizing Educational Opportunity for All.” It is free and open to the public.
Kopp proposed the creation of Teach for America in her undergraduate senior thesis at Princeton in 1989 and has spent the last 20 years working to sustain and grow the organization. In the 2009-10 school year, some 7,300 corps members will teach in the country’s neediest communities, reaching more than 450,000 students. Kopp also serves as the chief executive of Teach For All, which is supporting the development of Teach For America’s model in other countries. She is the author of One Day, All Children: The Unlikely Triumph of Teach For America and What I Learned Along the Way. In 2009, Teach for America was the number one employer of graduating seniors at Brown, and the University is among the top 10 medium-size colleges and universities that contributed graduating seniors to the 2009 corps.
“We are thrilled to recognize Wendy Kopp’s transformational work in founding, developing, nurturing, and sustaining Teach For America,” said Leslie Newman, who chairs the award committee at the Pembroke Center. “Teach for America has enriched public school education and created a national and international movement of young people dedicated to education equity and excellence.”
Salmons is executive director of the Providence After School Alliance (PASA), an organization that aims to improve and increase quality after school opportunities for the children and youth of Providence. She is being honored as the local recipient of the Leadership Award. Salmons leads a team focused on furthering a statewide quality improvement plan to advance practice and assessment capacities for community-based providers, as well as developing the delivery system, known as AfterZones, which serves nearly 2,000 students each year. Salmons earned a B.A. from Harvard University and an M.A. in public administration from the University of Oklahoma.
“Hillary Salmons has led the Providence After School Alliance to exciting new heights,” said Newman. “Under her leadership, PASA has been particularly effective in creating innovative partnerships between community based organizations and the Providence Public School Department to expand and ensure the quality of after school programming for students.”
The Leadership for Change through Education Award
At the core of the Pembroke Center’s mission is its belief in the necessity and power of education. The Leadership for Change through Education Award honors women in any field who, both nationally and at the grass-roots level, succeed in changing lives by helping others to see the world differently and who offer new ways of thinking about seemingly unsolvable problems. A donation of $5,000 is made to an organization selected by each recipient. Past recipients include Marian Wright Edelman, founder and president of the Children’s Defense Fund; Sister Mary Reilly, founder of Dorcas Place and Sophia Academy; Margot Stern Strom, founder and executive director of Facing History and Ourselves; and H. Terri Adelman, executive director of Volunteers in Providence Schools.
The Pembroke Center for Teaching and Research on Women
The Pembroke Center for Teaching and Research on Women plays a unique role at Brown University. Founded in 1981, the Pembroke Center was named in honor of Pembroke College in Brown University and the women of Pembroke and its predecessor, the Women’s College. It also honors those early women who fought to gain access to higher education and who raised the money to build Pembroke Hall in 1897. Although established to explore the cultural and social meanings of gender, the Center’s research has expanded to include the many other differences critical to the understanding of gender: ethnicity, race, nationality, and economics. In an era that seems torn by clashes of all types, the Pembroke Center explores the ways questions of difference affect our thinking and our world.
The Pembroke Center offers a broad range of research, teaching, and alumni programs. Its interdisciplinary research program, which draws scholars from around the world, has earned a reputation for excellence. Its scholarly journal, differences, the premier journal in feminist cultural studies, enjoys a worldwide readership. The Center’s work to preserve the history of women at Brown and in Rhode Island has produced the Christine Dunlap Farnham Archives, a rich resource for scholars.
For more information, visit www.pembrokecenter.org.