Congressman Tom Cole Recognized as a Teach For America Congressional Champion

Cole Honored for Efforts to Increase Educational Equity for Students


Oklahoma City, February 3, 2016—This week, Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK) will be recognized as Teach For America Congressional Champion for his continued efforts to expand educational opportunities for students in Oklahoma and across the nation. Cole is one of 12 members of Congress to be honored in this way by Teach For America CEO Elisa Villanueva Beard.

“Our Congressional champions have played an instrumental role in growing Teach For America’s impact in our first 25 years. Their support for critical funding and key policy provisions  has helped expand educational opportunity for children growing up in poverty across the country and inspired thousands of individuals to join the fight for educational equity and excellence,” said Teach For America CEO Elisa Villanueva Beard. “I am thankful for leaders like Congressman Cole who are committed to ensuring that all children in this nation have the opportunity to attain an excellent education.”

Cole was selected for his unwavering support for Teach For America in Oklahoma and Washington, D.C. During his time in office, Cole championed several critical educational policies, including high quality alternative certification programs, and increased funding for AmeriCorps.

“Without question, one of the greatest investments we can make in our young people is ensuring all students have access to a quality education and the tools they need to succeed,” said Cole. “The importance of that investment has always been foundational to Teach For America’s mission and continues to beat proudly in the hearts of its corps members and alumni spread out across the United States. As Teach For America marks 25 years of service to children in disadvantaged circumstances, I am honored to be recognized for my support of policies and programs—like Teach For America—that help those students achieve excellence.”

Teach For America has become an important partner in the local effort to ensure that every child has access to an excellent and equitable education.  The organization recruits top college graduates and professionals and prepares them to teach in urban and rural public schools, where they work for at least two years. Teach For America corps members and alumni teach in low-income communities in Tulsa, Oklahoma City, Lawton, Sapulpa and Muskogee. The organization’s partnership with these communities has impacted 97,000 schoolchildren statewide.

The list of Teach For America’s 2016 Congressional Champions follows:

  • Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO)
  • Rep. Susan W. Brooks (R-IN)
  • Rep. Tom Cole (R-OK)
  • Sen. John Cornyn (R-TX)
  • Sen. William Cassidy (R-LA)
  • Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-HI)
  • Chairman John Kline (R-MN)
  • Sen. Barbara Mikulski (D-MD)
  • Sen. Patty Murray (D-WA)
  • Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY)
  • Rep.  Bobby  Scott (D-VA))
  • Sen. Roger Wicker (R-MS)

About Teach For America
Teach For America works in partnership with communities to expand educational opportunity for children facing the challenges of poverty. Founded in 1990, Teach For America recruits and develops a diverse corps of outstanding college graduates and professionals to make an initial two-year commitment to teach in high-need schools and become lifelong leaders in the effort to end educational inequity. Today, 8,600 corps members are teaching in 52 urban and rural regions across the country while more than 42,000 alumni work across sectors to ensure that all children have access to an excellent education. Teach For America is a proud member of the AmeriCorps national service network. For more information, visit and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.