An American Girl in Washington

People who are People

Posted in Travel by AGinDC on 16 February 2012

I’m sitting here in the world’s longest flight from Philly to LaGuardia (*UPDATE: At least, for the first half of writing this post). Not because the flight is actually all that long, but because we keep getting put in f*ing holding patterns. I feel like I’m in Jet Blue’s worst nightmare. But, since I’m on hold and I’ve teed up all of the emails I can think of, I thought I’d take a quick blog break. =)

One of the awesome things about this job is that I get to meet pretty cool people. From our founder and hero Wendy Kopp to leaders of charter schools that are working their asses off to provide kids with excellent educations, every day I meet people who rock my world. I also, of course, meet some people who… well… don’t… but not nearly as often. One of the great things about being the alum of an amazing organization is that 99.9% of our alums completely kick ass. I get to meet them all over the country and it’s crazy how incredible TFA people are. It’s weird that I am one of them and is further confirmation that they actually meant to accept that other AG so many years ago and that I have been posing ever since. There are, however, also non-TFA alums who rock (although not nearly as many), and many of them are related to us in one way or another.

On Friday, when I got stuck in San Diego (did I tell you about that?) and stayed in the gorgeous US Grant Hotel, I was there to speak at a Young/World President’s Organization event (awesome) and to sit on a panel with John Legend! It was pretty cool. John is on the TFA board and is insanely passionate (and surprisingly knowledgeable) about education reform. He’s also way too charming and polite to be a pop star. He acts more like visiting minor European royalty than a guy who is friends with Kanye. Although, I guess being friends with Kanye would make anyone uber polite and humble. I mean, what else could you be? Anyways, it was a blast getting to talk ed reform with him and a roomful of 100 or so of San Diego’s top business leaders, all of whom were nodding and groaning and clapping as they, too, are passionate about education. Other awesome people I met at the event? Try the Director of the San Diego Zoo. Yep. He rocks. Of course. I mean, zoos are awesome and clearly the people who run them are awesome and since the San Diego Zoo is the second most awesome (after the National Zoo of course) zoo ever, this dude is clearly the second most awesome zoo-person ever. And he was. He had AMAZING ideas and is incredibly smart and just so so cool.

Yesterday I was in Cleveland, where, make no mistake, awesome people reside. For instance, the Mayor of East Cleveland and his assistant are incredimazing. So are a lot of the school leaders. And yesterday I met both the President and Owner of the Cleveland Indians. Totally cool guys and it was soooo amazing being in the office of the President of the Indians. Especially because he was sporting a Michigan hockey stick from when we kicked Ohio State’s ass a few months ago! Woohoo! More awesomeness? Today I went to New York to meet the Alaskan Arianna Huffington*!

It’s amazing how many diverse and incredible people all come together for the cause of education. It’s exciting, and it’s heartening, because with everyone actually pulling together, maybe we really can solve the problem of education in our country. And until then, I’m going to keep looking for opportunities to visit awesome baseball stadiums. =)


*not her actual name


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