Press Release

Senator Lamar Alexander to Receive Promise of America Award

America’s Promise Alliance Honors Five Individuals Committed to Improving the Lives of Young People

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Washington, D.C. – America’s Promise Alliance, the nation’s largest partnership dedicated to improving the lives of young people, is pleased to announce that it will honor Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN) with a “Promise of America” Award at its “Promise Night” gala on April 15th. The event, to be held at the historic Howard Theater in Washington, DC, will recognize the efforts of five individuals who have made an exceptional difference in the lives of America’s youth.  
 
As America’s Promise approaches its 20th anniversary in 2017, “Promise Night” will echo the legacy of America’s Promise – the belief that every child should have the opportunity and support to pursue his or her American Dream. 
 
“A public servant for nearly 40 years, Sen. Alexander has been an advocate for children his entire career,” said America’s Promise board chair Alma J. Powell and President & CEO John Gomperts in a joint statement. “We look forward to recognizing his contributions –previous, current and future - to helping young people fulfill their full potential.”
 
“America’s Promise Alliance does important work to improve the lives of young people across the country, and I am honored to accept the ‘Promise of America’ award,” said Senator Alexander.  “A good education is the best way for Americans to start climbing the economic ladder, which is why I am working to fix No Child Left Behind and make it easier for students to attend and afford college."
 
Sen. Alexander is the only Tennessean ever popularly elected to become governor and U.S. Senator.  As governor, he helped Tennessee become one of the first states to pay teachers more for teaching well and started Tennessee’s Governor’s Schools for outstanding students.   Before his election to the Senate, where he has now served for 13 years, Sen. Alexander was previously U.S. Education Secretary and president of the University of Tennessee.  During his time in the private sector, he co-founded Corporate Child Care, Inc. which later merged with Bright Horizons, Inc., creating the world’s largest provider of worksite daycare.  
 
In January 2015, Sen. Alexander was elected by his fellow committee members to serve as the Chairman of the Health, Education, Labor and Pensions committee where he has said his top education priorities are fixing No Child Left Behind and deregulating and reauthorizing the Higher Education Act.
 
The “Promise of America” Awards honor champions who have answered the call of every American president for the last forty years to fulfill the “Five Promises” for children and youth in their communities and in our nation: Caring Adults, Safe Places, a Healthy Start, an Effective Education, and Opportunities to Give Back. The award is the highest honor conferred by America’s Promise Alliance. 
 
The other 2015 award recipients include AT&T Chairman & CEO Randall L. Stephenson, BridgeEDU founder Wes Moore and AnBryce Foundation founders Beatrice & Anthony Welters.  Local NBC TV personality, Barbara Harrison, will host.  
 
Learn more about the “Promise Night” gala
 
Founded in 1997 at the Presidents’ Summit for America’s Future, America’s Promise leads an alliance of organizations, communities and individuals dedicated to fulfilling the presidential declaration signed on that day calling upon the nation to keep five crucial promises to every young person in America: the presence of caring adults in their lives; safe surroundings to live, learn and grown; healthy starts and healthy childhoods; an effective education that builds marketable skills; and opportunities to serve others.  As its signature effort, the GradNation campaign mobilizes Americans to increase the on-time high school graduation rate to 90 percent by 2020 and prepare young people for postsecondary enrollment and the 21st century workforce. For more information, visit AmericasPromise.org.