Teach for America has announced that founder Wendy Kopp will step down as CEO, effective March 1. Kopp will continue to serve the organization as board chair, however, succeeding Walter Isaacson, who will become chair emeritus after serving more than seven years as board chair.
The board has appointed TFA's current president, Matt Kramer, and chief operating officer, Elisa Villanueva Beard, to serve as co-CEOs. Beard will oversee regional operations and represent the organization publicly, while Kramer will manage all aspects of the organization's central functions, including recruiting and admissions, corps member training, development, marketing and communications, and central programmatic support of regional affiliates. In an effort to ensure continued strong governance, the board appointed Dick Parsons, former CEO and board chair of Time Warner, to the new position of independent lead director. In that position and as chair of the board's executive committee, Parsons will help ensure the effectiveness of the board, support the development of the co-CEOs, and provide additional support to the organization with respect to cultivating external relationships.
Kopp, who founded TFA in 1990, will continue in her current role as founding CEO of Teach for All, a global network of independent organizations that, like TFA, work to enlist their countries' future leaders as advocates for educational excellence and equality.
"It has been my privilege to serve as CEO of both Teach for America and Teach for All for more than five years," said Kopp. "Today's announcement helps ensure that each organization has the leadership capacity necessary to meet growing aspirations. Elisa and Matt are exceptional leaders and great partners. They have already contributed immeasurably to Teach for America's growth and impact, and I look forward to supporting them as they lead Teach for America into the future."