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American Schools Foundation Alliance

Article by Alex Kotlowitz

This marks the first year that the Beacon of Hope will be hosted by the two Centers together. The new luncheon format will include a keynote speaker, three distinguished honorees, and a paddle raiser.
Our keynote speaker will be renowned author, speaker and producer, Alex Kotlowitz. He is best known for the bestselling There Are No Children Here: The Story of Two Boys Growing Up in the Other America. The book, which was published in 1991 and has since sold over 500,000 copies, was the recipient of numerous awards and the New York Public Library selected There Are No Children Here as one of the 150 most important books of the century.
Kotlowitz, along with Steve James, produced a documentary on violence in Chicago and the fight against it, called “The Interrupters” which premiered at Sundance in 2011. He has also contributed to The New York Times Magazine, The New Yorker, The Washington Post, The Chicago Tribune, Rolling Stone, The Atlantic, and The New Republic. He is currently a writer-in-residence and professor at Northwestern University, as well as a visiting professor at the University of Notre Dame as the Welch Chair in American Studies.
This year’s Beacon of Hope will be the fifth annual celebration and is one of the key fundraising events for Marillac St. Vincent Family Services. Please join us in support of the work of Marillac and St. Vincent’s and help us make a difference in our community.

Alex recently wrote an op-ed piece for The New York Times, titled "Are We Asking Too Much of Teachers?" Regardless of how you may feel about the teacher strike in Chicago, Kotlowitz points out that all too often teachers are put into a situation where they must deal with complex social problems and societal issues their students face: poverty, crime, hunger, and much more. Teachers must not only provide classroom instruction, but deal with hard life lessons and personal problems. Without extra pay and without proper support services for teachers and students alike.

To read his article in full, please click here.

  •           Marillac St. Vincent Family Services
              Mailing Address: P.O. Box 14699 Chicago, IL 60614
  •           Marillac Social Center               773.722.7440           212 S. Francisco Ave. Chicago, IL 60612   
              St. Vincent de Paul Center        312.943.6776           2145 N. Halsted St. Chicago, IL 60614   
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