Anderson embarks on new chapter in education career

Memphis Standout profile for The Memphis Daily News

Aug. 9, 2013

With the first semester of the newly consolidated Shelby County Schools in full swing this week, all eyes are on this mammoth system and what it might mean, if anything, for education’s progress, efficiency and reform in the Mid-South.

As the new executive director of Stand for Children Tennessee, Betty Anderson will be based in Nashville, yet she said, “there is a lot more engagement in the Memphis reform community, there are a lot of coalitions, business involvement, there’s a lot of involvement by the Gates Foundation, the Teacher (Talent) Initiative, things that Stand has been involved in before me.”

In addition, the Memphis chapter of the organization is currently without a director and is actively looking to replace Kenya Bradshaw who left recently for a position in Texas.

Stand for Children Tennessee is part of a national network that advocates for students by affecting policy and legislation, increasing funding, improving schools and working toward solutions to the challenges affecting education today.

Anderson’s background is in education, having majored in it at Middle Tennessee State University in Murfreesboro, close to her hometown of Fayetteville, Tenn. She realized early on that the classroom wasn’t the place for her, but, she said, “I never lost my interest in education.”

She moved into championing the causes of educators and the needs of students alike by taking a job with the Tennessee Education Association as editor of its monthly magazine, “Tennessee Teacher.”

Anderson moved from that position to the TEA’s lobbying political action team, where she spent seven years as chief lobbyist and political action organizer across the state. In working closely within the TEA for 10 years, she was also deeply involved with the Memphis Education Association . . . (read more)