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Supporter Spotlight: Julie Johnson & Jerry Barnier

Julie Johnson and Jerry Barnier have been supporters of Teach For America for over 10 years. As teacher sponsors, Jerry and Julie have been wonderful hosts and supporters of their corps members. 


By The TFA Editorial Team

December 17, 2017

All kids possess the potential for greatness yet not all kids are provided adequate opportunities to express their greatness. Within our education system, a lack of equity and opportunity prevents students from fully achieving their potential. This reality is what brought us to partner with Teach For America. The incredible, dedicated, creative, and passionate corps members in Phoenix inspired us right away. We continue to support the work of Teach For America because we get to see their work personally in the classrooms and also hear about the impact they have with individual students, which in turn impacts our community as a whole.”

We also really enjoy the Meet the Teacher event. All of this positive energy and passion going on in our schools during the year is shared and it is contagious! We have also enjoyed having our Teach For America corps members over to our home for a relaxed and fun dinner during the year. We appreciate having the time to enjoy each other's company and thank them for all their amazing work with the students!

Beyond the corps member interactions we have, it’s very exciting to see the collective impact Teach For America alumni are having as a growing network of leaders working across sectors and within education. I see that as a great compounded return on our investment. 

During the holiday season, we give thanks for what we are grateful for and for our blessings. We want to share with others who are working to help our community to grow. This is why we have supported the work of Teach For America, because they play a critical role in reimaging our current system and raising the bar for education in Arizona. As partners with Expect More Arizona and Social Venture Partners, we also know improving education opportunities for all students in Arizona is difficult work. This issue will not be solved by a single organization or in short order. Together with students, families and community partners we look forward to collaborating on solutions and continuing progress in Arizona.

“"I was so glad to be paired up with Jerry and Julie for a second year through the Sponsor a Teacher program. When I met them last year, it was clear that they supported teachers and the mission that Teach For America stands behind. It is great having the support of community members like Jerry and Julie."  ”

Michelle Fernandez

Sponsored Teacher