Keynote

Philadelphia City Councilman-Elect Isaiah Thomas will give the welcoming address - Councilman Thomas ran on a progressive vision of education in Philadelphia which makes him a perfect speaker to welcome the EduCon attendees!

Bio: A 3rd generation Philadelphian Council Member Thomas grew up in Northwest Philadelphia The third youngest of 9 children of a Philadelphia school teacher and a child care provider. Growing up life was about education and basketball and decades later his passions remain; his city, education and basketball. Isaiah has committed his life to building a brighter future for all Philadelphians and knows that education, opportunity and teamwork are the way to get there together. Throughout his career, Isaiah has worked in the non-profit, public and private sectors in positions that impact the important issues our city faces. He has helped children get a better education as a teacher; supported high school students with mentorship and positive after-school time as the school’s Athletic Director and Head Basketball Coach; and volunteers time to advocate for and strengthen organizations for communities of color including the Mayor’s Commission for African-American Men, the Cambodian Association for Greater Philadelphia and as the co-founder of the Thomas and Woods Foundation, which provides free summer programs for children across the city.

Isaiah doesn’t just believe city government must work for all 1.6 million residents, he has been in and supported communities working to achieve it. As the Director of Community Affairs for the City Controller, he visited every neighborhood throughout Philadelphia to connect people with resources to resolve long standing municipal service issues and tools to strengthen their financial education. Isaiah Thomas is proud to be highest voter-getter of the newly elected Council members and will bring that enthusiasm to City Hall come January. While headlines of gun violence and school funding cuts dominate the news, Isaiah sees this is a call-to-action to work hard to find solutions.

A proud graduate of Philadelphia public schools Isaiah has a BA from Penn State and a masters of education from Lincoln University, the oldest degree granting historically Black college in the nation. Isaiah lives in Oak Lane with his wife Klissa and their son, Isaiah Jr.

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