John B. King Jr., a champion for education equality, started his career as a high school social studies teacher and reached the height of his profession in 2016 as President Barack Obama’s Secretary of Education. He now serves as president and CEO of The Education Trust; a national nonprofit focused on closing opportunity gaps for students of color and those from low-income families.
King’s parents, both public school educators in New York City, passed away by the time he reached 12 years old. His public school teachers filled a void in his life by nurturing his love of learning. King earned an undergraduate degree from Harvard University and a law degree from Yale Law School, and a doctorate in education from Teachers College at Columbia University. Throughout his career, King has advocated for underserved students, which he continues to do from his platform at The Education Trust.
(BET Digital Design/Getty)