Story posted August 24, 2009
Geoffrey Canada '74, president and CEO of the Harlem Children's Zone (HCZ), has earned the respect of some of the country's most powerful leaders.
New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg, who is seeking re-election, is the latest to make his admiration public. Bloomberg singled out Canada in an interview published in the New York Daily News.
In the August 23, 2009, article, "Mike Bloomberg, Independent for Mayor: Campaign Questionnaire," the incumbent is asked who, in contemporary New York City political or civil life, he admires and why.
Bloomberg's answer: Geoffrey Canada.
"Born in the South Bronx, he grew up poor and wasn't handed a path to prominence and success," elaborates Bloomberg in the profile.
"Instead, he stayed in school and won a scholarship to Bowdoin College, and from there he went on to earn a degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Since then, he has dedicated his life to ensuring that the next generation will have a chance at the same opportunities he used to propel himself forward. His organization, the Harlem Children's Zone, is a nationally recognized program that covers 100 blocks and reaches nearly 10,000 children, but he continues to say that we need to do more and we have to do it better. He is an entrepreneur, an innovator and an inspiration, and it's been a privilege to work with him to make our schools more effective for New York City kids."
At a June 30, 2009, White House event highlighting innovative non-profit programs making a difference across the country, President Barack Obama praised Canada and HCZ and reiterated his desire to see its programs replicated across the country.