Rebekah Cohen Morris
l’m passionate about public education, especially its role in fighting poverty. Education gives people a chance to succeed, even when the odds are stacked against them. I write about education in Dekalb County as it relates to the state and to the nation as a whole. Before founding Los Vecinos, Rebekah taught English for four years at Berkmar High School in Gwinnett County Public Schools and for two years at Cross Keys High School in the DeKalb County School District (both Title I schools). During her time as a teacher, she coached volleyball and basketball, served as the Co-President for the Berkmar High School PTSA, participated as the teacher liaison on the School Council at Cross Keys High School, and helped spark the student-led initiative Unify BuHi (which now operates as the student advocacy arm of Los Vecinos). In the past, she has also worked for the Center for Pan Asian Community Services (CPACS) doing advocacy and civic/community engagement. She has served on the Board of Directors for Presencia, a non-profit located on Buford Highway that exists to provide economic, educational, and social support to refugees and immigrants through after-school programs, job creation, and leadership development. In addition to this work, she has also worked for the Atlanta Children's Shelter and for the Latin American Association teen summer program. Throughout the past two years, she has spent her time co-founding Vecinos with an incredible group of Cross Keys cluster students, alumni, and residents to establish a community association within the apartment complexes along Buford Highway. The idea of vecinos or neighbors working alongside one another is integral to the idea of a strong, healthy community. Rebekah lives in Doraville, Georgia, with her husband, Andrew Morris, who works for the Metro Water District at the Atlanta Regional Commission. She has two beautiful daughters who attend school in the Cross Keys cluster. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions or concerns. To submit a guest piece, please send the article (up to 1400 words) and a brief biographical note.