Dear Friends of the Ashbrook Center,
Today is my first day as Executive Director of the Ashbrook Center. The first thing I’d like to do is thank my predecessor, Peter Schramm, for the 25 years he has dedicated to the Ashbrook Center. I look forward to working with him in his new and continuing roles as Senior Fellow, Director of the Ashbrook Scholar program, and Professor of Political Science.
I’d also like you to know that the mission of Ashbrook will remain the same. As a country, we are not doing enough to teach the next generation about America. Ashbrook is aggressively working to change this. We are expanding our programs so that more students and teachers across our country will better understand why America is exceptional and what America represents in the long history of the world.
We are celebrating Ashbrook’s 30th anniversary this year. The growth that we’ve experienced since the dedication of the Center by President Ronald Reagan in 1983 has been phenomenal — but is only the beginning.
For teachers, we are expanding the number of programs we offer and the number of teachers we reach to improve the way that American history and civics is taught in this country. For students, we are growing and strengthening our Ashbrook Scholar program to create future generations of leaders who understand why America is exceptional.
To accomplish this, we need your help.
One way you can help is to tell people what you know about Ashbrook. Everyone understands that we are not doing enough to teach our children about America. Tell them Ashbrook is fixing this. Tell them that we are working with teachers and students across America to help our next generation become informed patriots.
If they ask how Ashbrook is accomplishing this, tell them to visit 50docs.org. This is the list of 50 Core American Documents that we believe all students and teachers ought to study in order to understand what it means to be an American. One of my favorites (particularly as we approach July 4th) is Calvin Coolidge’s “Speech on the Occasion of the 150th Anniversary of the Declaration of Independence” delivered in Philadelphia on July 5, 1926. In the coming months, we will be adding many more resources to help students, teachers, and citizens use these documents to better understand our liberties and rights as citizens.
I hope you will become even more engaged in our important work. I look forward to hearing from you, and I will continue to share our plans for strengthening constitutional self-government in America.