TFA Alumni Named White House Fellows

Two alumni of the Teach For America program will have an opportunity to engage in public service as White House Fellows.

Rachel Gleischman, an alumna of the TFA/MAT partnership, is from Farmers Branch, Texas, and is working for the U.S. Department of Defense. She was most recently a partner at TNTP, a non-profit organization devoted to ending the injustice of educational inequality by partnering with public schools. She was responsible for business development and worked directly with districts on a variety of talent management initiatives.

Previously, she managed the Arizona Teaching Fellows, a program placing teachers in high-need schools in Phoenix, Yuma and the Navajo Nation communities in northeast Arizona. She also led the Oakland Practitioner Teacher Program, a special education certification program supporting Oakland Teaching Fellows and Teach For America corps members in the Bay Area. Prior to joining TNTP, Rachel served as a school administrator in San Francisco, a Teach For America recruitment director in the Mid-Atlantic region and a high school English teacher in Baltimore.

She was the founding board chair for CASA Academy, a K-3 public charter school in Phoenix, and currently serves on the board for the Capital Pride Alliance in Washington, D.C. She holds a B.A. in English literature, Phi Beta Kappa and summa cum laude, from Texas A&M University and an M.A. in teaching from the Johns Hopkins School of Education.

Jake Steel is from Garden City, Kansas, and sits on the White House’s Domestic Policy Council. He was most recently a math department chair in Oklahoma City where he focused on closing the achievement gap through the use of one-to-one technology that increased state test scores by over 30 percent. He is a former Teach For America corps member and an alumni board member.

He volunteered as a community choir director and an instructor for high-school and college-level seminary courses, and was honored by the School of Education’s alumni council for his commitment and leadership in the community. He studied ancient and modern Near Eastern Studies and ancient religious texts at Brigham Young University’s Jerusalem center. He holds a B.S. in communications from Brigham Young, Idaho, and an M.S. in education from the Johns Hopkins School of Education.

The prestigious White House Fellows program was created in 1964 by President Lyndon Johnson and designed to give the fellows high-level experience in the workings of the federal government. The mission of the program is to encourage citizenship and service to the nation. Fellows participate in an education program that expands their knowledge of leadership, policymaking and contemporary issues, and community service projects throughout the year.

Rachel Gleischman is working in the Defense Department.

Jake Steel sits on the White House’s Domestic Policy Council.