Political Advisory Council

The Political Advisory Council is national roundtable of elected officials, senior thought leaders, and civics education advocates that elevate the importance of Action Civics in K-12 education.

Generation Citizen Political Advisory Council 

Our country’s prevailing approach to civics education does not position students to participate meaningfully in our democracy. To address this public dilemma, Generation Citizen has launched a political advisory council to provide strategic insight on how to best advance Action Civics in states across the country. Members of the council participate in convenings and working group sessions, providing high-level feedback and support to policy expertise and support to undergird GC’s policy and advocacy initiatives.

Senator Jimmy HigdonMajority Whip, Kentucky State Senate

Senator Jimmy Higdon has been in the Kentucky legislature since 2002, first as a representative to the General Assembly for the 24th district, then in 2009, Jimmy won a special election for the Senate, District 14. He now represents Marion, Casey, Nelson and Spencer counties and a portion of Jefferson County including Fern Creek and Jeffersontown. In 2014, Senator Higdon was elected to serve as the Senate Majority Caucus Whip.

Sen. Higdon has served on the Civic Education Leadership Team for the Education Commission of the States. He is a graduate of Morehead State University and a member of the Marion County Economic Development Board. Senator Higdon resides in Lebanon with his wife, Jane. They have two children and three grandchildren.

Kirsten Baesler | Superintendent, North Dakota Department of Public Instruction

Kirsten Baesler is the state school superintendent of North Dakota. In her position, she oversees the education of more than 121,000 public and private school students. She was elected as state school superintendent in November 2012, and re-elected to her second term in 2016 with 75 percent of the vote.

Before taking office in January 2013, Superintendent Baesler had a 24-year career in the Bismarck public school system as a vice principal, library media specialist, classroom teacher and instructional assistant. She also worked for the North Dakota School Boards Association as the association’s assistant director.

Superintendent Baesler served on the Mandan school board for nine years. Her colleagues chose her as their president for seven of those nine years. She earned two associates’ degrees from Bismarck State College, a bachelor’s degree in education from Minot State University, and a master’s degree in library and information technology from Valley City State University. She holds Valley City State University’s Distinguished Alumni Award and the Rising Star Award from Bismarck State College. She has completed the Graduate School Educational Leadership Program at Harvard University.

She is one of the nine directors of the Council of Chief State School Officers, a national organization that represents state education organizations across the nation. CCSSO provides leadership, technical assistance and advocacy on major educational issues.
Superintendent Baesler is one of 25 women leaders chosen from across the country for the Governing Institute’s 2019 Women in Government Leadership Program, which provides training for participants to serve as mentors and advisers for other prospective female leaders.

She is a member of the advisory board of the Civics Education Initiative, an organization that advocates for a proposal to require high school students to pass a civics exam before they may graduate. Superintendent Baesler successfully backed this idea during the North Dakota Legislature in 2015.

She serves on more than a dozen boards, including the Education Standards and Practices Board, the Educational Technology Council, the Teachers’ Fund for Retirement board, and the Board of University and School Lands, which manages state land holdings and oversees a $4.2 billion trust fund that benefits North Dakota’s public schools. Superintendent Baesler is a native of Flasher, N.D. She lives in Mandan, N.D., and has three adult sons.

Representative Anthony Daniels | House Minority Leader, Alabama State Legislature

Rep. Anthony Daniels currently represents the 53rd District in the Alabama State House of Representatives. He was born in Bartow, Florida, and grew up in Midway, Alabama. In May 2005, he graduated cum laude from Alabama A&M University with a Bachelor’s degree in elementary education. Anthony went on to earn a Master’s degree in special education also from Alabama A&M University and completed a certification in education fundraising from Dartmouth College in 2012. In 2015, he received a certificate from the University of Virginia, Darden School of Business’s Executive Education Program. In May 2009, he released his first book, To Sweeten Alabama: A Story of a Young Man Defying the Odds.

In June 2006, Anthony was elected as chairman of the National Education Association (NEA) Student Program, where he represented more than 62,000 college students on more than 1,100 campuses nationwide. In this role, Anthony worked out of NEA headquarters in Washington, D.C. His leadership and collaboration with myriad organizations fostered the passage of the College Cost and Reduction Act of 2007, which was signed into law by President George W. Bush. He is recognized as a leading voice on the issues of college access and affordability. In his role as NEA chairman, Anthony has testified before Department of Education’s Negotiating Rule Making Committee hearings on college access and affordability, spoken to live audiences, provided commentary on nationally syndicated radio programs, television broadcasts and featured in various magazines discussing the topic of college affordability and mobilizing youth to be politically active.

In July 2009, Anthony was appointed to Huntsville Mayor Tommy Battle’s Economic Sustainability Council (Green 13) where he served as the Chairman of Transportation. Later that year, he was appointed chair of the Legislative Committee for the Huntsville Education Association, where he served a one-year term. The following year, he was elected to the State Board of Directors for the Alabama Education Association. In 2010 he was also appointed to the advisory committee for First-Book North Alabama, a non-profit organization that provides new books to low income children. Anthony continues to advocate for a quality education for all as a public servant and as a former elementary school teacher. His experience includes teaching third grade at the Academy of Science and Foreign Language, fourth grade at University Place Elementary (Title I school) and fourth and fifth grade blended-class at Cochiti Middle School on an Indian reservation.

In January 2012, Anthony returned to his Alma mater as Corporate and Foundations Relations officer, a position he held until November 2014. He currently serves as Chief Operating Officer for Premiere Dental, a small business he owns with his wife, Dr. Teneshia Daniels. Anthony was named Alabama State Legislator of the Year in 2015 by his colleagues in the House Democratic Caucus. Today, he continues to serve as a State Representative, a Member of the Downtown Huntsville Rotary Club and the Huntsville Country Club, a small business owner, a community activist, a husband, and a father of two daughters, Abigail and Madison.

Ernest LoganPresident, American Federation of School Administrators

Ernest A. Logan was elected AFSA President by acclamation during the 15th Triennial Constitutional Convention in July 2018. For nearly 25 years Mr. Logan worked in the NYC public schools before joining the staff of the Council of School Supervisors and Administrators in 1997 as a field service representative. CSA, represents more than 6,200 school and central office leaders including Principals, Assistant Principals, Education Administrators who work in the more than 1,200 New York City public schools as well as the Early Childhood Directors and Supervisors. Rising through the CSA ranks, he was elected President in November 2006 and held the position until he retired in 2017.

Mr. Logan, the 11th of 13 children, was born in Harlem, and raised in East New York, to a family that valued education. His father, a college graduate and trained engineer, died when Mr. Logan was 8, a huge loss for the Logan family emotionally but not spiritually; the older Mr. Logan, and his wife, had imbued their son with the importance of a college degree, family and faith, and his mother kept those values alive for her children despite the hardships they faced.

Mr. Logan remained focused on the future, graduating from Franklin K. Lane High School in 1969 and SUNY Cortland in 1973. He attended Baruch College/CUNY and received his master’s degree in education.

In addition to his responsibilities at the union, Mr. Logan is a board member for New Visions for Public Schools and the NY Research Alliance. He belongs to numerous organizations including St. John’s University’s Phi Delta Kappa chapter, the NY Alliance of Black School Educators, the National Association of Secondary School Principals, the NY Academy of Public Education, 100 Black Men, and is a life member of the Association of Black Educators of NY. Most recently, Mr. Logan became a member of the Education Equality Project, founded by the Rev. Al Sharpton and NYC Schools Chancellor Joel Klein.

He has served on the board of the Brownsville Community Development Corporation and is a deacon at the Mount Calvary Baptist Church in Harlem, where he also serves as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees.

He has received numerous awards from labor and education groups, most recently from the Ridgewood Democratic Club in June 2009 as a Labor Leader of the Year. Mr. Logan and his wife, Beatrice, a high school guidance counselor, have established the Ernest A. Logan Scholarship at SUNY Cortland, which provides tuition assistance for NYC public school students.

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