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Ninive  Calegari

Ninive Calegari

Co-Founder of 826 National, Leader of Enterprise for Youth & The Teacher Salary Project

Ninive Calegari

Co-Founder of 826 National, Leader of Enterprise for Youth & The Teacher Salary Project


Ninive Calegari is the co-founder, with Dave Eggers, of 826 National, which she helped grow from a local tutoring program into an influential education phenomenon that partners with schools, families, and community organizations across the country. She currently works in workforce development as the CEO of Enterprise for Youth and is the founder of the Climate Career Corps which trains and prepares young people for green careers. An emphatic speaker, Calegari explores how scalable social projects can have a profound effect on thousands of young lives.

A former teacher herself, Ninive Calegari is the Co-Founder and CEO of the Teacher Salary Project; the co-author of Teachers Have It Easy; and the co-producer of American Teacher, a documentary by Oscar-winning director Vanessa Roth, with narration by Matt Damon. With McSweeney's founder Dave Eggers, Calegari started 826 Valencia, a student writing program that has spawned 826 National as well as many other local 826 chapters.

Ninive Calegari has dedicated her life to creating supportive and innovative learning environments for both teachers and students, and to raising awareness of the unheralded struggles that many teachers face in simply doing their job. Calegari holds a Master's degree from the Harvard School of Education, and spent ten years as a teacher, at Drake High School in San Anselmo and at San Francisco's first charter school, Leadership High School. She received an honorary doctorate in Humane Letters from USF's School of Education. She lives in San Francisco, with her husband and two children.

Speaker Videos

Silver SPUR Awards | Nínive Calegari

The High Bar Amuse Booze: Nínive Calegari: on Teachers

Official American Teacher Trailer & Interview with Producer Nínive Calegari

Will The Teacher Pay Gap Be Fixed On A Federal Or Local Level? | Velshi & Ruhle | MSNBC

Anything to Build Community | Nínive Calegari

CA “Megafloods” | Literacy with Dave Eggers & 826 Valencia

Speech Topics

Time Travel, Pirate Supplies & Inspiring Young Students to Love Writing

Ninive Calegari will deliver a delightful and heartwarming speech about how she co-founded (along with Dave Eggers) the award-winning 826 National Chapters. 826 is a literacy organization that inspires students to write and helps teachers make their dreams come true. Each of the chapters she founded she fronted by a themed store that sell all sorts of fabulous items from spy supplies to robot necessities. The stores set the tone for the serious work done inside. 30,000 students around the country now benefit from these writing workshops and activities and they and their teachers report much more joy and skill in their writing. 826 has inspired almost 40 other centers around the globe. Ninive will share the magic sauce and core values of the work, as well as funny moments. The presentation includes images, short films and can include a pop up store.

A Passionate Appeal to See Teachers as The Solution

With a deep conviction that teaching and our democracy are intrinsically intertwined, Nínive will deliver a passionate appeal to see teachers as the solution, and to treat them that way. As a former classroom teacher, Nínive Calegari is struck by America’s ambivalence toward teachers: on the one hand we understand the importance of their work, and on the other, we spend great deal of energy badgering and blaming teachers, while not supporting them to do their best. Since her time in the classroom, Nínive has worked tirelessly to find solutions to create a large cultural shift in our society so teaching can become the prestigious, desirable, sustainable and financially rewarding profession it needs to be, She co-authored The New York Times bestselling Teachers Have It Easy, produced the documentary American Teacher (with Matt Damon as narrator) and founded an organization called The Teacher Salary Project, all in an effort to urgently elevate and value her beloved profession. Her speech includes slides, short films, and research.