#RegionProud: Julianne Boulware of Steel City Academy
Julianne Boulware, Director of Culture and Community at Steel City Academy

Julianne Boulware, Director of Culture and Community at Steel City Academy

Before our office closed for winter break last February, I received an email invitation from my new friend Katie for coffee.

Katie and I are both alumnae of Teach For America, and had been sent to different parts of the country. I taught special education in Washington D.C. for three years, while Katie made her home in Gary. Our paths crossed when I returned home to Gary in late 2012. That important discussion she wanted to have involved our mutual love for the City of Gary: history, families, students, potential.

Since I’d been home, I was working tirelessly to involve myself in the education landscape.

Being one of those people who believes in divine appointment or destiny, I know the circumstances that led to that moment in Starbucks were no coincidence. I left home in June of 2009 with the goal of gaining the skills necessary to change the trajectories of children’s lives in Gary.

So when Katie asked me to get involved in the development of what would become Steel City Academy, I said yes. It was a no brainer for me.

Saying yes has meant getting reacquainted with the City of Gary, hundreds of hours of meetings with a dedicated team, and personal sacrifice. As a member of the school’s board and founding design team, I get to do work that matters to me, and will improve the lives of families in the city that is home. I’m looking forward to continuing this story, and telling the Region about our first year.

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