Lily Eskelsen-García

Vice-President, North America and Caribbean

published 22 February 2017 updated 23 May 2022

Lily Eskelsen García is a teacher whose work in education spans from her first job as a school lunch lady to being elected president of the largest union in the United States, the 3-million-member National Education Association. Her career includes service as her State’s Teacher of the Year, as President of the Utah State Retirement system, as her party’s nominee for U.S. Congress and as Commissioner for President Barack Obama’s White House Commission for Education Excellence for Hispanics. She is founder of an endowed scholarship program at the University of Utah for bilingual aspiring teachers, Maestros Para Los Niños. She and her husband, Alberto Garcia, are the author/illustrator of the bilingual book, Rabble Rousers: Fearless Fighters for Social Justice, which they published to raise funds to help undocumented Dreamers. Lily retired as president of NEA in 2020, is currently pursuing a doctorate in Teaching, Learning and Culture, and continues to represent educators globally as a Vice President of Education International.