Virginia Walden Ford: The True Story of How She Opened the Doors of Educational Opportunity For All

Posted on: Nov 09, 2020

Categories: Education, Podcast, Relationships and Family

To mark the return of my podcast, The Next 24 Hours, I’m interviewing one of the most influential, inspiring pioneers in the world of education: Virginia Walden Ford.

In the 1990s, Virginia was a mother in D.C. who feared that she would lose her son to the streets unless he had better educational opportunities. Her journey to give him the schooling he needed led to a lifelong calling to give all parents the power to choose an education that met their child’s needs. 

She’s the subject of the 2019 film, Miss Virginia, which I highly recommend. (It’s available for streaming on Netflix!)

No one can deny that the quality of a child’s education can determine the quality of their life—and that we live in a country of vast educational inequality.

Because I moved nearly 30 times in my schooling years and bounced from special education class to special education class due to dyslexia, the cause of School Choice is close to my heart. 

If I had been able to attend a school based on my needs and not my zip code, it could have provided me with the stability and the education I needed.

I’ve been honored for the past few years to share my message with Choose a School Arizona, an organization that helps families find the best education for their children and helps quality schools tell their stories and find students. (And now, I’m working with them and numerous other schools and organizations to bring my brand new hybrid program to students and teachers virtually! To learn more, click here.)

It was during a week I spent in Arizona for Choose a School Week that Liz Dreckman (the president of Choose a School) introduced me to Virginia, and I will never forget that moment as long as I live. (You’ll have to tune into my interview with her to hear why!)

After hearing her story and meeting her in person, I knew I had to have her as a guest so she could share her message with you on my podcast.

On this episode, you’ll get to hear:

  • How loving and comforting someone never becomes irrelevant
  • The powerful lesson she learned when she was chosen as a student to desegregate schools
  • Keys to starting a grassroots movement and mobilizing large scale change
  • Why Virginia is optimistic about education in the time of COVID
  • How she got over her fear of public speaking
  • Empowering mindsets for parents who want more for their children’s education

I’m so honored to have her on the show so that you can hear her incredible story and be inspired to create change in your world.

Find this episode on Apple Podcasts and Spotify!