Since 1990, Geoffrey Canada has been the President and Chief Executive Officer for Harlem Children's Zone (HCZ). In his 20-plus years with Harlem Children's Zone, Inc., he has become nationally recognized for his pioneering work helping children and families in Harlem and as a passionate advocate for education reform.
In September 2008, Houghton-Mifflin published, Whatever It Takes, by Paul Tough, a detailed look at the work of Canada and the Harlem Children's Zone. The work of Canada and HCZ has become a national model and has been the subject of many profiles in the media. Their work has been featured on "60 Minutes," "The Oprah Winfrey Show," "The Today Show," "Good Morning America," "Nightline," "CBS This Morning," "The Charlie Rose Show," National Public Radio's "On Point," as well in articles in The New York Times, The New York Daily News, USA Today and Newsday. Canada is the author of two books: Fist Stick Knife Gun: A Personal History of Violence in America, published in 1995 by Beacon Press, and Reaching Up for Manhood: Transforming the Lives of Boys in America, published in 1998 by Beacon Press.
For his years of work advocating for children and families in some of America's most devastated communities, Canada was a recipient of the first Heinz Award in 1994. In 2004, he was given the Harold W. McGraw Jr. Prize in Education and Child Magazine's Children's Champion Award. He has also received the Heroes of the Year Award from the Robin Hood Foundation, The Jefferson Award for Public Service, the Spirit of the City Award from the Cathedral of St. John the Divine, the Brennan Legacy Award from New York University and the Common Good Award from Bowdoin College, as well as numerous awards from Harvard University, Bowdoin College, Williams College, John Jay College, Bank Street College and Meadville Lombard Theological Seminary.
Canada holds a B.A. from Bowdoin College and an M.A. in Education from Harvard.