News Release

Southern Education Foundation Introduces Alan Richard as Director of Communications

September 27, 2022

CONTACT: Alan Richard, cell 202-641-1300,

ATLANTA — The Southern Education Foundation (SEF) today announced that veteran education writer and advocate Alan Richard has joined the 155-year-old organization as Director of Communications.

“At this critical moment in the life of our nation, we are strengthening and amplifying our voice to push for every student in the South to have the educational opportunities that prepare them for life,” said Raymond Pierce, SEF’s President and CEO. “Alan’s experience will help us explain why greater opportunities for children of color and students from low-income families will benefit all of us.”

Previously, Richard was the media relations officer for the nonpartisan Southern Regional Education Board, where he had served as the Director of Communications in an earlier stint there. He has worked with many prominent education organizations as an independent consultant and at Hager Sharp, a communications firm in Washington, DC.

As a journalist, he covered the South and rural issues for Education Week, twice receiving national first prizes in the Education Writers Association’s awards. His work has also been published by The Washington Post, PBS NewsHour, The Nation and many others.

Richard began his career covering education and local communities for newspapers in his native South Carolina, including The State in Columbia. He holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of South Carolina.

“Growing up in a small town, I sometimes didn’t have the educational opportunities that I needed. Then I began to witness the dire situations that were impacting some young people more than others in the South, and I began to focus my work on why we couldn’t do better,” Richard said. “That journey has led me to SEF, where our team is working fiercely for justice and fairness in education for all.

About the Southern Education Foundation

Originally founded in 1867 to educate Black children and children from low-income families in the South, the Southern Education Foundation also has a long history of developing leaders in education, and was a pivotal source of research and data to support legislation and litigation aimed at fighting inequity in education during the civil rights era. The organization today conducts leadership development, research, and advocacy to improve educational opportunities for low-income students and students of color and achieve educational equity in the Southern U.S. It is based in Atlanta, Georgia. More is available at