Betsy DeVos Counter-Rally

This October, US Education Secretary Betsy DeVos came to Bellevue to speak at a fundraiser. Because DeVos’ past and recent policy seeks to privatize public schools, disproportionately hurting kids of color, EEC organized hundreds of public education advocates to show Washington decision-makers that we need to choose students over profits, and oppose DeVos’ plans to privatize public schools. We teamed up with 26 organizations, brought together elected officials and community leaders, and scored media coverage in over 300 publications nationwide. But thanks to the EEC, hundreds of protesters met the Secretary’s arrival with calls to fully fund public education in Washington!


Our Advocates

We pulled together public education advocates from across the board in order to demonstrate that our kids are not for sale. Our speakers represented a variety of community stakeholders, united in defending public education.

  • Teresa Mosqueda from the Washington State Labor Coucil and current candidate for Seattle City Council Position 8 as emcee
  • Sharonne Navas the Co-Founder and Executive Director of the Equity in Education Coalition
  • Larry Cordier of the Rosebud Sioux Tribe
  • King County Executive Dow Constantine
  • Washington State Attorney General Bob Ferguson
  • Senator Patty Murray’s King County Director, Nat Morales
  • Democratic candidate for Washington’s 45th LD, Manka Dhingra
  • Mayor of Bellevue, John Stokes
  • Chair of the Washington State Democratic Party, Tina Podlodowski
  • DACA recipient, Graciela Nuñez
  • DACA recipient and organizer with the Washington Dream Coalition, Paul Quiñonez
  • Public school teacher and WEA member, Justin Fox Bailey
  • Public school teacher and LGBTQ advocate, Shannon McCann
  • The Education Chair at the NAACP of King County, Rita Greene
  • State Representative of the 33rd LD, Mia Gregorson
  • Professor and AFT member, Carl Livingston

A range of 25+ organizations endorsed the event: Washington Education Association, Washington State Labor Council, NAACP of King County, Washington State Democrats, AFT Washington, OneAmerica, Washington’s Paramount Duty, Fuse Washington, Seattle Education Association, Bellevue Education Association, Indivisible, Indivisible Thurston County, Vietnamese Friendship Association, Faith Action Network, King County Democrats, Rainier Educators of Color Network, Kent Education Association, Class Size Counts, Bad Ass Teachers, Mukilteo Education Association, Tax March, WEA-Sammamish, Coalition of Immigrants Refugees and Communities of Color, SEIU 775, LELO, and Backbone Campaign.


Media Coverage

Women being interviewed

Words on page.

EEC’s DeVos Counter-Rally caught the attention of over 300 TV/Radio stories, and hundreds of print stories. The protest was on the local TV news in Washington DC, Las Vegas, Austin, Tampa Bay, Birmingham, and Grand Rapids; and covered in local newspapers in Idaho, Texas, and Kansas.

Here are a few stand out accomplishments:



Calls for fully funding education, for keeping public education public, and for dumping DeVos were trending on social media. Far and wide, folks shared their call for action at the rally.