Meet Bruce Padilla
TEACH’s Director of Development
A longtime supporter of charitable organizations, Bruce knew he’d eventually shift his career to focus on nonprofit work full-time. During his successful decades-long career in sales and development, he lent his time and talents in outreach and event-planning to a variety of charitable organizations, including serving on the Shared Decision Making Committee at Tanglewood Middle School for nine years.
Bruce joined TEACH in October 2021, driven by both his love of nonprofits and his conviction for education as a force of positive change in children’s lives. As Development Director, he’s focused on helping TEACH expand its reach and do more of its meaningful work within the Houston community. He’s excited to share that mission with potential new donors – a mission he is passionate about and proud to be a part of. When he’s not working, volunteering or cooking up a new dish, you’ll find Bruce playing with his 14 rescue dogs alongside his husband of 25 years.
TEACH: When did your interest / experience in education begin?
BP: Well, I went to public school, so I know first-hand what that experience is like. Having gone to public school in Albuquerque, I saw how underserved communities were impacted by education. I know the positive things that can happen when kids are educated. In 2010, I was asked to serve on the Shared Decision Making Committee at Tanglewood Middle School as the community business partner. I served on that committee for nine years, but one of my first exposures to the school’s challenges was when I had to speak to a class about business. Half of the students weren’t paying attention; some were talking and others were distracted. I kept thinking, “How do teachers do this?” Helping those teachers became important to me. What TEACH does to help teachers is so important, and ultimately, it benefits everyone. If we can help teachers reduce distractions so they can spend more time teaching, then students learn more and more quickly – good for teachers, good for students and good for the Houston community.”
TEACH: At the end of the day, what is one thing you find most fulfilling about your job?
BP: I love that I can believe in the work that we do. When I ask a potential donor for money, I know that their donation will go to serve a good purpose. I can articulate the why of what we do. I can promise that we’re going to do well with it. That’s why it was so important for me to be passionate about the nonprofit I joined; I knew I had to believe in it – and I believe in TEACH.
TEACH: What are you most looking forward to at TEACH this year?
BP: I’m looking forward to seeing how we can grow so that we can go into more schools, affect more teachers and impact more students. I’m really excited to see the evolution of TEACH. Even though it has been around since 2005, the organization seems brand new to me. It’s like it has relaunched itself in a really exciting way. I’m looking forward to that; I’m always up for a new challenge.
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