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Benjamin Franklin Medal

Introduced in 1956 to mark the 200th anniversary of Franklin’s RSA Fellowship, the Benjamin Franklin Medal is one of the society’s two highest honors.

Ben Franklin Medal

It is awarded to individuals, groups and organizations who have made profound differences in areas closely linked to the RSA’s agenda, whether through transatlantic co-operation and collaboration or through significant contributions to global affairs and social progress.

This award reflects achievements throughout a career and commitment to humanitarian and cultural international dialogue, education and innovation. Recent recipients include Walter Isaacson, Sir Ken Robinson, General Sir Colin Powell, Dame Marjorie Scardino, Sir Jonathan Ive, The Honorable Philip Lader, Dame Judi Dench and Senator George Mitchell.

2016 Benjamin Franklin Medal Winner

The RSA-US Board of Trustees is pleased to announce Wendy Kopp as the 2016 Benjamin Franklin Medal recipent. Awarded since 1957, and one of the society's two highest honors, the Benjamin Franklin is conferred to those who have made profound differences in areas closely linked to the RSA's agenda. 

Wendy Kopp is CEO and Co-founder of Teach For All, a global network of independent organizations that are cultivating their nations’ promising future leaders to ensure their most marginalized children have the chance to fulfill their true potential. Wendy founded Teach For America in 1989 to marshal the energy of her generation against educational inequity in the United States. Today, more than 8,000 Teach For America corps members—outstanding recent college graduates and professionals of all academic disciplines—are in the midst of two-year teaching commitments in 52 urban and rural regions, and Teach For America has proven to be an unparalleled source of long-term leadership for expanding opportunity for children. After leading Teach For America’s growth and development for 24 years, in 2013, Wendy transitioned out of the role of CEO. Today, she remains an active member of Teach For America's board.

Wendy led the development of Teach For All to be responsive to the initiative of inspiring social entrepreneurs around the world who were determined to adapt this approach in their own countries. Now in its ninth year, the Teach For All network is comprised of partner organizations in 40 countries on six continents, including its founding partners Teach For America and the U.K.’s Teach First. The RSA is honored to acknowledge Wendy Kopp’s significant global impact through the Benjamin Franklin Medal.

Location: Harvard Club of New York City

Time: Monday 5th December, from 7pm

Event Program:

  • Jazz and Wine Reception

  • Evening Welcome, Remarks and Keynote Address

  • Lolita Jackson, RSA US Chairman

  • Matthew Rycroft CBE, Ambassador and Permanent Representative, UK Mission to the UN

  • Wendy Kopp, 2016 Benjamin Franklin Medal Recipient

  • Haris Hromic, Benjamin Franklin Medal Chairman

  • Matthew Taylor, Chief Executive of the RSA

  • Wine Reception

Contact Katie Wilson E: for more information and seating reservations.  Seating is limited.