Chair's Welcome

Michael L. Klein
Chair, Board of Directors, Humanities Texas

Education is essential to the continued success of our great state. That’s why education is at the very center of the Humanities Texas mission. We develop programs that improve the quality of classroom teaching, support libraries and museums, and create opportunities for lifelong learning for all Texans.

One of my greatest pleasures during the last decade has been my involvement with Humanities Texas. Our grants, exhibitions, radio shows, and public lectures inspire and inform Texans. And our awards and professional development programs for classroom teachers are having a profound impact on the quality of public education. Our institutes and workshops furnish teachers with the knowledge they need to enter their classrooms with confidence. But these programs not only enlighten, they also energize—motivating teachers to stay in the classroom and to elevate their teaching from good to great.

In today’s uncertain climate, as our nation strives to regain its economic momentum, we often fix our hopes on science, technology, engineering, and math education. As someone with a degree in petroleum engineering, I do not discount the importance of these economic drivers, but we find ourselves in danger of a tunnel vision that disregards the disciplines whose contributions to our society cannot be so easily counted in dollars and cents. The humanities empower the human spirit, making Texans engaged and informed citizens, and maintaining Texas as a destination for the very businesses that propel our economic success.