Bill AYERS

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AmericanBorn William Charles AYERS

American elementary education theorist and a former leader in the movement that opposed U.S. involvement in the Vietnam War

Born on December 26, 1944 in Glen Ellyn, Illinois, USA , United States (77 years)

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Ayers grew up in Glen Ellyn, a suburb of Chicago, Illinois. He attended public schools there until his second year in high school, when he transferred to Lake Forest Academy, a small prep school. Ayers earned a B.A. from the University of Michigan in American Studies in 1968 (his father, mother and older brother had preceded him there). His parents are Mary (née Andrew) and Thomas G. Ayers, who was later Chairman and CEO of Commonwealth Edison (1973 to 1980), and for whom Northwestern's Thomas G. Ayers College of Commerce and Industry was named.



Ayers was affected when Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) President Paul Potter, at a 1965 Ann Arbor Teach-In against the Vietnam war, asked his audience, "How will you live your life so that it doesn't make a mockery of your values?" Ayers later wrote in his memoir, Fugitive Days, that his reaction was: "You could not be a moral person with the means to act, and stand still. [...] To stand still was to choose indifference. Indifference was the opposite of moral".

...   Ayers grew up in Glen Ellyn, a suburb of Chicago, Illinois. He attended public schools there until his second year in high school, when he transferred to Lake Forest Academy, a small prep school. Ayers earned a B.A. from the University of Michigan in American Studies in 1968 (his father, mother and older brother had preceded him there). His parents are Mary (née Andrew) and Thomas G. Ayers, who was later Chairman and CEO of Commonwealth Edison (1973 to 1980), and for whom Northwestern's Thomas G. Ayers College of Commerce and Industry was named.



Ayers was affected when Students for a Democratic Society (SDS) President Paul Potter, at a 1965 Ann Arbor Teach-In against the Vietnam war, asked his audience, "How will you live your life so that it doesn't make a mockery of your values?" Ayers later wrote in his memoir, Fugitive Days, that his reaction was: "You could not be a moral person with the means to act, and stand still. [...] To stand still was to choose indifference. Indifference was the opposite of moral".



In 1965, Ayers joined a picket line protesting an Ann Arbor, Michigan pizzeria for refusing to seat African Americans. His first arrest came for a sit-in at a local draft board, resulting in 10 days in jail. His first teaching job came shortly afterward at the Children's Community School, a preschool with a very small enrollment operating in a church basement, founded by a group of students in emulation of the Summerhill method of education.



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Geographical origins

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