Alex Caputo-Pearl


Alex taught for 22 years in the Compton and Los Angeles school districts, most of those at Crenshaw High School, before being elected UTLA president in 2014. He has been honored with LA Academic English Mastery Program, UCLA Social Justice, and UTLA Bilingual Education Committee awards for his classroom teaching.

During his teaching, Alex was deeply involved in community organizing, helping build the work of the Labor/Community Strategy Center and Bus Riders Union, as well as helping to found Coalition for Educational Justice, the Crenshaw Cougar Coalition, and the Extended Learning Cultural Model, a Community Schools approach. In 2006, Alex was administratively transferred from Crenshaw High School by the superintendent in retaliation for his teaching and organizing, and was reinstated to Crenshaw shortly thereafter when parents, youth, and educators protested.

In his time as UTLA president from July 2014 – June 2020, Alex is proud of many accomplishments that were collectively achieved. These include UTLA moving to a fighting, social movement union model; UTLA empowering educators and school sites through Contract Action Teams; forming Reclaim Our Schools LA with parents, youth, and community organizations; overwhelmingly passing the Build the Future Fund the Fight initiative within the membership for UTLA to become financially solvent and a merged AFT/NEA local; playing a key role in the founding of the California Alliance for Community Schools, and the building of Alliance to Reclaim Our Schools and other national racial justice formations; UTLA helping to lead the Red for Ed movement with the UTLA strike of January 2019, including wins on path-breaking Common Good demands; and, UTLA playing a key role in putting an unprecedented revenue measure on the state ballot, and working with Black Lives Matter, Students Deserve, and others to defund school police.

These accomplishments were reached collectively, through the profound work of hundreds of leaders, thousands of members and community allies, and the steadfast dedication of staff.

Alex now continues his leadership role in UTLA having been elected UTLA NEA VP and beginning that position in July 2020, after two terms as UTLA president.    

Alex earned a BA in Political Science at Brown University and an MA in Urban and Regional Planning from UCLA. He has written for many publications, guest lectured at various universities, is on the national advisory board for Bargaining for the Common Good, and is active in CFT, CTA, AFT, and NEA.

Alex Caputo-Pearl