Board & Staff

Our dedicated team members bring varied experiences in education, philanthropy, and nonprofit organization management to our work.  Learn more about each member of the team and the board of directors below.

Board Members Back to Top

Kristin Ehrgood

President and Board Chair

Kristin Ehrgood is the President and Board Chair of Flamboyan Foundation.  Additionally, she is the founder of Sapientis, a nonprofit organization dedicated to mobilizing a diverse and informed network of change agents committed to improving the quality of public education in Puerto Rico, and was part of the founding team of DC School Reform Now, a non-profit organization committed to supporting education reform in Washington, D.C.

After earning her master’s degree in Public Administration from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government in 2001, Kristin and fellow Kennedy School alumnus Vadim Nikitine started Sapientis in Puerto Rico.   In the spring of 2005, her work at Sapientis was recognized by Ernst & Young when she was named Entrepreneur of the Year in the area of Social Responsibility.

Kristin attended Bucknell University, where she earned a B.A. in International Relations, before joining Teach For America and teaching for three years.  She later joined the Teach For America staff as Executive Director of their New Jersey region and then as Director of New Site Development.

Kristin currently lives in Washington, D.C. with her husband, Vadim Nikitine, and their two children.  She also sits on the boards of Sapientis, DC School Reform Now, Stand for Children, Teach For America *D.C. Region, and Venture Philanthropy Partners.

Rea Carey

Rea Carey has served on the Flamboyan board of directors since its founding.  She shares a vision for improved outcomes and excellence in public education for all children.  She currently serves as the executive director of the National Gay and Lesbian Task Force, a nonprofit organization that builds the political power of the lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community from the ground up. The Task Force is the country’s premier social justice organization fighting to improve the lives of LGBT people, and working to create positive, lasting change and opportunity for all.

She has over 20 years of experience in nonprofit start-up, fundraising, program oversight, boards of directors, management and leadership development. She has worked extensively in HIV/AIDS prevention for youth and young adults.  Rea was the founding executive director of the National Youth Advocacy Coalition. In 1999, the Advocate named Rea one of its “Best and Brightest” for individual contributions to the LGBT rights movement.

Rea served on the board of directors for Sapientis, which advances the social and economic development of Puerto Rico by developing leaders who improve public education, from 2001 – 2005. She has also served as an advisor to individual major donors and foundations and has served on the advisory boards for such wide-ranging publications as Teen People magazine and the Georgetown University Journal of Gender and the Law. Rea earned her master’s degree in public administration from Harvard University’s Kennedy School of Government.  She lives in Washington, DC with her partner and daughter.

Vadim Nikitine

Vadim Nikitine is the President of Commercial Centers Management, a holding company involved in 6 million square feet of commercial space in Puerto Rico, Florida, the Mid-Atlantic and the Midwestern United States.  His companies are actively involved in all phases of the development of shopping centers, mixed-use projects, hotels, and mini-warehouses.  In Puerto Rico, Vadim developed the first self storage facilities that rely primarily on solar energy.  In the last several years, Vadim has continued to invest in the energy field, primarily focusing on efficiency and alternative energy sources.

Vadim is a graduate of Harvard University, where he obtained an undergraduate degree in economic development and sociology in 1989, and a master’s degree in Public Administration from the Kennedy School of Government in 2001.

Vadim is a co-founder of Sapientis, a non-profit organization committed to improving public education by mobilizing a diverse and informed network of change agents. Additionally, he is on the Board of Rare Conservation, an international environmental non-profit organization, and he has participated in the creation and preservation of a 580,000 acre national park in Peru.

In December 2001, Vadim was recognized in Caribbean Business as one of 40 people under the age of 40 having a significant and positive impact on the Caribbean.  In June 2003, he received the Entrepreneur of the Year award from Ernst and Young in the field of Real Estate, Construction and Hospitality.

Office of the President Back to Top

Kristin Ehrgood

President and Board Chair

Kristin Ehrgood is the President and Board Chair of Flamboyan Foundation.  Additionally, she is the founder of Sapientis, a nonprofit organization dedicated to mobilizing a diverse and informed network of change agents committed to improving the quality of public education in Puerto Rico, and was part of the founding team of DC School Reform Now, a non-profit organization committed to supporting education reform in Washington, D.C.

After earning her master’s degree in Public Administration from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government in 2001, Kristin and fellow Kennedy School alumnus Vadim Nikitine started Sapientis in Puerto Rico.   In the spring of 2005, her work at Sapientis was recognized by Ernst & Young when she was named Entrepreneur of the Year in the area of Social Responsibility.

Kristin attended Bucknell University, where she earned a B.A. in International Relations, before joining Teach For America and teaching for three years.  She later joined the Teach For America staff as Executive Director of their New Jersey region and then as Director of New Site Development.

Kristin currently lives in Washington, D.C. with her husband, Vadim Nikitine, and their two children.  She also sits on the boards of Sapientis, DC School Reform Now, Stand for Children, Teach For America *D.C. Region, and Venture Philanthropy Partners.

Natalie Bundi

Managing Director of Finance and Operations

Natalie Bundi is the Managing Director of Finance and Operations at the Flamboyan Foundation. In this role, she works directly with the COO in the establishment and maintenance of org-wide quality and efficiency in communications, human resources, finance and technology.

Prior to coming to the Flamboyan Foundation, Natalie spent four years at Teach For All, based out of London. Natalie’s first role at Teach For All was as a Regional Senior Associate, supporting the programmatic growth of the European partners and the internal operations of the regional team. For the past three years Natalie served as Chief of Staff on the organization’s programmatic partner-facing team. In this role she managed a team of associates to ensure effective administrative and operational support to a team of expatriates, as well as the team’s budget and strategic planning process. During her tenure, Natalie saw the organization grow from approximately 30 staff members and 10 network partners to 120 staff members and 35+ partners. Prior to Teach For All, Natalie worked as a consultant at Deloitte in New York City where she gained her Certified Public Accountant (CPA) credentials.

Originally half Swiss, half Irish, Natalie spent most of her life growing up abroad having spent significant time in Italy, Germany, India, Hong Kong, Thailand, the US, and the UK. Natalie has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Administration from the University of Notre Dame and a Master’s Degree in Development Studies from the London School of Economics & Political Science.

Samantha Cohen

Senior Managing Director of National Family Engagement

Samantha Cohen is Senior Managing Director of National Family Engagement at Flamboyan Foundation. In her role, Samantha builds Flamboyan’s strategy and approach for ensuring that every educator in the United States is an effective practitioner of family engagement.

Samantha brings 14 years of education experience, having worked in the district, charter, higher education, and non-profit worlds. She strives to bridge the siloes in the education sector to ensure that low-income students and families have the opportunities they desire and deserve. Having begun her career as a first grade teacher in Atlanta, Samantha believes deeply in working as a true partner with families and students.

Samantha received a doctorate in education leadership from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, her teaching certificate in Early Childhood Education from Georgia State University, and her Bachelor’s degree in political science from the University of Pennsylvania. She and her husband, Doug, live in Takoma Park, with their cocker spaniel, Cooper, and they enjoy running, cooking, and traveling.

Samantha Evans

Administrative Assistant, President's Office

Samantha Evans is the Administrative Assistant, President’s Office, at Flamboyan Foundation. In her role, she supports Flamboyan’s President and Chief Operating Officer through calendar management and expense processing, as well as managing wider President’s Office systems.

Prior to her time at Flamboyan, Samantha was an administrative assistant for three years at the law firm Wilson, Elser, Moskowitz, Edelman & Dicker LLP in Washington, D.C. She was responsible for supporting efforts around both external affairs and internal processes such as expenses and timekeeping.

Samantha received her Bachelor of Arts in Communications from Messiah College in 2012. She spent a semester abroad at City Unity College in Athens, Greece and is passionate about travel. Samantha visited 13 countries and plans to continue learning about as many countries, cultures, and opportunities the world has to offer.

Guiomar García Guerra

Executive Director

Guiomar García-Guerra is the executive director of Flamboyan Foundation. She shapes, implements, and oversees all aspects of the Foundation’s strategy in Puerto Rico (PR).

Prior to joining Flamboyan, Guiomar worked as an independent consultant to multiple nonprofit organizations, universities and private schools. Her services focused on strategic planning, donor development, program evaluation and program development. She also worked at the Puerto Rico Community Foundation, where she established Giving Circles as a new vehicle for philanthropic giving. Before returning to Puerto Rico in 2002, where she was born and raised, Guiomar lived for fifteen years in the United States. She worked at The Wallace Foundation in New York City as part of the Education team and managed the Ventures in Leadership Fund, dedicated to investing in innovative leadership programs for public school administrators across the United States.

While pursuing her doctorate at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, Guiomar worked as a researcher at Education Matters, where she focused on a multi-year study on the impact of district-wide school reform in Boston Public Schools. Guiomar taught Preschool in Seattle and Kindergarten-3rd grade in San Juan, Puerto Rico. She received her undergraduate degree from Williams College; MA in Human Development and Psychology, and EdD in Administration, Planning and Social Policy from Harvard.

She serves on the board of Scuba Dogs Society, a nonprofit organization devoted to protecting coastal ecosystems in PR. She has also served as a board member of several other education nonprofits. She currently lives with her family in San Juan.

Ilan Mach

Office Coordinator

Ilan Mach is the Office Coordinator at Flamboyan Foundation. In his role, he supports the efficient day-to-day operations of all teams and assists in crafting and implementing new systems of operations.

Prior to his time at Flamboyan Foundation, Ilan served as a program intern at the Information Security Oversight Office, helping to prepare for the implementation of the Controlled Unclassified Information Program. In addition, Ilan worked as a legislative intern in the office of Congressman Hakeem Jeffries, and performed outreach to DC college campuses as a function of his internship with the United States Public Interest Research Group.

Ilan received his Bachelor of Arts in Government from Georgetown University.

Robert Pryor

Associate, Finance and Operations

Robert Pryor is the Associate, Finance and Operations at Flamboyan Foundation. In this role, he supports the Managing Director, Finance & Operations in the establishment and maintenance of organizational wide finance, human resources, and technology systems.

Prior to this role, Robert worked as Flamboyan’s Office Coordinator. Previously, Robert was Volunteer and Programs Coordinator at Give and Surf in Bocas del Toro, Panama, where he worked with local Ngöbe communities in improving the quality of education in a remote environment. Robert directed the day-to-day operations of Give and Surf’s team and volunteers, designed and implemented more efficient systems of operation, and aided in the creation of culturally-responsible curricula.

Originally from California, Robert first came to DC to attend American University, where he earned Bachelor’s degrees in Latin American Studies & Spanish and International Politics.

Kendall Mattos Silverstein

Director, President's Office

Kendall Mattos Silverstein is the Director, President’s Office at Flamboyan Foundation. She manages the President’s external relations and provides support on internal foundation management around strategy, culture, and equity.

Kendall joined Flamboyan Foundation in 2011, bringing six years of experience in executive support and project management for nonprofit executives. Prior to Flamboyan Foundation, Kendall provided executive support around business and client management to the Managing Director at the policy consulting firm Education Counsel. She provided a key support role in the firm’s management of the Education Funders Strategy Group, comprised of representatives from nations’ leading policy-focused education foundations.

Kendall began her professional career as the assistant to the president of AOL founder Steve Case’s family office. She eventually moved on to provide administrative and development support for two of the Case Foundation’s grantee organizations, Play Pumps International and Accelerate Brain Cancer Cure.

A native of the South Shore of Massachusetts, Kendall studied at the College of Communications at the Pennsylvania State University, and resides in Silver Spring, Maryland with her husband.

Marci Young

Chief Operating Officer

Marci Young is Chief Operating Officer of Flamboyan Foundation. She oversees the strategy, program, and operations of Flamboyan’s work in Washington, DC, as well as the long-term planning, establishment and maintenance of organization-wide quality and efficiency to ensure the foundation’s goals are achieved in DC and Puerto Rico.

Marci brings nearly 20 years of experience as an education, non-profit, and advocacy leader at the local, state, and national levels. Marci began her education career as a kindergarten teacher in Montgomery County, Maryland. She brought her passion for working with young children to become a national advocate and served as Executive Director of the Center for the Child Care Workforce where she led efforts to improve the quality of working conditions for educators in early learning settings. She later applied her skills for strategy and issue campaigns to become the Director of Pre-K Now at the Pew Center of the States. In that role she led the final years of a 10-year advocacy initiative that successfully increased pre-k access, funding, and quality nationwide.

Prior to joining Flamboyan, Marci was a Partner at Venture Philanthropy Partners, a nonprofit philanthropic investment organization that combines growth capital and strategic assistance to improve the lives of children and youth of low-income families in the National Capital Region. Most recently, Marci served for three years as the Vice President of Impact at United Way Worldwide overseeing efforts to replicate and scale education, income and health impact strategies for the global network of United Ways.

Marci earned her bachelor’s degree in economics from Stanford University and a master’s degree in early childhood education with a specialization in policy and administration from the University of Pennsylvania. She has served on numerous local and national boards and currently is a Trustee at the McLean School. Marci and her husband live in Bethesda, Maryland with their two teenage sons.

Staff: Puerto Rico Back to Top

Alma N. Díaz-Carrión

Philanthropy Program Assistant

Alma N. Díaz Carrión is the Philanthropy Program Assistant. She will ensure that program operations run smoothly to achieve the area goal of increasing donations and the practice of strategic philanthropy directed at improving student academic achievement.

Prior to joining Flamboyan, Alma provided grant writing support for Proyecto ENLACE del Caño Martín Peña, a corporation that implements public policies for the social and economic development of 27,000 residents. Her passion to maximize the capacity and performance of the third sector in Puerto Rico led her to volunteer as a grant evaluator for NGO’s that compete for United Way funds. She also volunteered to promote the services provided by the Center for Volunteer Development located at the University of Sacred Heart.

Alma lived in Washington, D.C. for almost two years, where she participated in Córdova/Fernós Congressional Internship Program at the U.S. House of Representatives and worked in the Consumer Education and Engagement Division at Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.

She completed a graduate certificate in Non-profit Management from George Washington University and holds a B. S. in Interdisciplinary Sciences from the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus. She is currently pursuing her M. A. in Puerto Rican and Caribbean History from the Center of Advanced Studies in Old San Juan.

Alma was selected by the Center for Puerto Rico-Sila M. Calderón Foundation to join the first group of young entrepreneurs. Her project is focused on a business of selling 100% Puerto Rican natural products based on a solidary economy model.

Guiomar García Guerra

Executive Director

Guiomar García-Guerra is the executive director of Flamboyan Foundation. She shapes, implements, and oversees all aspects of the Foundation’s strategy in Puerto Rico (PR).

Prior to joining Flamboyan, Guiomar worked as an independent consultant to multiple nonprofit organizations, universities and private schools. Her services focused on strategic planning, donor development, program evaluation and program development. She also worked at the Puerto Rico Community Foundation, where she established Giving Circles as a new vehicle for philanthropic giving. Before returning to Puerto Rico in 2002, where she was born and raised, Guiomar lived for fifteen years in the United States. She worked at The Wallace Foundation in New York City as part of the Education team and managed the Ventures in Leadership Fund, dedicated to investing in innovative leadership programs for public school administrators across the United States.

While pursuing her doctorate at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, Guiomar worked as a researcher at Education Matters, where she focused on a multi-year study on the impact of district-wide school reform in Boston Public Schools. Guiomar taught Preschool in Seattle and Kindergarten-3rd grade in San Juan, Puerto Rico. She received her undergraduate degree from Williams College; MA in Human Development and Psychology, and EdD in Administration, Planning and Social Policy from Harvard.

She serves on the board of Scuba Dogs Society, a nonprofit organization devoted to protecting coastal ecosystems in PR. She has also served as a board member of several other education nonprofits. She currently lives with her family in San Juan.

Karen Holguin

Manager of Reading Programs

Karen M. Holguin García is the Manager of Reading Programs. She creates programs of professional development and coaching, among other initiatives that strengthen the teaching of reading and writing from kindergarten through third grade. She collaborates in the design, creation and implementation of reading comprehension materials aimed at the lower elementary grade levels. She works directly with Flamboyan ‘s partner schools and teachers to help further our goal of guaranteeing that every public school student reads at an appropriate level by the end of third grade.

Before she joined Flamboyan, Karen was a kindergarten teacher and professor at the Elementary Laboratory School of the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus. Prior to working at the Lab School, she was a Research Assistant at the Centro para el Estudio de la Lectura, la Escritura y la Literatura Infantil (C.E.L.E.L.I.) at the aforementioned university.

Karen holds a Master ‘s Degree in the Teaching of Reading and a Bachelor´s Degree in the Teaching of English to Spanish Speakers, both form University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus.

Since 2010, Karen has been an active member and collaborator of the Maratón Puertorriqueño de Lectura, a committee dedicated to the organization, promotion and realization of an annual international reading marathon. Furthermore, her passion for reading advocacy led her to become the co-founder and co-investigator of the Proyecto Alianzas de Lectura Puerto Rico – Guatemala, a pedagogical and investigative initiative aimed at the promotion of reading, the formation of readers and the integration of children´s literature to curricular content, carried out in a rural school in Guatemala.

Katherine Miranda

Director of Education Programs

Katherine Miranda is Director of Education Programs. She oversees the strategic planning, implementation, and evaluation of strategies to achieve Flamboyan’s outcomes in education, which focus on improving student achievement in reading by third grade.

Before joining Flamboyan Foundation, Katherine worked as a teacher coach and educational consultant on a range of projects in public and private schools across the island. Katherine began her education career teaching middle school English at a public school in New Jersey, where she grew up. She has also taught at Saint John’s School in San Juan and Parkville School in Guaynabo, and teaches classes on Caribbean literature and culture at the University of Puerto Rico.

Katherine holds a Ph.D. in English from the University of Puerto Rico-Río Piedras, a M.A. in educational technology and information systems with a minor in EFL education from Sagrado Corazón University, and a B.A. from New York University in Latin American studies with a minor in English.

Since moving to Puerto Rico in 2004, Katherine has collaborated on educational and nonprofit initiatives as a volunteer with organizations such as the Enlace Literacy Program, másTaller Collective and the Comité Pro Rescate y Desarrollo de Vieques.

Erika O'Neill

Administrative Assistant

Erika O’Neill has been part of the foundation since its inception.  She began as an intern in 2008. However, she now serves as Administrative Assistant and supports the daily work of the foundation. 

Erika graduated in 2009 from Josefa Pastrana High School in Aguas Buenas and currently studies health sciences with a concentration in nursing at Huertas College.  In 2005, Erika worked at the Office of the Assistant Secretary in the Puerto Rico Department of Education, and in 2007 she was an assistant teacher at a summer camp in an elementary school in Caguas.  Erika has volunteered in Casa Cuna San Cristobal, at senior centers and organizations that provide services to the homeless.

Rosiris A. Ramos Meléndez

Communications Assistant

Rosiris A. Ramos Meléndez is the Communications Assistant. She offers support to the Communications Officer, the Executive Director, and the teams in Puerto Rico to execute and implement effective internal and external communications processes and strategies. She creates content, helps with dissemination and filing, and provides administrative support

She began her professional career as an office clerk in the public radio station that is part of the University of Puerto Rico, where she coordinated large fundraising events, such as concerts, and was a customer service agent. Rosiris provided administrative and editorial support in Prensa Comunitaria, a nonprofit organization where she coordinated content for the website, as well as a training program for nonprofits, among several projects. She also worked as a free-lance journalist (writing articles and also producing videos) and has offered professional services for local magazines, as well as for a small marketing and communications firm.

Before Rosiris joined Flamboyan, she worked at Sistema TV, the local television channel 40, which is part of the network of universities of Ana G. Méndez. In her role, she coordinated all programming (including logs and evaluations of programs). She earned her Master’s degree, as well as her Bachelor’s degree, in Communications, with a major in Journalism from University of Puerto Rico (Río Piedras campus).

Rosiris has a great spirit of service and enjoys spending time with family and kids.

Nayda I. Rivera-Hernández

Philanthropy Program Officer

Nayda I. Rivera Hernández is the Philanthropy Program Officer. She helps shape our strategic direction, measure our success, and implement our strategies to achieve the outcomes of the Inspiring Effective Philanthropy area.

Before joining Flamboyan Foundation, Nayda served for 10 years at the National Council of La Raza (NCLR), the largest national Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization in the United States. She was the Senior Research Analyst on issues that affect children and youth in Puerto Rico. Among her duties, she managed and implemented the KIDS COUNT – Puerto Rico project and co-authored the annual editions of the KIDS COUNT – Puerto Rico Data Book – the first-ever book of integrated data on the status of children in Puerto Rico.

Throughout her 16 year career in research, she has worked on various federal and local research grants on child public and mental health. She also practiced psychology in clinical and school scenarios and taught multiple workshops seminars on school psychology.

Nayda finished all coursework for her master’s degree and PhD in Research and Academic Psychology, and she is completing a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Puerto Rico. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Puerto Rico.

A native of San Juan, Nayda serves as key active member of the Puerto Rico’s Institute of Youth Development Advisory Board and a Board Member for Sapientis.

Carlos Rodriguez

Planning and Operations Senior Manager

Carlos J. Rodríguez Silvestre is the Planning and Operations Senior Manager of Flamboyan Foundation ‘s Puerto Rico office. He works closely with the Executive Director of the Puerto Rico office in the areas of development, implementation, and evaluation of strategic plans to ensure the success of Flamboyan¹s programmatic investments in Puerto Rico, ensuring internal office operations run effectively and efficiently and bridging processes between the Puerto Rico and Washington, DC offices.

Before joining Flamboyan, Carlos worked as an engineer and business strategist focused initially on solving complex operations and logistics challenges faced by Fortune 500 companies. He also labored in the Media & Entertainment industry with Univision Communications, Inc. were he not only provided support to sales, finance and operations, but was the point of contact with Federal regulatory agencies for compliance matters, liaison between in-house legal counsel and local senior management and project manager of most corporate projects for Univision Puerto Rico.

He graduated from the Georgia Institute of Technology where he obtained a Bachelor in Industrial Engineering (B.I.E.) and a Masters in Science in Industrial Engineering (M.S.I.E.). He later obtained a Masters in Business Administration (M.B.A.) from The Wharton School at University of Pennsylvania, where he concentrated his studies in Finance and Strategic Management. Finally, he obtained a Juris Doctor (J.D.) from the University of Puerto Rico, School of Law. Carlos is licensed as a Professional Engineer (PE) in the jurisdiction of Puerto Rico and member of the Puerto Rico College of Engineers and Surveyors (CIAPR). He is also a licensed attorney and member of the Puerto Rico, Florida and Washington, DC BAR.

Zuleimaris Salas Jiménez

Education Program Assistant

Zuleimaris Salas Jiménez (Zuly) is the Education Program Assistant. In this position she offers administrative and programmatic support to achieve the outcomes outlined for the Great Teaching area. She started in Flamboyan in October 2013 as a consultant working with the data collection of the Puerto Rico Directory of Foundations. In 2014, she transitioned to provide administrative and office support while Erika was on maternity leave.

Before joining Flamboyan, Zuly worked in different nonprofits providing administrative and communications support. She has also dedicated her time as a volunteer in many nonprofit organizations and youth groups (Entre Voces, Impacto Juvenil, Mentes Puertorriqueñas en Acción, among others). She was one of the founders and the president of Jóvenes Sembradores de Esperanza, an initiative that provided community services to the northwest coast cities in Puerto Rico.

She holds a B.A. in Public Relations and Advertising and two minors in Corporate Communications and Cooperative Administration from the University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras Campus. She also has studies in photography, graphic design, event coordination and community management. Zuly is currently pursuing her M.A. in Communication and Education from the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona.

Eva Villalón Soler

Research and Public Policy Officer

Eva Villalón-Soler is the Research and Public Policy Officer. She researches and analyzes key public education issues related to Flamboyan’s work, articulates Flamboyan’s position on them and creates resources that capture and communicate what we’re learning in the field.

Before she joined Flamboyan Foundation, Eva taught anthropology and social sciences at the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras and the School of Visual Arts of Puerto Rico, both public higher education institutions. She also worked as an independent translator and editor for a wide variety of academic and literary publications.

As a researcher, Eva is concerned with social and economic inequality at both global and local levels. She conducted extensive qualitative research on the lives and struggles of migrant farmworkers in the United States through immersive fieldwork and hundreds of interviews. Her passion for public education stems from both her personal teaching experience and first-hand understanding of education’s transformative power for low-income families.

Eva holds a Ph.D. in social anthropology from the University of Manchester, United Kingdom and a B.A. in anthropology from the University of Puerto Rico, Río Piedras Campus.

Currently, she volunteers for the Humane Education Program of Darwin Animal Doctors, an international organization dedicated to animal welfare in the Galapagos Islands.

Staff: Washington, DC Back to Top

Shakia Asamoah

Program Associate

Shakia Asamoah is a Program Associate at Flamboyan Foundation. In this role she provides programmatic and logistical support to the Training and Knowledge Management team.

Prior to her time at Flamboyan, Shakia worked as a Program Instructor with For Love of Children, where she focused on college access for low income 7th and 10th grade DC students.

Shakia received her Bachelor’s degree in Women’s Studies from Denison University in Granville, OH. During her time at Denison she served in various leadership roles from student government to the executive staff of various campus organizations.

Shakia developed an interest in Education Equity during her freshman year while working as an intern for Citizen Schools Boston, a nonprofit that provides after school programming for students in low-achieving elementary and middle schools in the Boston area. She has since dedicated herself to helping all students gain the resources and support needed to succeed in all aspects of their lives.

Katherine Avery

Senior Director, Facilitation and Training

Katie Avery is the Senior Director of Facilitation and Training at Flamboyan Foundation. In this role she designs and delivers training around educator mindsets and biases, leads a team of parent and teacher facilitators who execute family engagement sessions at partner schools, and contributes to on-going professional development opportunities.

Katie joined Flamboyan Foundation after eleven years of working in public and public charter schools in Washington DC. She began her career as a primary teacher at Latin American Montessori Bilingual (LAMB) Public Charter School, where she led the English Curriculum development team and ran an afterschool Spanish-immersion theatre program. In 2010, Katie joined a group of parents, advocates, and community leaders to open a Montessori public charter school that focused on cultural enrichment and empowerment for students in Washington DC. In her role as founding co-director, Katie worked as the school’s family liaison, intervention specialist, National School Lunch Program (NSLP) manager, and professional development coordinator.

Prior to Flamboyan, Katie served District of Columbia Public Schools as a Master Educator, specializing in Early Childhood Education and Language Acquisition. In her role with DCPS, Katie designed and facilitated team sessions around race and equity in education, contributed to a variety of Critical Friends’ Groups and workshops, and provided individual teacher support through the program’s coaching initiatives.

Katie has a bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice from the George Washington University, attended the Barrie Institute for Advanced Montessori Studies (MD), and is trained in a variety of innovative educational practices including Brain Gym, SIOP/TWIOP, Redirecting Children’s Behavior, and anti-bias and multi-cultural education.

Melissa Bellin

Manager of Program Operations

Melissa Bellin is the Manager of Program Operations at the Flamboyan Foundation. In her role, she works with the program operations team to support the Family Engagement Partnership. Melissa coordinates and manages partnership agreements, grants, and payment processes, as well as co-creates departmental systems to ensure coordination or planning across teams.

Prior to joining Flamboyan, Melissa worked as a Reading Interventionist with KIPP DC: Lead Academy. As a Reading Interventionist, Melissa led and managed school-wide literacy assessment windows, analyzed assessment data and led PD on administering Strategic Teaching and Evaluation Progress (STEP) tests and tracking assessment data. She started at KIPP in 2013 as a Capital Teaching Resident, and has also served as a first and second grade teacher. Her prior experiences also include a summer as a case associate intern with Advocates for Children of New York and a summer in Tanzania as an English, Science, HIV teacher and Campus Coordinator.

Melissa received her Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology from Harvard University. At Harvard, Melissa worked as an undergraduate research scholar at the Institute of Quantitative Social Science where she conducted research on how strategies for responding to racial stigmatization vary with group identities and boundaries. She also spent two years with Roxbury Youth Initiative Term-Time as Director of Program and Curriculum.

Catalina Calachan

Communications Associate

Catalina Calachan is a Communications Associate at Flamboyan Foundation. In this role, she provides programmatic and administrative support to the Communications team.

Prior to joining Flamboyan, Catalina held internships at the Embassy of Jordan, Ready for Hillary, and the National Capital Planning Commission.

Catalina holds a B.A. in International Studies with thematic focuses on International Development and Identity, Race, Gender, and Culture from American University. She held multiple leadership positions within educational and cultural organizations on campus, such as Community Leaders Advancing in Spanish and English (CLASE). CLASE seeks to empower all members of the AU community by pairing student tutors with Spanish-speaking custodial staff interested in improving their English language and literacy skills and/or preparing for the U.S. citizenship test.

Catalina’s participation in two Alternative Spring Break programs – Inequalities in Urban Education (D.C.) and Community Organizing in the Favelas (Rio de Janeiro) – furthered her interest in the connections between built and social infrastructure and compelled her to think deeply about identity and equity in education. She has since been committed to improving educational experiences for students, especially in urban contexts where access to quality resources can be highly uneven and disparity often correlates along socioeconomic lines.

Robert Crosby

Senior Director of Elementary Program Design

Robert Crosby is the Senior Director of Elementary Program Design at the Flamboyan Foundation. In this role, he designs and manages programming, curriculum and tools for high quality and equitable family engagement practices for leaders and teachers in the Elementary Family Engagement Partnership. Robert also coaches school and network leaders to implement and institutionalize high impact family engagement practices at their respective school and school networks.

Robert began his career as a classroom educator, teaching first grade in Washington, D.C. and Kindergarten in Hong Kong. After his time in the classroom he transitioned to the Teach For America – D.C. Regional office, where he served as a coach of teacher and leadership development focusing on elementary curriculum, classroom management, and family engagement. Robert was responsible for developing new teacher training curriculum for hundreds of new teachers as well as partnering with school leaders at more than 15 schools in the D.C metro area to support teacher development. Robert left Teach For America to found Achievement First Aspire Elementary school in Brooklyn, New York as the Assistant Principal of Curriculum and Instruction. During his time at Achievement First Aspire, he created and supported the execution for high impact family engagement that lead to more than 90% of students meeting and exceeding district wide reading and math goals.

Robert holds a Masters of Education in curriculum and instruction from George Mason University, a teaching credential in early childhood education and a Bachelor of Journalism in strategic communications from University of Missouri.

Anita Drever

Managing Director of Evaluation and Learning

Anita Drever is the Managing Director of Evaluation and Learning at Flamboyan Foundation. In this role she provides strategic leadership to Flamboyan’s research initiatives and oversees the organization’s external and internal program evaluations.

Prior to joining Flamboyan, Anita was the Director of Applied Research at the Corporation for Enterprise Development (CFED) where she led CFED’s research team, and directed research and evaluation projects for the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, the Ohio Housing Finance Agency, and others. While at CFED, Anita became deeply involved in research examining parents’ influence on children’s financial capability.

Anita brings over a dozen years of academic and applied research experience to her work at Flamboyan. While a professor of geography at the University of Tennessee, Anita authored over a dozen peer-reviewed articles and book chapters, and received funding from the National Science Foundation and the German Institute for Economic Research. After leaving academia to become an applied researcher, Anita directed local, state and national evaluations of youth programs while based at the University of Wyoming and Catholic Legal Immigration Network, Inc.

Anita received her Ph.D. in urban and population geography and bachelor’ degrees in geography and political science from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Sarah Ferrell

Manager, Program Design

As manager on the program design team, Sarah works to ensure alignment across the elementary, middle, and high school programs, while including family, student, and teacher voice in program design.

A native Marylander, Sarah studied at the University of Maryland, College Park. She tied studies in global public health, nonprofit and government leadership, and social innovation in family engagement to experiences at Medicare, a community empowerment center, District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS), and the Institute for Educational Leadership (IEL). She was an activist on campus, organizing several movements for social justice in the College Park and greater communities. Sarah is excited to combine her experience in public health and education with her commitment to social justice to advance Flamboyan’s efforts for empowering D.C. teachers and families to partner together and accelerate academic achievement for children. Sarah joined Flamboyan as a member of the operations team and is excited about her transition to the program design team.

Courtney Garmon

Managing Director of Coaching

Courtney Garmon is Managing Director of Coaching at Flamboyan Foundation. In her role, she manages the Washington, DC family engagement coach team and shapes, implements, and oversees its strategy to ensure Flamboyan’s partners are effective family engagement practitioners.

Courtney brings 10 years of coaching and leadership development experience through working with teachers, principals, young adults, and student leaders. She began her career as a Teach for America (TFA) corps member in Atlanta, where she taught 6th and 7th grade mathematics and served as a Secondary Math Learning Team Leader for first year corps members. After spending 4 years in the classroom, she transitioned into corporate America as a recruiter in the accounting and finance industry. Courtney returned to education by joining City Year Los Angeles as a Program Manager and Senior Program Manager, where she was responsible for working with school leaders, managing school partnerships, and leading teams of corps members in the Los Angeles Unified School District. Courtney left City Year to pursue her Master’s in Education at the University of Maryland. While there, she worked for the Honors College, where she was responsible for coaching and developing student leaders within the Honors College and overseeing event planning and execution for Honors College programming.

Courtney holds a masters of education in mathematics education in teacher leadership from the University of Maryland, College Park, a teaching credential in secondary mathematics from Mercer University, and a bachelor of arts in mathematics/economics from Emory University.

Apeksha Goonewardena

Data Analyst

Apeksha Goonewardena is a Data Analyst at the Flamboyan Foundation. In this role she collects, manages, and analyzes data as part of organizational-wide evaluation plans. Apeksha also develops trainings and instructions for teachers, the Family Engagement Leadership Team (FELT) and Flamboyan staff for data entry and online tools.

Prior to her time at Flamboyan, Apeksha served as a research assistant in the Health Cognitions and Behavior Research Lab. In this role, she applied social psychology theories to examine cognitive, affective, and situational factors that affect health decisions.

Apeksha received her Bachelor’s Degree with Honors in Psychology from the George Washington University (GWU) in 2016. At GWU, she worked on a National Institute of Health funded research project focused on the relationship between racial discrimination and HIV/AIDS contraction in young African-American adults. In addition, she co-authored a separate research presentation on the effects of self-compassion and self-esteem on maladaptive eating patterns in college women, which was presented to a university-wide forum. Apart from these accomplishments, she was also an active member of the Elizabeth J. Somers Women’s Leadership Program and an outreach mentor at Community for Hope.

Athena Hernandez

Managing Director of Communications

Athena Hernandez is the Managing Director of Communications at the Flamboyan Foundation. In this role, she is responsible for designing and executing communications strategies that support effective family engagement efforts in Washington, D.C. She also oversees media relations, digital communications, messaging, and branding.

Athena joined the Flamboyan Foundation in 2015 with more than 20 years of relevant communications experience in the Washington Metropolitan region. She began her career in public television with WETA-TV, serving as a production assistant on local and national public affairs programming, including the award-winning Washington Week in Review.

Her career has spanned public education and public affairs, and has included all aspects of media relations and crisis communications, strategic communications, messaging and branding, publication production, and writing and editing. Her career has included serving as Director of Communications for the D.C. Office of the State Superintendent of Education, leading efforts to ensure public awareness of city-wide education initiatives. She was also Public Information Officer for Prince George’s County Public Schools, Maryland’s second largest school District, where she oversaw communications for the first county-wide full-day kindergarten implementation. As Media Relations Manager for the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, she was instrumental in the reunification efforts of more than 5,000 displaced children. In recent years, she has managed the development and execution of social media strategies, and produced video projects to highlight and promote various public programs.

Athena holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of Maryland, Eastern Shore, and a Master of Fine Arts degree from the Vermont College of Fine Arts. She lives in northern Virginia with her husband and daughter.

Justin Jones

Senior Managing Director of DC Family Engagement

Justin Jones is the Senior Managing Director of DC Family Engagement at Flamboyan Foundation. He manages the Washington, DC family engagement program team and shapes, implements, and oversees all aspects of its strategy.

Justin began his career in education as a 6th grade Teach For America teacher in Phoenix, Arizona, trained new teachers, and spent several years on Teach For America’s recruitment team in various positions leading a team of recruiters, data system efforts, and strategic initiatives. He then joined the Office of the State Superintendent of Education (OSSE) in Washington, DC, where he led the creation of a statewide longitudinal education data system.

Prior to Flamboyan, Justin worked at The Achievement Network (ANet) for six years. He served as the founding Executive Director of the DC region, where he built a network of over 70 district and charter schools and led a team of coaches working alongside school leaders to drive breakthrough results for their students. Later, he became Vice President of Product Strategy, leading the enhancement of ANet’s technology platform and partnerships in support of schools.

Justin holds a BA in Psychology and Political Science from the University of North Carolina and an EdM in Curriculum and Instruction from Arizona State University. He currently serves on the board of Two Rivers Public Charter School and lives in the District with his wife and two children.

John LaRue

Director, School Partnerships Coach

John LaRue is a Director, School Partnerships Coach at Flamboyan Foundation. In his role, he serves as a coach to school leaders and teacher leaders in Flamboyan partner schools and supports the development of family engagement practices and tools that partners use.

John joined Flamboyan Foundation with 8 years of experience working with teachers, principals, and students. John began his career as a DC Teaching Fellows member where he served as a special education inclusion mathematics teacher. After spending 6 years in the classroom, John transitioned into the role of instructional coach and special education coordinator. As a special education coordinator, he worked with families of students with disabilities to help them navigate the system of supports available to them, and served as a partner in their advocacy efforts within and outside of the school. While instructional coach, John used student data to drive instructional and school-wide decisions including the transition to high quality, Common Core aligned curricular resources.

John holds a masters of education in special education from The George Washington University, a teaching credential in special education, and a bachelor of arts in communication studies from The University of Iowa.

Tywanna Lesley

Director, School Partnerships Coach

Tywanna Lesley is a Director, School Partnerships Coach at Flamboyan Foundation. In this role, she partners with elementary schools across the District of Columbia to support the development of practices and tools that the partners use to engage their families.

Tywanna began her career in education as a teacher with KIPP D.C. She was a founding kindergarten, first, second and fourth grade teacher. During her tenure at KIPP D.C., she designed unit and lesson plans, managed multiple grade level teams, and coordinated grade-wide family engagement events. Tywanna also mentored first year teachers at KIPP D.C., and co-facilitated teacher trainings for The New Teacher Project.

Tywanna’s commitment to urban education derives from her experiences as a former public school student, and from her work as a tutor and mentor to students at the local Oberlin elementary and high schools. Tywanna has a Bachelor’s Degree in African American Studies from Oberlin College, and a Master’s Degree in Curriculum and Instruction from American University.

Megan Lucas

Senior Director of Knowledge Management

Megan Lucas is the Senior Director of Knowledge Management at the Flamboyan Foundation. In her role, Megan collects, codifies, and disseminates best practices within the organization and to external partners through fellowships, training, and tools. Megan also coaches schools within the Family Engagement Partnership, supporting their principals and teacher leads to implement and institutionalize effective family engagement practices.

Prior to joining the Flamboyan team, Megan spent 6 years as a classroom teacher. Her career began as a Teach for America (TFA) corps member in the Metro DC area, where she taught Kindergarten and First Grade in Prince George’s County. In summer 2010, Megan became a founding teacher at DC Scholars: Stanton Elementary, a turnaround partnership school in Southeast DC. During her tenure at Stanton, she authored reading curriculum, served as the K-2 Literacy Teacher Lead, Grade Level Lead, and conducted over 100 home visits. Outside of the classroom, Megan has served as a Relationship Building Trainer for Flamboyan, a Teach Plus Policy Fellow, a DCPS curriculum writer, and a member of the Leading Educators TLI cohort.

Megan holds a Masters of Education in Curriculum and Instruction from George Mason University and a Bachelor of Science in Communication Studies from Florida State University. She lives in Maryland with her husband, Danny, and baby, Penelope.

Cynthia Phillips

Managing Director of DC Operations

Cynthia Phillips is the Managing Director of DC Operations at Flamboyan Foundation. She supports Flamboyan’s family engagement work, leading and overseeing financial and grants management, designing and implementing systems and structures, and ensuring effective planning and coordination.

Prior to coming to Flamboyan Foundation, Cynthia was the Vice President of Operations for The Heart of America Foundation, where she was responsible for developing and enhancing organizational processes, including budgeting and finance operations, as well as overseeing HR and general administrative / organizational processes. She also crafted, implemented and managed strategic planning and organizational development, as well as overseeing technology systems, managing office facilities, and supporting foundation grant writing.

Cynthia’s previous experience includes serving as the Director of the National Book Program for Reading Is Fundamental. Earlier work experiences include the American Council on Education, as well as five years with the Peace Corps, where she worked as a bilingual liaison with posts in Latin America, with a focus on supporting Peace Corps’ Education Sector programs. Cynthia received her Bachelor’s Degree in International Affairs from The George Washington University, with a minor in Hispanic Languages and Literature.

Matt Robinson

Director, School Partnerships Coach

Matt Robinson is a Director, School Partnerships Coach at Flamboyan Foundation. As a School Partnerships Coach, he works with elementary, middle, and high school teachers and school leaders across the District to develop and support innovative family engagement resources, tools, and best practices.

Prior to joining Flamboyan, Matt worked as a middle school science teacher in Prince George’s County, Maryland as a Teach for America corps member in the D.C. region. He taught 6th, 7th, and 8th graders as well as serving as the K – 5 talented and gifted education coordinator. During his time in the classroom, he focused on implementing culturally responsive teaching while designing and implementing a curriculum based around climate change in the Chesapeake Bay region. In addition to teaching, Matt coached baseball and soccer while also directing the school’s athletic program.

Matt is a proud University of Tennessee Volunteer and graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Biochemistry and Cellular and Molecular Biology and a Bachelor of Arts in History. He became passionate about the power of education on communities through his work as a Young Life Leader in Knoxville, TN.

Nicole Savage

Director, College Readiness and Success

Nicole Savage is the Director of College Readiness and Success at Flamboyan Foundation. She firmly believes that post-secondary education is for everyone and is committed to increasing college access and completion. In this role she conducts research, shapes strategy, and works to build capacity around educators, non-profit organizations and families partnering to support student success.

Prior to joining the Flamboyan, Nicole served as the Program Coordinator for College Readiness for the University of the District of Columbia Community College. There she supported the strategic direction and overall management of the CARE Dual Enrollment Program. She also worked with schools and local agencies to support district college readiness initiatives and goals. Through this position she worked to build and sustain relationships with administrators, counselors, parents, and students across numerous public and charter schools.

Nicole began her career in higher education in admissions. As a Senior Director for Admission and Co-Chair for Multicultural Recruitment at Vassar College she was responsible for outreach, recruitment, selection and collaboration with offices across the institution on diversity programming. The opportunity to educate and support students from the application process through matriculation in this role is what sparked Nicole’s interest in college readiness.

Nicole earned a Bachelor’s degree in Urban Studies, focusing in sociology and race and ethnic studies from Vassar College and a Master of Public Administration from the Maxwell School of Syracuse University.

Justin Stephens

Director, School Partnerships Coach

Justin Stephens is a Director, School Partnerships Coach at Flamboyan Foundation. In this role, he partners with middle and high schools across the District of Columbia to research and pilot innovative family engagement practices aimed to support college readiness and college success.

Justin began his career in education as a teacher in Newport, Kentucky where he designed and taught an inaugural course on arts and humanities for middle school students. During his first years of teaching, Justin began an exploration of the impact of race, class, power, and privilege on adolescent literary experiences in the classroom. This exploration inspired his graduate studies in Minority and Urban Education at the University of Maryland. There, he conducted research on the literacy experiences of students in urban settings.

Justin taught Middle School English Language Arts with Baltimore City Schools from 2006-2010. During his last two years as a classroom teacher, his students achieved 90-90-90 status and in 2009 Justin was recognized as his school’s Outstanding Teacher of the Year. Justin then left the classroom to coach teachers and administrators across ten Baltimore City Elementary and Middle Schools on implementation of Common Core literacy standards. After eight years with Baltimore City Schools, Justin joined Leading Educators where he served as Program Director of the organization’s Washington D.C. teacher leadership fellowship. Justin then transitioned to Director, Strategic Consulting where he provided consulting services for teacher leadership initiatives for the New York City Department of Education and leaders from urban districts across the country.

Justin received his M.Ed. in Curriculum and Instruction, Minority and Urban Education from University of Maryland, College Park and his Bachelor’s degree in Middle Grades Education from Northern Kentucky University.

Diana Suarez

Managing Director of Training and Knowledge Management

Diana Suarez is Managing Director of Training and Knowledge Management, in this role she oversees teacher and leader training, fellowships and applied learning for Flamboyan. The Training and Knowledge Management team shares Flamboyan’s approach to effective family engagement with educators at all points in their careers by managing, supporting, developing, and facilitating trainings and learning opportunities for the Family Engagement Partnership (FEP), Alternative Certification Programs and in Flamboyan’s Professional Learning Communities and Fellowships. Diana brings to her work at Flamboyan expertise in structures and content that engage families to build academic partnerships.

Before coming to Flamboyan, Diana worked as a teacher in the DC Public Schools. She came to DCPS as a Teach for America (TFA) corps member. She taught 1st and 2nd Grade and is certified in ESL and Special Education. At Powell Elementary, a partnership school in Washington, DC, Diana served as the family engagement teacher lead for the school’s Family Engagement Partnership with Flamboyan.

Prior to beginning her career in education, Diana co-owned and operated Wagamuffin Pet Care LLC., a local DC pet care company. Diana has a Bachelor’s Degree in English from Catholic University and a Master’s Degree in Elementary Curriculum and Development from George Mason University.

Jacqueline Tuke

Senior Director of Secondary Partnerships

Jacqueline Pratt-Tuke is the Senior Director of Secondary Partnerships at Flamboyan Foundation. In this role, she assesses the unique needs of students and families in the secondary grades, the age-appropriate roles that families play to support student success, and strategies that schools use to effectively engage families in order to design family engagement programming for secondary schools. She also supports middle and high schools across the District to implement programming to equitably engage families. Additionally, in collaboration with her colleagues, Jacqueline develops strategies to connect family engagement from pre-school to post-secondary so that families have a consistent experience across elementary, middle, and high school.

Prior to joining the Flamboyan Foundation, Jacqueline taught sixth grade science and nonfiction literacy at KIPP DC: KEY Academy. During her tenure at KEY, she wrote curriculum, managed the sixth grade team, and designed and implemented a family engagement plan across the lower middle school. Jacqueline also coached student teachers and Capital Teaching Residents and facilitated teacher trainings for The New Teacher Project and Teach for America as a content specialist.

Jacqueline came to D.C. as a Teach for America (TFA) corps member and taught biology at Dunbar Senior High School where she began her family engagement work, implementing a problem-based module for students and their families on bioethics. Jacqueline double majored at Penn State University, earning a Bachelor’s Degree in Agriculture and Extension Education and Journalism. She holds a Master’s Degree in Teaching from American University.

Emily VanHouten

Senior Director, School Partnerships Coach & Project Management

Emily VanHouten is a Senior Director, School Partnerships Coach and Project Management at Flamboyan Foundation. In her role, she serves as a coach to school leaders and teacher leaders in Flamboyan partner schools, and supports the development of family engagement practices and tools that partners use. Emily also leads our partner school selection work and helps coordinate internal and external project management needs.

Prior to coming to Flamboyan, Emily served as the Assistant Principal for Excel Academy Public Charter School’s Elementary Campus in Southeast, D.C., where she used student achievement data to develop, implement, and manage a rigorous academic program for 350 students in Kindergarten through third grade. Emily also served as an Instructional Coach at Excel, coaching teachers in the areas of curriculum planning and development, instructional best practices, family engagement practices, and behavior management. She designed and implemented professional development in the areas of item analysis and data action planning. Emily was a founding third and fourth grade teacher at Excel, and began her career as a Teach for America (TFA) corps member in Washington, D.C.

Emily holds a Masters of Education in Curriculum and Instruction from George Mason University, and a Bachelor of Science in Elementary and Special Education from The State University of New York: College at Geneseo.

Stacia Weaver

Director of Communications

Stacia Weaver is the Director of Communications at Flamboyan Foundation. In this role, she identifies strategies and communication platforms that shed light on and promote Flamboyan Foundation’s mission and key focus area – family engagement and its unparalleled success in increasing academic achievement for students in Washington, DC and across the country.

Stacia joined Flamboyan Foundation in 2016, transitioning from a management position at a high-performing charter school in Washington, DC. There, she was introduced to the dynamic education landscape. Coming on-board with public relations and communications experience in national, health-related organizations, Stacia used those specialized skills to tell the story from the lens of academic achievement, student success, and the systems in place that help minority students excel in college and beyond. In this role, Stacia also had the opportunity to mentor a graduating senior and tutor students who participated in Homework Help, one of the school’s signature enrichment programs.

In her career, Stacia has explored many elements of public relations and communications at non-profit organizations, including fundraising, event planning, managing crisis communications, overseeing editorial calendars and social media messaging, and producing digital and print communications and marketing materials.

Stacia graduated from Lincoln University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Mass Communications. In 2011, she earned a Master of Arts degree from Drexel University, where she studied Public Communication. Stacia lives in Maryland and spends most of her free time with family, friends, and decorating her new home.