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Michela English is and education advocate and former President & CEO of Fight For Children, a non-profit organization that works to improve the quality of education for low-income children in Washington, DC. Prior to joining Fight For Children, Michela worked for eight years at Discovery Communications. In the 1990s, Michela served as Senior Vice President of the National Geographic Society, with responsibility for the book division, Traveler magazine, WORLD magazine for children, educational media, and international publishing. She also served as a member of the Society’s Board of Trustees and as Vice Chairman of the Board of the NGS Education Foundation. Throughout her professional life, Michela has held leadership roles in a variety of education, youth-related and other non-profit and corporate initiatives. She holds a BA from Sweet Briar College and a Master of Public and Private Management from the Yale School of Management.
Hadley Cooper is a proud mom of two girls. She has been involved with DC Prep for over 10 years, first helping with the annual benefit, then as a Development Committee member and Advisory Board member. Hadley has an undergraduate degree from Yale.
Jenny Abramson is the Founder and Managing Partner at Rethink Impact. Prior to that role, she served as CEO and President at LiveSafe. Jenny is a proven executive with roles in the technology, education, and media sectors. Her past successes have ranged from large companies like The Washington Post to start-ups like Personal. In education, Jenny ran the Transformation Management Office for DC Public Schools’ Chancellor Rhee, and was Director of Program Strategy & Development at Teach For America. Jenny received a BA and an MA from Stanford, an MBA from Harvard Business School, and a Fulbright at The London School of Economics.
Dr. Patrick Clowney works as a manager of IT Systems at the United States Department of Education Federal Student Aid Office, and is the proud parent of two DC Prep students. Prior to his current role, Dr. Clowney served as a Systems Engineer at the National Nuclear Security Administration. He has also worked as Technical Program Manager at Amazon Web Services and as an officer in the United States Air Force. He has held several leadership roles in DCPS to include two-time Chairman of the DCPS Head Start Parents Policy Council, Chairman, McKinley Technology Local School Advisory Team, and as a member of DCPS Chancellor’s Parents Cabinet. Dr. Clowney also serves on Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton’s Service Academy Selection Committee. Dr. Clowney graduated from the United States Air Force Academy with a degree in Engineering Sciences. He holds master’s degrees from The University of Oklahoma, The George Washington University, Naval War College, and the School of Advanced Air and Space Study at Air War College. He earned his PhD in Systems Engineering from The George Washington University.
Nicole Davy is a mother of two and her son has been attending DC Prep's Anacostia Elementary Campus since its inaugural year in 2015. She has 15 years of healthcare experience. She has worked at the student health center at George Washington University since moving to Washington, DC in 2013. Nicole received her Master of Science in Nursing: Family Nurse Practitioner in 2017 from GW.
Terry Eakin is a former President and Chairman of EYA, LLC, a builder of urban "in-fill" housing in the Washington DC area. EYA has built over 5000 homes, was twice selected as America’s Best Builder, and has received over 250 other national and local awards. Prior to founding EYA in 1992, Terry was a Senior Vice President and General Partner for 20 years at The Holladay Group. He received a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2009 from the DC Metropolitan Area Builder Association. Education reform has long been a passion of Terry's. He served on the Federal City Council’s Committee on Public Education and as Chairman of the DC Public Charter School Resource Center before becoming the initial DC Prep Board Chair. He has also served on the Board of Sidwell Friends School and The Learning Alliance of Vero Beach, FL among other not for profit Boards. Terry graduated from Sidwell Friends School and Princeton University and received an MBA from Stanford GSB.
Brian Jones is the President of Strayer University. Prior to this role, he served as General Counsel and Deputy General Counsel for Strayer Education, Inc. – the University’s holding company. Prior to that, Brian served as General Counsel at the U.S. Department of Education. Brian has a long and distinguished career in education, formerly serving as Chairman of the DC Public Charter School Board. In addition, he co-founded Latimer Education, Inc., a venture-backed company that partners with HBCUs to provide African-American students with online educational opportunities. Brian earned a BS in Business Administration from Georgetown University and a JD from the UCLA School of Law.
Mercedes Kearney is a native Washingtonian, a proud mom of five, two who are DC Prep students, both of whom are Benning Middle Campus Preppies. Mercedes has been a supporter and fan of DC Prep since first reading their test scores when searching for a school for her then 3 year-old. Mercedes has over 28 years of government, private sector, and non-profit experience. Mercedes is also the owner of MASsiveworks, LLC, a designed apparel and home décor company as well as photography. Mercedes has experience in human resources, creative arts, and administration.
Judy Lansing Kovler, PhD, is a Psychotherapist in private practice with over 30 years of experience. She has served on a variety of boards for non-profit organizations. Judy graduated from the University of California, Berkeley.
Emily Lawson founded DC Prep in 2002 and led the growth of the organization from a single middle school to the highest-performing Charter Management Organization in the nation’s capital — today serving 1,900 students in preschool through 8th grade on five campuses. Emily’s work at DC Prep has been featured in The Washington Post and on the NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, and has attracted the support of major national foundations focused on public education reform. In 2007, Emily completed the Broad Foundation’s Associate Residency in Urban Education. Prior to founding DC Prep, Emily worked for Victory Schools, a charter school management company in New York, as well as Academy of the Pacific Rim, a nationally-recognized charter school in Boston. Emily holds an MBA with Distinction from Harvard Business School and an MPA, with a focus on education, from the Kennedy School of Government. Her business career includes three years at The Boston Consulting Group and two years at the New York private equity firm, New Mountain Capital. She is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of North Carolina where she was a Morehead Scholar. She is a native Washingtonian.
Maura Marino is the CEO at Education Forward DC, where she leads the organization's effort to accelerate the work of visionary education leaders to foster a city of high-quality, equitable public schools for every DC student and family. Prior to that, she served as a Managing Director in NewSchools Venture Fund’s Washington, DC office, where she led the DC Schools Fund. Before joining NewSchools, Maura was Program Director and Lead Teacher at East Palo Alto High School, a charter school in Northern California. Maura served on the steering committee for the Stanford Schools Corporation and was a member of the Stanford School of Education’s Performance Assessment Collaborative. Maura earned a BA in American Studies from Stanford University, an MA in teaching from Teachers’ College, and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Lawrence C. Nussdorf is Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of Clark Enterprises, a privately held company with extensive interests in real estate, private equity and traditional investments. He previously served as President, Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Clark. Mr. Nussdorf serves as Director of Leidos, Inc. (NYSE:LDOS) (formerly SAIC, Inc.). He is a member of the Executive Committee of the Anti-Defamation League (DC Chapter), a Trustee of WETA and the United Jewish Endowment Fund of Greater Washington, a Director of the A. James & Alice B. Clark Foundation and a founding member of the Advisory Board of the Penn Institute for Urban Research. He previously served on the Boards of Clark Construction Group, LLC; Pepco Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:POM); Capital Source, Inc. (NYSE:CSE); as well as numerous DC-area nonprofits, and is a former Trustee of the University of Pennsylvania. Mr. Nussdorf is a member of the District of Columbia Bar Association and is also a Certified Public Accountant (inactive status). He received his BS in Economics from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, his JD from Rutgers School of Law, and an LLM (Tax) from Georgetown University Law Center. Mr. Nussdorf is the recipient of the Alumni Award of Merit from the University of Pennsylvania and the Outstanding Director Award from the National Association of Corporate Directors.
Valerie Rockefeller Wayne is a philanthropist and former middle school special education teacher specializing in adolescents with learning and emotional disabilities. She taught in Sydney and Melbourne, Australia, after beginning her teaching career with three years at Central Park East Secondary School in East Harlem, New York. Valerie has an undergraduate degree from Stanford University, an MEd in special education from Bank Street College of Education, and an MAT from Columbia University Teachers College.