Meet the 2017 Atlanta Fellows
(back to NLC 2017 Fellows)
Ashley Brady, Director of Strategy, DaVita
Ashley Brady is a Director of Strategy at DaVita, a Fortune 200 healthcare company. In her role, Ashley serves as Chief of Staff and key strategy advisor to the regional Group Vice President and is responsible for leading strategy and high priority growth initiatives across seven states and 300+ dialysis clinics. Prior to joining DaVita, Ashley worked at McKesson in Corporate Strategy and Business Development for the company’s Healthcare Technology Solutions segment. In this role, she supported leading hospitals, health systems, payers and pharmacies as they addressed challenges related to cost reduction, improved patient outcomes, and the transition to value based care/reimbursement.
Before McKesson, she worked as a Senior Healthcare Consultant with The Advisory Board Company in Washington, D.C, where she was responsible for advising hospitals and health systems on population health management, value-based care and healthcare reform.
Prior to The Advisory Board Company, Ashley served as a U.S. Diplomat with the U.S. Department of State. In her capacity as a Diplomat, Ashley was responsible for carrying out the foreign policy of the President of the United States and representing the political and economic interests of the United States abroad. She completed diplomatic tours at the U.S. Consulate General in Guangzhou, China as an Economic Policy Officer and the U.S. Consulate General in Toronto, Canada as Chief of the Policy Section. In both countries, Ashley covered international healthcare policy and served as a liaison between the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the FDA and the Ministries of Health in both China and Canada.
Ashley earned her MBA from Columbia Business School, where she was a Columbia Fellow. She also earned a MA in International Affairs from The Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University and BA in International Relations from Agnes Scott College. While at Agnes Scott, Ashley was awarded the prestigious Thomas R. Pickering Foreign Affairs Fellowship by the U.S. Department of State and the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation.
A native Texan, Ashley loves to travel internationally and volunteer with Junior League of Atlanta. Ashley is also a member of the National Black MBA Association of Atlanta.
Telvin Debnam, Executive Director, A+ Squash
Telvin Debnam, was born in Youngsville, North Carolina. He graduated from North Carolina Central University with a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science, and completed his Master of Public Administration with an emphasis on social entrepreneurship and nonprofit management.
Prior to joining A +Squash, Telvin worked with the National Society of Black Engineers’ Summer Engineering Experience for Kids (SEEK) program. His areas of expertise include recruitment and training of volunteers, development of local parent committees, and management of social media strategy and execution.
Previously, Telvin was VP of Outreach for Generation Next, a DC startup which assists millennials, women and minorities to find employment and create their own businesses. In July 2015, Telvin leaped into the role of Executive Director for A+ Squash. Telvin looks forward to advancing A+ Squash’s unique vision of urban squash in Atlanta.
Christopher DeVore, Master of Public Health Candidate, Rollins School of Public Health – Emory University Christopher DeVore is currently studying Health Policy at the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University for his Master of Public Health degree. At Rollins, Christopher is a student leader, representing his department as its elected student representative on the Rollins Student Government. Additionally, he sits on the Emory-wide Graduate Student Government body as an appointed legislator, representing the Rollins’ student body as a whole.
Prior to beginning his Masters program, Christopher spent two years working as a contracted Executive Assistant to the Assistant Secretary of Preparedness and Response (ASPR) at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in Washington, DC. During his time there, he was a member of the team that supported the ASPR during various public health emergencies such as the Ebola outbreak, Flint, Michigan water crisis, and Zika Virus outbreak. It was during these complex events that Christopher witnessed just how political public health really is. Many of the decisions made were met with a barrage of hearing requests and letters from elected officials, likely in response to concerns from their constituents. Christopher was fascinated by the congressional hearings and grew more interested in the political aspects of public health. Shortly after the spring of 2015, he decided that public office is where he wants to be champion for public health and make his impact on improving the health of the country. In September of 2015, Christopher joined former Maryland Lt. Governor Anthony Brown’s Campaign for Maryland’s 4th Congressional District as a Campaign Fellow. During the campaign, Christopher assisted in coordinating speaking events, maintaining a voter database, and recruiting volunteers for phone banks.
Wanting to expand on his interest in politics, Christopher was appointed to a two-year term as a Chief Election Judge for Montgomery County, Maryland in April 2016. Christopher obtained his Bachelor of Science degree (Community Health) from the University of Maryland, College Park. In his spare time, Christopher serves as a mentor and advisor to the undergraduate members of the Emory Chapter of Sigma Beta Rho Fraternity Inc. Additionally, he enjoys cooking for and entertaining friends at his apartment, exploring new cities, and traveling around the country in search of the best tapas restaurants.
Martina Edwards, VP, Corporate Partnerships, Points of Light
We are excited to announce that Martina (Marshall) Edwards will be joining the 2017 Cohort of NLC Fellows. Edwards serves as Vice-President, Corporate Partnerships for Points of Light - the world’s largest organization dedicated to volunteer service, putting people at the center of change. She brings a broad set of capabilities across both the private and public sector.
Prior to Points of Light, Edwards was most recently the Senior Director of Alternative Investments & Alumni Programs for Sponsors for Educational Opportunity (SEO) - a New York based non-profit with a 50-year history of providing talented and motivated young people from underserved and underrepresented communities with access to educational and career opportunities. She bore responsibility for continuous alumni engagement and the growth in scale and scope of the alternative investments platform through strategic partnerships and events.
An experienced banking professional, Edwards was also a Vice-President with Merrill Lynch and worked as a broker on the New York Stock Exchange. She was in fact the first African-American female broker for the firm on the floor of the NYSE. Post graduate school, she joined US Trust, the private banking arm of Bank of America as a Private Client Manager. In this role, she collaborated with business partners to find solutions to grow, manage, and preserve the assets of emerging wealth clients. Prior to SEO, she served in a dual capacity as Interim Executive Director and Director of Finance for a Kaplan Higher Education career college, where she consulted with regional campuses on strategic operations. She holds a B.S. in Finance from Tuskegee University and an MBA from UNC, Kenan-Flagler Business School, where she completed an exchange at the University of Witswaterand in Johannesburg, South Africa. A native of Alabama, Edwards, her husband and two sons are enjoying being back in the South! She enjoys traveling, reading, and outdoor events and activities!
Emerson Girardeau, Associate, Sutherland Asbill & Brennan LLP
Emerson is an Associate in the Energy and Environmental Group at Sutherland Asbill & Brennan LLP where his practice focuses on mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, commercial transactions, and project development in the energy industry. His mergers and acquisitions experience focuses on acquisitions of power generating assets (both gas-fired and renewable assets, including solar and wind facilities) and retail electric providers. Emerson also has an extensive pro bono practice in which he advises on landlord tenant issues through the Atlanta Volunteer Lawyers Foundation’s Standing with Our Neighbors initiative. In addition, he recently evaluated candidates for President Obama’s non-violent drug offender clemency program. Before joining Sutherland, Emerson was a Business Development Associate at BNY Mellon Wealth Management where he analyzed investment portfolios for prospective high-net-worth clients in the Atlanta market. A native of Greensboro, North Carolina, Emerson moved to Atlanta, Georgia in 2004 to complete his undergraduate studies. Emerson was a 2008 graduate of Morehouse College, receiving a BA in Philosophy. After graduating cum laude from the University of Michigan Law School, Emerson returned to Atlanta, Georgia to pursue his legal career. While in Atlanta, Emerson has served as a member of the City of Atlanta Elected Officials Compensation Commission, the Emerging 100 of Atlanta Executive Board, and on the board of the Metro Atlanta Chapter of the Morehouse College Alumni Association. Emerson enjoys traveling and is a devoted Michigan Wolverine Football fan.
Jenn Graham, CEO, Aha! Strategy
Jenn Graham is on a mission is to design a more inclusive world by making civic engagement fun, social and meaningful. She is the founder and CEO of Aha! Strategy, an Atlanta-based social innovation design firm, helping leaders move the needle on critical issues such as early childhood education, alternative transportation and community engagement. Also, Jenn leads Civic Dinners, a civic engagement platform designed to bring new voices to the table around conversations that matter. Through her work, Jenn has helped raise the Millennial voice by leading the Atlanta Regional Commission's Millennial Advisory Panel and sparked a week-long conversation on regional transit leading The Great Exchange on Transportation in Gwinnett. In partnership with the Atlanta Bicycle Coalition, Jenn helped raise the visibility of bicycling in Atlanta by rebranding and reorganizing Atlanta Streets Alive, now the largest open streets event in the country. She’s led the brand strategy, communications and community engagement for Get Georgia Reading and Talk With Me Baby, a coalition funded by United Way working to bridge the 30 million word gap by training nurses to coach parents on the power of language nutrition. Recently named one of Atlanta’s 40 Under 40 by the Atlanta Business Chronicle and a graduate of the Regional Leadership Institute Class of 2016, Jenn is recognized for her contributions and leadership in the Atlanta region. She currently serves as a board member for Community Farmers Markets. Formerly she served as project lead for (co)lab summit, a Collaborative Leadership Summit organized by Leadership Atlanta in 2013 and TEDxAtlanta co-organizer for 5 years, helping over 100 speakers prepare for the talk of their life. Her current focus is on reinventing citizen engagement to be fun, social and meaningful.
Roberto Gutierrez, Navigator, Georgia Association For Primary Health Care
Roberto Gutierrez was born in Peru, South America, and moved to the USA 15 years ago. First with the idea of just ‘check it out’, he decided to stay and pursue the American Dream, given the great opportunity he saw here. Higher education was the premium environment to experience America, and invaluable instrument to develop his interest in Social Justice and Activism, becoming the founding member and first President of Students for a Progressive Society in Gainesville State College, and President of the Chapter of Amnesty International in Georgia State University, organizations through which he advocated for immigrant reform, gender and race equality, religious tolerance, anti-militarism, respect for the environment, and human rights. After graduating with honors from GSU, Roberto worked with the Georgia Rural Urban Summit and the Georgia Latino Alliance for Human Rights, advocating for immigrant rights and immigration reform at the state and national level, working on his goal of building a connection between legislative advocacy and grassroots activism in Georgia. Currently, Roberto is one of the top performers in the ACA Navigator’s Program of the Georgia Association for Primary Health Care, has won 3 races as a consultant for political campaigns in the state of Georgia, volunteers for immigrant rights through the Georgia Immigrant and Refugees Rights. Coalition, co-hosts a radio show in Radio Information, the first Spanish Speaking talk radio in Georgia, and serves as Policy Senior Adviser for State Representative Brenda Lopez.
Justin Harris, Financial Advisor, Northwestern Mutual
Justin Harris is a Financial Advisor partnered with Northwestern Mutual. After graduating with a degree in Economics from Cornell University, Justin was driven to embark on a career where he could directly have an impact on people’s lives. Justin’s financial services practice helps his clients create a lifetime of financial security. He provides detailed financial security analysis and recommendations. Leaving himself at the door, Justin puts the client’s needs and wants at utmost priority to create a comprehensive financial plan unique to their financial situation. Justin also uses his expertise to have an impact on the Atlanta community through outreach programs and volunteer opportunities. His ambition is to progressively work towards diminishing the wealth gap here in Atlanta and throughout the United States. Justin values his life by “using his blessings to be a blessing to others”. An Atlanta native, Justin admires the fashion in which the city of Atlanta is developing. During these times of significant growth, his efforts are to promote positive economic development while ensuring that equal opportunity is provided, especially in the residential real estate market. Justin truly believes that home ownership is a pivotal component to an individual’s wealth accumulation. He is working towards initiatives to promote affordable housing opportunities in the Atlanta market. In the past, Justin was a student federal aid advocate in Washington D.C., a mentor in both high school and college, and the captain of his Cornell University football team. He is currently a budget coach at the Habitat for Humanity and an 8th grade football coach at St. Pius X, where he too attended high school and was a two-sport athlete. Justin’s father, Brian, is an IT Director in the medical industry and his mother, Jeannine, is the Founder of CDD Interior Designs. His brother, Nick, is a collegiate basketball player at The College of Charleston.
Jonathan Liddell, Client Executive, IBM
Jonathan Liddell is an IBM Client Executive covering the state & local government of Georgia where he helps clients drive towards technological innovation and achieve transformational progress in their organizations. Before joining IBM, Jonathan was a AML/KYC Officer at JP Morgan in NYC, NY. Jonathan supported the Global Funds Group where he managed compliance issues for several prominent global hedge funds and was recognized by JP Morgan for his outstanding quality, timeliness, and collaboration with both clients and bankers. Prior to joining JP Morgan, Jonathan was a Senior Intelligence Analyst at various private military firms where he supported U.S/Canadian conventional forces and U.S. Special Operations. Jonathan resided in both Guantanamo Bay, Cuba and southern Afghanistan and served as the intelligence subject matter expert for the Middle East and South-East Asia to include but not limited to: Afghanistan, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, Pakistan, and India. In these positions, Jonathan created over 1,000 intelligence assessments based on the complex collection, research and analysis of large data-sets, which was collected using a combination of intelligence methods and collaboration with key influencers within the U.S. Intelligence community and various government agencies. Jonathan began his career in the U.S. Army as a Human Intelligence (HUMINT) Collector stationed in Ft. Shafter, HI. During his military career Jonathan was a team leader for an intelligence collection team that performed over 150 intelligence collection operations. He was also a section leader of an HUMINT Collection Team in support of strategic intelligence and counterintelligence operations and assisted in the development of and led multiple HUMINT and counterintelligence field training exercises. He holds a Master of Business Administration degree from George Washington University School of Business and a Bachelor of Arts in Intelligence Studies from American Military University and is passionate about helping transitioning military and veterans identify and work towards their “next mission” in post-military service.
Brenda Lopez Romero, Principal Attorney, The Lopez Firm
Brenda Lopez is State Representative for House District 99 in Gwinnett County. Brenda is the Principal Attorney at The Lopez Firm, LLC handling removal and family based immigration cases. Brenda seeks to incorporate immigration, civil rights, international law, and community development into the practice of law. Brenda holds a law degree from Syracuse University with a National Security and Counterterrorism certificate and a bachelor’s degree from Georgia State University in Political Science and Sociology. While in law school, she was a clerk for Georgia Legal Services Program, American Civil Liberties Union, and an intern for Trial Judge Laura Galvan Salgado for the First District Court of Morelos in Mexico. Currently, she is member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association, Hispanic National Bar Association, and Georgia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Brenda is also involved in political, legal, and education advocacy. She is proud to serve as Vice-Chair of the Latino Caucus for the Democratic Party of Georgia. Among her lengthy volunteerism, she is most excited to be a G.E.D. instructor with the Marist School Adult Education Program.
Abigail McCann, Coordinator of Teaching and Learning, Purpose Built Schools
A product of public education in the great state of Maine, Abby is committed to closing the achievement and opportunity gap for the most underserved communities of students in America. She began her career as a Teach for America corps member in South Louisiana. Her time teaching in Donaldsonville, LA, convinced her that she had much to learn about urban education, and she moved to Atlanta, GA, in search of school models successful in meeting the needs of low-income pupils. This search lead her to Charles R. Drew Charter School and the East Lake community. After teaching at Drew for years, Abby was recruited to join a new start-up, Purpose Built Schools, founded with the goal of replicating Drew’s highly-successful school model. An arm of Atlanta-based Purpose Built Communities, Purpose Built Schools supports public school districts across the nation in designing new charter and turnaround schools as part of holistic neighborhood revitalization efforts. As Coordinator of Teaching and Learning at Purpose Built Schools, Abby designs and facilitates professional development for the next generation of highly-successful urban school leaders. Abby graduated cum laude from Dartmouth College in 2011.
Ericka McCracken, Training Specialist, Federal Emergency Management Agency
Ericka McCracken attended the University of Virginia, one of the top universities in the country and received a Bachelor’s degree in English. While attending” Jefferson’s University,” Ericka volunteered with Madison House, a volunteer organization associated with the school. Ericka spent nearly 2 years working in schools in the greater Charlottesville area. Upon graduation, Ericka began working with Sanford Brown Institute. Ericka began working in the registrar’s office as the assistant registrar. She quickly became a favorite of the students and staff, assisting with creating a new counseling component to the school. After only a year, Ms. McCracken was promoted to career services where she led two program areas in interviewing etiquette and job placement. During this time, Ericka had been accepted to Georgia State University, pursuing an advanced degree in Public Administration. After two years a Georgia State University, she graduated Cum Laude with a degree in Public Administration and a certificate in Emergency Management. Ms. McCracken transitioned into the public sector, working with the Federal Emergency Management Agency in Logistics. Ms. McCracken was tasked with managing a cadre of over 200 reservists. She successfully assisted the Logistics cadre in the credentialing effort led by FEMA HQ. After serving in Logistics for seven years, Ericka began a new assignment in the National Preparedness Division as a Training Specialist. In addition to her professional accomplishments, Ericka is a producer, published author and Life Coach. To date, Ericka has completed two documentaries, “Tic Toc: The Black Women’s Timeline” which details how the Black family is viewed in the eyes of its own as well as “No Color To It: A Real American Story”, the story of a local business owner who didn’t allow his impoverished upbringing to deter him from serving a community who always supported him. Ericka has also completed a web series titled, “Thirty Below”, a comedic take on the breakups and breakthroughs of turning 30. Ericka released her first memoir in April 2015 titled ALTARcation: My Story of Forgiveness and will release her new book Let It Burn: 7 Ways to Ignite Your Future Through Forgiveness in January 2017. Additionally, Ericka conducts F.R.E.E. workshops that focus on helping others create strategic plans to obtain freedom in love, career and purpose. Ericka currently resides in Marietta, Georgia
Chris McDade, Packaging Category Leader, Chick-fil-A
Chris McDade serves as the Packaging Category Lead in Marketing at Chick-fil-A and has over 15 years of experience in the Consumer Package Goods and Food Services Industry. Chris started his career at Procter and Gamble in Cincinnati, Ohio where he was responsible for commercial innovation and new product development for the Bounty paper towel brand. In 2008, Chris relocated to Atlanta,Georgia and transitioned to The Clorox Company as a Senior Packaging Engineer. He continued leading new process and packaging development on brands such as Pine Sol, Clorox Bleach, Liquid Plumber, Green Works and Clorox Wipes. After obtaining an M.B.A with a concentration in Marketing Strategy, Chris transitioned to lead Brand Packaging at Chick-fil-A. Chris has a passion for community service, civic engagement, and mentoring. While at Clorox, Chris developed a community outreach program to mentor at risk male students. The students made significant academic improvements and Chris was awarded the Educational Excellence Award from the Mayor of Smyrna. Chris currently serves in multiple organizations in Atlanta and is a youth mentor for middle and high school students. He is a member of the Beta Gama Sigma International Honor Society, the Urban League Young Professionals-Atlanta, a founding board member of Another Level of Excellence, and a proud member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Incorporated. Chris hails from Los Angeles, California by way of Hattiesburg, Mississippi. He is a graduate of Morehouse College and the Georgia Institute of Technology with dual degrees in General Science and Mechanical Engineering. He earned an M.B.A. from Emory’s Goizueta Business School. His proudest accomplishments are is his faith in God and his family, where he is a loving husband, devoted son, and older brother to four siblings.
Sweta Patel, Director of Data, Analytics, & Insights, Achieve Atlanta
Sweta Patel has recently transitioned to Atlanta and currently works at Achieve Atlanta as the Director of Data, Analytics, & Insights. In this role, she is responsible for managing and analyzing data to drive organizational and program decisions. Prior to this role, Sweta worked at the Dallas Independent School District in the Human Capital Management department as the Data & Design Manager. During her time in Dallas, she designed processes to improve the overall talent strategy for the district and managed all human capital systems and data. Prior to Dallas, Sweta was a First to the Top Fellow at the Tennessee Department of Education in the educator talent department and also served as a Teach For America Corps Member in Washington, DC. With a passion to serve her community and transform educational systems, Sweta has also been active in multiple community organizations including Leadership for Educational Equity, Dallas Mayor’s Star Council, and Leadership ISD. Sweta earned a BA in Political Science and Environmental Studies at Emory University and a MA in Education Policy at Teachers College, Columbia University.
Victoria Phifer, Public Health Analyst, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Victoria Phifer is a Presidential Management Fellow (PMF) serving at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). She is passionate about health equity and building healthy communities by addressing the social determinants of health. During her time with the agency, she has worked with senior leadership in the CDC Washington Office, supporting Congressional relations; the Office of the Associate Director for Policy, contributing to innovative health systems collaboration; and most recently the Center for Surveillance, Epidemiology and Laboratory Services. She previously worked for a non-profit organization that provides transitional housing for homeless women with HIV/AIDS and contributed to the volunteer engagement and development teams. Service has been a lifelong passion for Victoria. Since her arrival in Atlanta, she has been an active volunteer with the Urban League of Greater Atlanta Young Professionals, Political Awareness Committee. Her service contributed to the development of several civic engagement programs and voter registration drives. She was also recognized by the organization as Political Awareness Committee Member of the Year 2015 & 2016. She is also committed to ensuring the professional and educational advancement of youth in Atlanta and mentors local youth through The Winner’s Circle, Inc., where she serves as Executive Secretary. Victoria earned a Bachelor of Science degree from Howard University in Health Administration and a Master of Public Health degree from Emory’s Rollins School of Public Health, with a concentration in health policy. Her practicum focused on reproductive justice and campus sexual assault prevention among minority women. She served as a Department Representative on the Student Government Association and was awarded a 2014 Herman L. Reese Community Service Award for making significant contributions to the black community at Emory and greater Atlanta. A native of Toledo, OH, she enjoys listening to podcasts, running and learning about Georgia through service.
Ranada Robinson, Research Manager, Market Street Services
Ranada Robinson is the Research Manager at Market Street Services, a holistic economic development consulting firm that has worked in 35 states and over 150 communities. Ranada provides quantitative and qualitative data analysis to client projects and is a resource for the firm’s research staff. In her role, Ranada has served as lead researcher on an array of economic and community development projects and other special projects in many communities, including her hometown of Jackson, Mississippi. In addition, Ranada designs staff training and evaluates current and potential research tools and resources. Ranada holds a Master of Science in Urban Policy Studies with specializations in policy analysis and economic development and planning and a Master of Science in Risk Management and Insurance from Georgia State University. Ranada is also a graduate of Tougaloo College, where she earned a bachelor’s degrees in mathematics and computer science. She has completed the IEDC Basic Economic Development Course at Georgia Tech, and she has received certification from Economic Modeling Specialists International (EMSI). Ranada is active in several organizations, including Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. She currently serves as President of Tau Epsilon Omega Chapter, which serves East Point and College Park, as well as its nonprofit arm The Twenty Pearls Foundation, Inc., She also served as a Service Projects Liaison for the sorority’s 2016 international conference, helping to manage 23 community projects throughout Metro Atlanta including a KaBOOM! playground build in College Park, an HBCU Expo, and the donation of backpacks to metro Atlanta organizations. In 2016, she was inducted into the Tougaloo College Inaugural Class of 40 Under 40 for her career achievements as well as her alumni leadership. Ranada is the immediate past president of the Atlanta Tougaloo Alumni Chapter, a role in which she served for seven years. In addition to her leadership locally, Ranada has also served multiple terms as Southeastern Regional Representative for the Tougaloo College National Alumni Association. In 2015, Ranada was selected from 300 applicants to participate in the Next City Vanguard conference in Reno, Nevada, where she worked with fellow urban leaders to brainstorm ideas using tactical urbanism for Reno redevelopment projects. As busy as Ranada is, her #1 role is being a mother to her vibrant four-year-old son Frederick Daniel Todd. Ranada’s goal is not only to ensure that her legacy includes making lasting improvements in communities worldwide but to also raise a successful, compassionate young man.
Caroline Saudek, Director of Operations and Special Projects, Institute of Classical Architecture & Art
Caroline Saudek is the Director of Operations and Special Projects at the Institute of Classical Architecture & Art, a non-profit organization that promotes the continuation of the classical tradition in architectural education and the built environment. In this role, she oversees the organization’s development efforts and serves as the primary liaison with the Board of Directors and various Board Committees. She also manages the organization’s annual academic journal, the Classicist. Over the past ten years, Caroline has worked in development at various non-profits including American Ballet Theatre, Ubuntu Education Fund, and Theatre Communications Group. She also worked on the data team at the Youth Justice Board, a government agency that is part of the UK’s Ministry of Justice. Caroline holds an MSc in Philosophy and Public Policy from the London School of Economics and a BA in Political Science and French from the University of Michigan. She is an avid supporter of the performing arts and a member of American Ballet Theatre’s Junior Council. She is also the Co-Founder of 12 Oaks Bakery, a small business that is committed to creating beautiful and delicious sweets, from scratch with love.
Everett Steele, Chief Operating Officer, Steele Technology Partners
Everett Steele is a proud native of Atlanta, an accomplished technology professional, and active participant in community focused organizations. After graduating from The University of Georgia, Everett joined the United States Army, where he served with distinction as a Cavalry Officer. As a platoon leader deployed to Baghdad, Iraq, Everett led 16 highly trained reconnaissance infantrymen on hundreds of combat missions in support of the Global War on Terror. After completing his time in service, Everett returned to Atlanta and refocused his energy into technology-driven businesses. His most recent startup, Kanga Technology, raised millions of dollars in funding, and acquired thousands of customers around the world, with operations in North America, Europe, and Asia. Kanga's innovative crowd-sourced logistics solutions were covered by Forbes Magazine, The Atlanta Business Chronicle, TechCrunch, and many other outlets, and were a TechCrunch Disrupt finalist. After serving as Chief Executive Officer of Kanga for three years, the company was acquired by an international conglomerate. Following the success of Kanga, Everett launched Steele Technology Partners, an IT-focused staffing and professional services company. With clients ranging from high growth tech startups to Fortune 100 enterprises, Steele Technology Partners helps business expand their personnel, improve their business practices, and optimize their information technology infrastructure. Outside of his work, Everett is passionate about community issues, with a special focus on education, LGBT rights, and veteran's issues. Everett served as a member of the Board of Directors of VOX Teen Communications, an organization he first encountered during his time with LEAD Atlanta. Everett was a founding board member of The Homeless Veterans Foundation, which serves to improve quality of life for our nation's veterans. He works as a volunteer for organizations including Project Open Hand, The Atlanta Community Food Bank, The Wren's Nest, Georgia Equality, KIPP Scribes, Trashwater International, and 21st Century Leaders. He is an awardee of the Atlanta Business Chronicle's 40 Under 40 award, a Creative Loafing Best of Atlanta honoree, a graduate of LEAD Atlanta, and a member of the Atlanta CEO Council, The American Legion, and Veterans of Foreign Wars. He is the co-author of the nationally recognized book ""Bon Rappetite: The Hip Hop Cookbook."" In his free time, Everett enjoys writing and recording music, watching the Atlanta Falcons, Hawks, and Braves, and spending time with family.
Emily Steiger, Assistant Director of The Westminster Fund for Alumni Giving, The Westminster Schools
Emily Baselt Steiger is a fundraiser, marketer, and digital strategist. Emily began her career as a legislative aide in the Ohio House of Representatives during the 2012 presidential election cycle before returning to her alma mater, Colgate University, as a fundraiser. At Colgate, she created multi-channel fundraising campaigns that bridged direct mail and online platforms; helped spearhead record-breaking growth for the university’s leadership giving society; and initiated innovative digital strategy focused on paid Facebook advertising. She won a CASE Gold Award for Best Short Fundraising Video in 2016 and a CASE Platinum Award for Best Practices in Fundraising Campaigns in 2015. Currently, Emily manages the alumni giving program at The Westminster Schools in support of the School’s mission to educate leaders of conscience. In her free time, she’s a freelance Facebook ad architect and digital strategy consultant, as well as a politics nerd, frequent traveler, and avid whale enthusiast. Her other interests are teasingly diverse.
Yvonne Wagner, Food Oasis Program Associate, Atlanta Community Food Bank
Yvonne Wagner has woven together diverse education and experience in entrepreneurship and public health to address food access in the Atlanta community. Originally from Minneapolis, MN, she earned her undergraduate degree in Entrepreneurial Management, International Business, and French at the University of Minnesota. After a few years in marketing in the for-profit world, she moved to Raleigh, NC to serve as an AmeriCorps VISTA member at the Inter-Faith Food Shuttle to work on culinary education for low-income families across the state. She moved to Atlanta in 2014 to attend Emory’s Rollins School of Public Health. While there she served on the student council for the Socio-Contextual Determinants of Health certificate. She received her Master of Public Health degree in Global Health – Community Health and Development in 2016. Yvonne is currently the Food Oasis Program Associate at Atlanta Community Food Bank, where she works with residents and organizations in target neighborhoods to improve fresh and healthy food distribution within the community. She facilitates meetings of diverse stakeholders to set strategic priorities for food access projects, manages program communications, and plans several events throughout the year. With the signature Potluck & Pitch competition, she has been able to crowdfund thousands and arrange additional mentorship support for local food entrepreneurs. In her free time she enjoys fitness, reading and cooking with her husband and pug.