Kate Brandley is the Principal of Saint John Paul II Catholic Academy – Neponset Campus. She has worked in Catholic education for 21 years as a teacher, guidance counselor, Admissions Director, and Assistant Principal. Kate has degrees from Holy Cross, Providence College, and UMass Dartmouth. She completed the Lynch Leadership Program and is participating in the Emmaus Leadership program at Boston College. Kate loves kids, education, sports (especially the Red Sox), cooking and eating, and friends and family.
Jon Clark is the Network Co-Director of Brooke Charter Schools. He founded the original Brooke Roslindale middle school in 2002, and served as principal until 2011. Before coming to Brooke, Jon was a founding teacher at South Boston Harbor Academy (now Boston Collegiate Charter School) where he also served as math department chair for four years. Jon taught junior high school math in Belle Chasse, Louisiana and worked as a researcher for a professor of International Economics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Mr. Clark was a 1992 Teach for America corps member.
Rahn Dorsey serves as the Chief of Education for the City of Boston and is a member of Mayor Martin Walsh’s cabinet. As Chief of Education, Rahn is charged with setting a strategic agenda for the city that will improve the quality of instruction and student support across the education pipeline and better integrate school-, community-, and work-based learning opportunities. Prior to joining the Mayor’s cabinet, he served as Evaluation Director and an Education Program Officer at the Barr Foundation. A native of Detroit, Rahn graduated with a B.A. degree in Economics from the University of Michigan.
Dr. Karla Estrada is the Deputy Superintendent of Student Support Services for Boston Public Schools, which includes special education, English language learners, and social emotional learning & wellness. She has spent 20 years in education as a special educator and administrator committed to creating educational opportunities for all students. Karla attained her doctorate in Educational Leadership for Social Justice from Loyola Marymount University, is a Board Certified Behavior Analyst, and holds multiple credentials in instruction and administration. She is committed to creating educational opportunities and access for all children and supporting students, families, community members, and educators toward this common goal.
Dr. Makeeba McCreary serves as Chief of Staff for Boston Public Schools. Makeeba has spent 20 years in educational policy, and has designed and managed philanthropic investment for global brands. Her early career was spent in direct service delivery with opportunity youth. In addition to her direct student work, she has designed, programmed, and supported team-problem solving with urban public school teachers in order to reduce the disproportionate special education designation of Black and Latino children, particularly boys. Makeeba received her B.A. from the University of Massachusetts Boston, an M.Ed. from Harvard University, and an Ed.D. from Teachers College, Columbia University.
Monica Roberts, Assistant Superintendent of Engagement for the Boston Public Schools, has over fifteen years of experience in public education. In her current role, she oversees family and community engagement, student engagement and leadership development, school and community partnerships, and registration and assignment. Under her leadership, BPS is making significant policy and operational improvements that will result in improved outcomes and experiences for students, families, communities and schools. Ms. Roberts has served in a number of key positions within the Boston Public Schools since 2001, including Director of School Support and Training; Director of Federal and State Programs, and Assistant Director of Development.
Shannah Varón joined Boston Collegiate Charter School as Executive Director in July 2011. At BCCS, she leads a team of 100 dedicated staff to ensure that graduates continue to achieve 100% acceptance to 4-year colleges and universities. Prior to joining BCCS, she worked as a strategy consultant with The Parthenon Group, a Boston-based strategic advisory firm. Shannah began her career with Teach For America, through which she served in South Texas as a bilingual special education teacher. She then worked for Teach For America in New York City, where she managed the team responsible for the support and development of teachers. Shannah holds a B.S. in Foreign Service from Georgetown University and an MBA from Harvard Business School.
Ali Dutson is the Principal of Mission Grammar School in Roxbury. She received her B.A. in Elementary Education from Emmanuel College and her M.A. in Education from Harvard Graduate School of Education with a focus on Innovation, Technology, and Education. Ali brings a love for learning, social justice, and educational leadership in Boston. She is a proud new mother and enjoys spending time with her family.
Kate Scott is the Executive Director of the Neighborhood House Charter School (NHCS) where she has worked in various capacities for over 20 years. In her previous position as Assistant Headmaster, Kate oversaw the academic program for NHCS. She has also served as a 4th grade teacher, 8th grade math teacher, and as Dean of the Middle School. She started her career with Teach for America as a fourth grade teacher in Long Beach, California. Kate holds a BA from Wellesley College and an EdM from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Kevin T. Taylor is Chief Operating Officer at KIPP Massachusetts, the state’s largest charter organization, and is Vice Chair of Operations of the Boston Charter Alliance. Previously, Kevin was Director of Finance for Achievement First, and also worked in finance at children’s book publisher Scholastic; as high-stakes educational assessments producer at The Princeton Review; and at magazine publisher, PRIMEDIA. A former news reporter, Kevin majored in political science and mathematics at Tuskegee University. He is pastor of the oldest African-American church in New Bedford and is actively involved in the community. Kevin sees education reform as a form of ministry and is working tirelessly to close the achievement gap, increase literacy, and improve education for students of all ages and socioeconomic backgrounds.
Naia Wilson began her career as an engineer, but in her quest to change women's roles in the technology industry, she discovered her passion for teaching. It has been more than twenty years since she came to the field of education, and she has used that time to gain valuable experiences as a math teacher, instructional coach, assistant principal, and headmaster. She has spent the last 11 years as the headmaster of New Mission High School. This journey has led to the school’s designation as a 2013 National Blue Ribbon School for Improvement and winner of the 2012 EdVestors’ $100k School on the Move Prize.
Kevin Andrews (Special Advisor) was one of the Compact’s founding co-chairs and serves as Senior Advisor to the Boston Charter Alliance. He was founding headmaster of Neighborhood House Charter School (NHCS), which opened in 1995 as a full-service school. Kevin is also co-founder of the Project for School Innovation, a pilot of NHCS to transform education by empowering public school educators to share their successes and drive school change. Kevin has been an educator for 40 years, during which time he has taught the gamut from early childhood to the post-graduate level. His leadership roles have included president of the Brookline Educators Association, principal of a Newton K-6 school, and principal of a Brookline K-8 school. Kevin holds a B.A. in Education from the University of Massachusetts and an M.Ed. from Antioch College.
Elise Swinford is the Collaboration Coordinator for the Boston Compact. Previously, Elise worked as the Communications Director for an education consultancy specializing in gender and sexuality diversity training. She helped develop numerous initiatives in collaboration with college administrators to improve underserved student populations' access to academic resources while on staff at the UMass Graduate School. Elise graduated from DePauw University with a double major in English and Women's Studies, and completed a PhD in English and Gender Studies at the University of Massachusetts Amherst in 2017. A classroom teacher for ten years, Elise is excited to pivot to the education non-profit field.