Mildred joined the School Turnaround staff after participating in the program. She now works extensively not only with principals but also with teachers, district administrators, and school boards. She leads much of the national and regional training and initiates many of our new education initiatives. She leads the team of School Turnaround Specialists on the ground and is instrumental in providing professional development internally for them at TRI.
Nicole led Leonard Sixth Grade Center as a participating principal in School Turnaround prior to becoming a specialist. Under her leadership, in 2008 the school received a rating of “Recognized” from the Texas Education Agency, the 2nd highest achievement rating in the state of Texas. The campus reading gap that was as wide as 20 points – was reduced to less than 9 points. Her campus received the Gold Performance Award for 51% of the students scoring Commended in Reading.
Chief Partnerships &
Loretta became a principal in 1991. Loretta led her first school, Dumfries Elementary, in making marked improvements, including a 23% improvement in fourth grade writing scores in one year. Loretta continued her work as a turnaround principal at John Small Elementary School. Test scores improved from 56% of the students being proficient in reading and mathematics to 81% being proficient and the school being recognized as a School of Distinction.
Tamara brings over a decade of experience in strategic leadership and a sense of direction to a team of managers and educators.. She has knowledge working with City, Federal, and private donors within the fields of Child Welfare, Youth and Community Development. Throughout her career, she has provided youth with the skills needed to successfully navigate primary education, get them through college and provide them with the opportunity to be prepared for the world of work through meaningful experiences. Tamara's goal is to continue improving the lives of others; one community at a time.
Director Of Operations
Felecia believes that everything she does should point to her “why”: “To advance, empower and inspire people through education, information and opportunities”. Using her background as a Shell Oil Senior Chemist/Quality Control Lab Manager and educational leader, she’s served as a STEM Consultant providing support to K-16 STEM programs and bridging the gap between corporate partner needs and educational programming. She is a certified science educator, principal, superintendent, Microsoft Certified Educator, and Human Resources Senior Certified Professional(SHRM-SCP).
As a NASA Trainer of Trainers, Felecia learned ways to provide exciting, engaging, and relevant use of NASA resources, and in 2018, she was recognized by the National Society of Black Engineers as a TOP STEM Influencer in Dallas Fort Worth.
Director of Strategy
Billie-Jo has been supporting the people and programs of The Rensselaerville Institute since 2006. Her robust skillset and results driven leadership has attributed to countless successes over her tenure. As the Director of Program Operations she maintained the website and provided strategic support for all TRI programs.
Director Communications & Marketing
As the principal of John Muir Middle School, Bruce led his staff in an effort that addressed sub par academic performance and raised API (Academic Performance Index) scores by 43 points in his first year and 41 points in his second year, earning the school the California Governor’s Performance Award. As the Principal of Burbank High School, Bruce led a turn around effort that grew the school’s API by 127 points over 8 years and met AYP targets for all significant sub populations. Bruce has served as an Elementary teacher, Middle School Principal, and High School Principal.
Interim Director Of
Tyrone was the principal of Cherokee Park Elementary School in Caddo Parish, Louisiana. Under his leadership the school made major gains, and he was named Elementary School Principal of the Year in 2013- 2014. Under his leadership student achievement increased by 75% in core content areas. Cherokee Park Elementary went from threat of closure in 2001 to earning some of the highest distinctions in the state. In 2009 and 2010, his school earned the Cecil Picard Excellence in Education Award for achieving the highest value added score in the state.
Raquel's entrepreneurial spirit and out of the box thought processes have contributed to her success in a variety of roles in the community and the corporate world. Raquel has played key roles in assisting local small businesses and non-profits with change management and developing infrastructure. Her list of accomplishments includes: creating strategy and the branding of several local businesses, successfully managing a grass-roots political campaign and an event management company.
Natasha Hunter joined the School Turnaround team in August, 2019. She has served as an Elementary Assistant Principal, High School Accountability Specialist, Junior High Literary Specialist, and K-4 Reading Coach. Natasha brings a passion for using data to guide standards-based planning and instruction and is excited to collaborate with others in this area. Natasha has been in education for sixteen years and is looking forward to growing more professionally alongside such accomplished educators as those in the School Turnaround department, as well as those who partner with our company.
Sherron became the principal of Anniston High School in Anniston, Alabama when it was designated a persistently failing school. She became a participating principal in School Turnaround in 2011 and as the instructional leader implemented strategies for her school to achieve AYP in reading in 2013. From 2012-2013 Anniston High School saw gains of 25% in reading and 30% in math. She received the honor of being named School Turnaround Principal of the Year in 2013.
John is a Senior Fellow at TRI after a 40 year career at the organization. John helps organizations to understand and implement the tools and techniques of outcome thinking and practice. His interests lie in improved effectiveness and increased efficiency for programs and organizations. His strengths come from an ability to translate the lessons of his long tenure at TRI to a large and varied audience.
Cynthia has served as a principal, instructional supervisor, and specialist at the district and state levels. Throughout her career, she received various awards and accolades for improving the schools in which she worked, including Kentucky’s Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching and Mathematics Education Service and Achievement Award, presented by the Kentucky Council of Teachers of Mathematics. In addition, under her leadership, Second Street Middle School was named a finalist in the Middle Schools to Watch Program for Kentucky and a National Title I Distinguished School for Narrowing the Achievement Gap, one of two schools selected by the Kentucky Department of Education.
Debon, has served as a founding school principal and teacher throughout his career. His expertise as a turnaround school leader has led to several awards and accolades throughout his career, including an NAACP Education Award and two Rookie Teacher of the Year Awards. Under his turnaround leadership, KIPP AMP Academy’s grade from the NYDOE went from a D to an A in two years. He is also founder and CEO of Transformative Growth Partners and does consulting work nationally for various entities.