Research now shows that countries that experienced longer periods of strong economic growth were likely to be characterized by more equality than less. This conclusion undergirds the importance of building a national equity agenda; community schools must be part of that agenda.
Georgette Bhathena is the Northern California Relationship Manager for JPMorgan Chase's Global Philanthropy group. Her responsibilities include overseeing the firm's philanthropic activities in Northern California and serving as a liaison between the firm and the larger community as it relates to philanthropy and volunteerism.
With ten years of experience in the financial services industry, she has held a wide range of responsibilities. Most recently she worked at Citi as the Community Relations Officer of the East Bay for five years. Prior to that role, she worked more broadly in community and economic development at the Federal Home Loan Bank of San Francisco, Bank of America, and the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco.
Ms. Bhathena is on the Board of Directors for CompassPoint Nonprofit Services in San Francisco. She also serves on various task forces and committees such as HOPE SF's education development task force and Northern California Grantmakers Corporate Contributions Roundtable Steering Committee.
LaShawn Routé Chatmon
LaShawn Routé Chatmon has served as Executive Director of the National Equity Project (formerly the Bay Area Coalition for Equitable Schools / BayCES) since 2007. She previously served as the Director of BayCES' Oakland High School Redesign Initiative for seven years. A former teacher with ten years of classroom experience, LaShawn has taught American and World History, Economics and African American and Ethnic Studies, most recently at Berkeley High School. While at Berkeley High, LaShawn co-directed the Diversity Project, a research and education reform effort in collaboration with the University of California at Berkeley, with Dr. Pedro Noguera. A California native and recipient of public school education, LaShawn earned her undergraduate degree from UC Berkeley and her Masters in teaching from Brown University. She is married with three children, and she resides with her family in Oakland, CA.
Angela Glover Blackwell
Founder and CEO, PolicyLink
Angela Glover Blackwell, founder and chief executive officer, started PolicyLink in 1999 and continues to drive its mission of advancing economic and social equity. Under Blackwell’s leadership, PolicyLink has become a leading voice for policies that promote equity as an economic imperative, recognizing that the country’s very future depends on its ability to develop and leverage the skills and talents of its emerging people-of-color majority, many of whom have historically been left behind. A lawyer by training, she gained national recognition as founder of the Oakland (CA) Urban Strategies Council, where she pioneered new approaches to neighborhood revitalization. She has also served as senior vice president of the Rockefeller Foundation. Blackwell is a frequent commentator for some of the nation’s top news organizations, including the New York Times, Washington Post, Salon, CNN, and the Huffington Post, and has appeared on such programs as public radio’s Marketplace, The Tavis Smiley Show, Nightline, and PBS’s Now. Blackwell has also been a guest on the PBS series Moyers & Company and PBS’sNewsHour. In 2013, Blackwell and PolicyLink collaborated with the Center for American Progress to write and release All-In Nation: An America that Works for All. She is also the co-author of Uncommon Common Ground: Race and America’s Future (W.W. Norton & Co., 2010), and contributed to Ending Poverty in America: How to Restore the American Dream (The New Press, 2007) and The Covenant with Black America (Third World Press, 2006). Blackwell earned a bachelor’s degree from Howard University, and a law degree from the University of California at Berkeley.
Francisco, who co-founded the Llano Grande Center, is a former high school teacher who is now a professor of educational leadership at the University of Texas-Pan American. Guajardo began the program with a vision of motivating local students to become educated citizens and active members of their communities. As a former public school teacher, now a professor of educational leadership, he applies his first-hand experience daily through interaction with leaders in the educational field in South Texas. In this capacity, he researches many of the challenges and best practices that are pertinent in todayâ€™s classroom.
Edwin M. Lee
Edwin M. Lee is the 43rd Mayor of the City and County of San Francisco. The former City Administrator, Lee was appointed unanimously as successor mayor by the Board of Supervisors on January 11, 2011 to fill the remaining year of former Mayor Gavin Newsom's term, who was sworn in as California's Lieutenant Governor on January 10, 2011. Lee is the first Asian-American mayor in San Francisco history.
Jane Quinn joined The Childrenâ€™s Aid Society executive team in January of 2000 and currently serves as the Societyâ€™s Vice President for Community Schools and as Director of the National Center for Community Schools. On the national level, Quinnâ€™s work focuses on advancing the community schools strategy as a preferred education reform approach. She also provides strategic planning and fundraising expertise to the Societyâ€™s local community schools, which are long-term partnerships with the New York City Department of Education.
Junious Williams is Chief Executive Officer of Urban Strategies Council, a community building support and advocacy organization in Oakland. He joined the Council in 1992 and was appointed CEO in 1998. He holds a Juris Doctorate in law and a Bachelor's degree in sociology from the University of Michigan. He began his legal career as founder of the Saginaw Student Rights Center and co-founder of the Ann Arbor Student Advocacy Center. He has done extensive work with schools on desegregation, education equity, and school improvement as Associate Director of the Programs for Educational Opportunity at the University of Michigan's School of Education.
He served as the Executive Director of Student Attendance and Discipline for the Detroit Public Schools and as Associate Professor of Ethnic Studies and Assistant to the Vice President for Academic Affairs at California State University, Fresno. In addition to private law practice, he worked as a compliance monitor in an employment discrimination case for the federal district court for the Northern District of California. He has worked on numerous community building and community development efforts in Oakland, the Bay Area and other cities across the country. He currently serves as a founder and Board Chair for the Oakland Community Land Trust which is working to acquire and rehabilitate 200 vacant, foreclosed properties in Oakland. He also serves as Co-Chair of the Steering Committee for the Oakland Emerald Cities Collaborative, a national effort aimed at large scale urban building energy retrofit with high road employment opportunities for workers. Other current board service includes the Union Bank Community Advisory Board, the Center for Law and Education and the National Trust for the Development of African American Men. He is a former member of the boards of directors for the Cross-City Campaign for Urban School Reform, National Community Building Network, Kids First! and the National Neighborhood Indicators Partnership.
Angela Blackwell, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of PolicyLink, discusses the role of leadership in education initiatives. Blackwell acknowledges that a good leader is important to get the ball rolling, but everyone has the potential to "rise to the challenge" of creating an equitable educational system.