Our volunteer-based team includes award-winning principals and teachers, parents, non-profit leaders and
relevant professionals, working particularly in public schools and the public sector. Bright Mind
Schooling leaders and team members have done non-profit educational work together for twenty years.
the listings below, we will continue to post bios of more Bright Mind team members, so keep checking
From healing arts non-profits to civic and community groups, Bright Mind collaborates with - and always
collaborate further with a diversity of individuals and groups.
New team members are often sought, including those with educational, operational,
financial, administrative and
other types of experience. Let us know how you would like to contribute.
Bright Mind's board has wide-ranging experience, with lifelong commitments to community-oriented work. We
attended and send our own children to public schools. Our board has always been led by people of color,
organization works closely with the communities we serve.
Jennifer serves as our primary leader
for educational and curriculum matters. She represents Bright Mind to all communities, notably
Having taught special education
full-time since 2006, Jennifer is currently the Head of Special Education at a large high school
Montgomery County (greater Washington DC area), overseeing 200 individuals.
Recently, Jennifer has twice been a full-time summer school assistant principal for the
Public Schools, for the High School Summer School program: responsible for overseeing the
department, state tests (SOLs), interactive achievement testing, computer labs, cafeteria, and
one of four assistant principals overseeing 1,500 high school students.
From 2012 - 2013, she served as Inter-Assistant Principal at Washington-Lee High School,
Summer 2012, she also served as Intern Assistant Principal at Arlington Traditional School. She
additional experience within the Arlington Public Schools as a Local Educational Agency (LEA)
Representative, a member of the Aspiring Leaders group, and a Facilitator for Cultural
She has been licensed in multiple areas as a teacher (Administration and Supervision Pre-K - 12,
Childhood Special Education, Early / Primary Education Pre-K - 3 and Specific Learning
12). She teaches high school special education in Montgomery County, Maryland.
Jennifer holds a Bachelor of Arts in Child and Family Studies and a Master's degree in General
Special Education Children Birth-2nd Grade, both from Syracuse University, and a Master's degree
George Mason University in Education Leadership. She has earned multiple relevant certifications
Terrence oversees Bright Mind finances,
promotes Bright Mind to funders, guides grant submissions, and works on fundraising campaigns.
represents Bright Mind to all communities, with particular emphasis on African-American
Terrence is a non-profit professional, as well as a diversity educator. As Conference and Events
for HealthHIV, he serves as Project Manager for HealthHIV's annual SYNChronicity conference.
that, he served as the Director of Conferences and Meeting Services (CMS) with the National
AIDS Council for over fifteen years. In this work, his responsibilities encompassed logistical
for conferences, developing marketing collateral and conference promotional materials;
for conference related activities; and negotiating contracts for national and regional
Terrence has served as the Director for the United States Conference on AIDS and as the point of
for CDC's HIV Prevention Leadership Summit. In addition, he has received numerous awards and
for his service to the HIV community.
Terrence has also spent years doing director-level diversity education work, with a focus on
with and teaching students. He did his undergraduate studies at Cornell University (NY) and is
foster and adoptive father. He is highly involved in fostering networks.
Martin is responsible for Bright Mind
board matters, raising funds and cultivating relationships with institutions, and implementing
providing oversight of overall goals of the organization.
Martin has a passion for helping youth and young adults, and for veterans' issues, having served
National Guard. He was Dean of Peer Education at Hobart and William Smith Colleges in Geneva,
he taught for six years in the field of Peer Education in Human Relations, conducting research
students on how to work together across difference.
He has presented at three national AIDS conferences on effective management skills. He has
social worker with disabled people and was a founding director of the ARCH, a non-profit focused
community, cultural, and diversity education in schools and workplaces. He regularly conducts
outreach and programming to aid victims of sex trafficking, including as a focus of his work as
pastor, where he works to bring diverse faith communities and human services organizations
aid poor and under-served communities. He is an ordained Elder in The United Methodist Church.
2008, he has served as a pastor in the Baltimore Washington Annual Conference. He holds Master
Divinity and Master of Theological Studies degrees from Wesley Theological Seminary (Washington,
currently serves as senior pastor at Magothy United Methodist Church in Pasadena, Maryland.
Martin received a Bachelor of Science degree from Cornell University and an Honorable Discharge
serving in the US Army National Guard (Washington, DC). He and his wife have a 3-year-old
Craig guides Bright Mind's growing team
and network of dozens of professionals, from executing content to developing capacity as both a
grassroots-based non-profit and an educational organization. He oversees all operations and
strategies for Bright Mind, working with our excellent team and allied resource people. He
Mind’s public profile, including building relationships with non-profit, civic, and other
Craig has directed non-profit and socially-engaged efforts focused on education for over twenty
He has also taught low-income children, including in a Harlem (NYC) public school and a Tijuana
community. He has run campaigns with a strong focus on children and education, including as
Director of: Pennsylvania Action, a statewide advocacy agency, where he hired and oversaw many
planned campaigns that reached across the state; Progressive Action, LLC, where he negotiated
and alliances with national organizations; the ARCH, where he executed over 300 events for a
New York City-based agency; and Bright Mind. He was founding director of Trilogy Leadership
well as a Senior Writer and Project Coordinator at Garrison Institute, where he brought
funding growth (on projects with a focus on education and at-risk groups) and long-term
support. He has worked on social-action efforts in California, New York, and the Southwest.
The New York Times, CNN, and NPR have covered Craig’s work. His op-eds have appeared with
newspapers, KQED (the largest NPR station), and other leading newspapers. He graduated with
from Cornell University and speaks Spanish fluently.
Andra is an education consultant
specializing in language acquisition, mindfulness and literacy and the interaction between these
She works with public school teachers and parents to turn down the noise of the world outside
on creating safe, caring environments. Andra began her career as an early childhood teacher and
taught grades K-5 in the Denver Public Schools and surrounding districts. Andra believes
children with inspiration and clear boundaries is the most important work we can do as adults.
Director of the Boettcher Teacher Residency, Andra helped to create a national model for teacher
residency. She has been published in the Huffington Post and various parenting magazines, and
at University of Denver, Metro State University and the University of Colorado. Andra has
mindfulness since 2003. She holds a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Innovation from the
Amy's professional background is in
finance and accounting. She is a Certified Public Accountant and is currently the Chief
Officer for the Housing Authority of the County of Marin (in the San Francisco Bay Area), an
organization committed to the housing needs of low-income families and individuals. She teaches
qi-gong and mindfulness, having taught at various studios and wellness centers in New York. Amy
a yoga practitioner for over 9 years and is a classically trained ballet dancer, under the
method for 11 years. She has also been studying with acclaimed New York choreographer, Daria
her Certification Program, C O R E M O T I O N, a movement practice rooted in the Chinese
Theory and Qigong fundamentals.
CREATIONxPROGRESS co-creators Sydney
Ford and Karen Pancho met in 2017 over a pot of well-brewed tea in a cafe for a typical session
“dreaming and scheming.” Frustrated with the lack of people of color representation and freedom
field where expression should be at the forefront of the operation, the two created a company
represents all they want to see in the realm of artistry. They've provided an opportunity to
education in a creative concentration, resources to facilitate a craft, and support from a
believes in what you have to say through art.
Ankita works on grant research and
writing for Bright Mind and has also done Bright Mind survey designing work. She completed her
degree in Applied Economics from University of Maryland, College Park. She is a Statistical Data
Assistant with University of Maryland on the India Human Development Survey project. She also
an Investment Intern with the United Nations Joint Staff Pension Fund, which focuses on securing
pensions of UN employees by investing provident funds around the world. She is passionate about
and human development, and her career focus is on improving the lives of people globally.
Sloka Iyengar PhD, PMP is a
neuroscientist, science educator and science advocate, passionate about using her science and
training for the public good. As an educator, she has developed curricula and taught
forensic science to middle-school and high-school students. Presently, she teaches neuroscience
evolution to educators at the American Museum of Natural History.
She developed the Basic Science section of www.epilepsy.com to communicate advances in basic
research to patients and caregivers globally. Her most recent projects focus on science and
communications. She is involved in neuroscience outreach and advocacy, having visited Capitol
several times to lobby for basic neuroscience funding to elected officials.
Sloka is also a professional dancer and performer of the 2000-year-old classical Indian dance
as Bharatanatyam. Among other programming, she teaches dance and has started a program to bring
residents of New York City nursing homes. Passionate about combining the arts and sciences,
developed “Neuronatyam” - a production to explore dance through the lens of neuroscience. She
a shelter for stray animals, as well.
Her studies include at the University of South Carolina (USC) School of Medicine, where her
focused on understanding how neuronal circuits generate and sustain epileptic seizures. After
postdoctoral study in an academic setting, Sloka transitioned to clinical research, where she
closely with adults and children with refractory epilepsies. One of the trials led to the
approval of cannabidiol in subjects with specific epilepsy syndromes by the FDA.
Erica Miller is one of the most versatile members
Bright Mind team. Erica is part of Bright Mind’s team in Florida. Her ability to navigate and
projects has done wonders in helping Bright Mind flourish.
She works for the US Department of Labor as a
Compensation Claims Examiner. Her list of experience goes beyond her current duties including
for the US Air Force as a Security Forces Specialist and volunteering for various organizations.
Ryan’s hybrid talent for the visual and for
serves him well as he serves those in need and no one’s background is as diverse as Ryan’s
the skills he has: video production services, writing, filming/directing, editing, copywriting,
production and acting.
And sometimes a nonprofit needs exactly someone
this—someone who sees it on both sides of the camera, giving it a unique take on what’s needed
He also cofounded and codirects all of our Florida programming.
Many organizations have used his talents: Little Boy Workaholic Productions (as the founder),
Command Financial Services, Inc. and Vitaleo. Also, he served in the Navy for 11 years as a
pilot in Hawaii, Pensacola, and Jacksonville (he is currently medically retired due to a
Along with his BME duties he runs the communications wing of Vitalleo Health, a clinical-grade
nutritional supplement company featuring advanced, non-invasive diagnostic testing.
Giovanna Mingarelli is a founding senior advisor of Bright Mind. She is a crowdsourcing expert,
speaker and writer. As the CEO and Co-Founder of M&C Consulting, she brings critical solutions
companies, organizations and governments can fuse traditional communications with new media. To
effect, she has worked with organizations and companies in Ottawa, New York, Birmingham, Seattle
Helsinki in developing innovative digital communications strategies.
Throughout her career, Giovanna has worked with
federal government agencies as well as for a former Prime Minister of Canada. She has been a
Parliamentary witness, a guest lecturer and a keynote speaker at events and conferences relating
women in politics and digital democracy.
She has contributed to and has been interviewed by: Harvard Business School, The Huffington
CBC/Radio-Canada, The Globe and Mail and The Toronto Star for her contributions to various
entrepreneurship and youth engagement initiatives, including Global Dignity Canada. In 2011,
was named a Global Shaper by the World Economic Forum and in 2015 she was named one of Canada’s
Most Powerful Women by the WXN. She holds a degree in Political Science and International
Folarin is of Nigerian Descent who resides in Nigeria. Folarin studied Law in Nigeria and has
called to the Nigerian Bar. Folarin is a qualified Legal Practitioner but nonetheless, he is on
as a Project Manager. Folarin is vast in Project Management as he has undergone various online
classes on Project Management and his interest in Project Management has seen him succeed in
various projects for Bright Mind Enrichment and Schooling. Apart from carrying out his duties as
Project Manager, he also helps in giving legal opinion on trivial legal issues as a result of
background in law.
Folarin is passionate about volunteering and has volunteered for various non-profit
Start-ups in Nigeria such as, Centre for 21st Century Issues, Lexlam Nigeria, Law and Tech
others. He is also the pioneer volunteer for The Health-Wise Foundation.
Folarin has achieved remarkable feat through volunteering as a result of his desire and passion
others and this has led to him being one of the Delegates at the International Model United
three occasions (IMUN 37.0, 35.0 and 34.0). He participated fully in the conference and he
position papers in the three conferences.
Folarin sees himself volunteering more for Bright Mind Enrichment and Schooling and ensuring
impact is felt and ultimately, joining minds to helping Bright Mind Enrichment and Schooling
mission, aim and objectives.
Angel has been providing business management and financial services to nonprofits, government
contractors and private firms for nearly 20 years. She brings to the BME team an MBA with a
Accounting. She is a Certified Bookkeeper (CB), member of the American Institute of Professional
Bookkeepers and a Notary Public for multiple states. Angel owns and runs Financially Sane
assisting multiple agencies across the US. “My goal is to keep the foundation of business and
solid, so others can expand their vision and awesome social impact.
Teamwork makes the dream work!”
Lynette is Bright Mind’s Web and Graphic designer, designing print material for events including
frequently updating our websites, compiling content design for newsletters with Mailchimp and
with programs like Google Slides to enhance Bright Mind campaigns.
She has over 5 years of experience as a freelance graphic designer designing promotional
both web and print clients.
Her degrees include an Associate of Applied Science in graphic design and a Bachelor of Science
University of Oregon in art, plus a certificate in UX/UI, a 24-week Bootcamp program with the
Sridhar Shanmugam is the director of Bright Mind’s New York team. His creative skills and
community awareness have made him an essential part of Bright Mind.
Sridhar has been working within the performance art field as an executive director and manager
decades. His expertise lies within administration & finance.
Sridhar is also an artist and performer himself. He has mastered various forms of art within
culture and wishes to spread his knowledge across the globe.
Roopa is the co-director of Bright Mind’s New York team. Besides running the NY team, Roopa is
founder and president of Shri Navagraha Devasthanam of North America.
Roopa has a graduate degree in Botany and Zoology from Chennai, India. After graduating, Roopa
career in pharmacy and social services which she continued after moving to the US in early
Mobile app development is essential for nonprofit organizations just as engaging volunteers and
is crucial to success. Michael knows this and he brings his stellar background to the table with
As an iOS Development Manager he led the development teams responsible for the initial launch of
Chase iPhone and iPad apps while managing the iOS development team, creating iOS mobile strategy
roadmaps, budgeting, vendor management and capacity planning. Not only this but he also won
There is no doubt that app development has changed the way we do business and Michael’s
him at the forefront of this. He has held various titles such as Vice President of Payment
and Adjunct Professor.
Jack Trent is a documentary and commercial filmmaker with a special inclination for
camera operating. Jack’s directorial debut short documentary, “Ramak Niakan Safi: This is Life,”
being judged at film festivals across the country. Along with this Jack continually works with
businesses and nonprofit organizations by not only producing and filming content but by editing
media to help promote an idea or story. Currently enrolled in Florida State University studying
Production, he has been trained under two former BBC and National Geographic editors and
Tuqa has extensive work experience in
the non-profit, technology and education sectors. After serving two years as an AmeriCorps VISTA
she recently began a career in educational technology. Growing up in a family of educators has
her drive to advocate for and inspire students who want to pursue a career in the field. Tuqa
from the State University of New York at Oswego with a BA in Public Relations and is currently
her Masters in Information Systems - Technology Leadership at Touro College.