|A. Wade Boykin, Ph.D.
Sheryl Denbo, Ph.D.
Jill Moss Greenberg
Rita Robinson, Ed.D.
Warren Simmons, Ph.D.
Carmen Delgado Votaw
Dr. A. Wade Boykin is the Executive Director of the Capstone Institute at Howard University and is a full professor and the Director of the graduate program in the Department of Psychology. From 1994, to 2004 he has served as co-director of the Center for Research on the Education of Students Placed At Risk (CRESPAR), a U.S. Department of Education-funded national research and development center that operated jointly out of Howard University and Johns Hopkins University. He now serves as executive director of the Capstone Institute for School Reform at Howard. Dr. Boykin has done extensive work on research methodology; the interface of culture, context, motivation, and cognition; Black child development; and academic achievement in the American social context. In applying his expertise in these and other areas, he has conducted research and evaluation projects and held workshops for several school districts across the country on topics such as evidence-based approaches to school reform, culturally responsive pedagogy, multicultural education, and minority student achievement. He also has published numerous books, research and theoretical journal articles and book chapters relevant to his research interests.
Nora Illia Morales is the Vice President of the Mid-Atlantic Equity Consortium, Inc., and Senior Educational Equity Specialist of The Mid-Atlantic Equity Center. Ms. Morales has over 19 years experience as an elementary school teacher, professional development specialist, curriculum developer, and parent organizer. She is the Maryland State Field Coordinator for MAC, Project Director for MAEC’s 21st Century Community Learning, and Turnaround/Title I/ESOL Project Lead for work with Prince George’s County Public Schools and Baltimore City, MD. Ms. Morales is also author of Entre Nosotros, Between Us: Transitions into Kindergarten, Entre Nosotros, Between Us: Transitions into Middle School, and Paving the Way to Colleges and Careers: Families and Schools Together curricula designed to help families successfully navigate key transitions.
Sheryl Denbo has more than 30 years of experience advocating for high quality educational programs for all students, but particularly low-income students and students of color. She has taught in elementary, middle, high school, and college, and developed a large number of successful programs targeted to supporting the academic development of low-income minority students. She also served as Special Assistant to the Commissioner of Vocational Education in the United States Department of Education. Her latest book Improving Schools for African American Students: A Reader for Educational Leaders (2002), which she co-edited with Lynson Beaulieu, has become a standard guide for educational reform. She has written numerous articles, published in over 30 educational and equity journals and newsletter and has conceptualized, authored, co-authored or edited over 25 Mid-Atlantic Equity Center publications. Dr. Denbo holds a B.S. in History from the University of Wisconsin, an M.A. in Anthropology for The New School For Social Research, and a Ph.D. in Sociology from Rutgers University.
Ginny Gong is the Director for the Office of Community Use of Public Facilities in Montgomery County, Maryland. Ms. Gong is a successful businesswoman, an accomplished educator, a frequently requested speaker, an experienced human resource administrator/trainer, a talk show host, and a highly respected community leader. Ms. Gong was employed by Montgomery County Public Schools as a Human Resources Administrator responsible for recruitment, staff development, community outreach and case management for issues related to diversity, equal employment and compliance. Ms. Gong has served on the Governor’s first Asian American Advisory Committee and the Governor’s Advisory Council on New Americans, serving as its first chairperson. She is host of the weekly talk show series “Ginny’s… where East meets West.” Her autobiography about growing up in the back of a Chinese laundry is entitled From Ironing Board to Corporate Board: the Chinese Laundry Experience (Homa & Sekey Books, 2008).
Jill Moss Greenberg has more than forty five years of experience in the field of education. Ms. Greenberg is currently the executive director of the Maryland Women’s Heritage Center. Highlights of her working experience include working as: Director of the National Association of Multicultural Education (NAME); program Consultant for Homeless Children and Their Families in Baltimore County Public Schools; Multicultural Program Coordinator at the Mid- Atlantic Equity Center; and Vocational Equity Specialist at the Maryland State Department of Education. Ms. Greenberg has been a recipient of multiple awards including being inducted into the Maryland State Women’s Hall of Fame; the Educators Award of National Association for Multicultural Education; and Outstanding Business and Community Leadership Award among others. Ms. Greenberg has published extensively and has presented in numerous national and international conferences. She holds an M.A. in Special Education from the University of Connecticut.
Rita L. Robinson, President, Creative Learning Enterprises, Inc, is a licensed professional counselor, educator, and consultant. She is a retired administrator from the Prince George’s County Maryland Public School System. Her broad professional career and experience include working as a public school teacher, counselor, pupil personnel worker, vice-principal, principal, Director of Pupil Services, Director of the Office of Equity Assurance, and Director of Staff Development. Dr. Robinson is currently an adjunct professor of graduate courses at Bowie State University and an independent contractor for the Anti-Defamation League. She also taught graduate courses at McDaniels College (formerly Western Maryland College) and the University of the District of Columbia. Dr. Robinson is the recipient of numerous award and recognitions from professional and non-professional organizations at the local, state, and national levels for her outstanding leadership and services.
Barbara R. Scherr is a Family Involvement Coordinator at the Maryland State Department of Education. In her 21 years of public service, Barbara has worked in the areas of childcare, safe and drug-free schools, homeless education, and family literacy and family engagement. Her primary responsibility is building capacity for educators by providing technical assistance and training to school systems and schools in the area of parent involvement, and ensuring that the requirements of No Child Left Behind pertaining to parent involvement are being fully implemented. However, her favorite title is MOM which reflects her most important work to her 10 year old daughter Jenna and 9 year old son Jason.
Susan Shaffer is currently the President and Chair of the Board of Directors of the Mid-Atlantic Equity Consortium, Inc. a non-profit whose mission is to build the capacity of educational
and community-based organizations to support low-income and culturally diverse children and their families. She also served as Executive Director of the Consortium’s Maryland Parental Information
and Resource Center (MD PIRC), a statewide organization that addresses issues of increasing family engagement to improve school success and student achievement. Ms. Shaffer has more than forty years
of professional training, management, consultation, teaching, and materials development experience in family engagement, gender equity and multicultural education.
For almost two decades, she served as Deputy Director of the Mid-Atlantic Equity Center the Region III technical assistance center for educational equity. Her recent appointments include: the Maryland’s Superintendent’s Parent Involvement Advisory Council, Maryland’s Committee of Title I Practitioners, the board of directors and the executive board of the Maryland Women’s Heritage Center, and Harmony Through Education, an international NGO whose mission is to build schools in developing countries for children with disabilities. Susan Shaffer is a member of the National Family, School, and Community Engagement Working Group and was invited to participate in “The White House Conference on Teenagers, 2000,” and the White House and Congressional celebrations of Title IX. She is the recipient of numerous awards, and was recognized by AERA for the most significant contribution to curricular materials on women. Susan Shaffer has co-authored three books on adolescents, appeared on varied media nationwide and has published widely on issues of equity, parenting, women’s history, disability, and multicultural education.
Warren Simmons directs the Annenberg Institute for School Reform at Brown University. The Institute was established in 1993 to develop, share, and act on knowledge that improves conditions and outcomes in American schools, particularly in urban areas and in schools serving disadvantaged students. Previously, Dr. Simmons headed the Philadelphia Education Fund, a nonprofit organization that played a key role in helping the School District of Philadelphia fund, develop, and implement a comprehensive school reform agenda called Children Achieving. Dr. Simmons was a grant maker at the National Institute of Education and Annie E. Casey Foundation, where he developed and funded initiatives on youth and adult literacy, community development, and urban school reform. He served as Director of Equity Initiatives for the New Standards Project, working with a coalition of 17 states and 6 school districts to design performance-based assessments, and advance curricular and instructional reforms. Dr. Simmons received his B.A. in psychology from Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota, and earned a doctorate in psychology from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York.
Carmen Delgado Votaw retired as Senior Vice President for Public Policy from the Alliance for Children and Families, a nonprofit organization that serves over 400 agencies that provide services to children and families. She previously served as Director of Public Policy for United Way of America in the Community Impact Service Area linking public policy advocacy to community outcomes; Director of Government Relations for the Girl Scouts and member of the National Board of Directors of the Girl Scouts; and chief of staff to U.S. Representative Jaime B. Fuster of Puerto Rico. Ms. Votaw is the author of a bilingual book (English and Spanish), Puerto Rican Women: Some Biographical Profiles, of biographies of Julia de Burgos and Maria Cadilla de Martinez in Notable American Women (1980), and of a chapter in To Ourselves be True. She has written a number of articles in publications such as Americas, Vision, Horizontes, Agenda Magazine, Nuestro and Graduate Woman. Ms. Votaw has a B.A. in international studies from The American University, an honorary doctorate in the humanities from Hood College and an associate degree from the University of Puerto Rico.