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2017-18 WRP Policy Fellows Bios

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Yolande' Anderson
Director of the Office of Family and Community Engagement
South Carolina Department of Education
Columbia, SC

Yolandé received a BA in Sociology from the University of South Carolina and a dual MA in Human Resources from Webster University. She serves as Director for the Office of Family and Community Engagement at the South Carolina Department of Education (SCDE). Prior to joining the SCDE, Ms. Anderson served in the nonprofit community as program manager of various educational and community outreach programs. She has led several initiatives for after school/expanded learning efforts, family and community engagement projects, and other deserving programs that have focused on increasing the success of students. Most recently, Ms. Anderson served as an Academic Dean at a local college. Ms. Anderson is married to Broderick Anderson, Sr., and they have three children, Diondré Jamal (DJ), Broderick, Jr. (BJ), and Charles John (CJ). Motto: “From Head Start to Higher Education, all students deserve the opportunity to excel.”

Mercadi Crawford
Deputy Director
Texas Partnership for Out of School Time
Austin, TX

Mercadi joined the Texas Partnership for Out of School Time in the spring of 2017 as Deputy Director. Prior to joining TXPOST, Mercadi managed after-school programs and summer camps for multiple organization is the Austin area. Mercadi also has previous work experience in community recruitment and outreach, program coordination, communications, and public relations. She received a Masters of Public Administration from Texas Southern University in 2013 and her BA in Public Relations from Sam Houston State University in 2010. Mercadi Crawford was born and raised in Houston. She knew from an early age that persistence created opportunity, and with opportunity came knowledge, and knowledge could build the bridge needed to become a role model for her younger siblings. She is excited that she can now extend that bridge to the youth in Texas.

Mallory Deprey
School Age Program Coordinator
YWCA of New Britain
New Britain, CT

Mallory holds the title of, School Age Program Coordinator, for the YWCA in New Britain, CT. Mallory is responsible for the oversight of all out of school time programming at the YWCA for school aged youth, ranging from Kindergarten to 12th grade. Mallory is an active member of the New Britain community including; chair of the Professional Development Committee for the Coalition for New Britain’s Youth, and a Board of Education member for the Consolidated School District of New Britain. Mallory is a native of New Britain and has been working with the youth through community-based programs for 18 years. She received her bachelor’s degree from Southern Connecticut State University majoring in Recreation and Leisure studies with the concentration of community and youth development. Mallory believes that combining the power of grit and resilience, and following your passion can bring greatness to life within any circumstance. In the words of Babe Ruth “Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game.”

Andrew Ganucheau
Network Lead
Louisiana Center for Afterschool Learning
Baton Rouge, LA

Andrew is the Director of the Louisiana Center for Afterschool Learning. Andrew has over 13 years of experience working in the afterschool communities of Illinois, Louisiana and Pennsylvania. Before coming to LACAL, Andrew coordinated afterschool initiatives for three years at the Center for Prevention of Abuse in Peoria, Illinois. He was also the creator of the Mind over Muscle program, an afterschool program focused on improving academic and behavior success. In 2007, he received the Clyde Smith Scholarship from Bradley University for his work. A graduate of the Louisiana State University, Andrew also holds a Master’s degree in Human Development Counseling from Bradley University and is currently working on his doctorate in education policy from the University of Pittsburgh.

Angelique Jessup
Program Director
Baltimore Campaign for Grade Level Reading
Fund for Educational Excellence
Baltimore, MD

Angelique serves as the Program Director for the Baltimore Campaign for Grade Level Reading. The Campaign is a Coalition of over 120 public agencies, funders, non-profit organizations, community leaders, and other key stakeholders that aims to ensure all Baltimore City public school students are reading well by the end of 3rd grade through various innovative programs ad initiatives. Most recently, Angelique served as the Manager for the Office of College and Career Readiness with Baltimore City Public Schools. In this role, she provided support and helped to develop district wide initiatives around college access and readiness, school counseling and guidance, and career training. Prior to working for City Schools, Angelique was a Senior Program Associate with Public/Private Ventures in New York City and provided technical assistance in the areas of disconnected youth and young adults, and criminal justice. She received her B.A. from the College of New Jersey and her M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of Michigan. She lives in North Baltimore with her husband and two children.

Steve Mielenhausen
Principal
Davenport Community Schools
Davenport, IA

Steve Mielenhausen has been with the Davenport Community School District since 1996, serving as a teacher, vice principal, and principal. Steve received Master’s degrees from St. Xavier University in Chicago and the University of Northern Iowa. Last December received his Education Specialist Degree from UNI. The majority of his 30 years in education have been spent in urban/diverse settings. Steve is currently the principal at Madison Elementary School in Davenport and has served as their principal for 4 years. Madison Elementary is a Full Service Community School and its staff and partners are working hard to meet the needs of its students and families to strengthen the community. Steve has recently been accepted in the White-Riley-Peterson National Policy Fellowship for Afterschool and Expanded Learning.

Jenna Pak

Program Specialist
A+ Program, Community Engagement Office
Hawaii State Department of Education
Honolulu, HI

Jenna is the Program Specialist for the After-School Plus (A+) Program in the Hawai'i Department of Education (HIDOE), which provides affordable childcare for 180 HIDOE public elementary schools. She also manages the UPLINK program for public middle and intermediate schools and the 21st Century Community Learning Centers Program. Prior to working with the HIDOE, Jenna was an instructor and administrator at a private language school and taught English as a Second Language at both public and private middle schools. She received her master's degree in Second Language Studies from the University of Hawai'i at Mānoa, where she specialized in Hawai'i Creole English and identity.

Amy Pichette
Director of Afterschool and Summer Programming
LearningWorks
Portland, ME

Amy is the Director of Afterschool and Summer Programming at LearningWorks in Portland, Maine. Since joining LearningWorks in 2007 as an afterschool teacher at their single afterschool site, Amy has worked to grow the program to 11 sites across 4 school districts, serving almost 1000 students annually. In 2016-2017, Amy was named one of 15 national Afterschool Ambassadors through the Afterschool Alliance. Prior to joining LearningWorks, Amy was an elementary teacher for 5 years in Washington State. She holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Geography and Masters of Arts in Teaching from Southern Oregon University.

Michelle Radford
School Age Specialist
Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning
Atlanta, GA

Michelle is a University of Georgia graduate, with a Bachelor of Science degree in Early Childhood Education with a Gifted Endorsement and earned her Masters of Education Degree from Northcentral University in Educational Leadership. She is certified to teach in Georgia and North Carolina in the areas of Pre Kindergarten through 5th grade, Gifted P-12, Special Education P-12 and  provide School Leadership. Michelle has served as a Special Education Facilitator in elementary, middle and high schools to ensure schools were in compliance with state and federal regulations and were creating legally defensible Individualized Education Plans. Michelle was also a certified trainer for the special education reading curriculum and served as the Reading specialist for the special education department and has provided technical assistance to teachers. She was also the director for Camp Allstars which was a summer camp for students with special needs. Currently Michelle is the School Age and Youth Program Specialist with Bright From the Start Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning and serves on the Georgia Statewide Afterschool Network Leadership team and Quality Committee. With almost three decades of experience working with children from birth to age 21 in three different states, she has devoted her career to helping ensure that all children have access to high quality care and excellent education.

Aleah Rosario
Director of Capacity Building Programs
California School Age Consortium
Berkeley, CA

Aleah is the Director of Capacity Building Programs at the California School-Age Consortium, overseeing the country’s only year-long leadership development fellowship for emerging leaders of color in the out-of-school time field, various training projects, and grassroots advocacy efforts. Before this, she worked in the afterschool programs in the rural, central California community where she grew up. Aleah received her undergraduate degree in Political Science from CSU Stanislaus, and is an alum of CalSAC's 2012 inaugural cohort of the Leadership Development Institute for Emerging Leaders of Color. In 2014, she was recognized by NAA as Afterschool’s Next Generation of emerging professionals. Aleah has and continues to serve on various strategic implementation committees of the California Expanded Learning Division and is a founding member of Sisters Inspiring Change, a group formed in 2015 that aims to increase opportunities in the field for women and girls of color. As she continues to pursue a more equitable world, she is motivated by early memories of walking the precincts, organizing neighborhood events and boycotting grapes that imparted in her a deep responsibility to honor her family’s legacy of service, community, and justice.

May Sagbakken
Executive Director
New Mexico Out-of-School Time Network
Albuquerque, NM

May is the Executive Director for the New Mexico Out-of-School Time Network. May has more than seventeen years of experience as a director for local and international organizations focusing on women’s rights, violence prevention, and positive youth development. She has a dual Master’s Degree in Community and Regional Planning/Latin American studies from University of New Mexico, and a Bachelor's Degree in Journalism and International Studies from University of Oregon. May has extensive experience in community collaboration and strategies for implementing community projects for change. This includes implementing the Safe Schools Healthy Students Initiative in Albuquerque Public Schools, which focused on prevention of violence and substance abuse. She has also worked as a Special Advisor on Women Worker’s Rights at the International Labor organization in Geneva. May is Norwegian and has lived in New Mexico since 1991, and is a proud mother of three children. She is a Certified Reflexologist, Blue belt Nia Instructor, and an Advanced Trainer in the Nurtured Heart Approach.

Eric Shaw
Development and Communication Specialist
Massachusetts Afterschool Partnership
Boston, MA

Prior to starting his work at the Massachusetts Afterschool Partnership (MAP) in January of 2017, Eric earned his BA in English from Tufts University. Following his graduation, he engaged in direct service through various education nonprofits such as Playworks, Youth Speaks, and the YMCA by working with students both in and out of school. After observing with interest the ways in which policy and systems affect the lives of young people, Eric began work in the out-of-school time field at MAP. In his short time at MAP, he has worked to secure funding for out-of-school time in Massachusetts and to ensure the representation of out-of-school stakeholders in policy plans.

Felicia Simpson
Contract and Grants Administrator
University of Alabama
Tuscaloosa, AL

Felicia is the Proposal Development Administrator at the University of Alabama.  She serves in the Dean’s Office of the College of Education. Felicia is the Director of Community Outreach and Engagement for the Alabama Afterschool Community Network (ALACN). She has served as a Community Education Coordinator, 21st Coordinator and has coordinated grants including 21st Century, Dependent Care, Office of Safe and Drug Free Schools Counseling Grant, United Way, Family Success, Carol White and At-Risk. She is the Alabama Community Education Association (ACEA) Past-President, Council for Leaders in Alabama Schools (CLAS) past District Coordinator, and serves on several local advisory councils. Felicia works diligently with the State Department of Education, Office of Early Childhood and numerous other organizations to create awareness of the need for afterschool and summer programming. 

Brent Wake
Executive Director
Indiana State Alliance of YMCAs
Indianapolis, IN

Brent has over a decade of experience in government, public affairs and public policy, having worked in federal and local government in various capacities.  In his role as Executive Director, Brent leads the advancement of the Indiana State Alliance of YMCAs through oversight of advocacy efforts, securing resources, building external partnerships, and fostering statewide internal communication, cooperation and consensus on issues important to Indiana YMCAs.  Prior to serving as the Alliance’s ED, Brent served as its Director of Healthy Living Initiatives—a role in which he coordinated statewide collaborative efforts to achieve policy and environmental outcomes of the Indiana Statewide Pioneering Healthier Communities’ initiative. Before coming to Indiana YMCAs, Brent worked for the City of Fort Wayne Office of the Mayor most recently as the Mayor's Legislative & Business Liaison, directing government activities in support of the City’s local, State and federal agendas and taking on special business initiatives for the office. Brent received his bachelor’s degree from Indiana University–Fort Wayne and his Masters in Public Health with a concentration in Public Health Administration from Indiana University–Bloomington.

Renea Wood
Program Development Director
YMCA of Klamath Falls
Klamath Falls, OR

Renea graduated with a bachelor in Sociology from the University of Oregon in 1998 and has been working with social service agencies ever since. Most recently Renea has been with The YMCA of Klamath Falls since June 2010 overseeing all aspects of their Year Round Food Program for early education and school aged programming. She has been the driving force in maintaining participation in the YMCA school aged programming which includes finding funding and developing age appropriate enrichment activities. Each year increasing community partnerships and strengthening sustainability. Her advocacy goes beyond Klamath Falls as she advocates on behalf of the Oregon Alliance of YMCA’s, supporting all 11 YMCA’s in Oregon as she helps find ways to improve OST in her state. In addition, she works as a Regional Facilitator for the Y-USA Year Round Food Program, helping YMCA’s across the country find sustainable ways to outreach to more children through OST and summer programming.

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