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Tony Valdés

2/25/2016 |

Antonio (Tony) Valdés is Executive Director of Children’s Crisis Treatment Center, a non-profit agency specializing in providing behavioral health services to Philadelphia’s children and their families. Tony began his career in behavioral healthcare in 1987 as a Social Worker for Connections CSP, a behavioral healthcare provider, and later served as Executive Director of the Child Psychiatry Center in Philadelphia.

Elizabeth L. Useem, Ed.D.

2/25/2016 |

Betsey Useem has had extensive experience as a sociologist teaching about and researching education reform issues. She has served as Director of Research at the Philadelphia Education Fund and as a Senior Consultant at Research for Action. Prior to that, she was an Associate Professor of Sociology at the University of Massachusetts/Boston and was Chair of the Massachusetts Youth Policy Council. Now retired, she is a Vice President of the Board of Episcopal Community Services in Philadelphia, Vice Chair of the Board of the Education Policy Leadership Center in Harrisburg, and a member of the Advisory Board of Healthy Newsworks.

Nicholas Torres, M.Ed.

2/25/2016 |

Nicholas Torres has over 20 years of experience in executive management. He built and led one of the largest and nationally recognized human services organization, founded/governed two charter schools, founded a nonprofit focused on scaling high impact social enterprises, and founded a social sector consulting organization.  Currently, he is CEO/Founder of Education Plus Academy Cyber Charter School; Founder and Co-Publisher of a social impact/innovation journal and Lab; President of Education Plus, Inc.; and President of Ed Plus Business Consulting.  He also serves as adjunct faculty at the University of Pennsylvania’s Fels Institute of Government/Wharton.

Kathy Sykes

2/25/2016 |

Kathy Sykes served as the Director of Intellectual disAbility Services for the City of Philadelphia for 19 years and worked within the office for a total of 34 years.  Since her retirement she has worked as a consultant to organizations that serve people with disabilities, with a particular interest in employment for people with disabilities and assisting organizations to transform their services to those that promote employment. Her career with the City gave her extensive experience working with nonprofits and governmental entities.

Kathleen M. Shaw, Ph.D.

2/25/2016 |

Kate Shaw became Executive Director of Research for Action (RFA) in December 2009. Since then, she has greatly increased the scope of its regional and national work while maintaining a commitment to Philadelphia. Prior to her arrival at RFA, Kate served as Deputy Secretary of Postsecondary and Higher Education in the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Kate was also a faculty member at Temple University in the Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies, and served as Chair of that Department as well. Her scholarship has focused on issues of access and equity in higher education with a particular emphasis on policy issues.

Chaya Scott

2/25/2016 |

Chaya Scott is Executive Director of the Coatesville Youth Initiative (CYI). Chaya holds a Master’s degree in Organizational Leadership from Immaculata University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Public Relations (Magna Cum Laude) from Temple University. Chaya is passionate about systems change, youth development and community mobilization. Chaya is a Chester County native and resident of Coatesville.

Mark Schwartz

2/25/2016 |

Mark Schwartz is Executive Director of Regional Housing Legal Services (RHLS). RHLS is a nonprofit law firm with unique expertise in affordable, sustainable housing and its related components: community and economic development, utility matters and preservation of home ownership. He is a long-time gubernatorial appointee to the Board of the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency. Mark and his wife reside in Abington Township and love to spend time at the shore with their grandchildren.

Janet Riley-Ford

2/25/2016 |

Janet Riley-Ford is the Chief Operating Officer at the Boys & Girls Club of Chester. The Boys & Girls Club of Chester is proud to have nurtured numerous young people and guide them to successful post-secondary careers by supporting academic excellence, healthy lifestyles, good character and citizenship. Janet is a licensed therapist, graduating from Widener University with a Masters in Social Work. Over the past six years, Janet has worked closely with local government in Chester to establish the Chester Older Youth Plan in hopes of guiding quality youth development for the future in Chester.

Erin Reilly

2/25/2016 |

In 2005 Erin Reilly co-founded Theatre Horizon, an award-winning Equity theater, and led a $1 million campaign to build a new venue for the company in Norristown. She is a director and Equity actress and has appeared on numerous area stages. Theatre Horizon’s Education Department & Autism Drama Program was established ten years ago and now serves 750 children per year. Erin was named one of 76 Creative Connectors by Leadership Philadelphia. She is the co-founder and Board President of Theatre Philadelphia.

Chinwe Onyekere

2/25/2016 |

Chinwe Onyekere is the Associate Administrator for Lankenau Medical Center. She is responsible for implementing innovative models for primary care, overseeing the graduate medical education financial enterprise, business development, as well as building relationships with community-based organizations in the Philadelphia area. Chinwe was previously executive director of Health Leads in New York and Program Officer at Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

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