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OUR TEAM

Our organizational infrastructure is configured to address the specific needs of the See Forever Foundation and the Maya Angelou Schools. Accordingly, our board members have expertise in key fields, including education, community service and nonprofit management, parenting and community engagement, finance, law, communications and corporate governance. There are ad hoc and standing committees of each board who engage in more in-depth organizational planning, support, and operations. 

Maya Angelou Public Charter School Board of Directors  

Dr. Peter Leone, Board Chair
 
Peter is a Professor in the Department of Counseling, Higher Education, and Special Education at the University of Maryland. He received his B.A. and M.A. in history and special education, respectively, at the University of Iowa and his Ph.D. in special education at the University of Washington. During his professional career he has taught adolescents with behavioral disorders in the public schools, trained teachers, and studied education programs and practices in institutional settings. 
 

Dr. Leone has monitored, evaluated education services, and provided technical assistance in jails, detention centers, training schools, and prisons in a number of states. He is the former Director of the National Center on Education, Disability, and Juvenile Justice at the UM and he served on the Blue Ribbon Commission for the reform of the Texas Youth Commission in 2007. His research examines access and equity of education services for marginalized youth particularly those in institutional settings, school exclusion, and litigation involving individuals with disabilities in the juvenile and criminal justice systems.

 
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Michael Vu, Board Vice-Chair
 
Michael is a Principal with Artemis Real Estate Partners, a real estate fund manager based in metropolitan Washington DC. Michael is a member of the Investment Committee and is responsible for developing and implementing the Acquisitions and Asset Management priorities of Artemis. Michael was a founding member of the Artemis team and has participated in the acquisition of over $3.0 billion of real estate nationwide. 
 
 
Previously, Michael was a member of the U.S. Real Estate acquisitions team at the Carlyle Group, and was previously an analyst at Lazard Freres & Co, where he focused on mergers and acquisitions within the real estate group in New York. Michael attended Princeton University, where he graduated magna cum laude. 
 
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Thomas White, Board Secretary
 
Tom is a practiced corporate and bankruptcy law at WilmerHale from 1983 to 2017, where he was one of the firm’s leading practitioners in the area of corporate governance and disclosure, with extensive experience representing corporate and institutional clients in complex business transactions. Mr. White also served as General Counsel of the firm for nine years. He retired in 2017.
 

Mr. White has  particular experience in legal aspects of accounting and auditing. He currently serves as a member of the Financial Accounting Standards Advisory Council (FASAC). He founded Focus on Audit Committees, Accounting and the Law, a WilmerHale blog that provides a legal perspective on developments in accounting standards, financial reporting, auditing and regulation of the accounting profession. As General Counsel of WilmerHale, Mr. White advised internal and external clients on professional responsibility and legal practice issues.

Since retiring from WilmerHale, Mr. White’s focus has been teaching activities.  Beginning in September 2018, he will be a Lecturer in Law at Columbia Law School, where he will teach a course on “Governance of Financial Reporting.”  In January 2018, under the auspices of the ABA Rule of Law Initiative, he taught a course on Accounting for Lawyers to a class of 26 female law students and recent law graduates at Prince Sultan University in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

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Darren Cambridge
 
Darren Cambridge is a versatile and visionary education leader with 20 years of experience in professional learning, communications, technology, educational research, and policy. At the American Council on Education, he produces digital learning content, experiences, and spaces that help senior leaders of colleges and universities transform higher education. Previously, he was co-founder and CEO of Mia Learning, an educational software company developing conversational artificial intelligence that helps children to become more powerful and purposeful readers.
 

He also led the Washington office of the National Council of Teachers of English, securing authorization and funding of a comprehensive federal literacy program; directed large scale projects and multidisciplinary teams across multiple organizations and government agencies focused on education policy, technology, assessment, and professional learning for the U.S. Department of Education, National Science Foundation, Intel Education, EDUCAUSE, and the American Association for Higher Education; and taught higher education and integrative studies at George Mason University.

He has served on the Technical Advisory Board of IMS Global, third country representative for the Europortfolio project, and founding board chair of the Association for Authentic, Experiential and Evidence-Based Learning. He currently serves on the board of the Maya Angelou Schools. A keynote speaker at national and international conferences in eight countries on four continents, he has authored, edited, or produced more than 35 research and policy publications, including award-winning books, reports, interactive web sites, and video collections. He won the MacArthur Foundation Digital Media and Learning Faculty Prize for Eportfolios for Lifelong Learning and Assessment in 2012. 

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Dr. Cheryl Chun
 
Dr. Chun graduated from the Meharry Medical College School of Medicine in 2014. She works in Silver Spring, MD and 3 other locations and specializes in Internal Medicine/Pediatrics and Pediatrics. Dr. Chun is affiliated with Holy Cross Hospital.
 
 
David Domenici, Co-Founder 
 
David is the co-founder of the See Forever Foundation and the Maya Angelou Public Charter Schools, a network of alternative schools in the District of Columbia, and a Senior Fellow at the Center for American Progress. He is one of a handful of practitioners who work at the intersection of education and juvenile justice reform. A graduate of the University of Virginia and Stanford Law School, David was awarded both an Echoing Green and an Ashoka Fellowship to support his work as a social entrepreneur developing programs for at-risk and court-involved youth.
 
 
He is credited with taking one of the country’s worst schools for incarcerated youth and transforming it into a national model. David served as the founding principal of the Maya Angelou Academy—the school located inside the District of Columbia’s long-term, secure juvenile facility—from 2007 to 2011. He designed the key elements of the school model, including short, thematic units aligned with state standards, incentive programming based on the Positive Behavioral Intervention and Supports framework, a technology-enhanced instruction and learning platform, and a set of technology tools designed to enhance communication between school and correctional staff. 

The Maya Angelou Academy’s success has been widely recognized. Students at Maya Angelou improve their reading and math scores at an annualized rate of nearly 1.5 grade levels. Over 50% of the students who earn a GED or high school diploma while at the Academy go on to postsecondary school—a rate nearly unheard of in youth correctional settings. Retention rates (the percentage of students remaining in school or holding jobs after release to the community) have doubled since the Maya Angelou Academy began serving D.C.’s incarcerated youth. The changes at the school have been termed “remarkable” by a national expert and court-appointed monitor. David left the Maya Angelou Academy in the fall of 2011 to start the Center for Educational Excellence in New Orleans, Louisiana.

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Lewis Goss II
 
Lewis Goss II is a partner in the Real Estate group with an emphasis on finance, aquisitions, and dispositions. Lewis represents financial institutions, private equity funds, and other institutional investors in a wide variety of commercial transactions, including: real estate acquisition, bridge and construction financing; mezzanine and other subordinate debt structures; syndications and intercreditor agreements; and loan restructuring, distressed assets, and workouts. Lewis has experience with both single-asset and large portfolio transactions with domestic and international borrowers and collateral. Additionally, Lewis represents commercial real estate developers in their single asset and portfolio acquisitions and dispositions.
 

Lewis served as intern for the Hon. Maurice A. Ross of the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. He received the following degrees:  The George Washington University Law School JD in 2008 and from the University of Tennessee BS, cum laude, Finance, 2004.

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James Forman, Jr., Co-Founder
 
James is a Professor of Law at Yale Law School since 2011 and a 2018 Pulitzer Prize winning author in the general nonfiction category for his book Locking Up Our Own:  Crime and Punishment in Black America. After attending Brown University and Yale Law School, he worked as a law clerk for Judge William Norris of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals and Justice Sandra Day O’Connor of the U.S. Supreme Court. In 1994, Forman joined the Public Defender Service in Washington, D.C., where for six years he represented both juveniles and adults charged with crimes. In 1997, Forman and David Domenici started the Maya Angelou Public Charter school, an alternative school for opportunity youth.

Forman taught at Georgetown Law from 2003 to 2011, when he joined the Yale faculty. At Yale, he teaches Constitutional Law, a seminar called Race, Class and Punishment, and a seminar called Inside Out: Issues in Criminal Justice, in which Yale law students study alongside men incarcerated in a Connecticut prison. Professor Forman teaches and writes in the areas of criminal procedure and criminal law policy, constitutional law, juvenile justice, and education law and policy. His particular interests are schools, prisons, and police, and those institutions’ race and class dimensions.

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Dr. Julie Johnson
 
Julie Johnson is founder and principal of StrategyForward Advisors, a higher education policy and strategy consultancy in Washington, D.C. As a higher education leader, Dr. Johnson brings 20 years of institutional, policy, and entrepreneurial expertise. She helped launch and lead a new community college as Deputy CEO of the University of the District of Columbia Community College.
 
 
She oversaw state higher education policy and advocacy for 42 states as Vice President of Strategy for Complete College America. At the Advisory Committee on Student Financial Assistance in the U.S. Department of Education, she conducted policy research on college access, success, and affordability. She helped develop and launch a new education-to-business venture to close industry skill gaps at Strayer Education and co-founded Faculty Guild, an ed-tech startup, to help college faculty improve their teaching.

Dr. Johnson is a long-time board member and former board chair for Maya Angelou Schools and an advisor to CampusESP, an ed-tech startup that engages parents to support college student success. She has served as a professorial lecturer in education at The George Washington University’s Graduate School of Education and Human Development and a community college adjunct instructor at the UDC Community College. She received her Ed.D. in Educational Policy from The George Washington University, Ed.M. in Higher Education from Harvard University, and B.A. in English from Azusa Pacific University.

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Alise Marshall
 
Alise joined the Public Welfare Foundation as Director of Strategy and New Ventures in 2018 to identify new levers for impact and build cross-sector collaborations for social change. Alise has dedicated her career to advocating for the opportunity for people in need and leading system reform for transformative change. Prior to joining Public Welfare, Alise served as Senior Manager for Economic Opportunity at Walmart Foundation where she oversaw the Foundation’s Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion portfolio, among others.
 
 
In that role she led the strategic design and management of a combined $10 million philanthropic portfolio dedicated to accelerating impact for new majority communities (people of color, the LGBTQIA community, individuals with disabilities, and women and girls).

Prior to joining Walmart Foundation, Marshall spent six years in the Obama administration. She last served as the Deputy Chief of Staff for the Office of the Deputy Secretary at the U.S. Department of Education where she managed the development of the Department’s strategic plan and led efforts to create transformative impact in low/moderate income communities. Marshall was on the launch team for the President’s My Brother’s Keeper Federal Task Force and managed its policy apparatus, designing solutions to expand access to opportunity for and address barriers experienced by boys and young men of color. She also led the administration’s Rethink Discipline effort to encourage more effective policies to disrupt the school-to-prison pipeline and served on the Second Chance Pell selection committee providing Pell Grants to incarcerated students.

Alise is a native of Shelbyville, KY and received her B.A. from the University of Kentucky.

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Cheryl Mills
 
Cheryl is a lawyer and corporate executive. She first came into public prominence while serving as deputy White House Counsel for President Bill Clinton, whom she defended during his 1999 impeachment trial. She has worked for New York University as Senior Vice President, served as Senior Adviser and Counsel for Hillary Clinton‘s 2008 presidential campaign, and is considered a member of Hillary Clinton’s group of core advisers.

She served as Counselor and Chief of Staff to Hillary Clinton during her whole tenure as United States Secretary of State. After leaving the State Department in January, 2013, she founded BlackIvy Group, which builds businesses in Africa.

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Access board meeting information here.

                    ADMINISTRATION 

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CLARISSE MENDOZA DAVIS

 CHIEF EXECUTIVE OFFICER 

Clarisse Mendoza Davis currently serves as the Chief Executive Officer for the See Forever Foundation and Maya Angelou Public Charter Schools. In this role, Clarisse will lead the organization’s network of schools with a primary focus on academic performance, long-term planning, and sustainability. Dr. Mendoza Davis joined our team in 2016 as the Chief of Schools, with over ten years of experience serving students and families in urban schools in both traditional district and charter settings. After teaching high school English in the District of Columbia Public Schools (DCPS), Clarisse served as Principal of Tindley Renaissance Academy in Indianapolis, Indiana, Chief Operating Officer of the Early Stages Division of DCPS, and Deputy Chief of Schools at the UNO Charter School Network (now the Acero Network of Schools) in Chicago, Illinois. 

Clarisse earned her Ed.D. and M.Ed. in Education Leadership from Teachers College-Columbia University. She also holds a M.A. in Teaching from American University and her B.A. with Honors in English and Music from Loyola University in Chicago. In 2019, The Leadership Center for Excellence recognized Clarisse in their “40 Under 40” 2019 Class for her demonstrating exceptional and impactful leadership. 

Outside of her career, Clarisse enjoys spending time with her husband William, and their daughter Sophia. Some of her hobbies include baking, trying out new recipes in the kitchen, and reading. 

One of the ways Clarisse defines her leadership style is through this quote written by Dr. Maya Angelou, “Without courage we cannot practice any other virtue with consistency. We can’t be kind, true, merciful, generous, or honest.” 

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Staff Directory

Tinnell Slade
Special Education Coordinator
MAA @New Beginnings
Tonya Harley
Operations Manager
Maya Angelou Public Charter School
Travon Jolley
Security Manager
Maya Angelou Public Charter School
Trevor Alexander
Special Education Teacher/Case Manager
MAA @DC Jail
Troy Shine
School Psychologist
MAA @New Beginnings
Tuesday Hence
Director of Residential Programs
Maya Angelou Public Charter School
Tyler Groves
English Teacher
Maya Angelou Public Charter School
Vicky Mitchell
Business Office Manager
MAA @YSC
Vincent Norman-Morris
Teaching Assistant
Maya Angelou Public Charter School
Kewanna Wade
Enrollment Manager
Young Adult Learning Center
Yvette Bowman
Server
Maya Angelou Public Charter School
Zvi Walter
English Teacher
Maya Angelou Public Charter School