Board of Directors
Jules De La Cruz
Co-Chair
Jules De La Cruz
Jules De La Cruz is a graduate of the University of Michigan/Ann Arbor where she obtained a Bachelor's Degree in Elementary Education. After teaching fifth grade in the Detroit Public School System, she embarked on a 17-year law enforcement career to include time as a traditional beat cop, Detective, SGT/Crime Prevention, LT/Watch Commander and for a time, a member of SWAT. Further studies garnered a Master's in Public Administration from Georgia State University. A former Chief of Police for a large, multi-campus metro Atlanta college, she was briefly profiled in "Breaking the Brass Ceiling: Women Police Chiefs and Their Paths to the Top". In 2004 Jules relocated to San Diego, California, where she has been employed as the Director of Security for the prestigious Salk Institute for Biological Studies.

Beverly Guy-Sheftall
Beverly Guy-Sheftall, Ph.D., is the president of the National Women's Studies Association and founding director of the Womenís Research and Resource Center and the Anna Julia Cooper Professor of Womenís Studies. She is also adjunct professor at Emory Universityís Institute for Womenís Studies where she teaches graduate courses. She has published a number of texts within African American and Womenís Studies which have been noted as seminal works by other scholars, including the first anthology on Black womenís literature,Sturdy Black Bridges: Visions of Black Women in Literature (Doubleday, 1980). Her most recent publication is a book coauthored with Johnnetta Betsch Cole, Gender Talk: The Struggle for Womenís Equality in African American Communities (Random House, 2003).

Rahsaan Harris
Rahsaan Harris, Executive Director of Emerging Practitioners in Philanthropy (EPIP), has over 10 years of experience working in philanthropy and non-profits. He has served as a fellow and Program Executive at The Atlantic Philanthropies, where he lead diversity and racial equity initiatives. Prior to Atlantic, Mr. Harris served as the Executive Director of Playing2Win, one of the countryís first public access technology learning centers in an inner-city, low-income area. Mr. Harris received his doctorate in Public and Urban Policy from the New School, and has received numerous leadership awards, including selection to the Association of Black Foundationís (ABFE) 2005 Connecting Leaders Fellows Program.

Cynthia Neff Cynthia Neff
Co-Chair
Cynthia Neff has lived in Charlottesville, Virginia since retiring from IBM in 2006. Prior to settling down in Virginia she was a human resources executive with IBM and ran a number of operations during her tenure there. Throughout her career she fostered a number of initiatives focused on building high-performance, global workforces with a focus on diversity.
 
Cynthia is now a Democratic candidate for the Virginia General Assembly and running for the House of Delegates and Thomas Jefferson's old seat. In her spare time she works with a number of non-profits in addition to TrueChild, including the AIDS Services Group and the Legal Aid Justice Center. She is happily ensconced on five gorgeous acres with a variety of young campaign staff, family and dogs.

Kimberly OtisKim Otis
Kimberly Otis is a consultant in non-profit advancement and philanthropy with a dedicated 25+ year career focused on the rights and empowerment of women and girls and progressive social change.  From 2008-3014, Otis was director of the Caring Economy Campaign, and is the former CEO of the National Council of Womenís Organizations, Women & Philanthropy, the Rauch Foundation, and The Sister Fund.  During the challenging aftermath of September 11, 2001, Otis was chair of the board of Philanthropy New York. She now serves as board chair of Gender Action and as a board member of True Child, and is a former Board member of the National Womenís Hall of Fame and the Women's Funding Network. She has published three book chapters, authored dozens of reports and OpEds, and has presented widely at venues including the National Press Club and on Capitol Hill.

Karen PetersonKaren Peterson
Karen A. Peterson is the Chief Executive Officer for the EdLab Group, an educational equity non-profit organization. For over 25 years, Peterson has been active in education as a classroom teacher, university instructor, pre-service and in-service teacher educator, program administrator, and researcher. Currently, she is the Principal Investigator for the National Girls Collaborative Project, the Computer Science Collaboration Project and Co-Principal Investigator for SciGirls Season Two, Bio-ITEST: New Frontiers in Bioinformatics and Computational Biology, and Build IT Underwater Robotics Scale Up for STEM Learning and Workforce Development. Funded by the National Science Foundation, these projects address gender, racial, and socioeconomic underrepresentation in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. Peterson has published in The Journal of Women and Minorities in Science and Engineering and co-authored evaluation reports and promising practices reports in informal information technology education for girls. Her Masterís thesis focused on gendered attitudes towards computer use in education. (Excerpted from her EdLab Group profile.)

Gina ReissGina Reiss
Gina is currently the Director of the UN Foundation's Girl Up campaign, working with US adolescent girls to raise funding and awareness for their counterparts in developing countries. Prior to that, Ms. Reiss served as Executive Director of TrueChild. She was the Managing Director of the Gender Public Advocacy Coalition (GenderPAC), Executive Director of the New Jersey Lesbian & Gay Coalition, and Action Vice-President of NOW-NJ. She is a founding member of the Equality Federation. She is the proud mother of a six-year-old daughter.

A Toni Young Toni Young
Toni Young is founding Executive Director of Community Education Group in the District of Columbia. Founded in 1993 as the National Women and HIV/AIDS Project (NWAP), it has consistently focused on the needs and challenges the Black community, particularly those faced by women. Today CEG conducts the bulk of community HIV testing and counseling in SouthEast DC. A recognized expert on reproductive health and gender-based violence, Toni is in frequent demand as a speaker. In 2012, CEG was selected to lead the Road to AIDS, a nationwide tour to increase community participation in the 15 cities most adversely impacted by HIV.

   

 

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