Title: Development Director

    Ashley grew up in Winston-Salem, NC. She earned a scholarship to swim while completing a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Clemson University.

    Following graduation, Ashley moved to Charlotte as a 2009 Teach For America Corps Member, where she taught elementary school for four years. She then went on to work in communications and media for Sports Friends (a ministry of SIM), where she served as bridge between SF’s work in 13 countries and the ministry’s supporters around the world. Following her time at Sports Friends, Ashley served as the Director of Community Engagement at Watershed Church. At Watershed she helped facilitate small group leadership and oversaw all of Watershed’s local and global outreach partnerships.
    Ashley and her husband, TJ, have been involved with UrbanPromise Charlotte since its inception, and she is excited to now serve as UP’s Development Director. She is passionate about youth empowerment and truly believes that UP’s unique StreetLeader model is what makes the program so powerful and transformative!


    Title: Literacy Facilitator

    Christine grew up in Cincinnati, Ohio. She attended Taylor University, where she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education and a minor in Spanish.  After moving to Charlotte in 2006, she earned her Master’s in Education with a concentration in Literacy Instruction from Lesley University.  She taught 5th grade for a Title I school in CMS for 5 years and earned an Employee Excellence award from the district for starting and leading a parent education organization for Latino families.
    In 2011, Christine and her husband, Tracey, moved to Santiago, Chile as missionaries.  There they began an English Institute while also serving as teacher facilitators at two charter schools and an after school boys and girls club. They returned to Charlotte in May 2017 with their three sons, Coen, Makai and Desmond (aka “Dezi”).


    Title: Freedom Drive StreetLeader Director

    Rolanda Sue is a Charlotte native of 14 years that is passionate about working with students. She graduated from Johnson C. Smith University with a double degree in biology and chemistry. At Johnson C. Smith, Rolanda served as the school’s official hostess, captain of her tennis team, and helped in the implementation of an initiative that afforded Haitian students the opportunity to study at the university.
    Prior to joining the UrbanPromise Charlotte team, Rolanda taught high school science in Charlotte for five years. In her role as a teacher, she aimed to inspire, motivate, and transform students. She received the “Above and Beyond Teacher” award for her efforts. Outside of UrbanPromise, Rolanda is a member at Marathon Praise Ministries where she serves as the Youth Director for the youth ministry.


    Title: Idlewild Road Streetleader Director

    A Charlotte native, Will attended CMS schools from Kindergarten through 12th grade. He is a graduate of The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he studied Communications and Entrepreneurship. During his time in college, Will was highly involved in campus ministry and served on the student leadership team for an organization called Cru.
    Upon graduation, Will returned to Charlotte as a Teach For America Corps Member in 2015, where he taught Earth & Environmental Science at Harding University High School for two years. During his first year of teaching, he was given the New Teacher of the Year award by The Beacon Initiative. Will joined UrbanPromise in the summer of 2017 to serve as the StreetLeader Director for the Idlewild Site.
    In his free time, Will enjoys reading in coffeeshops, cheering on the Tar Heels, watching NBA basketball, imitating Steph Curry’s jump shot and eating copious amounts of Chick-Fil-A.


    Title: South Boulevard Middle school coordinator

    Robert is originally from Bronx, NY.  He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Behavioral Science from Mercy College in Dobbs Ferry, NY, and has completed most of his Master’s in Education there as well.  Robert taught middle school for almost a decade in districts from White Plains, NY, to Charlotte Mecklenburg, here in North Carolina.

    Before becoming a teacher, Robert completed the Ella Baker training in Early Childhood Literacy in Tennessee and worked as a Servant Leader with CDF Freedom Schools in Mount Vernon, NY.  An ardent believer in the power of arts, athletics, and mentoring as tools for boosting academic success, Robert enjoys incorporating and encouraging the skills and talents young people bring to their own education and personal development.
    Outside of Urban Promise, Robert enjoys playing basketball, drumming, and listening to music.  He especially enjoys spending time with his wife Elizabeth and their two boys Judah and Lennox.


    Title: South Boulevard StreetLeader Director

    Ciara Anjelica is originally from Los Angeles, California. She attended Azusa Pacific University, where she earned a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work.
    Ciara Anjelica discovered her passion for youth leadership as she studied community development and served with an afterschool program in South Africa. She has also spent three summers interning with UrbanPromise sites in Camden, New Jersey and Copan Ruinas, Honduras. Before coming to UrbanPromise Charlotte, Ciara Anjelica was a seventh grade teacher in Clinton, North Carolina for two years as a Teach For America corps member.
    She values social justice and serving others. Ciara Anjelica is passionate about empowering youth to pursue their goals, to find their voice, to become leaders, and to be change agents in their communities.


    Title: South Boulevard Site Director

    Julia was born and raised in Charlotte, NC. She is a graduate of The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she studied Global Studies and Spanish and minored in Social Entrepreneurship. She spent four summers working for Amigos de las Américas on sustainable community development and youth leadership programs in Peru, Panama, and the Dominican Republic. Julia also gained experience working with Latino/a high school students on college readiness as a mentor and Co-Director for the organization Scholars’ Latino Initiative (SLI). Before coming to UrbanPromise Charlotte, Julia developed her project management skills as a Data Consultant for the healthcare company Premier Inc.

     As a Charlotte native, Julia feels very passionately about seeing community restoration in the city of Charlotte through the power of youth leadership.


    Title: Idlewild Road Site Director

    Erika Hernandez was born and raised in Charlotte and takes pride in her family’s Salvadoran heritage.  She earned her bachelor’s degree in Religion at Davidson College where she loved studying ancient Roman culture and Paul’s letters.

    Before arriving to UrbanPromise, Erika worked at the Center for Prevention Services promoting healthy lifestyles among youth through substance use prevention. During her time there, Erika coordinated the youth council for North Carolina’s first Latino drug free coalition, Alianza. 

    Erika strives to connect youth with opportunities, knowledge, and skills that allow them to be leaders, pursue their dreams, and change their communities.  


    Title: Freedom Drive Site Director

    Dionté Grey grew up in Johnson City, TN. He earned a scholarship to play basketball while earning his Bachelor’s degree in Sport Management from Tusculum College (Greeneville, TN).

    After graduation, Dionté moved to Charlotte, NC in 2012 and began a year long internship with UrbanLife Charlotte as an urban missionary. There, he served as a mentor and tutor to students at Ashley Park K-8 and focused on building relationships within the West Charlotte community.

    Before joining UrbanPromise Charlotte, Dionté worked as a Program Specialist at Right Moves for Youth, where he focused on helping students graduate from high school with a plan for their future success by directly facilitating and implementing a “life skills” curriculum with small groups at 7 CMS schools.

    Dionté is excited to be the Freedom Drive Site Director and to continue investing in the wonderful community of West Charlotte. He and his beautiful wife Meg welcomed their first child, Dove, in July 2016.


    Title: Executive Director

    Jimmy was born and raised in Columbia, MD. He attended Wake Forest University, where he earned a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Spanish.

    Jimmy came to Charlotte in 2009 as a Teach For America corps member. He taught high school Spanish and coached basketball for four years at Phillip O. Berry Academy of Technology. During his teaching career, he was nominated and selected as a regional recipient for the Teach For America Sue Lehmann Excellence in Teaching Award in 2011, received the First Year Teacher of the Year award for high school teachers in the West Learning Community in CMS in 2010, and received the All-Star in Achievement award from the Charlotte Bobcats and Wells Fargo in 2010.

    Jimmy also received a Certificate in Nonprofit Management from Duke University.

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