BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Alisha Birthá is the Assistant Principal of Scholar Support at KIPP Atlanta Collegiate High School. She joined the KIPP Atlanta Collegiate team in 2016 as a Math Learning Specialist. After 21 years in education, she has served in various capacities, including middle school special education teacher, special education coordinator, Head Start manager, and school leader.
Alisha’s greatest passion is for scholars to have the tools and exposure they need to make appropriate choices that lead to independent, productive, and choice-filled lives. She is the mother of twin daughters (Jala, Aerospace Engineering student at Purdue University, and Nandi, Elementary Education student at Georgia Southern University). They are her role models, having become strong, independent, young women in control of their own destiny.
Born and bred in Singapore, Kelly obtained a full ride scholarship from a Singapore bank when she graduated high school. The scholarship covered 4 years of college at the University of California-Berkeley. In return, Kelly was contractually obligated to work for the bank for 6 years, and therefore stumbled into banking as a career starting at 18 years of age. Between 2004-2006, she spent her first 2 years of her career in Singapore writing credit papers for loans in Southeast Asia and OECD countries. She then spent 7 years (2007-2013) working for the Singapore bank at their New York Agency as a credit analyst and relationship manager covering diversified industries and real estate finance. In 2013, she joined HSBC Bank as a relationship manager covering companies headquartered outside the US. Kelly loves to read and travel the world. She lives in Brooklyn, NY with her school-teacher husband, 2 children (ages 9 and 12), 2 cats, 1 dog and a bearded dragon.
Kwame Green is the Director of Programs and Impact at Dr. Howard Fuller Collegiate Academy. Kwame was a practicing attorney before becoming an educator. He teaches secondary writing-based classes that prepare students for the challenges of going to college. Kwame has always been inspired and encouraged by the progressive leaders at the school who preached teamwork and going all out for every student. Kwame’s popularity with his students stems in part from the way he deeply understands the challenges teenagers go through. From broken families to extreme poverty, he’s seen it all. And he knows every student has his or her own story. Yet his goal is to balance compassion with teaching them to overcome the obstacles. He is adamant about the “path” that students need to learn. It’s the path out of their current world and into one that they want someday. So Kwame is relentless in getting them to accept the hard work it will take to achieve something for themselves. A big part of his job, Kwame says, is “to help you develop those skills as a critical thinker and a problem-solver and a decision-maker.” https://youtu.be/axSjkbPdffE
Ramy Katrib is an award-winning filmmaker and CEO / Founder of Digital Film Tree (DFT), a post-production and software development company. Ramy started his career in media and technology over 25 years ago, as filmmaker, negative cutter, and telecine colorist. In all the organizations and projects he propels, Ramy champions a multidisciplinary work culture, led by world-class creatives and technologists working hand in hand to solve huge problems. DFT played a key role in transitioning the media and entertainment industry to digital post and file-based workflows, on projects like Cold Mountain and Scrubs. Today DFT is the leading provider of IP based production, post, story visualization services and software solutions. DFT clients include ABC, A&E, CBS, Disney, Fox, HBO, Netflix, Turner, Warner Bros, and first-time storytellers alike.
Carmelita Tiu is a lawyer, podcaster, creative, and educator. After earning an art degree, law degree, and certificate in dispute resolution, she worked as an attorney at The Oprah Winfrey Show and OWN: The Oprah Winfrey Network for several years, then pivoted to senior counsel roles in the design and advertising world. She's also held adjunct professorships at DePaul University and Columbia College Chicago.
Passionate about service, creativity, and social change, she's served on various boards and committees, including with the Chicago Artists Coalition, Monuments to Movements (M2M), Project&, Lawyers for the Creative Arts Associate Board, WomanCraft (a division of Heartland Alliance), and Collaboraction Theatre Company. A program she founded while in law school, the Pro Bono and Community Service Initiative at the DePaul College of Law, still thrives to this day. As a curious and committed mom to two daughters, Carmelita recently launched the podcast, "Know Them, Be Them, Raise Them," a show that informs and inspires mindful and growth-oriented moms of girls -- so they can show up for themselves and their daughters the way they want to. Each week, she interviews experts, thought leaders, and moms-who've-been-there, and reads a curated collection of articles. You can find "Know Them, Be Them, Raise Them" on all the major podcast platforms, or by visiting knowberaisethem.com. Though she's based in Chicago, she's currently taking a career break to loop around the U.S. with her family for the 2021-22 school year -- a bucket list dive into memory-making, hyperfocusing on the family, and pouring into passion projects.
Mark Torphy is a Milwaukee-born, New York and Phoenix-seasoned, Atlanta-residing father of three. Mark began his first career as a practicing CPA and Business Manager. A desire to be more direct in advocating for his community and having learned of his own depression and anxiety during his divorce years earlier led him to birth a second career amidst the 2020 Covid-19 pandemic and he began a journey to becoming a Marriage and Family Therapist. Mark is passionate about music, Wisconsin sports and helping heal people through love, truth, faith and hope.