Founder & CEO (Board)
Rhonda Broussard founded Beloved Community to create sustainable paths to equitable schools and communities. Her vision for Beloved Community is informed by her leadership in diverse by design schools and Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s goal “ to create a beloved community and this will require a qualitative change in our souls as well as a quantitative change in our lives.”
Rhonda leads our Equity in Schools practice, where she designs supports that transform operations, pedagogy, student culture, and adult culture for sustainable inclusion and equity. Rhonda’s education career has been synonymous with creating more diverse, inclusive, and equitable environments for youth and adults. As a teenager staffer and intern at Breakthrough Collaborative, Rhonda facilitated PD on white privilege and bias and developed recommendations for recruitment and retention of faculty of color. As a classroom teacher, Rhonda led affinity groups for students and faculty, chaired district-wide DEI initiatives, facilitated DEI workshops and trainings for school and community partners, and specialized in integrating LGBTQ inclusion in K-12 programming. As a minority language speaker, Rhonda’s DEI facilitation lens expanded to include supports for language minority communities, immigrants and refugees.
Rhonda’s education consulting practice, The Ochosi Group, focused on school transformation and aligning adult culture with key beliefs for teaching and learning. Clients included education non-profits, public charter schools, independent schools that serve niche populations and Transcend Education, inspiring breakthrough innovative school redesign. In fall 2015, Rhonda launched the blog One Good Question, that features an interview series with education leaders around the world. The blog is answering Rhonda’s one good question about education investments and surfacing the good questions of others.
In 2007, she founded St. Louis Language Immersion Schools (SLLIS), a charter management organization designed to be Missouri’s first K-12 immersion and International Baccalaureate education continuum. SLLIS is an intentionally diverse school community and is the first public school in the US to offer this rigorous academic model to a majority minority student population and socio-economically diverse student population. Under Rhonda’s leadership, the the first three schools in the network became IB World Authorized Schools, and SLLIS achieved an AYP of 92%, equivalent to Accreditation with Distinction from the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. Rhonda served as President of SLLIS until June 2015.
Rhonda is a Pahara-Aspen Institute Fellow and a member of the Aspen Global Leaders Network. Rhonda is a 2014 recipient of the Eisenhower Fellowship for International Leadership. During her fellowship she studied whole system education reform and teacher education practices in Finland and New Zealand. Rhonda currently serves on the board of EdNavigator, and previously served on the board of PROMO, Missouri's statewide LGBT advocacy organization, Missouri Charter Public School Association, and Campus YMCA-YWCA of Washington University in St. Louis.
Rhonda is a native of Lafayette, Louisiana. She has taught French in public schools in New York City, Connecticut, California and St. Louis and has earned National Board Certification, the most prestigious teaching credential in the United States. Rhonda began her education reform career as a teenage staff member with the Breakthrough Collaborative in New Orleans, Kansas City and San Francisco.
Rhonda completed her undergraduate studies in French and Secondary Education at Washington University in St. Louis and a Master of Arts degree in French Studies from New York University’s Institute of French Studies. Growing up in Louisiana inspired Rhonda to research the francophone world and dedicate herself to exploring the connections between francophone regions. As a result, in addition to learning French since childhood, she has studied and conducted research in metropolitan France, Cameroon and Martinique.
Rhonda and her bilingual family live New Orleans. She studies, performs and occasionally teaches traditional dances from the African diaspora.
Memphis Music Initiative (Board)
Darren Isom is currently the Executive Director of the Memphis Music Initiative, an organization that uses music to empower youth in Memphis, TN. Prior to leading Memphis Music Initiative, Darren was a manager with the The Bridgespan Group where he was a strategic advisor to nonprofit and foundation leaders in youth and community development, foundation strategy and education policy.
Before Bridgespan Darren worked in direct services in New York, with funding for public art and performance initiatives throughout the Times Square District (Times Square Alliance) and youth services (Groundwork). Darren worked as the director of Global Logistics for CSI, an international trade finance group, where he managed strategy, organization, and change management projects in Belgium, Spain, France, The Netherlands, and Germany.
A seventh generation New Orleans native, Darren is a graduate of Howard University, Institut d'Études Politiques de Paris, and Columbia Business School’s Institute for Nonprofit Management. As a volunteer, Darren has been an activist around issues concerning disconnected youth and LGBT communities of color. He has served as an advisor to the leaders of several Bay Area and national foundations and currently serves on the board of Horizons Foundation.
Dr. Michael Goetz
Dr. Michael Goetz is as Executive Director of RSEC. His clients include the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Council for Better Education, Foundation for Child Development, National Academies, National Center for Innovation in Education, and several legislative and gubernatorial committees.
Goetz leads projects related to educational policy and school finance research. He has worked with academics and policymakers to analyze fiscal data and develop models for PK-12 school finance equity and adequacy in Kentucky (2013-14), North Dakota (2013-14, 2007-08), Maine (2012-13), Texas (2012), Arkansas (2005-06), Washington (2005-06), Wisconsin (2005-06), Wyoming (2005-06), and Arizona (2003-04). Goetz has also performed analyses of school-based resource allocation and restructuring in Alaska, Hawaii, Kentucky, Missouri, New Jersey, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
In addition to managing the day-to-day operations of RSEC, Goetz leads projects related to educational policy and school finance research. He has worked with academics and policymakers to analyze fiscal data and develop Evidence-Based and Professional Judgement models for PK-12 school finance adequacy in Kentucky, Maine, Texas, North Dakota, Arkansas, Washington, Wisconsin, Wyoming, and Arizona. Goetz has also performed analyses of school-based resource allocation and restructuring in Hawaii, Missouri, New Jersey, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.
Before focusing on school finance policy, Goetz was a Researcher with the Consortium for Policy Research in Education (CPRE) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Prior to joining CPRE, he managed K-8 educational centers for Score Learning, Inc. in New York and taught middle school math and science in Kansas City.
Dr. Goetz received a B.A. in Educational Studies from Washington University in St. Louis and a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership and Policy Analysis at University of Wisconsin—Madison. He received a Wisconsin-Spencer Doctoral Research Program Fellowship, a dissertation grant from the American Educational Research Association (AERA), and the American Education Finance Association (AEFA) New Scholar Award.
Vice President, Performance Management & Strategy, New Orleans Business Alliance (Board)
Alejandra has developed her work experience mostly in the private sector where her main focus has been to develop and operate inter-sectorial partnership programs combining non government organizations (NGO), government agencies, and private sector companies focused on solving community and economic development challenges in the United States, in Mexico and other Latin American countries.
Some of the projects she has worked on include:
- Microcredit programs through public private alliance
- Platform to facilitate the reconstruction of areas affected by natural disasters
- Programs targeting women to improve their quality of life and promote economic activity
- Programs focused on providing employment opportunities and training to the disabled
- Platform to improve the performance of small and medium enterprises in Latin America
- Alliances to promote higher education in Latin America
- Public private partnership to advance urban development and multimodal transportation in Mexico
In 2016 she began targeting her efforts to the +350,000 members of the Greater New Orleans Community whom she serves daily through the New Orleans Business Alliance as Vice President, Performance Management & Strategy. Alejandra remains connected to the Latin community via the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Louisiana and also by writing a monthly bilingual column with VIVA NOLA Magazine.
She has graduated with honors from ITESM as an Organizational Psychologist, and has postgraduate studies in Corporate Social Responsibility and a Master in Business Administration (MBA) from the A.B. Freeman School of Business at Tulane University. She was published in The Aspen Institute (www.caseplace.org) and RGSA - Journal of Social and Environmental Gestão in which best social responsibility practices are published. She is a member of strategic organizations such as The Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Louisiana (HCCL) and The Urban Land Institute (ULI). She serves as Chair of the Board of Directors for Fund 17, an organization helping micro-entrepreneurs in New Orleans and as Vice Chair of the Board of Directors for USGBC Louisiana.
In the last year she has also received 4 different awards that recognize her work including the IEDC Young Economic Development Professional of the Year, the Biz New Orleans Magazine New & Notables Recognition, the Best Millennial in Economic Developmentand the “Excelencia” Young Leader Award by the Hispanic Chamber of Commerce of Louisiana.
Maggie Pullen was a founding Board Member of Beloved, and leveraged her non-profit expertise to help design our capacity-building services. Maggie is a strategic advisor who brings a strong background in strategic planning, program assessment & evaluation, participatory and cross-cultural approaches. She seamlessly melds her international experience with her work supporting social entrepreneurs and non-profit organizations in the US.
Kira Hudson Banks, Mouse and Elephant
Andy Cheng, Apple
Matt Chingos, Urban Institute
Tanya Clay House, ClayHouse Consulting
Joiselle Cunningham, Harvard EDLD candidate
Aimee Eubanks Davis, Braven
Krupa Desai, The Broad Center
Lisa Dorner, University of Missouri
Kriste Dragon, Citizens of the World
Rachel D'Souza-Siebert, Gladiator Consulting
Elsa Duré, Coalition of Diverse Charters
Vanessa Foster-Cooksey, Wells Fargo
Antoinette Hayes-Triplett, Tampa Hillsborough Homeless Initiative
Christie Huck, City Garden Montessori Charter School
Roxana Maiorescu, Emerson College
Ian Rowe, Public Prep
Carmita Semaan, Surge Institute
Heather Schwartz, RAND Corporation
Derwin Sisnett, Seavest Investment Group
Phil Tegeler, PRRAC
Tom Vander Ark, Getting Smart
Kira Van Niel, Boeing
Mary Wells, Bellwether Education Group
Ellen Winn, School System Leaders Fellowship
Lauren Young, Today and Tomorrow Scholarship Fund