|Cynthia M. Gibson|
Kath Connolly is an educator interested in public engagement and creative practice in community-based settings, college campuses, and public schools. As the director of partnerships at The Learning Community a K-8 public school in Central Falls, RI, she manages data systems, external communications, and special projects to enhance the school and its companion consulting practice.
Before she joined The Learning Community in 2005, Kath worked for 10 years at the Howard R. Swearer Center for Public Service at Brown University, where she created Careers in the Common Good, a nationally recognized program that encourages young people to become community activists and pursue public interest careers. She was also involved in fellowship programs and projects related to public education, the arts, and advocacy.
She has been a designer at a children's museum, a public-policy researcher, the director of a grassroots school-reform network, and a consultant to community groups, schools, and colleges. She has appeared at conferences and workshops across the country.
She was a founding board member of Farm Fresh Rhode Island, BSR 88.1 FM, and New Urban Arts. She is the founder of a progressive greeting card company, Card Carrying Liberal, and has served on boards and as a volunteer for numerous non-profits and political campaigns.
Kath, a resident of Providence, RI, is a graduate of Brown University and a student of paper engineering, data visualization and craft with a political edge.
Ami is the founder and executive director of Idealist.org. Built in 1996 with $3,500, Idealist has become one of the most popular nonprofit resources on the web, with information provided by 80,000 organizations around the world and 100,000 visitors every day. Ami was born in Jerusalem, grew up in Peru and in Mexico, and lives in New York.
Bob is Chief Executive Officer of UAspire, a national leader in providing college affordability services to young people and families, with local operations in Massachusetts (Boston, Springfield, Lawrence and Fall River), Miami, FL, and the San Francisco Bay Area (San Francisco & Oakland) and training partnerships reaching more than 26 other states.
Under Bob's leadership, uAspire has been recognized for the important role it plays on issues of college access, success and affordability. Since 2010, uAspire received the Organization of Excellence Award by the National College Access Network, was named a Social Innovator by Root Cause, was recognized by Opportunity Knocks as one of nation's "Best Non-Profits to Work For" and the Boston Foundation for "exceptional non-profit leadership", and by Year Up as recipient of its Urban Empowerment Award. Personally, Bob's leadership and contributions to the community been recognized by the Boston Business Journal, the Harvard Club of Boston, Social Capital Inc., and Freedom House.
Prior to joining UAspire, he served as the Vice President of Business Development and Government Relations at Jumpstart for Young Children, a national nonprofit organization that engages college-aged young people in service.
As the first in his family to attend college, a product of the Somerville (MA) Public Schools, and a graduate of Harvard College, Bob knows the vital role that strong financial aid advice and minimizing debt plays in ensuring a strong economic future. He resides in the Dorchester neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts.
Cynthia M. Gibson, is founder and principal of Cynthesis Consulting, a firm celebrated for providing custom support to improve capacity and program effectiveness for leading national foundations and nonprofit organizations through public policy research and analysis, program development, strategic planning, survey design, evaluation, and marketing and communications.
Gibson is also a widely published author and active blogger on issues affecting the nonprofit/philanthropic sector. In 2007 for the Case Foundation, Gibson authored Citizens at the Center: A New Approach to Civic Engagement which served as the frame for a new "open source" approach to grantmaking that she helped to develop. Previously, she served as a program officer at Carnegie Corporation of New York in the area of Strengthening U.S. Democracy, developing and overseeing two subprograms in Strengthening the Nonprofit and Philanthropic Sector and Youth Civic Engagement. She authored two publications—From Inspiration to Participation: Strategies for Youth Civic Engagement and The Civic Mission of Schools—that became standards for the field, the basis of a national advocacy campaign, and catalysts for federal legislation for school-based (K-12) civic education. Recently, Gibson co-edited From Command to Community: A New Approach to Leadership Education in Colleges and Universities (Tufts U./New England Press).
Gibson has taught at the New School University's Milano Graduate School of Management/Urban Policy; serves as a senior fellow at the Philanthropic Initiative and Tufts University; and been a member of numerous advisory committees, selection panels and boards, including VolunteerMatch.org, Mobilize.org, Nonprofit Quarterly, Public Allies, Public Conversations Project, Idealist.org, and Whatgoesaround.org. Gibson has a B.A. in psychology from Pennsylvania State University, an M.S.W. from Catholic University of America; and a Ph.D. in social welfare policy and administration from Rutgers University.
Sandy Stonesifer is the founder of S-Squared Consulting, an organization development consulting firm. As a skilled organization development practitioner, facilitator, and coach, Sandy works with social change organizations and leaders to meet their goals and maximize their impact.
Before entering the American University Master of Science in Organization Development program, Sandy served as Executive Director of the external advisory board for the US Agency for International Development (USAID). Prior to that she worked in global development advocacy, most recently at the ONE Campaign.
She has significant experience in non-profit board strategy, strategic planning and leadership transitions for social change efforts. Sandy is a member of the OD Network and the International Society for Organization Development and Change. She graduated from Brown University with honors and was a fellow in Stanford University's Executive Program for Nonprofit Leaders.