Meet Our Team

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Christine Y. Mason, PhD

Founder and Executive Director

Chris is an educational psychologist and a nationally recognized expert in the area of educational reform, mindfulness, teacher mentoring, and special education. She has made more than 500 national, international, regional, and local presentations on topics ranging from inclusion and IDEA to student self-determination and integrating the arts.

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Orinthia Harris, PhD

Faculty

Orinthia is a dynamic educator with over 10 years of experience both inside and outside the classroom. She has a passion for making learning engaging, and has presented on how to effectively motivate and engage all students, nationally and internationally.

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Michele Rivers Murphy, EdD

Associate Director, Heart Centered Learning

Michele Rivers Murphy is a seasoned consultant, presenter, and educational leader. A change agent for over two decades, she has helped transform some of the highest-needs neighborhoods and districts by improving student engagement, school culture, and academic success.

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Kevin Simpson, MEd

Consultant

Kevin Simpson has 15 years in education with K-16 roles ranging from teacher, specialist, lead teacher, mentor, coordinator, adjunct professor, and consultant. He has taught a range of grade levels and content areas. The last ten years he has focused on mathematics.

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Dana Asby, MA, MEd

Director, Innovation and Research Support

After seven years as a classroom teacher, from preschool to junior high school in Missouri, Georgia, New York City, and Japan, Dana transitioned to a career in education reform and development.

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Suzan Mullane, MSEd

Research Associate and Trustee

Suzan (Sue) is an expert in early childhood trauma, STEM, the brain and project-based learning, gifted education, autism spectrum disorder, and special education. University of Alaska in Anchorage, and has experience as a School Counselor for the Anchorage School District.

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Kathleen Sciarappa, PhD

Leadership Associate and Trustee

Kathleen Sciarappa is an experienced elementary and middle school principal and has received numerous awards for her work. She was an urban educator in Ohio and now pursues her interest in working with aspiring, new, and practicing principals.

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Mary Woods, MA

Leadership Associate and Trustee

Mary Woods has served as a teacher, media specialist, curriculum consultant, assistant principal, and principal. She is collaborating with CEI to facilitate our leadership and Heart Centered Learning frameworks.

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Kaela Farrise, MA

Program Assistant

Kaela is a therapist and consultant on issues related to the empowerment of communities of color, the experiences of people of color in predominantly white spaces, and in perceptions and treatment of mental health and mental illness in marginalized communities.

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Ingrid Padgett

Director, Communications and Development

Ingrid is a nonprofit professional with expertise in fund development and communications. Throughout her career, she has worked with organizations to develop
the infrastructure to support programmatic goals and fundraising activities and strategically move beyond traditional fund development programs to more diverse revenue streams.

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Meghan Wenzel, MS

Consultant

Meghan is a researcher and writer with a background in developmental cognitive neuroscience and education, Meghan is very interested in early brain development and subsequent school performance and life opportunities.