City Year names a new class of Executive Directors to lead across thirteen U.S. communities

Boston, Feb. 28, 2022 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- City Year, an education nonprofit that recruits young adults for a year of service in public schools, is excited to announce a new class of 13 executive directors who will lead our local markets across the United States. Over the past year, City Year has completed a wide search to find the most qualified, committed and diverse group of executives, selecting the strongest leaders from a variety of mission-driven and youth-focused organizations to serve as the top leadership of our U.S. sites.

“As City Year continues to strive to attract and cultivate leaders, staff and AmeriCorps members who reflect the rich perspectives of the students and communities we serve, we’re inspired by the talents, vision and passion of a new cohort of executive directors,” said City Year Chief Equity Officer Stephen Spaloss. “We’re proud that among this group are several City Year AmeriCorps member alums, a professional athlete, former principals in City Year partner schools, and seasoned public sector, nonprofit and educational professionals.”

This year, 3,000 City Year AmeriCorps members and staff are serving 226,000 students in 350 public schools across 29 U.S. cities, partnering with classroom teachers, supporting student academic, social and emotional growth, and helping to advance educational equity in systemically under-resourced communities.

“Our new executive directors are dedicated to the learning, development and well-being of both the students we serve in public schools as well as the extraordinary corps members who support them every day as student success coaches,” said City Year Chief Operating Officer John Tupponce. “These leaders are attuned to the specific strengths, needs and contexts of the local communities they serve and believe in the power of partnerships and collaboration to expand opportunity for all young people and make lasting, positive change.”

Meet City Year’s new cohort of executive directors:

John Albright, City Year Denver Executive Director, is a mission-driven leader with 20 years of experience in public education, most recently with Denver Public Schools, focusing on student and family engagement, relationship management, organizational and team strategy, partnership cultivation and development, fundraising, communications, policy, and board management and development.

Allishia Bauman, City Year Jacksonville Executive Director, most recently served as the Managing Director of People, Operations and Strategy at City Year Jacksonville and remains an engaged community steward, supporting organizations such as the Jacksonville Public Education Fund, TEDxJacksonville and the Women's Giving Alliance.

Kevin Bradshaw, City Year San José/Silicon Valley Executive Director, a lifelong team player, teacher and coach, began his career playing basketball for the NCAA and professionally in Israel as both player and coach before dedicating his career to the education sector. He most recently served as executive director at Bridge Academy International School in San Diego where he helped students develop their life and career goals. 

Sandra Cano, City Year Los Angeles Executive Director, previously served Los Angeles Unified School District as a field coordinator for Beyond the Bell, LAUSD’s before-school and afterschool program. Dr. Cano’s two decades in the field of education have allowed her to become intimately familiar with the communities served by City Year Los Angeles.

Jennifer Cobb, City Year Little Rock Executive Director, is an authentic, energetic, data-driven leader with more than 20 years of diverse experience in nonprofit communications, fundraising and marketing in organizations that advocate building capacity for the pediatric healthcare system as well as promoting educational equity in K-12 schools.

Tanika Epps (City Year Columbia ‘07), City Year Columbia Executive Director, who served as a City Year Columbia AmeriCorps member, returns to the organization after serving as the Midlands Regional Vice President for Communities In Schools of South Carolina, where she advocated for children and families in the Midlands, strengthening partnerships with school districts, state agencies and local municipalities during the pandemic.

Robyn Ford, City Year Memphis Executive Director, is the longest-serving staff member at City Year Memphis, previously working as operations manager, development manager, development director and interim executive director. She began her City Year career as an impact manager at City Year Columbia and holds a B.A. in English from Spelman College and a M.A. in Public Relations and Advertising from DePaul University.

Quamid Francis, City Year New York Executive Director, joins the organization with extensive public service experience and a deep understanding of how New York City's civic and business landscapes shape communities. Prior to his current role, Quamid served as Deputy Commissioner, Chief of Staff, and Chief Diversity Officer at the New York City Department of Veterans' Services (DVS), where he oversaw agencywide programs, operations, strategic partnerships and legislative affairs.

Stephanie Maney-Hartlaub, City Year Milwaukee Executive Director, is equipped with more than 20 years’ experience as an educational leader, teaching elementary and middle school students, serving as an assistant principal for 10 years, a principal for four years and the Director of School Turnaround for Milwaukee Public Schools. She holds a doctoral degree in educational leadership from Cardinal Stritch University and is committed to elevating the gifts of the students, AmeriCorps members and team with whom she serves.

Tarra Mitchell, City Year Seattle/King County Executive Director, has worked in public education in Washington State since 2009, including serving four years as a principal at a City Year partner school and most recently as the Director of Special Education for Seattle Public Schools. Her doctoral work at the University of Washington was designed to equip equity-focused leaders to transform and re-envision educational systems. 

Monica Roberts, City Year Greater Boston Executive Director, has spent 12 of her 20-year career in public urban education at Boston Public Schools (BPS) in various capacities—most recently as the Chief of Family and Community Advancement. Monica was born and raised in Boston, is a proud graduate of BPS, and serves on the board for the Boston Higher Education Resource Center and the Boston Education Fund.

Adero Robinson (City Year Columbus ‘96), City Year Columbus Executive Director, has over 25 years of nonprofit experience, which began as an AmeriCorps member in a Columbus City School fifth grade classroom. Adero is the recipient of Medical Mutual’s 2022 Pillar Award for Community Service, Executive Director of the Year as well as City Year’s Comcast Leadership Award. He has participated in local and national leadership programs including the African American Leadership Academy, Ray Miller Institute for Change and Leadership, and Bank of America Emerging Leaders. 

Jeff Shafer (City Year Chicago ’11, ‘12), City Year Kansas City Executive Director, grew up attending Kansas City Public Schools and is a graduate of Lincoln College Preparatory Academy. He spent 10 years in Chicago, receiving a degree in marketing communications from Columbia College Chicago and serving with City Year as an AmeriCorps member on the city’s South Side. For the last five years as City Year Kansas City’s development director, Jeff has been responsible for the cultivation and stewardship of donor relationships and has exceeded the organization’s local fundraising goals.

During their year of full-time service in public schools, City Year AmeriCorps members serve as student success coaches—near-peer tutors, mentors and role models who are powerfully positioned to support students’ holistic growth and help students to cultivate the skills, relationships and learning environments they need to succeed in school and in life. Nationally, schools with City Year are two-to-three times more likely to improve on math and English assessments than similar schools without City Year. Last year, 94% of partner principals agreed that City Year has supported their schools’ transitions between in person and distance or hybrid learning during COVID-19, and 95% of partner principals and partner teachers say City Year AmeriCorps members have supported the engagement and participation of students in school during the pandemic.


About City Year

City Year helps students and schools succeed, while preparing the next generation of civically engaged leaders who can work across lines of difference. Diverse teams of City Year AmeriCorps members provide holistic support to students, classrooms and the whole school. A 2020 study shows that the more time students spend with AmeriCorps members, the more they improve on social, emotional and academic skills— skills that help students thrive in school and contribute to their community.

A proud member of the AmeriCorps national service network, City Year is supported by AmeriCorps, local school districts and private philanthropy. City Year partners with public schools in 29 communities across the U.S. and through international affiliates in the U.K. and South Africa. Learn more at www.cityyear.orgCity Year’s Facebook page, on Twitter, and LinkedIn.


City Year's new class of Executive Directors