Texas Conference Speakers 2018

Keynote

Representative Nicole Collier, Texas House of Representatives, District 95

NC_Headshot.jpg

Follow Representative Collier on Twitter @nicolecollier95

Nicole Collier is a respected attorney, small business owner, grandmother and mother of three who has spent her life working to obtain the American Dream. Nicole was raised in a family with vision and a dedication to service. Her grandfather, Walter B. Johnson, Sr., a World War II veterans, started his career as a hostler for a local railroad company, and later went on to work for the U.S. Bureau of Engraving and Printing as a janitor. After years of hard work and determination, Walter rose to become one of the first African-American plate printers at the Bureau, landing him on the front cover of Jet Magazine. 

Nicole’s father, Rolland Johnson, Sr., started working at the Bureau following a tour in the U.S. Navy. While attending Howard University in Washington, D. C., Rolland worked nights as an apprentice plate printer, and eventually retired lead foreman. Both Rolland and his father Walter were proud members of the plate printer’s union. Meanwhile, Nicole’s mother, Shirley Johnson, dedicated her life to serving children in many youth ministries and caring not only for her children and grandchildren but for many local neighborhood children. 

Nicole herself was born with the same vision and determination as her predecessors. As a single mother before finishing high school, both her faith and her family bolstered her to continue her education all the way through law school graduation. Nicole graduated from the University of Houston and married her soulmate Gary “Big C” Collier shortly thereafter. Gary and Nicole established their home in Fort Worth, Texas, and for the last sixteen years, Nicole has been a tireless legal advocate for individuals and families in the Texas court systems and has now taken her passion to the state capitol.

Nicole is the first African-American woman to represent House District 95 in Tarrant County. 
In the 84th Texas Legislature, Representative Collier served as Vice-Chair of the General Investigating and Ethics Committee and was a member of the Select Committee of Federal Environmental Regulation, Public Health, Business and Industry Committees. The Representative will be working on legislation this session to eliminate credit checks on certain employment applications, limit the collection of so-called “zombie debt”, expand paid sick leave, and ensure our children have clean drinking water at school.

Moderator

Alisha Laventure, C0-Anchor at WFFA News 8

alisha-laventure_1476203394083_6479824_ver1.0.pngFollow Alisha Laventure Collier on Twitter @AlishaLaventure

Alisha Laventure is the co-anchor of News 8 at 4pm and solo anchors News 8 Midday at 12pm. She joined WFAA in July 2016 as News 8 Daybreak's weekend morning anchor.

Alisha began her journalism career at CBS Broadcasting Inc. in Manhattan, where she worked as a junior production assistant in affiliate relations. Given her Haitian ethnicity and fluency in Haitian-Creole, she was able to help produce 60 Minutes', "The Lost Children of Haiti," following the 2010 earthquake. The piece won an Emmy for Best Report in a News Magazine.

From her home state of New York, Alisha's next stop was WMBF-TV News in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. There, she led the evening newscasts from the Florence bureau with live, late-breaking coverage across five counties in the Pee Dee region.

Alisha eventually returned to New York in 2011 as a general assignment multi-media journalist at News 12 The Bronx. Within a year, she was promoted to anchor/reporter for both News 12 The Bronx and News 12 Brooklyn. During that time, she won a NY Associated Press Award for her work on "Pieces of the Puzzle, ” a special on children with autism. In 2014, Alisha joined the network's flagship station, News 12 Long Island. While there, she served as weekend morning anchor, host of "Diverse Long Island," and led the 5pm and 10pm newscasts as a general assignment reporter. She was recognized by the Press Club of Long Island in 2016 for her breaking news coverage, and an original series she created called "Exotic Eats."

Alisha is a graduate of Washington and Lee University, where she double-majored in Broadcast Journalism and Romance Languages. She speaks French, Spanish and Haitian-Creole. While in college, she traveled the world, studying abroad in Senegal, China, Peru, France, Colombia and Ghana. While on campus, she reported for and anchored the journalism department's student-produced newscast, The Rockbridge Report.

In her spare time, Alisha enjoys reading New York Times bestsellers, playing marathon games of Scrabble and Monopoly and trying new recipes. (She makes a mean tiramisu!) She also enjoys volunteering with organizations that promote college access and preparedness.

Speakers 

Sara_Bagheri.jpgSara Bagheri, Mayor Pro Tem, City of Denton

Sara Bagheri is one of the youngest City Council Members elected to office in the City of Denton and the first woman of Persian heritage to be elected to office in Denton County. She is a practicing lawyer and has dedicated her public service life to promoting, ethics, transparency and accountability in the public sector.

Nishima Chudasama, Director of Programs, Nest Foundation

Nishima Chudasama is the Director of Programs at the Nest Foundation and primarily focuses on developing sexual violence prevention education programs. Previously, Nishima was the Campaign Producer and Production Manager of the Girl Rising campaign and Associate Producer of the Girl Rising film. Before moving into social impact films, Nishima worked in higher education and development and has served a consultant for UNICEF Pakistan. Nishima holds a master’s degree with distinction in Art History and Archaeology from SOAS - University of London and graduated summa cum laude from Emory University with degrees in English and Women’s Studies.

Feyten-0020-6x8.jpgCarine M. Feyten, Chancellor and President, Texas Woman's University

Carine M. Feyten is chancellor and president of Texas Woman’s University. Chancellor Feyten started the hashtag #campuswithaheart to celebrate the long appreciated but under-recognized Texas Woman’s culture of ‘a campus that cares.’ She insists on excellence in the quality of academics, facilities, services, and learning outcomes to maximize opportunities for students. She holds a Ph.D. in interdisciplinary education focused on second language acquisition and instructional technology from the University of South Florida, an M.A. in English, Dutch and Education and a B.A. in Germanic Philology, both from the Université Catholique de Louvain in Belgium. A native of Belgium, Chancellor Feyten is fluent in five languages.

Patty Garcia, Vice President of Programs and Operations, Latino Center for Leadership Development

Dr. Patty Garcia serves as the Vice President of Programs and Operations for the Latino Center for Leadership Development (LCLD), where she leads the implementation of the organization’s strategic plan.

Previously, she served as the Deputy Director of Constituency Services for Education with NALEO Educational Fund, where she managed and carried-out national, state, and local relations and efforts with elected and appointed officials, philanthropic partners, and stakeholders. She has vast experience creating professional development opportunities for Latino/a elected and appointed officials across jurisdictional and partisan lines. Her expertise ranges around core governance skills, education policies from birth to postsecondary education and the workforce, civic engagement, as well as other key issues impacting the success and development of the Latino community. Prior to that, she was NALEO Educational Fund’s Data and Campaigns Manager, charged with implementing the organization’s data-driven civic engagement projects—primarily its GOTV voter education and participation efforts.

Dr. Garcia’s experience spans from direct student mobilization, community outreach, programmatic and policy assessment and evaluation. Dr. Garcia earned her doctoral degree in Educational Policy Studies with a concentration in Latina/o Studies from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2011.

Amber.jpgAmber Givens-Davis, State District Judge, 282nd Judicial District Court

Judge Amber Givens-Davis currently presides over the 282nd Judicial District Court in Dallas County, Texas. Before taking office on January 1, 2015, Judge Givens-Davis served as an Assistant District Attorney in New York and Texas for eight years. She received her Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science from Tuskegee University and earned a Juris Doctor Degree from the Syracuse University College of Law.

Judge Givens-Davis believes that everyone is entitled to a just and fair system; evidenced by the two programs she has implemented since taking the bench. Both the Word of Mouth series and Empowerment Program have been featured on KDFW Fox4. The Word of Mouth series gives the public access to the inner workings of the criminal justice system and demystifies the system. The Empowerment Program is designed to equip probationers with the necessary support and life skills to successfully complete probation. She also works in conjunction with three of her Judicial Colleagues on the Pipeline to Possibilities Program.

Judge Givens-Davis' public service extends beyond the courtroom as she serves on the Advisory Board of the Oak Cliff Boys and Girls Club, the Dallas County Juvenile Board, the Advisory Board of the Dallas Women Lawyers Association, Miles of Freedom, Co-chair of the Junior League of Dallas Diversity Committee, and Ambassador to the Dallas Bar Association amongst other organizations. Judge Givens-Davis served on the 2016 Dallas Bar Association’s Diversity Task Force and has been selected to serve as a panelist for several Dallas Bar Association programs. In 2015, she was elected as a Texas Bar Foundation Fellow. Each year the top 1/3 of 1% of Texas attorneys are invited to become Fellows. This is the highest honor that can be bestowed upon a member of the State Bar of Texas. In 2017, Judge Givens-Davis was awarded the Unity Award by the City of Dallas. In September 2017, she was selected to be a Fellow in the Racial Equity Action Leadership Program for Young Leaders (REAL City). Judge Givens-Davis is a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. [Alpha Xi Omega Chapter]. She is married to Attorney Corwyn M. Davis and they are members of Concord Church.

Rachel Herrera, Founder, Vice President, Women in Politics- IGNITE TCU

Rachel is currently attending Texas Christian University, pursuing a degree in Communication Studies. She just added a pre-health track to her degree with the hope to work in medicine one day. She founded TCU's chapter of IGNITE in 2016 because there were no non-partisan groups on campus, and nothing tailored specifically to women.

Shari_Hicks_Photo.jpgShari Hicks, Assistant Vice President, Corporate Banking, Frost Bank

Shari Hicks is the Assistant Vice President, Corporate Banking for Frost Bank. She is an accomplished executive that seamlessly blends her diverse background in commercial lending, marketing, public affairs and strategy development to yield maximum results for her stakeholders and the teams that she leads.

Shari has held leadership positions at Nordstrom and The Dallas Morning News and served as a political speechwriter for the Mayor of Dallas. She has an extensive track record of award-winning performances in crisis communication, market analysis and business consulting. Her creativity and commitment to world-class excellence make her a highly sought-after thought leader.

Her civic commitment is shown through her volunteer service and board appointments with various nonprofit organizations throughout the DFW area.

Shari holds an Executive Masters of Business Administration Degree from the University of Texas at Dallas and a Bachelors Degree from the University of North Texas.

Shari and her husband live in Dallas with their three children.

SANDRA_JACKSON_PROFILE_PICTURE.jpgSandra Jackson, Attorney, Jackson Law Office

Sandra Jackson has practiced family law for over thirty years. She is an advocate for the care of children who are impacted by the legal system. She served as Assistant District Attorney in Juvenile Division. She is currently campaigning to be the next Judge of the 302nd Family District Court. 

Stephanie Krauth, Associate Vice President for Student Engagement, Texas Woman's University

Dr. Stephanie Krauth has over 25 years of experience in higher education administration in public and private universities across the nation. As AVP for Student Engagement at Texas Woman's University, she chairs the campus Sexual Misconduct Task Force.

Brooke_Lopez.pngBrooke Lopez, Texas Civic Ambassador, The Annette Straus Institute for Civic Life

Brooke Lopez, a recent graduate from the University of Texas at Dallas with a Bachelors of Science in Public Affairs and minor in Geography, first sparked a career in local politics and government by working with her local congresswoman to propose a state bill at age 15, founding the 501c(3) non-profit “Student of Change” at age 16, running for Wylie City Council at age 18, and holding appointed office for her hometown on the Wylie Public Arts Advisory Board by the age of 19 as the youngest member. Lopez recently founded the Lone Star Parity Project, a nonpartisan online publication dedicated to sharing research and stories from women in politics with hopes of bringing parity to the Texas political realm. She plans to attend law school in Fall 2018.

Rhonda Love, Professor, and Secretary of DAG, Denton Drilling Awareness Group

Dr. Rhonda Love is a retired Professor of Public Health who has worked on community-based health problems for decades. She is a founding member of the Denton Drilling Awareness Group which led Denton's anti-fracking campaign and continues to work on health problems related to activities of the oil and gas industry.

Audrey_Lundahl.jpgAudrey Lundahl, Visiting Assistant Professor, Texas Woman's University

Audrey Lundahl, PhD, RYT-200, is a visiting assistant professor in Women's Studies at TWU, where she teaches classes in spirituality and wellness. She is also a registered yoga teacher with special training in trauma-informed yoga. She teaches yoga and wellness classes at Authentic Yoga Life Studio and for various organizations.

Adrianna_Maberry.JPGAdrianna Maberry, Texas Civic Ambassador, The Annette Straus Institute for Civic Life

Adrianna's interests lie in breaking down barriers for those who are unable to participate easily in our entrenched political system. She is continually looking for ways to incorporate her two passions, data and politics and has explored this intersection through her master’s program at the University of Texas at Dallas. Ms. Maberry currently serves as a Texas Civic Ambassador for the 2017-2018 school year and will be an Archer Graduate Fellow for the 2018 summer term. She also works as a public servant for the City of Dallas and volunteers for organizations that align with her values, including women’s issues and voter engagement.

dorothymartinez.jpgDorothy Martinez, Trustee, Place 7, Vice President, Denton Independent School District

Dorothy Martinez, a retired educator and Denton business owner, is a longtime community volunteer with a deep commitment to Denton ISD and its students. She is a strong believer that through education a person can receive the vital skills and tools that are important to being successful and prosperous.

A veteran educator, Mrs. Martinez spent 17 years as a classroom teacher in Denton ISD. She also was the first ESL Coordinator for the district while she also taught second grade. Additionally, Mrs. Martinez worked for the Dallas school district, where she was an assistant principal and dean of instruction. She also served as secretary at the University of North Texas.

Mrs. Martinez is the owner of American Floor Cleaning, a local business that her family has owned for more than 35 years. Mrs. Martinez received her bachelor’s degree, master’s degree, ESL certification and administrator’s accreditation from Texas Woman’s University. Her children include Christopher Martinez, Anita Martinez-Strickland and Charles Martinez – all products of Denton ISD.

Sasha_Morena.jpgSasha Monik Moreno, Immigration Attorney and Candidate for Dallas County Justice of the Peace 4-2, Lira Bravo Law

Sasha Monik Moreno is an immigration attorney with Lira Bravo Law where her practice focuses on family-based immigration and removal defense. She previously practiced law in the areas of foreclosure defense and corporate transactions. 

Sasha is committed to serving her community and is actively involved in various organizations and professional associations. She currently serves as the Dallas Chapter President of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute Alumni Association and was recently selected to the Board of Directors for the Dance Council of North Texas. She also recently completed the 2016-2017 fellowship of the Latino Center for Leadership Development Academy as well as the 2016-2017 Dallas Mayor’s Star Council. She is also a member of the following professional organizations: Dallas Bar Association, American Immigration Lawyers Association, Mexican American Bar Association and Dallas Hispanic Bar Association. After serving her community for many years, Sasha has decided to run for public office and is currently a candidate for Dallas County Justice of the Peace Precinct 4, Place 2.

Sasha was born and raised in El Paso, Texas. She received her Bachelors of Art in Journalism and Political Science from the University of North Texas in Denton, Texas. She is also a graduate of Pepperdine School of Law where she earned her Juris Doctor and Masters in Dispute Resolution.

Nikiya_Natale.jpgNikiya Natale, Legal Director, The Council on American-Islamic Relations, Dallas-Fort Worth

Nikiya Natale is the Legal Director for the Dallas-Fort Worth chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations (CAIR-DFW), where she fights to defend the civil rights of the Muslim community in North Texas. Prior to joining CAIR-DFW, she managed the immigration legal program at Refugee Services of Texas, a local refugee resettlement agency. Nikiya earned her J.D. from the University of Texas School of Law and has a bachelor’s degree in Anthropology and Economics from the University of Pittsburgh. Nikiya’s work focuses on the intersection of immigration and national security and civil rights issues involving federal law enforcement agencies.

Geovanie_Ordonez.jpgGeovanie Ordonez, San Antonio Fellow, IGNITE

Geovanie (Geo) Ordonez currently serves as IGNITE National Fellow in San Antonio. She is a recent graduate of St. Mary's University where she earned her Bachelor's in Political Science and International Relations. Throughout her college career, Geo was deeply involved in the Student Government Association (SGA) where she served as president for the 2016-2017 school year. Recently, Geo was accepted to the San Antonio Hispanic Chamber Latina Leadership Institute where she will further her understanding of the inner workings of local government.

As a Latina writer and organizer, she is committed to empowering women in hopes of motivating female minorities to declare their political ambition and run for office on campuses and in communities across San Antonio.

PhillipsCunningham_Headshot.jpgDanielle Phillips-Cunningham, Associate Professor, Multicultural Women's and Gender Studies, Texas Woman's University

Dr. Danielle Phillips-Cunningham is an associate professor of Multicultural Women’s and Gender Studies at Texas Woman’s University. She teaches courses on feminist and womanist theories, US women of colors, black feminist thought, the politics of motherhood, and women’s labors and migrations. Her research examines the history of race and women’s migrations and labors. More specifically, her current book project, Putting their hands on race: Irish immigrant and Southern African American Domestic Workers in the US Northeast is a comparative history of Irish immigrant and southern African American women who labored as domestic workers after having migrated to northeastern cities in the United States during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

Mia_Price.jpgMia Price, President, Denton ISD Board of Trustees

Mia Price was born in Baton Rouge, Louisiana and received her bachelor’s degree in Medical Technology from Louisiana State University. She has lived in Denton ISD for more than 30 years. Mia is a homemaker who also works part-time as financial manager for her husband’s medical office. Mia's medical background and experience brings a multi-layered perspective to the board – as parent and advocate. She has four children, all Denton High School graduates.

Mia is currently serving as board president and, since her initial election in 2001, she has also served as vice president and secretary. She served as treasurer of the North Texas Area Association of School Boards for two years and continue to serve on the NTAASB board and I am currently serving as a member of the TASB Legislative Advisory Council.

Mia is actively involved in addressing the government in regard to issues that concern Denton ISD. Through her position on the TexPac Board, she meets regularly with state legislators on medical issues and other matters affecting Denton ISD students and staff. She is also a graduate of Leadership TASB with her project team specializing in legislation. She continues to advocate and encourage state lawmakers to pass bills supported by the Denton ISD community. She has achieved Master Trustee status from TASB.

Kimberly_Powell.jpgKimberly Powell, Support Escalation Engineer, Microsoft

Kimberly Powell has worked for Microsoft for 20 years. She currently works on the SharePoint Online/OneDrive for Business team. As a Support Escalation Engineer, no two days are the same. She engages in solving challenging and complex problems, as well as collaborate and share learnings with team members and external customers writing blogs.

At Microsoft, Kimberly is a Site Culture Ambassador, she serves as the DigiGirlz Camp Coordinator, is a member of BAM (Blacks at Microsoft) and WAM (Woman at Microsoft). She also serves as the Marketing and Communication lead for STEAM Achievers Hackathon.

Kimberly is based in Rowlett, TX and has been married nearly 25 years. She has a 19-year old son and a 17-year old daughter. She enjoys spending time with family, cooking and volunteering.

Loretta_Powers.jpegLoretta Powers, Attorney and Legal Analyst, Law Offices of Tim Powers

Loretta Powers is a criminal defense attorney and legal analyst for various news outlets.

Pryor.bw.pngWill Pryor, Mediation & Arbitration

Will Pryor is married to Ellen Smith Pryor, Associate Dean for Academic Affairs of the UNT Dallas College of Law. Will and Ellen are the proud parents of Lindsey, currently clerking for a Justice on the Fifth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, and Emily, a graduate of Dickinson Collegein Carlisle, Pennsylvania, and working on the American Bar Association’s Death Penalty Representation Project. Will was born in Arkansas, grew up in Dallas, and attended public schools in Dallas and Richmond, Virginia, before his opportunity to serve during his final two years of high school as a Congressional Page in the United States House of Representatives.

During Will’s senior year, at the height of the “Watergate era”, he served as the Speaker’s Page, the personal page to the Speaker of the House of Representatives (the Honorable Carl Albert, Dem.-Oklahoma). As an undergraduate at Yale University , Will was both the Chairman of the student government organization, the Yale College Council, and Captain of the varsity baseball team.

Will was a co-founder, along with the late, great, Honorable Merrill Hartman, of the South Dallas Legal Clinic, the precursor of the neighborhood legal clinics in Dallas and the most successful pro bono project in the United States. Will was twice a recipient of the “Pro Bono Award of the Year” from the Dallas Bar Association and North Texas Legal Services.

In 2006 Will was the Democratic Party nominee for the United States House of Representatives (32nd – Texas).  He lost!

Will is an elder at the First Presbyterian Church of Dallas, a volunteer “Big” with Big Brothers & Big Sisters, and serves on the North Texas Board of BBBS and the Board of Ignite!, a non-profit, non-partisan organization which encourages young women to engage in politics and pursue elective office.  Will is currently working on a book about door-to-door campaigning.

Candice_Quarles.jpgCandice Quarles, Councilwoman City of Desoto

Candice Quarles was elected to the DeSoto City Council in May 2016. Prior to being elected, she served as a member of the City of Desoto’s Zoning Board of Adjustment. One of the guiding reasons that compelled Candice to run for City Council was to ensure that the next generation continued to have a real voice in helping to shape the future of the city.

Candice, a native of St. Louis, MO, received her Bachelor’s degree in Personnel Psychology from Missouri Western State University, and thereafter completed a Master’s Degree in Managerial Leadership with an emphasis in Human Resource (HR) Management from Webster University.

Candice’s professional career spans over a decade in Human Resources in the private and public sector with distinguished consulting firm Deloitte coupled with experience in municipal government at the City of Grand Prairie, TX. She is currently the Director of Talent Management for a technology start-up company based in Dallas.

In addition, her industry certifications are as follows: Professional in Human Resources (PHR), Global Professional in Human Resources (GPHR) and Senior Human Resources Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP).

Outside of work Candice is involved in a variety of community organizations such as the Alliance for Greater Works (Board of Trustees), Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., National Urban League, and Golden Circle DFW (Board Chair).  She currently serves as Secretary for League of Women Voters - Dallas Chapter and is a member of Friendship West Baptist Church.

Angelica_Ramirez.JPGAngelica Ramirez, Program Facilitator & College Chapter Leader, IGNITE

Angelica is a student at The University of Houston majoring in Political Science with a minor in Law, Values, & Policy. She was first introduced to Texas politics as a volunteer on various campaigns. She first worked on the Wendy Davis campaign as a junior in high school, and the rest was history. Since then, she's interned with State Senator Sylvia R. Garcia, started a chapter of IGNITE National at The University of Houston, and serves as high school Program Facilitator for the organization. She will be interning with the Harris County District Attorney's office in the spring semester, and taking the LSAT in February. She wants to study and pursue a career in immigration or corporate law, and aspires to one day hold public office in Texas.

Madalyn_Shircliff.pngMadalyn Shircliff, President, IGNITE Chapter at TCU

Madalyn Shircliff is the president of the IGNITE Chapter at TCU and is an IGNITE facilitator at the Young Women's Leadership Academy of Fort Worth. She is a junior studying political science and journalism.

Libby Spears, Executive Director, Nest Foundation

Libby is a filmmaker who uses art as a vehicle to bridge gaps and provide access to places and people that would otherwise not converge or be seen. Her film, PLAYGROUND (produced by George Clooney and Abigail Disney), illuminates the underground epidemic of children forced into the sex trade in the US. In 2013, Libby was invited to direct a short film for Gucci’s high-profile concert event, CHIME FOR CHANGE. The film, JESSICA’S STORY, celebrates a survivor of sex trafficking and was part of an effort to raise awareness and funds in support of women and girls around the world.

Arisha_Smith.jpgArisha Smith, CEO, Managing Partner, Idyllic Interactive

Arisha Smith is an expert marketer that has designed growth strategies for businesses leveraging digital, social and mobile platforms for over 15 years. As CEO and Managing Partner of Idyllic Interactive, Arisha leads the agency’s business with large brands, niche agencies and startups; and charts the journey towards demonstrating results. On the other end of the spectrum, she also advises on topics such as yield management, customer experience and sales strategy to large-scale digital publishers. In the tech startup space, Arisha is a known innovator that, leverages Idyllic Interactive’s proprietary formula for growth, to help startup businesses accelerate and operate lean and efficient marketing strategies. Arisha also works with social media influencers, municipalities, political candidates and nonprofits, coaching them on how to leverage data, and their audience, to grow their platforms and raise funds. Arisha donates her time and resources to support women and minorities running for public office find cost-effective solutions to complex challenges they face in the digital and mobile space.

Jamila_thomas.jpgJamila Thomas, Strategic Initiatives / External Relations, Dallas ISD

Jamila Thomas is the Founder of WOMEN DIVINE, NFP. This organization focuses on the educate, inspire and empower young women in all facets of life; specifically working with incarcerated youth. She is also a coordinator for Dallas ISD strategic initiatives and external relations team. Jamila's commitment to serving the community in various organizations is expressed in her appointment as a Board Member of the Friends of the Dallas Public Library in 2016, and a member of the 2015 Leadership Dallas ISD class. In addition, she was recently named a 2017 Fellow for the Boone Family Foundation Op-Ed project and a 2017 Fellow of the SMU Lyle School of Engineering Hunt Institute Fellow. As a result of her commitment to her community, she won the 2015 WOMAN of the YEAR award from the South Central Dallas Business and Professional Women’s Club.

Dominique_Torres.JPGDominique Torres, Board of Directors, Dallas Area Rapid Transit

Dominique Torres is a native of Dallas, Texas. She is a product of DISD schools, graduated Skyline High School in 2005, a graduate of the University of North Texas with a Bachelors of Arts in Political Science and a J.D. from Texas A&M School of Law. Ms. Torres currently operates her own law firm, The Torres Law Office, P.C. focusing on personal injury and immigration. She is the youngest member of the Dallas Area Rapid Transit Board of Director and is focused on progressive transportation policy.

whitney-warren.jpgWhitney Warren, NextGen Votes Chairman, North Dallas Texas Democratic Women

A Texas native, Whitney attended undergrad at Boston University for Hospitality Administration. In a swift change of plans, Whitney decided to pursue law and returned to Dallas for law school at SMU. She now works as a civil litigator for Deans & Lyons, LLP and is involved in the local legal community. After 2016, Whitney also decided to stop just talking politics and do something, specifically to get out the young vote by grassroots, local efforts in the DFW area.

Nancy_Yingling_city_photo.jpgNancy Yingling, Mayor Pro Tem, City of Coppell

Council Member Nancy Yingling currently serves on the National League of Cities Community and Economic Development Committee, North Central Texas Council of Government's Emergency Preparedness Planning Council, as well as the city's liaison to North Central Texas Council of Governments. She is a graduate of North Texas Commissions Leadership North Texas Class 7 and served on the selection committee for Class 8. 

As a long time community volunteer she participated in the building of the original Kid Country Playground, served as the city's Red Cross Representative, CERT team member, honored as Civilian of the Year from the Coppell Fire Department, received proclamation from Mayor for organizing 9/11 fundraiser, participated on numerous boards, and served on the City Manager's Advisory Committee.

Councilmember Yingling is a Consultant in small business marketing. Prior to that she worked with ClubCorp as a Director of Sales, as well as 21 years with Delta Air Lines, Inc. where she worked as an Operations Specialist. 

Nancy holds a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications from Eastern Illinois University. She and her husband Keith moved to Coppell in 1990 and have two adult children. The Yingling family attends Irving Bible Church.

Tina_Yoo_Clinton.jpgJudge Tina Yoo Clinton, Presiding Judge of Criminal Court 8, Dallas

Judge Tina Yoo Clinton is the presiding Judge of Criminal Court 8, elected in November 2010. She is a former Municipal Judge in  Hutchins, from 2007 to 2010. She is a former Criminal Defense Attorney from  2006- to 2010. Former Associate Municipal Judge, City of Dallas, 2006-2007. Former Attorney Advisor for Small Business Administration, 2006. Former Prosecutor, Dallas County D.A.’s Office, 1995-2006. Law Degree from SMU School of Law, 1995.

More speakers to be announced soon!