About

Staff

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STRATEGY OFFICER

Chad Ahren, Ph.D.

Chad Ahren is a strategy officer at Lumina Foundation where he contributes to work focused on building and sustaining learning infrastructure for learning pathways that increase the attainment of high quality postsecondary credentials. Lumina’s work in this area includes competency-based education, learning frameworks, assessment, credential recognition and learner records, as well as quality assurance.

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ADMINISTRATIVE ASSOCIATE

Raymond AlQaisi

Raymond supports the Foundation’s efforts to reach Goal 2025 by assisting in the advancement of federal policy to increase attainment and in the development of postsecondary finance models. Prior to joining Lumina, he served the Office of Student Financial Assistance in City University of New York’s Central Administration.

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INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY DIRECTOR

Indira Anand

With over 30 years of experience in the IT profession, Indira Anand currently is the director of information technology at Lumina Foundation in Indianapolis where she is responsible for strategic and tactical aspects of technology acquisition. She has been instrumental in developing and embedding the vision of becoming a learning organization, a collaborative environment, practices to improve grants processing, and a range of technologies and tools to help Lumina evolve its grants, contacts management, evaluation functions and collaboration within and external to the foundation. Recent initiatives include the development of a digital enterprise and cloud and mobile technologies at Lumina.

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DIRECTOR OF MEDIA RELATIONS

Lucia Anderson Weathers

Lucia Anderson Weathers is director of media relations for Lumina Foundation. Weathers deals with all aspects of communication, including national and local media, social media, electronic communication, publications, as well as internal communications for the Foundation. She is a liaison with the Office of the President and Lumina’s Convenings team. Anderson Weathers co-manages many of the Foundation’s strategic media partners, including: Hechinger Institute, Education Writer’s Association, American Public Media and The Washington Monthly.

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ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT

Apra Arnold

Apra Arnold is an administrative assistant at Lumina Foundation where she provides general and specialized administrative support to the accounting team. Arnold is as an internal and external communication liaison and reinforces the Foundation’s strategic and operational priorities by actively seeking opportunities to streamline office procedures, processes and systems and leverage administrative resources in the interest of enhanced operational effectiveness and efficiency.

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GRANTS MANAGEMENT OFFICER

Candace Brandt

Candace Brandt is the grants management officer for Lumina Foundation and supports the grant and contract process for the program staff. Candace joined Lumina in 2002 after working at Eli Lilly in the scientific library and the distance learning department. When she is not in the office Candace enjoys country life and spending time with family.

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CONVENING ASSOCIATE

Maria Carbenia

Maria is Lumina's convening associate and is responsible for overseeing Lumina's convening efforts. Convenings bring together a wide variety of audiences to increase awareness of Goal 2025 and to create and inspire action to move the nation towards the Goal 2025.

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HR & FACILITIES ASSOCIATE

Micky Clymore

Micky serves as the human resources and facilities associate assisting in the administration of assigned benefit programs, maintenance of personnel data files and staffing activities. She also manages a number of facility related functions for the Foundation.

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INVESTMENT OFFICER

Cody Coppotelli

Cody Coppotelli serves as Investment Officer for the Lumina Foundation. In this capacity, he helps to invest and monitor the Foundation’s $1 billion endowment portfolio across a variety of investment strategies and asset classes. Prior to joining the Foundation in 2011, Mr. Coppotelli worked as a portfolio analyst at an investment management firm in Indianapolis, where he focused on building portfolios for high net worth individuals and Indianapolis-area foundations and endowments.

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STRATEGY DIRECTOR

Kevin Corcoran

Kevin Corcoran leads Lumina Foundation's strategic communications team. Prior to assuming this role in late 2016, he spent eight years directing design and policy work that promoted development of new higher education business and finance models aimed at helping the United States achieve a goal of 60 percent of working-age Americans with high-quality degrees, certificates, or other postsecondary credentials by 2025. His areas of expertise include competency-based education and outcomes-based funding. He also manages a portfolio of grants related to Lumina's work with nonprofit and public media partners.

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STRATEGY OFFICER

David A. Croom

David A. Croom is a strategy officer in Lumina Foundation's Washington, D.C. office where he focuses on the Foundation's work to advance federal policy and to develop models of postsecondary finance, both toward the goal of increased attainment of high-quality credentials.

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SENIOR ACCOUNTING OFFICER

Monique Crowell

As senior accounting officer, Monique oversees the data entry, reconciliation, and maintenance of all financial activity at the Foundation. From the general ledger to the annual audit, she ensures the resources are available for staff and grantees to do their work as we get closer to reaching Goal 2025.

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COMMUNICATIONS OFFICER

Kirsten Cuniffe

Kirsten Cuniffe is part of Lumina Foundation’s strategic communications team. As part of that team, she engages in an integrated approach to developing, deploying, and evaluating content that mobilizes stakeholders around work to help the United States achieve a goal of 60 percent of working-age Americans with high-quality degrees, certificates, or other postsecondary credentials by 2025. Prior to joining Lumina in 2010, Cuniffe worked at Indianapolis NPR/PBS affiliate WFYI, were she handled fundraising communications and donor engagement. Cuniffe received a bachelor of arts in journalism from the Ball State University School of Journalism in 2006.

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EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT & BOARD RELATIONS OFFICER

Lori B. Drzal

Lori B. Drzal is the executive assistant and board relations officer in the Office of the President at Lumina Foundation, the nation’s largest private foundation committed solely to enrolling and graduating more students from college. She provides administrative support to the President/CEO, Chief of Staff and the Board of Directors in operating the Foundation’s $1.3 billion endowment.

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ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT

Lisa Dunham

Lisa Dunham supports the vice president for strategy development and employees of this department. Lisa loves time with family and spends as much time boating as possible.

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DIRECTOR OF STRATEGIC IMPACT INVESTMENTS & SOCIAL INNOVATION

John Duong

John Duong is the Foundation's director of strategic impact investments and social innovation. John sources, structures, underwrites and negotiates social investments to support Lumina’s strategic priorities.

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STRATEGY OFFICER

Frank Swanzy Essien Jr.

Frank Swanzy Essien Jr. serves as strategy officer. He helps Lumina Foundation in its efforts to achieve Goal 2025 by working to build sustainable learning infrastructure to create flexible learning pathways that increase the attainment of high quality postsecondary credentials.

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STRATEGY DIRECTOR

Amber Garrison Duncan, Ph.D.

Amber Garrison Duncan is a strategy director at Lumina Foundation where she leads work focused on building and sustaining learning infrastructure for learning pathways that increase the attainment of high quality postsecondary credentials.

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STRATEGY DIRECTOR

Haley Glover

Haley leads Lumina's mobilization strategies, focusing on communities and institutions of higher education, and on work to define and expand student pathways to success.

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DIRECTOR

Tina Gridiron

Tina Gridiron helps communities, colleges, universities and other postsecondary providers to adopt effective policies, programs and practices designed to increase attainment and close achievement gaps for first generation students, low-income students, adult students and students of color.

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CONVENING ASSISTANT

Rachel Gurley

Convening Assistant Rachel Gurley creates a welcoming and hospitable environment for meetings and convenings to enable collaboration between Lumina staff and partners.

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ACCOUNTING OFFICER

Beverly W. Hudson

Beverly is responsible for the completion of financial closing procedures. This includes overseeing accounts payable, personnel expenses, the financial reporting process and the implementation and maintenance of accounting controls. These processes are essential to Lumina in maintaining accurate financial records. She is also responsible for administering payroll, in addition to the reporting/auditing of tax payments through electronic capabilities.

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DIGITAL CONTENT PRODUCER

Matthew Jenkins

Matthew creates online content highlighting the work of the Foundation and its partners with a focus on illustrating the reality facing today's students and clarifying policy imperatives for a broad general audience with the goal of promoting a national sense of urgency for increasing postsecondary attainment.

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STRATEGY DIRECTOR

Scott Jenkins

Scott Jenkins serves as strategy director for Lumina Foundation. In that role, he leads development and advancement of the Foundation’s State Policy Agenda. Scott has a broad and extensive background in institutional, state, and federal policy development and execution.

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DIRECTOR OF IMPACT & RESEARCH

Susan D. Johnson, Ph.D.

Susan D. Johnson, Ph.D., is director of impact and research where she guides data-informed decisions in Lumina's efforts to achieve Goal 2025.

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SENIOR STRATEGY OFFICER

Jeanna Keller Berdel

Jeanna Keller Berdel is a Senior Strategy Officer for Lumina Foundation. She joined the newly formed Foundation in 2002, working primarily on college access and success issues for underserved populations. Her current work focuses on strategies for sixty percent of the population to attain a postsecondary education by the year 2025 through regional/ metro networks, community organizations and higher education institutions. Her other major responsibilities include supporting Lumina’s Mobilizing Higher Education strategy.

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FACILITIES AND FRONT DESK ASSISTANT

Michelle Lasley

Michelle supports our facilities and convenings departments and provides general office assistance. She is a former elementary school teacher, with a bachelor of science degree in elementary education.

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HR & ADMINISTRATION DIRECTOR

Shelley Lloyd, CBP

Shelley Lloyd leads Lumina's human resources and facilities team. Her expertise includes talent acquisition, staff development, compensation, performance, employee relations and benefits. She also oversees the management of Lumina's physical facilities, business operations and capital improvements.

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CORPORATE COUNSEL

Thomas Major Jr., J.D.

Thomas Major, Jr. serves as Lumina's corporate counsel. He provides legal support to all of Lumina's strategic, financial and administrative operations, including matters involving state and federal policy, grant and contract review, risk management and intellectual property. Thomas’ program work focuses on supporting efforts that engage higher education systems and institutions to increase completion rates and close attainment gaps of underrepresented and low-income students.

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DIRECTOR OF THE OFFICE OF THE PRESIDENT AND ORGANIZATIONAL DEVELOPMENT

Molly G. Martin

Molly G. Martin is the Director of the Office of the President and Organizational Development at Lumina Foundation where she focuses on organizational culture, internal communication, and project/change management in strategic operations. She started with the Foundation in 2007, after working seven years in academic affairs and governance at Butler University and Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis.

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DATA ASSOCIATE

Lorna McClurkin

Lorna McClurkin is the Foundation's data associate responsible for facilitating the internal practices, processes, programming, learning, and relationships necessary to achieve Goal 2025.

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STRATEGY OFFICER

Nicole L. McDonald, Ph.D.

Nicole McDonald, Ph.D. works as a Strategy officer at Lumina Foundation and is responsible for developing strategic approaches to increase the educational attainment of college students. Her portfolio includes initiatives to help institutions plan and implement policies, partnerships, and practices increase student success, and the creation of a national multi-sector network of organizations and individuals through a digital platform to exchange and collaborate on strategies to increase attainment.

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GRANTS MANAGEMENT ASSISTANT

Amie Michael

Amie Michael is Lumina's grants management assistant responsible for executing grantee payments, processing matching gifts, length of service awards and assisting in the grant and contract process.

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STRATEGY OFFICER

Jesse O’Connell

Jesse O’Connell is a strategy officer, working to advance federal policy to increase higher education attainment and create new models of student financial support.

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STRATEGY DIRECTOR

Julie R. Peller

Julie Peller leads Lumina Foundation's federal policy team, where she develops and advances the Foundation's federal policy priorities. In order to reach the Foundation's goal to increase the proportion of Americans with degrees, certificates and other high-quality credentials to 60 percent by 2025, Lumina's federal policy efforts aim to support a student-centered system that is focused on student outcomes, recognizes the variety of postsecondary pathways, and is designed for today’s students.

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STRATEGIC IMPACT AND LEARNING OFFICER

Kelly Porter

As strategic impact and learning officer, Kelly Porter works across all of Lumina’s strategies to support strategic decision-making with data and evidence.

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SENIOR EDITOR & WRITER

David S. Powell

Dave Powell plans, supervises, edits and produces all of Lumina Foundation's publications, collateral and other printed material; he assists in creating content for Lumina's electronic publications, and serves as the main speechwriter for the Foundation's president and CEO. In addition, he works jointly with all members of the Communications staff, and with numerous outside contractors, to plan and implement Lumina’s strategic communications efforts.

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STRATEGY DIRECTOR

Domy Raymond

Dominique (Domy) Raymond is Lumina's strategy director leading stakeholder engagement, coalition building and convenings.

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ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT

Qiana L. Robinson

Qiana L. Robinson is an administrative assistant for Lumina Foundation currently supporting strategy directors and officers. Prior to joining Lumina, she was a customer solutions facilitator at WorkOne Indy as well as an administrative assistant at PMBC Ministries where she supported a congregation of 1500+ parishioners.

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DIRECTOR OF GRANTS MANAGEMENT

Timothy P. Robinson, J.D.

Tim Robinson is the director of grants management at Lumina Foundation, where he brings 25 years of legal and investment management experience. Prior to joining, Tim was with PNC Wealth Management for 6 years, most recently as investment director for Indiana where he was responsible for implementing investment strategies for high net worth clients.

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ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT

Barbara Rodriguez

With 14 years in the non-profit sector, Barbara provides highly-specialized mentoring, training, and guidance personalized to her colleagues needs to help lead them on paths to success. Before coming to Lumina, Barbara worked for 10 years in human resources at The Republic newspaper in Columbus, Ind. She graduated Phi Theta Kappa with a degree in business management from Ivy Tech Community College of Indiana.

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DIRECTOR OF INVESTMENTS

Eileen Scott

Eileen joined the Foundation on March 1, 2008 as a Senior Investment Officer and now serves as Lumina's Director of Investments.

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INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY & CYBER SECURITY MANAGER

Ryan Shaffer

Ryan is Lumina's Information Technology & Cyber Security Manager. He has lended his information systems expertise in various capacities for the Foundation since 2002.

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DIRECTOR OF ACCOUNTING AND CONTROLLER

Julie K. Shewmaker

Julie K. Shewmaker, Lumina's director of accounting & controller, is responsible for accounting, especially investment, financial analysis, and budgeting to ensure the Foundation assets are safeguarded.

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EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT

Sharon Shickel

Sharon B. Shickel provides administrative and organizational support to Lumina's chief of staff and office the the president. With professional experience in risk management and litigation process management, Sharon works closely with Lumina's general counsel assisting in the coordination of knowledge and process management.

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STRATEGY DIRECTOR

Zakiya Smith

Zakiya Smith is as a strategy director at Lumina Foundation, where she leads the work of the Foundation to develop new models of student financial support for higher education. Most recently, Smith served as a senior advisor for education at the White House Domestic Policy Council, where she focused on developing the President’s higher education policy. Ms. Smith also served in the Obama administration as a senior adviser at the U.S. Department of Education where she developed programmatic, policy and budget solutions to respond to pressing challenges in college access, affordability, and completion.

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STRATEGY OFFICER

Gretchen Syverud

Gretchen supports state efforts to increase postsecondary attainment through Lumina’s state policy agenda.

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STRATEGY DIRECTOR

Holly Zanville, Ph.D.

Holly Zanville, Ph.D. is a strategy director at Lumina Foundation where she leads the development of strategies to help create new systems of quality credentials and credits defined by learning and competencies, clear and transparent pathways to students, and alignment with workforce needs and trends. Her portfolio includes a focus on improving outcomes of developmental education, increasing degree completion for returning adults with prior college/no credential, and statewide approaches to reverse-transfer degrees through the national Credit When It’s Due initiative.

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