Surge alumni are active, growing their careers, and making a difference all over the country. Many are living out their freedom dreams through new business ventures. Take a look at what these alumni have been doing and join us in congratulating them on their accomplishments!
Jessica Sullivan Wilson, CHI21
Jessica was recently promoted to Managing Director, Partnerships, at Teach for America Greater Chicago-Northwest Indiana. Congratulations on your promotion, Jessica!
Chanelle Bell, CHI19
Chanelle had a huge win in her career this year after getting the Illinois General Assembly to pass a FY24 budget that includes a $2M investment in TFA Chicago, double the amount that TFA received in 2023 and the first time in the history of her region that the state has made such an investment. Congratulations on all of your hard work and dedication, Chanelle!
Malia Gibert Neal, PHILA23
Malia recently graduated from the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education, received $100,000 from the Genesis Inspiration Foundation, and received full sponsorship of the Awaken Your Dreams Art Show. Congratulations on all the joyous things 2023 has had for you, Malia!
Tanesha Peeples, CHI20
Tanesha’s organization, The Roots Initiative, has become a partner of Chicago Beyond through their Rapid Response Fund, which supports the critical work led by Black and Brown people to drive equity for young people and communities. Major shout out to you and your team for making this happen, Tanesha!
Quiaria Asiedu, CHI21
Quiaria has recently started a new position as Director of Program Delivery at Run for the Future. Congratulations on your promotion, Quiaria!
Melissa Flores, CHI19
Melissa was recently selected to be one of the 30 2023 HIPLíderes Fellows with Hispanics in Philanthropy. This fall, she will join a cohort of national Latinx leaders working to transform philanthropy and the wider social impact space. Huge congratulations, Melissa!
Geoffrey Fenelus, INDY21
Geoff was recently inducted into his high school’s Hall of Fame. Shout out to your impact, influence, and inspiration in your Indy community, Geoff!
Sara Rizik-Baer, OAK18
Sara, a former bilingual teacher, recently began a new role as a program manager for Sobrato Early Academic Language (SEAL) with the goal of providing a powerful early foundation of language and centralizing the needs of Dual Language Learners. Congratulations on being back in this space you love, Sara!
Dirrick Butler, CHI20
Dirrick is the founder and director of Project OneTen. Well-known to the Chicago area because of his true gift and compassion for the community, he was recently recognized as a 2023 Man of Excellence in the Chicago Defender. Congratulations, Dirrick!
AshleyMarie Marie, KC20
AshleyMarie recently concluded seven years of professional service at Kauffman Scholars Inc (KSI) and entered into a new and exciting role as the Director of Learning at Nonprofit Connect, where her focus involves curating opportunities and programming for nonprofit professionals and organizations to network, learn, and grow. Congratulations, AshleyMarie!
Edgar Palacios, KC19
Edgar was honored and humbled to receive an Urban Hero award from the Downtown Council of Kansas City. He is grateful to the many people who have invested in him, supported him, given him tough love, and encouraged him to push forward. Congratulations, Edgar!
Rosaura Altamirano, OAK20
Rosaura recently became a CASBO Chief Business Official through the California Association of School Business Officials’ Business Executive Leadership (BEL) Program. She is super proud of her accomplishment, and so are we—congratulations, Rosaura!
Will Collins, CHI17
Will and his wife, Alicia, launched their first venture and labor of love, Light Source Consulting LLC, to empower and strengthen schools and nonprofit organizations through their expert and faith-based consulting services.
Rychelle McKenzie, OAK22
Rychelle launched Clever Whimsy, a business through which she facilitates career development workshops for early career professionals to help them navigate their career journeys.