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Our Board

Our Board

From Our Board Chair

Dear Friends and Supporters:

It is hard to fully appreciate the impact that the last three years has had on our nation, our communities and each of us individually. The COVID-19 pandemic presented our families and communities with challenges that were unimaginable only a few years ago. We also saw protesters in Rhode Island and across the nation and world take a stand against anti-Black racism. The Black Lives Matter protests of 2020 took place against a backdrop of rising political extremism that has left many in our community feeling unsafe and vulnerable.

While through it all, Inspiring Minds has weathered the storms with a steadfast commitment to our students and families – and with the generous help of thousands of volunteers, donations, and community grants – these shared hardships have presented opportunities for our organization to examine our own history and to be intentional about our future. Nearly sixty years ago, a small group of Providence residents began volunteering in neighborhood schools. Today, more than 500 volunteers touch the lives of over 3,200 students across the state and across five different programs. We have seen tremendous growth over the years, but with this growth in programming and impact comes a greater responsibility to ensure that we are also growing and improving in how we show up as a member of our community. We are proud of Inspiring Minds’ legacy and the role that we have played in helping prepare students to succeed academically. We now want to take the further step and intentionally strive to be an anti-racist organization. The strategic plan that follows reflects that intention.

As the Board of Directors embarked on the strategic planning process, we recognized the inherent power dynamics involved and made the decision to prioritize the voices of community members and those most impacted by racism. We sought the input of our families, stakeholders, and other community members and collaborated closely and shared decision making with our committed Inspiring Minds staff members. We began to ask ourselves how best to use our resources, what goals we should set for ourselves, and how we would know if we were doing the right thing and doing it well.

What soon became clear is both intimidating and exciting – we don’t know all the answers! We had to admit to ourselves that we don’t know exactly what it will mean for us to become an anti-racist organization – and that ambiguity can be uncomfortable. A strategic plan, after all, is supposed to provide a roadmap for an organization to follow. Yet, we are leaning into this ambiguity and embarking on a growth journey together. We have much to learn, but we are confident that this challenge will only strengthen the organization and benefit our students, families, and community.

We invite you, our friends and supporters, to embark on this journey of learning with us. We want to hear from you about how we are doing, but even more so, we invite you to join us in this work. Together, we can be the village that empowers students to succeed in school and in life.

Sincerely,
Kimberly Bright
Board Chair

BOARD CHAIR
Kimberly Bright

Executive Board

VICE CHAIR
Margaret Koosa

TREASURER
Tammy Warner
SECRETARY
Jen Linton

VICE CHAIR
Maggie Koosa

TREASURER
Tammy Warner

SECRETARY
Jen Linton

Board

Kelly Chippas

Rothel De La Cruz

Dr. Noni Thomas Lopez

Dr. Mary Ann
Shallcross Smith

Daryl Wright

Lynn Abrams

Regina Maddox

Laura Hart

Lorraine N. Lalli

Kelly Chippas

Rothel De La Cruz

Dr. Noni Thomas Lopez

Dr. Mary Ann
Shallcross Smith

Daryl Wright

Lynn Abrams

Lorraine N. Lalli

Laura Hart

Regina Maddox