Our Board

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Andy Baker is the founder and Managing Director of Tyrian Capital, a private investment firm. Mr. Baker has spent the past 15 years of his career investing in closely-held businesses on behalf of family investment offices and has sat on numerous company boards. He started his career at Lehman Brothers after graduating from the University of London with a degree in Economics. Active in various philanthropic activities, Mr. Baker also serves on the Investment Committee for a large family foundation based in Chicago.

Aparupa Bhattacharya is a Managing Director in Deloitte Consulting’s Human Capital Organization Transformation practice who focuses on supporting healthcare executives with large scale organizational change—collaborating with leaders to design and build new operating models, leadership teams, roles and talent strategies in healthcare delivery systems and health plans. Ms. Bhattacharya is a Founding Board Member of Great Lakes Academy, and holds an M.B.A. and Health Sector Management Certificate from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University and a B.A. in Communication Studies from Vanderbilt University.

Christine Chen is a Director at McDonald's, leading a Restaurant Culture team that focuses on the employee experience strategies of the Crew across all restaurants in the United States. Prior to joining McDonald's, Christine led change management teams in the Life Sciences industry at Deloitte. She also started off her career as a high school Performing Arts and Reading Teacher at a Noble Street Charter School through Teach for America. Christine has been involved with Great Lakes Academy since 2017, and began her role as a Board Member in 2023. She holds an M.B.A. from the Yale School of Management and a B.A. in Neuroscience from Wellesley College.

Katherine Menendez Cherry has been involved with Great Lakes Academy since its inception in 2014. She previously served as the founding Director of Talent, and since her move to California in 2019, she has been a member of GLA’s Board of Directors. Prior to her time at GLA< Katherine worked in the Strategy and Planning office of Chicago Public Schools and as a teacher on the Southwest Side of Chicago. Katherine has her B.A. in Public Policy Studies from Duke University and her Masters of Administration in Social Services Administration and Public Policy from the University of Chicago.

Duane B. Davis is a proud graduate of Whitney M. Young Magnet High School, who completed his undergraduate degree in English with Honors at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, a Masters in the Art of Teaching from Columbia College Chicago, a Master’s in English at Loyola University Chicago and a Ph.D. in Curriculum and Instruction from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Duane has spent almost three decades teaching, leading, coaching and consulting at a variety of schools and organizations in Chicago and nationally. He is currently the Executive Director of K12 Education Initiatives at the University of Chicago.

Brad Karsh is the Founder and CEO of JB Training Solutions, a company dedicated to helping workplaces thrive. Brad is a public speaker, corporate trainer, and author of three business books including Manager 3.0: A Millennial's Guide to Rewriting the Rules of Management. Prior to creating JB Training Solutions, Brad spent 15 years at advertising agency Leo Burnett in Chicago. He received a B.A. in History from Wesleyan University in Middletown, CT. and resides in Chicago with his wife Lisa and three boys.

Katie McClay is Vice President Account Director at Leo Burnett USA, where she leads multi-discipline teams to develop integrated marketing communication that drives dynamic business change for her clients. She has overseen the growth and success of brands like the U.S. Army, P&G’s Tampax and Delta Faucet. Ms. McClay earned a B.A. in Art History from Duke University. She serves on Chicagoland Habitat for Humanity marketing committee and served on the Duke University Annual Fund Advisory Board, which she co-chaired from 2017–19.

Faye Paul Teller is a Partner at Bartlit Beck Herman Palenchar & Scott LLP where she represents clients in complex civil litigation matters, with a focus on intellectual property. Prior to joining Bartlit Beck, Ms. Paul served as a law clerk to the Honorable Thomas L. Ambro of the United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit and the Honorable Edmond Chang of the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois. Ms. Paul holds a J.D. from the University of Chicago Law School and a B.A. from the University of Southern California.

Larissa Silberberg graduated from Duke University with a B.A. in Public Policy Studies and Visual Arts. She moved to Chicago and worked in film production for 1 year at Z Group Films, a small company producing television commercials. Ms. Silberberg then pursued a career in post production at Whitehouse Post, where she was an Assistant Film Editor. She currently lives in Roscoe Village with her husband and 3 children.

John Washington is a Senior Manager in Accenture's Strategy practice, primarily supporting clients in the Consumer Goods industry through enterprise-wide transformation & operating model design. Prior to joining Accenture, John worked at KPMG as part of their Mergers & Acquisitions Advisory team. John is from a big family that is currently scattered across the east coast and he loves when they come to visit him in Chicago. John holds a B.S. from Emory University and an M.B.A from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.

Nicole Woodfork is a native South Chicago resident. She graduated from Northeastern Illinois University with a B.A. in Social Work and Sociology. For many years, Ms. Woodfork worked in various capacities as a Social Service Professional, contracted through the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services. Ms. Woodfork and her husband, James, are the parents of two Great Lakes Academy Scholars, Corinne and Chloe. She is currently a stay-at-home mom and enjoys music and cooking. Ms. Woodfork also serves on a Parent Advisory Committee at Larabida Children’s Hospital.