OUR CORE VALUES HELP US MAKE DECISIONS, ALWAYS WITH KIDS AT THE FRONT AND CENTER.
MEET THE ENRICHED TEAM
We’re a team of doers, musicians and advocates. We’re math teachers, band-leaders and yoga instructors. We believe in community, creativity in education and the power of kids to change our world for the better.
Andre started Enriched Schools in 2012 to bring more enrichment and meaningful sub days to kids in New Orleans, inspired by her own experiences as a former high school teacher and student in an arts-focused public school. Her bold vision quickly caught on, sparking a national movement to reimagine substitute teaching. Andre has been involved in every aspect of Enriched over the course its successful growth, and serves as a passionate champion to mobilize everyone she meets to sign up and teach (or refer someone amazing) so that schools have access to high-quality, diverse talent pipelines.
Andre is a Teach For America alumna, 2x start-up founder and holds a double major from Barnard College, Columbia University. She believes in young people, social entrepreneurship and the power of education to change the world.
Steven is passionate about teaching the next generation that anything is possible, a message he shared for seven years as band director and advisor at UIC College Prep on the west side of Chicago. A highlight of Steven’s career came in 2014, when he was selected as a Fishman Prize winner for Superlative Classroom Practice.
When Steven is not teaching or building community at Enriched, he can be found spending time with his loving wife and enjoying the wonderful blessing of a life lived in service to God.
Lynda SurajbaliTalent Intake Coordinator new yorker. ice cream lover. friend.
Lynda, an NYU graduate and native New Yorker, made her way from the “Big Apple” down to the “Big Easy” in the fall of 2014 after working in communications at CBS. On the human resources side at Enriched, she works diligently to ensure guest educator files are in tip-top shape and answer logistics questions from prospective applicants.
In her spare time, Lynda likes to hang out with friends, explore new sites in New Orleans and enjoy the rich cultural heritage that is the heartbeat of the Crescent City.
Silas EamesCommunity Care Coordinator problem-solver. bookworm. sock collector.
Silas, a New Orleans native, studied philosophy at Tulane University and brought their talent for thoughtful problem-solving from education to advertising to hospitality, and they now work as a Community Care Coordinator on the hotlines for Enriched. They are a proud (if not very social) nonbinary advocate and were the founding VP of Tulane’s trans support group GES.
Silas enjoys reading about world mythology, playing video games, exploring their city and shopping — they collect socks, textiles and nail polish.
Kethzy PachecoCommunity Assistant proud Latina. observer. animal lover.
Kethzy earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of New Orleans. She’s always wanted to work with children, and is excited to work at Enriched to help improve kids’ experiences in schools across the country. She believes great teachers have the influence to help great kids become great adults.
During her free time, Kethzy likes to try new foods, explore new places, and spend time with loved ones. She’s also strangely obsessed with her dog, Mia.
Katie OliverDirector of Impact and Regional Support educator. mother. traveler.
Originally from the Pacific Northwest, Katie has worked for over 9 years in New Orleans as a tutor, math teacher, grade level chair, instructional coach and assistant principal. She believes in the power of educators and works to ensure that students have excellent instruction every day.
Katie earned a master’s degree in Educational Leadership and Administration at The George Washington University. In her spare time, you can find her with her family, traveling, listening to music, and eating all of the delicious food in New Orleans.
Tess GardephePhiladelphia Regional Manager leader. optimist. friend.
Tess started her education career teaching middle school English in New Orleans. After teaching, Tess went on to work for the nonprofit NFTE (Network for Teaching Entrepreneurship), where she led teams and supported teachers and students first across New York City and then across the Philadelphia Metro area. She enjoyed watching students (and teachers!) activate their entrepreneurial mindset and become confident pitching their own original business ideas.
Tess is a Teach for America alumna, and holds a major in International Development, Health and Human Rights from New York University. Tess enjoys catching up with friends and family, exploring different restaurants and Philly establishments, and traveling to other countries.
Mackenzie HerifordDirector of Recruitment Traveler. Brainstormer. Friend.
After studying Economics and Spanish at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Mackenzie started her career in education with Teach For America. After recruiting corps members for two years, Mackenzie then recruited herself! For four years, she taught math at a high school in New Orleans and continues to center her work around her students and love for her New Orleans community.
In her free time, Mackenzie loves to find new recipes to cook (anything pasta related in particular), travel to as many new places as possible and read all of the Book of the Month books!
Shosh PojawaCommunity Care Coordinator Artist. Dreamer. Achiever.
Shosh was born and raised in Nutley, NJ. A recent graduate of Loyola University New Orleans, they have lived in New Orleans since 2017 and have a BA in Sociology with a minor in Women’s Studies. They are an alumni of the Benjamin A. Gillman scholarship, which granted them the life changing opportunity to study gender and sexuality at the Universiteit van Amsterdam in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.
They are passionate about worker’s rights, silkscreen printmaking, gender and sexuality studies, music, and design. In their free time, you can find them making clothes, creating playlists, or perusing the local craft beer selection at the grocery store, struggling to make a decision.
Eric LabonMemphis Regional Coordinator Problem Solver. Communicator. Father.
Eric has a passion for education and has over 17 years of experience leading in various educational fields. He believes all individuals can learn regardless of circumstances or background. Eric earned a Bachelor’s degree in 2009 in Psychology from the University of Phoenix. He also received a Masters Degree in 2017 in Business Administration from Belhaven University.
When Eric is not teaching or working in Education, he enjoys spending time with his wife and kids and playing and watching a variety of sports. You can also find him spending time relaxing on the water with his fishing pole!
Emily PaxtonCommunity Assistant Thinker. Traveller. Cat Mom.
While originally from Shreveport, Louisiana, Emily is excited to live in the Southern end of the state. She earned her bachelor’s degree in Liberal Arts from Northwestern State University and her master’s degree in American Literature from the University of New Orleans. She has spent a lot of time tutoring kids, and is excited to be working towards a better education for children in a new capacity.
Emily doesn’t shy away from new experiences and is working to fill her passport with stamps from around the world. In her free time she enjoys cooking (and eating) Asian-inspired dishes, exploring the many plant nurseries in the city and kayaking on Bayou St. John.
Gayle RamboDFW Regional Manager Teacher. Lifelong Learner. Yogi.
Gayle is originally from California and moved to Fort Worth, Texas to attend Texas Christian University. She spent five years teaching elementary students in Fort Worth and found a love for early learning, professional development, and teacher education. Gayle is passionate about high quality learning experiences that can impact students and teachers of all ages, skills, and backgrounds. She is excited to be working every day to make a difference in the lives of students.
Gayle continues on to pursue her Masters of Education degree in Instructional Technology from Texas Tech University in hopes of achieving her dream to impact education through well-designed instruction. In her free time, Gayle enjoys teaching and taking yoga classes, spending time with friends, visiting family in California, and telling her dog Kevin that he’s a good boy.
Sarah LoweryNashville Regional Coordinator Adventurer. Educator. Joy-enthusiast.
Born and raised in St. Louis, Missouri, Sarah made the trek down south in 2014 to attend The University of Mississippi. After obtaining her degree in Secondary English Education with endorsements in Social Studies and Business, Sarah moved to Nashville, TN to begin her career in education. Sarah taught a variety of English courses in her three years at a charter school and has a passion for equity in education, building relationships, and instilling independence in youth.
In her free time, Sarah enjoys working out, riding her bike, cooking new recipes and spending time with her rescue dog, Graham. She is an avid reader and always open to new book suggestions!
Rachael MontzFinance Assistant hard worker. smiler. barre enthusiast.
Rachael, a native New Orleanian, holds a Masters and Bachelors Degree in Accounting from Louisiana State University. Having previously held multiple positions in the education industry, she has plenty of knowledge and experience in the areas of finance, office management, and educational sales. Rachael is able to flex her accounting muscles as Finance Assistant, assisting the Headquarters team with all related matters. She loves being part of a team who shares the same passion for education, vision, and growth.
In her spare time, Rachael enjoys attending barre classes, going to festivals, and exploring new places in the city.
Riley HamburgRecruitment Assistant Music Lover. Bookworm. Weirdo.
Riley is originally from Fort Worth, Texas and moved to New Orleans to attend Tulane University. Having recently received her undergraduate degree in Management and English, she is excited to be a new member of the Enriched Schools team. With experience assisting in early childhood education, Riley is passionate about equal opportunities to high quality education.
Riley loves to read and write, and a couple of her favorite books are Lonesome Dove and The Perks of Being a Wallflower. In her free time she enjoys attending live concerts, or you can find her at home watching her favorite comfort movie, The Big Chill.
Lilly WrightDC Regional Area Manager Learner. Advocate. Pioneer.
Lilly earned a bachelor’s degree in English from Indiana University and recently graduated with her master’s in Teaching after spending two years teaching 4th graders in Indianapolis, Indiana. As the first in her family to earn both undergraduate and graduate degrees, Lilly is passionate about educational equity and ensuring that all children have the ability to write their own stories.
Lilly loves to write poetry and has had a handful of her poems published during her time at IU. In her spare time, she loves tending to her plants and snuggling up with her cats, a bubble tea, and a good book!
Fas QayyumNational Director of Growth Reader. Wanderer. Motivator.
A Chicago native, Fas began his time in education in New Roads, LA in 2009 where served as an Elementary School classroom teacher, grade level chair, and instructional coach. Fas is a Teach for America alumni, and holds a JD/MBA from Louisiana State University. Fas spent four years living in New York City, but he’s excited to be back in Louisiana and is motivated by the mission to serve school partners and their students in driving impactful and high quality learning experiences.
In his spare time, Fas loves to read and his favorite book is A Gathering of Old Men by Ernest Gaines. You can also find him cooking with friends and training/coaching wrestling and Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.