The College Prep Roundtable Operation Managers
Thomas is currently the Executive Director of the Philadelphia College Prep Roundtable; a network of over 300 college access and attainment professionals and advocates across the greater Philadelphia region. Butler has convened this network for over 30 years providing oversight of monthly meetings, annual conferences, and a communications network inclusive of a website, an email list, and several social media systems.
In the past, Thomas has served as Executive Director of Project GRAD Philadelphia and Executive Director of the CORE Philly Scholarship Program where his primary responsibility was to oversee the awarding of up to $40 million in scholarships to Philadelphia high school graduates. Additionally, he was the Director of the Philadelphia Education Fund’s College Access Program and Director of Admission at Cheyney University of PA.
Thomas’ professional affiliation and appoints includes:
- Board of Directors (Chair), F.E.L.L.O.W.S
- Board of Directors, ACCEPT – Admissions Community Cultivating Equity & Peace Today
- (Philadelphia) Mayor’s Commission for African American Males
- Served as a Vice-Chair for the Community College of Philadelphia’s Board of Trustees
- Served as President of the Project GRAD Philadelphia Board of Directors
- Served as President of the Pennsylvania Association of College Admission Counseling
- Executive Advisory Member of the Black Male Development Symposium
He has received numerous awards including:
- (2022) Mayor/s Office of Philadelphia Citation for Service to the City
- 2021 National Association for College Admission Counseling’s “Gayle C. Wilson Service to Education Award”
- The Black Male Engagement (BMe) Community Leadership Award
- The Legacy of Love Foundation, Inc.’s Men Making a Difference in the Community Awards – recipient of the Educational Excellence Award
- Phi Delta Kappa, Tau Chapter – Dedicated Service to Public Education Award
- National Association for College Admission Counselors’ Outstanding Leadership in Government Relations Award
- The Congressional Black Caucus’ School District Leadership Award
- Community College of Philadelphia’s Distinguished Leadership Award
- The PA Association for College Admission Counseling Human Relations Award
- 100 Black Men Making a Difference Award
Thomas received his Bachelor’s Degree from Cheyney University and holds a Masters Degree in Counseling in Student Affairs in Higher Education from Kutztown University of Pennsylvania. Thomas is also a graduate of the Urban League of Philadelphia’s Leadership Institute and the Mid-Eastern Association of Educational Opportunity Program Personnel Leadership Institute.
He is a proud member of New Birth Missionary Baptist Church and a Life Member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.
Nancy W. Campbell, M. Ed.
Dr. Ron Finnell
Dr. Ron Finnell is an experienced educator and practitioner. His experience includes Chair/Associate Professor of Public Administration at Clark Atlanta University in Atlanta, Georgia. He also served as Director of the Southern Center for Studies in Public Policy at Clark Atlanta University. Dr. Finnell has been a national and international consultant for numerous organizations in the public, private, nonprofit and education sectors. He served as principal investigator for a variety of grant-funded research projects, including An Evaluation of the Atlanta Public Schools’ 21st Century Program, An Evaluation of the Atlanta Public Schools’ After School Program; a study on The Effect of School Violence on Student Learning Outcomes in Atlanta, and a national study on Diversity in the American Workforce for The American Society for Training and Development. Dr. Finnell has over 15 years of experience in nonprofit management, which includes strategic planning, organizational development, and program design, development, administration, and evaluation. He earned a Doctorate of Public Administration degree from the University of Southern California. He has been a passionate supporter of and contributor to educational policy issues for over 30 years.
Nasser Jones is a highly skilled professional with a diverse set of expertise spanning various digital platforms and software applications. He demonstrates exceptional proficiency in internet-based applications, CRM and CMS systems, including Facebook, Google Apps, and WordPress, as well as a comprehensive understanding of email nurture campaigns and written content. Nasser also possesses expert-level skills in advanced form software, such as Jotform, Typeform, Gravity Forms, and Formstack, which allows him to effectively create and manage interactive forms for a wide range of purposes.
In addition to his expertise in software applications, Nasser is an accomplished graphic designer and video editor, with experience using programs like Photoshop, InDesign, Canva, Premier, iMovie, and Final Cut Pro. He has a strong background in social media marketing, implementing ROI-focused ad campaigns across platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube. Nasser also excels in sales processes, sales funnels, and proposal development, leveraging his deep understanding of both Mac and PC systems, hardware, and mobile applications.
Beyond his technical skills, Nasser is an effective communicator, boasting excellent public speaking, presentation, and training abilities. As a highly successful leadership trainer and development coach, he has a proven track record of fostering team building and resolving conflicts. Nasser is proficient in information technology and multimedia integration within business and education settings, and he has a strong grasp of Microsoft Office, Apple, and internet applications, including CMS, HTML, and social apps. With this comprehensive skill set, Nasser is well-equipped to take on a variety of roles and contribute meaningfully to any project or organization.
Jody Markley is the director of Temple University’s TRIO Upward Bound and Upward Bound Math and Science programs, which serve approximately 150 high school students from the School District of Philadelphia, specifically targeting Ben Franklin, Simon Gratz, Strawberry Mansion, and Dobbins high schools as well as The U School. She has over 30 years’ experience in education, diversity and inclusion, and college access, and recently served as the inaugural director of the Tichenor-Greer Scholars Program at Chestnut Hill College, a scholarship and support program for 100 students of color majoring in STEM.
Prior to that, she provided diversity, equity, and inclusion support to the Russ College of Engineering and Technology at Ohio University as Director of Multicultural Experiences, and previously directed Penn State’s TRIO Upward Bound Math and Science program, working with the school districts of Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, Harrisburg, and Reading for 15 years. There she directed summer research experiences for urban and underrepresented high school students with over 25 faculty, over 20 graduate and post-doc students, and 10 undergraduate students from 4 Colleges: Science, Earth and Mineral Sciences, African and African American Studies, and Agricultural Science, across the disciplines of: African and African American Studies, Astronomy, Astrophysics, Biology, Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Chemistry, Electrical Engineering, Energy and Mineral Engineering, Fuel Science, Geography, Geoscience, Industrial Health and Safety, Materials Science and Engineering, Meteorology, Mining Engineering, Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering, Physics, Statistics and Quantitative Forest Ecology.
Jody has a B.S. in Education and an M. Ed. in Curriculum & Instruction and Educational Leadership and is a certified teacher. She is completing a Ph. D. in Educational Leadership.
She has developed programs in STEM readiness, successful college transition, SAT and GED preparation, character education, personal and professional development, job-readiness and career awareness, performance-based and developmental education, virtual learning, student leadership, positive behavior management, and student motivation. She is committed to equipping students to succeed in realizing their dreams and challenging them to achieve excellence. She also consults with schools, community organizations and educational programs to help them develop exemplary and effective programs for students.
Candace Powell Kinard
Candace Powell Kinard is a Philadelphia College Prep Roundtable (PCPR) charter member and currently serves as a volunteer on the Operations Leadership team. She has 35 years of experience in higher education, is a Certified Financial Educator and owner, founder and Executive Consultant of EduDreamer Consulting, LLC. She serves the Philadelphia, Delaware, and New Jersey regions managing college access projects, providing professional development, and consulting on paying for college to high school counselors, non-profit organization staff, students, and families.
Candace’s rich experience also includes working in college admission at Arcadia University, directing and creating new college access program initiatives, supervision of school-based practitioners, and managing college access centers as the Managing Director for a non-profit organization in Philadelphia.
Her work spans nationally as the Chairperson of the Philadelphia National College Fair and a conference presenter for the National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC). Candace has also been a featured presenter during conferences for the National College Attainment Network (NCAN), Experian’s Paying for College event and as a faculty member for the Pennsylvania Association for College Admission Counseling (PACAC). She has been recognized by her peers and honored with the PACAC Gary M. Kelsey Human Relations Award.
Ms. White is currently retired and spends most of her time volunteering for local nonprofits bringing her over 40 years of experience in higher education project management and academic program administration. She currently serves on the Philadelphia College Prep Roundtable Leadership Operations Team. She also serves as a State Volunteer for AARP and a program volunteer for the breast cancer awareness nonprofit, Praise Is The Cure, Inc.
During Michael A. Nutter’s tenure as Mayor of Philadelphia (from 2009-2017), Ms. White served as his Higher Education Advisor in the Office of Education. She was responsible for managing the city’s strategic planning process designed to achieve the Mayor’s bold education goal of doubling the number of Philadelphians with an earned baccalaureate degree. Ms. White worked collaboratively with key education partners – including the School District and Archdiocese of Philadelphia, charter schools, higher education institutions, non-profits, community organizations, foundations, businesses, students and parents – to align existing resources and develop innovative coordinated strategies designed to systemically increase the City of Philadelphia’s college going and completion rates.
Ms. White brought to this work over 30 years experience in higher education. She served as an academic administrator at the University of Pennsylvania for over 20 years where she provided visionary leadership to eight fully staffed offices responsible for offering co-curricular programs and supportive services to designed to assist Penn students in earning their undergraduate degrees, as well as college preparatory programs targeting middle school, high school and adult students from the surrounding community.
The first ten years of her career were devoted to administering programs that supported low-income, first-generation students in achieving their academic and career goals at Clarion University of Pennsylvania. Ms. White earned her Bachelor and Master’s Degrees in Education at the University of Illinois.
A member of the volunteer PCPR Operations Leadership Team, Janine currently manages the K-16 partnership work for PHENND (Philadelphia Higher Education Network for Neighborhood Development), a consortium of nearly thirty colleges and universities in the Greater Philadelphia area. Prior to joining PHENND, she spent over twenty-five years in the nonprofit sector focused primarily on college access and success, community-based education and engagement and professional development. Janine began her career as an agency relations manager for United Way member agencies focused on addressing the needs of low income women and children. She served as the Assistant Director for Minority Recruitment at the University of Pennsylvania and was part of the inaugural staff of the Philadelphia Education Fund’s College Access Program (later serving twice as its director).
Later, Janine managed the E3 Centers project at the Philadelphia Youth Network (PYN), neighborhood centers for young people seeking a GED or returning from juvenile adjudication. She also directed the agency’s professional development initiatives for its sixty member agencies.
Janine received both her bachelor’s degree in communications and her master’s degree in urban education from Temple University and was a LEADERSHIP Fellow with LEADERSHIP Philadelphia.