Raymond (Ray) McKenzie, Chair is the Founder and Managing Director of Red Beach Advisors. He has more than 15 years of experience as a senior business executive and consultant leading global organizations ranging from small businesses, startups, and large enterprises. Ray has held various senior executive positions with companies such as Verisign, Neustar, State Farm Insurance, TeleSign, UltraDNS and has served in an advisory role for several start-up companies in Silicon Valley, Los Angeles, and Washington, DC. Ray McKenzie completed his studies in Management Information Systems from San Diego State University in 2001 and is a certified AWS Cloud Practitioner (CLF). Mr. McKenzie is also a certified Lean Six Sigma sensei (CLSSS) practitioner from Villanova University, is a Certified ScrumMaster (CSM) from Scrum Alliance. Mr. McKenzie currently sits on the board of directors for non-profit organizations such as My Friend’s House, Inc. based in Los Angeles, CA and Students With Aspiring Goals based in Merced, CA and regularly speaks to groups of children and youth regarding entrepreneurship, leadership, and achievement.
Abeselom "Abby" Alem, Member, is a Marketing Executive at Diageo. Abby is a highly motivated, goal-oriented professional that has over 10 years of experience in strategy formulation, marketing, financial analytics, distributor management, joint business planning, organizational leadership, inclusion & diversity planning, execution, and corporate communications. He has developed a passion for consumer engagement and relationship building while working for some of the largest and most iconic global sales and marketing organizations, holding various positions with companies such as PepsiCo, Coca-Cola, and Anheuser-Busch. Abby holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration with an emphasis in Accounting and Business Management from San Diego State University and is a Certified Professional Category Manager (CPCM). Abby also currently sits on the board of directors for Habesha Networks, a grassroots non-profit organization committed to developing and implementing methods of connectivity and support between Habesha communities across the globe. Abby is also a freelance business and marketing consultant, specializing in business development, public relations, organizational planning, and leadership development. Abby has a strong passion for community, entrepreneurship, and education. He is a native of Southern California with dreams of inspiring and empowering communities, globally, to re-imagine and innovate our world for the betterment of people.
Veronica Davey, Board Member, has worked for 25 years in the public and non-profit sectors with a focus on education policy and navigating state/local governments. During the last ten years, she has consulted for several dynamic clients in Los Angeles and New York City. Notably, she partnered with Tony Bennett’s non-profit, Exploring the Arts, to expand his organization’s reach to over 2,800 high school students in Los Angeles. Other clients include Eli Broad, The Broad Center, ExED, the Partnership for LA Schools, Los Angeles County High School for the Arts, and Kayne Anderson Investments. Currently, Veronica is focused on the Skilled Trades education field as a consultant for the Harbor Freight Tools for Schools non-profit. Before establishing her consulting path, Veronica served as Senior Vice President of Policy, Advocacy and Communications for the NYC Charter School Center, managed a national K-12 grant portfolio for The Eli and Edith Broad Education Foundation; and built deep government knowledge as an Assistant Deputy Mayor to Richard Riordan in Los Angeles, as well as Chief of Staff to Councilmember Fernandes in San Jose. Veronica has B.S. in Public Policy from Santa Clara University and MBA from the Anderson School of Management at UCLA.
Kurt Gramm, Secretary Plant Manager at Haskel International. In his role at Haskel International Kurt helps companies and departments reach their objectives and goals by analyzing current processes and encouraging team members to provide more effecient methods in reaching the desired results. My participation on the Resolute Academy Board all started when an admired past cohort of mine and a current Resolute Board member asked me if I would be interested in joining, and if so, I needed to talk to Natasha. After talking to Natasha I was inspired by her passion and vision for the academy, I just knew I wanted to be a part of the team. Being part of something larger than myself and giving back to the community was just what I was looking for and so far I have not been disappointed. My background and expertise in accounting and financial processes seemed to be what the Board members were looking for, so it felt like a perfect fit. This experience has introduced to me to new world, for I have worked mostly in a for-profit manufacturing environment and I am learning how to translate those skills into a non-profit educational setting.
Jennie Kress, Member is an education researcher focused on school performance, equity, accountability, and state policy. In her current role as the Director of Research at the California Charter Schools Association, she leads several research studies, helps charter schools craft their data stories as they prepare for renewal, and creates data tools. Prior to joining CCSA, she worked as a Research Coordinator at Teach Plus, a teacher voice non-profit, collaborating with teachers across the country to use research to advocate for policy reforms. She also worked at Success Academy Charter Schools in New York City in their Talent department. Jennie received a Masters in Public Policy from the University of Southern California and a B.A. in liberal arts from Bates College. She is passionate about using data to eliminate opportunity gaps and improve student outcomes and is excited to learn from and support Resolute.
Mark Narain, Treasurer is a Director of International Digital Distribution in Fox's Filmed Entertainment Group. He specializes in developing solutions to improve organizational effectiveness and efficiency as well as stimulate consumer demand in the context of digital media. Mark has spent the last ten years creating strategies and providing financial analysis for several media companies. At Fox, Mark developed financial reporting standards for his distribution team, enhanced internal processes, conducted market research for emerging markets, and developed strategies to distribute Fox film and television properties throughout the world. Mark holds a Bachelor of Arts in Business Economics with a minor in Accounting and specialization in Computing from the University of California at Los Angles and a Masters of Business Administration from the Harvard Business School. Mark has had a passion to serve his community since his teenage years. He has been involved with community service organizations since high school. He is currently a member of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. An organization that develops leaders, promotes brotherhood and academic excellence, while providing service and advocacy for local communities. In addition, he has recently volunteered with Defy Ventures to help individuals in prison to develop business plans, helping them prepare for success on the outside and improve life on the inside. He also helps high school students navigate the college application process by providing advice on study habits, school choice, essays, and financial aid. In addition, he assists graduate school applicants with test prep resources and essay review. During his free time, Mark enjoys taking his five-year old daughter on adventures throughout Southern California.
Kevin Reeves, Board Member, a native of Yazoo City, MS, and received his BA in Finance from Clark Atlanta University. Following his graduation, he worked as a commercial analyst in Houston, Texas. Although he excelled in the area of finance his passion to civic service led him to academia. He obtained his M.Ed. in Higher Education Administration and Supervision from the University of Houston while joining Teach for America 2011 Corps. After completing his master’s degree he accepted a teaching job in Dubai, UAE.Throughout his years in education, Kevin has been heavily involved in not only student's academic attainment but shaping their lives. He has served in the capacity of Math and Physics teacher, Math Intervention Specialist, and Dean of Students. Working in different areas within academia he understands how to cultivate change, push through barriers, and get results. He currently is the Director of Business Development for Scoot Education, an education consulting company in Los Angeles. He joins the Board of Resolute with a commitment to student success, academic rigor, and accountability.