Graig Weiss, Chief Executive Officer
Graig Weiss joined Foundation Academy Charter School in 2009 as the Middle School Principal. After serving in that role for several years and leading the expansion of the lower grades, Graig became the Chief Executive Officer in 2014.
Prior to joining Foundation, Graig served as the Founding Middle and High School Principal at Cap Cana Heritage School, an English immersion private school in the Dominican Republic. A 2003 Teach for America corps member, Graig taught Math and Science in the Bronx and the Dominican Republic prior to becoming an administrator and was selected as Teacher of the Year in 2007. Prior to entering the education field, Graig worked in the financial services sector with Cambridge Associates, LLC in Boston, MA. He holds a Bachelor of Arts and a Bachelor of Science in Finance and Accounting from the University of Pittsburgh, a Master of Science in Teaching from Fordham University, and a Master of Science in Educational Leadership from the University of Scranton.
Sheria McRae, Chief Academic Officer
Sheria McRae joined Foundation Academies in 2010 as a 6th and 7th Grade English Teacher. After serving as a teacher and then Dean of Instruction for three years, Sheria became the Middle School Principal in 2013 as a part of the organization’s expansion project. In 2017, Sheria went on to become Foundation’s Chief Academic Officer, with a focus on Assessment, Curriculum, and Instruction. Prior to joining Foundation, Sheria was a Teach for America Corps member in Newark, New Jersey where she taught 3rd, 5th, and 6th Grade English for four years. Sheria holds a Bachelor of Science in Psychology from Howard University in Washington, DC, a Master of Arts in School Counseling from Montclair State University, and a Certificate of Advanced Studies in Administration and Supervision from National Louis University.
Natasia Cooper, Principal, Foundation Academy Primary
Natasia Cooper joined Foundation Academies in 2016. Prior to joining Foundation, Natasia was an Assistant Principal of Instruction at Mastery Charter School. In 2014, she served as the Assistant Principal of Student Support at KIPP Philadelphia Charter School. Natasia was a 2003 Teach for America Corps member in Baltimore, Maryland where she taught 5th and 6th grade for four years. She continued to teach for an additional six years before moving into administration. Natasia holds a Bachelor of Science in Social Work from Syracuse University and a Master of Arts in Teaching from Johns Hopkins University. Natasia received her Principal Certification through Philly PLUS (Philadelphia Pathway to Leadership in Urban Schools).
Venetia Birchmore, Principal, Foundation Academy Intermediate
Venetia Birchmore is a passionate educator who believes in the transformative power of education. She joined Foundation Academies in 2014 as a 7th and 8th Grade Reading Teacher. After serving as a teacher and Instructional Dean for three years, she departed Foundation to serve as an Instructional Coach at a founding charter school in Philadelphia. After a year away, Venetia returned to Foundation Academies as the Principal-in-Residence in 2019, transitioning to the Intermediate School in early 2020. Prior to joining Foundation Academies, Venetia was a Teach for America Corps member in Hartford, Connecticut where she taught 2nd, and 4th-grade English for three years. Venetia holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and African American Studies from Smith College, a Master of Science in Education from Johns Hopkins University, and a Certificate of Advanced Studies in School Administration and Supervision from Johns Hopkins University.
Angela Joyner, Principal, Foundation Academy Middle
Angela Joyner joined Foundation Academies in January 2020. Prior to joining Foundation, Angela was the Middle School Principal at Gestalt Community Schools, in Memphis, Tennessee, where she also served as Dean of Instruction from 2016-2017. In 2014, Angela accepted a position as the Founding Turnaround High School Academy Director at Frayser Community Schools. From 2002-2005 and 2007-2014, Angela held multiple positions at Charlotte Mecklenburg Schools, rising from English Teacher to Instructional Dean to Literacy Coach. She served as a Language Arts Teacher in the Baltimore Public School system from 2006-2007. Angela holds a Bachelor of Arts in Communication from Syracuse University, a Middle Grades Teaching Certification from The University of North Carolina at Charlotte, and a Master of Arts in Executive Leadership in Education from Gardner-Webb University. Angela received her Principal Certification through RELAY Graduate School of Education.
Melissa Campbell, Principal, Foundation Academy Collegiate
Melissa Campbell joined Foundation Academies in July 2018 as the Middle School Principal. Prior to joining Foundation Academies, Melissa worked at Young Scholars Charter School in Philadelphia for fourteen years as a teacher, instructional dean, and then as principal. Under Melissa’s leadership, Young Scholars Charter School was Philadelphia’s “highest-performing charter middle school serving students in high poverty.” Ms. Campbell holds a Bachelor of Arts in Secondary Education & Biology from Rider University, a Master of Arts in Education from Gratz College, and earned her Principal certification with the RELAY Graduate School of Education.
Dr. Shanesia Davis, Director of Training and Development, Foundation Academies
Dr. Shanesia Davis is an educator with a passion for action learning whose purpose is to equip others with the tools to activate their innate power. She believes true leaders inspire others to be in pursuit of their best selves and connect their purpose to every aspect of their lives. Shanesia leads FA’s leadership development and drives innovation to our academic and character curriculum. Shanesia also leads the robust onboarding and training plan for our staff to grow and develop at Foundation Academies. Prior to joining FA, Shanesia advanced from a Science Teacher to a Science Department Chairperson, to Vice Principal, to School Principal, and most recently served as a Director of Curriculum and Instruction. Shanesia earned both her Ed.D. in Organizational Leadership and a Masters in Education Administration from Grand Canyon University, as well as her Bachelor of Science in Biology from Stockton University.
Artemus Werts, Principal-In-Residence, Foundation Academies
Artemus Werts is an experienced educator whose purpose is to build leaders who help students understand their strengths, gifts, and passions so that they can change the world. He believes that great schools are not defined by their neighborhood or socio-economic demographic, but by how well they position students to understand themselves in relation to the world's needs. Artemus works alongside our senior leadership and school leadership members to learn, plan, and prepare for becoming one of our school Principals in the future. Prior to joining Foundation Academies, Artemus worked with Teach For America in Maryland for the past four years. During his time at TFA, Artemus worked in Teacher and Leader Development and most recently as their Data and School Impact Director. Artemus has a Bachelor of Arts in History and African Studies and a Master of Science in Education from Johns Hopkins University.
Jacqueline Griffith, Board President
Jacqui grew up in the Philadelphia area and graduated from Barnard College with a degree in American Studies. She earned an M.S.S. from Bryn Mawr College and worked for many years as a clinical social worker, specializing in the field of child and adolescents. She also holds a Master of Letters from Drew University. Jacqui and her husband live in New Hope, PA, and have two adult children. Jacqui is a community volunteer and has been active on several boards in Philadelphia and Bucks County.
Kimme Carlos, Vice President
Kimme is a graduate of Regent University with a Bachelor of Arts in Religious Studies and a minor in Psychology. She is the co-Founder and Lead Facilitator of Sister Wellness Retreats; a certified health and wellness coach with the Institute for Integrative Nutrition; a certified instructor for Mental Health First Aid, and author of the published book The Window of Grace: Living in Recovery through Christian Faith.
Stephen Silverman, Secretary/Treasurer
Steve attended Case Western Reserve University where he majored in Philosophy. After college, he served as an officer in the United States Marine Corps. He received an MBA in Accounting and Finance from the Graduate School of Business at The University of Chicago (Booth), and commenced upon a career in investment management.
A founding partner of KSS Architects, Allan was named a Fellow to the American Institute of Architects in 2001. He currently serves as Adjunct Faculty for the College of Architecture and Design at the New Jersey Institute of Technology. Allan received his Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Ohio Wesleyan University and his Master of Architecture from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University.
Todd W. Kent, PhD
Todd is Director of Teacher Certification and a lecturer for Princeton University’s Program in Teacher Preparation. He serves as secretary for the New Jersey Association of Colleges for Teacher Education and is a member of the Accreditation Panel for the Teacher Education Accreditation Council. He holds a Bachelor of Arts in Economics from Princeton University and earned his doctorate in educational evaluation from the University of Virginia.
Grecia serves as the Director of Recruitment in the Office of Admissions at The College of New Jersey. After earning her Bachelor of Arts in Communications from the State University of New York at New Paltz, Grecia later served as the university’s Assistant Dean of Admissions. She is a member of the New Jersey Association for College Admissions Counseling.
Stacy A. Denton
Stacy earned her Master of Science in Professional Counseling from Grand Canyon University and her Bachelor of Arts in Law & Justice Studies and Sociology with a concentration in African American Studies from Rowan University. She is the Director of Mercer County Community College’s Upward Bound program.