Program Leadership & Faculty
Luisa Boyarski, Ph.D.
Luisa Boyarski, Ph.D. is the Associate Director of the Center for Public & Nonprofit Leadership. She is involved in developing and executing the Center’s many executive education and customized programs, and representing the Center at Georgetown University and in the broader community. She recently researched and wrote Advancing Racial Equity Within Nonprofit Organizationsand edited the Center’s series on Leading in Times of Hyper Change. Luisa frequently conducts workshops and gives keynote addresses on NGO Management and High Impact NGOs to international delegations, including trainings in China, Colombia, Czech Republic, Hungary, Mongolia, Panama, Romania, and St. Vincent. She has also co-taught an undergraduate course on Philanthropy and Social Change. Prior to working at CPNL, she was the Executive Director of a D.C.-based nonprofit, working on global warming prevention with Arctic indigenous people. She currently leads a coalition of grassroots groups in Virginia, representing over 10,000 citizens. Luisa received her Ph.D. in Comparative Government from Georgetown University, with a research focus on the role of nonprofit coalitions in public policy advocacy.
Gary Bass, Ph.D.
Gary D. Bass, Ph.D. has been the Executive Director of the Bauman Foundation in Washington, D.C. since 2011 and an affiliated professor at Georgetown University’s McCourt School of Public Policy for more than a decade. At the Bauman Foundation he focuses on democracy issues, including voting rights, census, redistricting, economic justice, and government accountability. He founded and, for twenty-eight years, directed OMB Watch, a nonprofit organization promoting greater government accountability, transparency, and increased citizen participation in public policy decisions, which merged with Project On Government Oversight in 2016. An expert on federal budgetary, program management, regulatory and information policy issues, Gary has published extensively, testified before Congress, appeared on national television, and presented to groups across the country. In his role at OMB Watch, he is credited with leading numerous campaigns against federal regulatory attacks, the silencing of nonprofit advocacy, and unfair government spending cuts to those in need. He is also known for efforts to utilize information technologies to strengthen government transparency and increase nonprofit advocacy. He has received numerous awards, served on various boards of nonprofit organizations, and participated in multiple federal government committees. Prior to OMB Watch, Gary worked for the Human Services Information Center and the U.S. Council for the International Year of Disabled Persons. Gary earned his doctorate from The University of Michigan.
Bea Boccalandro is founder and president of VeraWorks, a global consulting firm that helps companies design, implement and measure corporate involvement in societal causes, including supporting successful business-nonprofit partnerships and conducting social impact measurement. Her work includes helping Save the Children, USAID, FedEx, HP, PwC and other organizations measure social impact. Bea focuses her corporate work on “job purposing,” defined as the management practice of heightening employee engagement, performance and wellbeing through workplace opportunities to support societal causes. She authors the Job Purposing Blog (BeaBoccalandro.com), is a frequent keynote speaker and is leading the UN’s IMPACT 2030 effort to measure the impact of corporate volunteering on the Sustainable Development Goals.
Cheryl Clarke is the Chief Executive Officer for the National Visionary Leadership Project (NVLP), a nonprofit organization housed at the American Folklife Center of the Library of Congress that preserves and collects video recorded oral histories of extraordinary African American elders to create professional development for K-12 teachers and curriculum support materials. Prior to joining NVLP in 2008, Cheryl worked at the Federal Home Loan Mortgage Corporation (Freddie Mac) for 25 years serving in several senior management positions, including senior director of the Freddie Mac Foundation Investments and Community Programs, director of communications in Community Relations, director of Diversity, and director of Human Resources and Business Support Services in the Atlanta, Dallas and Northeast operations. In these roles she strengthened organizational capacity, led high-performing teams, developed and conducted competency and skills-based training for staff and management, created and directed the corporate diversity office and directed the human resource, facilities and financial and administration operations in the regional and headquarters operations. Cheryl provides management consulting and training to nonprofits including AARP, INROADS, SMYAL, Family Matters of Greater Washington, and the Executive Leadership Council. She is a graduate of the American University in Washington, DC with a BA in Psychology.
Michael Gellman, CPA, CGMA
A. Michael Gellman, CPA, CGMA, is an independent Fiscal and Financial Strategist for nonprofit organizations and a founding principal partner for Fiscal Strategies 4 Nonprofits, LLC, (FS4N) where the primary focus is helping new and legacy organizations build and achieve a sustainable and financially healthy future. Mike is also the co-founder of Sustainability Education 4 Nonprofits (SE4N), an open-access website for fiscal, financial, legal, and governance information to assist nonprofit organizations with sustainability challenges. He is a former twenty-year shareholder for Rubino & Company, Chartered, CPAs, and Consultants. Mike has more than thirty-five years of experience in nonprofit fiscal, financial, and accounting systems through working as a chief financial and management consultant. He focuses on specialized management and advisory services for trade and professional associations, publicly supported charities, and endowment-based foundations. He has conducted numerous seminars and has written articles on budgeting, reserve and investment policies, financial management, fiscal sustainability, leading economic indicators for nonprofits, and the impact on governance, transparency, and accountability. Mike teaches courses and has made presentations for numerous groups including Georgetown University, American Society of Association Executives (ASAE), the Washington, D.C. Mayor’s Office, D.C. Pro Bono Bar Center, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Institute for Organization Management (IOM), and United Way agencies, and many others. He was president of the Greater Washington Society of CPAs. Mike has also served on the Finance & Administration Section Council of the American Society of Association Executives and currently serves on various nonprofit boards.
Erica Greeley is the Vice President of Economic Mobility at Feeding America. Feeding America is the national network of 200 food banks that, before COVID, distributed over 4 billion pounds of food to 46 million people through a web of 60,000 local agencies. Today, they are navigating and responding to unprecedented need. Erica leads the Empower Strategy, with the goal of increasing the long-term financial wellbeing of households facing hunger. Their approach is to develop partnerships at the intersection of the charitable food system and related domains, such as workforce and financial health. Prior to Feeding America, Erica held several senior positions at Independent Sector (IS), the national leadership forum for charities and foundations, where she led major projects to understand drivers of success across the nonprofit community and map nonprofit networks. In her role as Vice President of Networks, she oversaw IS membership and engagement. In addition, Erica served as the Deputy Director for the National Council of Nonprofits, an organization representing over 20,000 local organizations, with responsibility for programs, public policy, and communications. She began her career running afterschool programs for girls in under-resourced neighborhoods in San Jose, CA. Erica is an adjunct faculty member at Georgetown University’s Center for Public and Nonprofit Leadership. She holds a master’s in Public Policy from the McCourt School of Public Policy at Georgetown and a B.A. from Wesleyan University.
Mirsad Jacevic is Vice Chair of Inclusive Security and has been integral to the conceptualization and the work of the organization since its founding in 1999. A native of Sarajevo, he attributes his inspiration to his experience supporting women peacebuilders working to stop the bloodshed and promote reconciliation in war-torn Bosnia and Herzegovina. Now, after two decades of finding practical solutions to seemingly intractable conflicts in more than 40 regions, he leads Inclusive Security’s effort to promote lasting, systemic change around the world by developing national action plans that ensure women’s leadership in peace and security affairs. Before joining Inclusive Security, Miki directed the Emerging Leaders Project at the State of the World Forum and managed reintegration efforts for child soldiers at Search for Common Ground. He teaches at American University, Georgetown University, and the School for International Training, with a special focus on transitional justice.
Monisha Kapila is the Founder and CEO of ProInspire, a nonprofit that activates leaders at all levels to accelerate equity at the individual, organizational, and systemic levels. Rooted in the belief that leadership and equity are key to the systems change needed to maximize social impact, they design and deliver cohort programs, fellowships, workshops, coaching, research, and convenings. ProInspire is a co-founder of Equity in the Center and the Impact Fellowships Summit. The Chronicle of Philanthropy named ProInspire one of “7 Nonprofits to Watch” in 2015. Monisha previously worked for Capital One, Accion, CARE, and Arthur Andersen. She is a Board Member of the National Human Services Assembly and Chairs the Board of AchieveMission. Monisha has written about equity & inclusion, leadership, and career paths in Stanford Social Innovation Review, Chronicle of Philanthropy, the Huffington Post, and other publications. She has been recognized as a Chronicle of Philanthropy’s 40 Under 40, an HBS Leadership Fellow, an American Express NGen Fellow, and a National Urban Fellows America’s Leaders of Change. Monisha has an MBA from Harvard Business School, where she received the Dean’s Award, and a BBA from the University of Michigan. She is an executive coach and received her Certificate in Leadership Coaching from Georgetown University.
Valeria Lassiter is the founder and CEO of Lassiter & Associates, LLC, a management consulting firm specializing in strategic planning, communications, fundraising, and strategic partnerships. Her clients include nonprofit organizations, corporations, and foundations. Valeria has worked in government public affairs, community-based organizations, and corporate philanthropy. Since 2003, she has served as the lead instructor for Resource Development with Georgetown University’s Nonprofit Management Executive Certificate Program. Valeria has coached and trained over 2,000 nonprofit leaders for various organizations including The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, The Case Foundation, JP Morgan Chase Foundation, and Wells Fargo Regional Foundation. Valeria holds a Bachelor of Communications from East Carolina University, a Master of Divinity from Colgate Rochester Divinity School, and an MBA from Babson College. She is vice-chair of the Board of Directors for the National Education Association (NEA) Foundation and a member of the East Carolina University Foundation Board of Directors.
Tram Nguyen is an award-winning activist and community leader who helped found New Virginia Majority in 2007. Tram currently serves as New Virginia Majority’s Co-Executive Director, where she leads multi-racial, multi-issue campaigns using large-scale civic engagement, community organizing, advocacy, leadership development, and strategic communications. Under her leadership, New Virginia Majority has mobilized over 1.5 million Virginians – immigrants, people of color, women, low-income working people, and youth. Prior to joining New Virginia Majority, Tram organized and advocated on behalf of survivors of some of the country’s most devastating disasters, including the World Trade Center Rescue and Recovery Program at Mount Sinai Medical Center and organizing tens of thousands of Vietnamese immigrants throughout the Gulf Coast whose lives were devastated by Hurricane Katrina. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Eugene and Agnes E. Meyer Foundation, whose mission is to invest in solutions that build equitable communities. Tram is an alumna of Barnard College, a 2011 Lead the Way Fellow of the NYU Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service, and a 2012 Executive Fellow at the Center for Progressive Leadership.
Veena Pankaj is the Director of Innovation Network and works closely with funders and nonprofits to answer questions around program design, implementation, and impact. She is particularly adept at systematically applying a diversity of frameworks and approaches to assess levels of influence and progress towards advocacy and policy change efforts. Veena offers a learning orientation that draws on a combination of principles from emergent learning and participatory evaluation to engage stakeholders in collaborative learning engagements designed to promote shared sensemaking, generate insights, and advance collective learning. Her experience ranges across topical areas such as health equity, civic engagement, and social justice. In her work with the Kansas Health Foundation, Veena led the evaluation of their multi-site, community-driven efforts to advance health and health equity. Through her evaluation work, she has developed a keen interest in facilitative learning processes that enhance stakeholder understanding and use of evaluation data. Veena received her MA in Social Science from the University of Chicago and her BA in Sociology from the University of Virginia. She has also completed a certification in organization development through Georgetown University and received a master certification in Emergent Learning in January 2020.
Michela M. Perrone, Ph.D.
Michela M. Perrone, Ph.D., is the President of MMP Associates, a consulting firm established in 1993 to support the successful development and increased effectiveness of organizations, boards, and CEOs in the United States and Europe. She is a Senior Associate for Board Source, and an instructor for the Center for Nonprofit Advancement. Previously, Michela was the President and CEO of the Joseph P. Kennedy Institute. She consults with hundreds of organizations in the U.S. and abroad in nonprofit governance, board and leadership development, and strategic planning. Michela was a Fulbright Scholar and earned a B.A. degree at Macalester College in St. Paul Minnesota and a Ph.D. from the Union Institute and University.
Maria Posey has over 10 years experience leading program and evaluation development with different nonprofit organizations. She brings expertise in strategic planning, business development, internal training and knowledge management as well as impact measurement, continuous improvement and learning strategies. In her current role as a Director with Third Sector Capital Partners (new window), a nonprofit advisory firm, Maria is responsible for developing new projects and initiatives with government clients – many of which involve strengthening data systems for better collection, reporting, analysis and use. Maria has worked across a variety of sectors and issue areas for international as well as national organizations. Some of these include poverty reduction, countering human trafficking, workforce development, after-school tutoring, re-entry, health systems strengthening, peacebuilding, and youth and women’s empowerment. Maria holds an M.A from Uppsala University in Peace and Conflict Research and a B.A from Wellesley College in International Relations with a concentration in Political Science.
Peter Reilly, J.D., LL.M
Peter Reilly, J.D., LL.M. is Associate Professor of Law at Texas A&M University School of Law in Fort Worth, Texas. His past scholarship has focused on servant leadership, emotional intelligence, and theories of influence and persuasion within the context of negotiation. From 2002-2005, Peter was a Hewlett Fellow in Conflict Resolution at Georgetown University Law Center during which time he also began teaching within the University’s Center for Public and Nonprofit Leadership. Prior to the fellowship, Peter worked for seven years as Attorney-Advisor at the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights in Washington, D.C., an independent, bipartisan fact-finding agency of the executive branch. Before law school, he worked on Capitol Hill as legislative assistant to U.S. Representative Les AuCoin of Oregon, handling human rights, veterans’ affairs, and telecommunications issues. Peter received his B.A. from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, his J.D. from Harvard Law School, and his LL.M. (in Advocacy) from Georgetown University Law Center.
Rashad Robinson is the Executive Director of Color Of Change, the nation’s largest online racial justice organization. Driven by over one million members, Color Of Change builds power for Black people and Black communities, moving decision makers in corporations and government to create a more human and less hostile world for Black people and all people. Recently, Color Of Change developed successful strategies to hold local district attorneys accountable, and target corporate enablers of the destructive right wing agenda and policies of the current White House. Rashad helped Color Of Change lead winning campaigns forcing over 100 corporations to stop funding ALEC, frame and win net neutrality as a major civil rights issue, and force Pat Buchanan and Bill O’Reilly off the air. Successful Color Of Change strategies have been profiled in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Fast Company and The Hollywood Reporter, and on CNN, NPR, PBS and MSNBC. In 2015, Fast Company named Color Of Change the 6th Most Innovative Company in the world, and in 2016, the Stanford Social Innovation Review profiled Color Of Change. Rashad is the proud recipient of awards from organizations as varied as ADCOLOR, the United Church of Christ and the Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Foundation. He serves on the boards of Demos and the Hazen Foundation.
John Trybus, APR
John D. Trybus, APR is a social strategist on a mission to help impact organizations embrace the blur—between sectors, functions, departments and human strengths—for good. He leads and manages Georgetown University’s Center for Social Impact Communication, a renowned research and action center working to ignite the power of responsible marketers, communicators, fundraisers, and journalists to combine their strengths within an organization in order to drive societal change. John has served as the personal advisor to world-famous chimpanzee expert Dr. Jane Goodall, traveling with her on a perpetual 300 days-per-year global advocacy tour. He has also been a strategy lead within the British Embassy and a social innovation consultant to Tiffany & Co., L’Oreal Paris, Coca-Cola, Women for Women International and other clients at Waggener Edstrom Worldwide. John is an adjunct professor of Social Impact at Georgetown University, and a highly sought after speaker and trainer.
Shereen Williams is a partner at Education Board Partners (EBP), the only national nonprofit organization dedicated exclusively to strengthening governance in education nonprofits. She leverages her strong coaching and facilitation skills to help education leaders across the country navigate nonprofit governance. Before joining EBP, Shereen served as the Senior Director of Community Partnerships and, later, Special Assistant to the Chancellor at DC Public Schools. In that role, she managed relationships with strategic partners that resulted in tremendous resources for students and teachers across the district. Shereen holds a bachelor’s degree in Political Science from the University of Michigan and a master’s in Urban Planning from New York University.
David Williamson has served as the Managing Director of the consulting firm Bernuth & Williamson since 2002, serving nonprofits, foundations, and academic clients from around the world in the areas of strategy, change management, and organizational effectiveness. He previously served for 13 years in senior management positions at The Nature Conservancy, including six years as Director of Communications (1997-2002) and as Vice President for Marketing. In addition to David’s long association with Georgetown University’s Center for Public and Nonprofit Leadership, he has served as an adjunct professor of Business Administration at the Georgetown University McDonough School of Business and has lectured on nonprofit management at Harvard Business School, Stanford Business School, and the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University. While serving as a visiting Senior Fellow at the Aspen Institute, David undertook pioneering research in capacity building in nonprofits and measuring nonprofit impact. This work, which first appeared in the McKinsey Quarterly, has been widely cited in academic literature. He also served as a Fellow at the Salzburg Seminar and with the Korea Development Institute in Seoul. A summa cum laude graduate of Princeton University, David has also previously held leadership positions on the board of directors of four nonprofit institutions.