Finalist Selection Judges

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Cheryl Carrier

Director, Ford Next Generation Learning

Cheryl Carrier directs Ford Next Generation Learning (Ford NGL), an education program of Ford Motor Company Fund, which is designed to engage educators, employers, and community to prepare students for college, career, and life. Currently, there are 20+ communities in the Ford NGL network.

Cheryl joined Ford in 1978 and has held various positions at Ford. Cheryl assisted Ford Executive Chairman William Clay Ford, Jr., for many years, including a special assignment with the Detroit Lions where she was responsible for developing human resource policy. Cheryl retired from Ford in December 2013 and has been retained by Ford to continue to manage Ford NGL.

Cheryl serves on the boards of the National Career Technical Education Foundation, National Career Academy Coalition; and Ford STEM Advisory Council.

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Aneesh Chopra

Co-Founder, Hunch Analytics; Former U.S. CTO

Aneesh Chopra is the co-founder and EVP of Hunch Analytics, a “hatchery” incubating ideas that improve the productivity of health and education markets, including NavHealth, an open data intelligence service.

From 2009-2012, he served as the first U.S. Chief Technology Officer with a focus on better public/private collaboration as described in his 2014 book, “Innovative State: How New Technologies can Transform Government.” In 2015, he served as the Walter Shorenstein Media and Democracy Fellow at Harvard Kennedy School. In 2011, he was named to Modern Healthcare’s list of the 100 Most Influential People in Healthcare and in 2008, to Government Technology magazine’s Top 25 in their Doers, Dreamers, and Drivers issue.

He is a Member of the Council on Virginia’s Future, earned his master’s degree in public policy from Harvard Kennedy School in 1997 and his bachelor’s degree from The Johns Hopkins University in 1994.

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Aarti Dhupelia

VP of Strategic Initiatives, National Louis University

Aarti Dhupelia is the Vice President of Strategic Initiatives at National Louis University, working to re-engineer undergraduate programming to make a high-quality and affordable bachelor’s degree more accessible to all. She formerly served as the Chief Officer for College and Career Success at Chicago Public Schools, where she worked to ensure that every student at every grade level is engaged, on-track and accelerating toward success in college, career and life. This included driving strategies around attendance and truancy, drop-out re-engagement, out-of-school time, social and emotional learning, college and career planning, and early college and career coursework. Before assuming this role, Ms. Dhupelia served in additional capacities at CPS including Deputy Chief of Staff for the CEO and Director of Career and Technical Education.

Prior to joining CPS, Ms. Dhupelia served as Manager at strategy consultancy Marakon Associates. She holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA from Northwestern University, and she is a graduate of the Broad Residency in Urban Education and the Leadership Greater Chicago Fellows Program.

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Donna Harris

Cofounder & CEO, 1776

Donna Harris is cofounder and CEO of 1776, a global incubator with campuses in Washington, DC, Northern Virginia, and San Francisco, and operating a venture capital fund making investments worldwide. Prior to launching 1776, Donna served as the Managing Director at the Startup America Partnership where, working in partnership with the White House, the Kauffman Foundation and the Case Foundation, she led the formation of entrepreneurial communities across the United States and integrated them into a national startup ecosystem. Prior to joining Startup America, Donna was Vice Chair of Interpoint Group, a government markets, government relations, and public affairs strategy and management firm. She was also previously Founder and CEO of Kinderstreet, which sold software in the education, sports, and recreation markets. She was also Vice President at Centromine, a provider of web-based clinical and fiscal systems in the Health and Human Services industry.

Donna serves as a Trustee of the Federal City Council, is on the Board of Directors of the Global Entrepreneurship Network and is also an Entrepreneur-In-Residence at Georgetown University. She is also an active angel investor as a cofounder of K Street Capital. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Central Michigan University and MBA with distinction from The University of Michigan Ross School of Business.

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Cory Notestine

Counseling & Postsecondary Coordinator, Colorado Springs School District 11

For the past seven years, Cory Notestine has worked as a professional school counselor in both urban and rural settings in North Carolina and Colorado. Through collaborative efforts, and cooperative leadership he’s developed two ASCA recognized comprehensive programs that have led to increased student outcomes.

His work with students has been honored by the North Carolina School Counselor Association, and the Colorado School Counselor Association, as Secondary School Counselor of the Years in 2011 and 2013. The American School Counselor Association mostly recently named him the 2015 National School Counselor of the Year.

Cory also provides instruction and supervision as an Adjunct Instructor in the Counselor Education Department at Adams State University, and has received degrees from the University of Kentucky in Psychology and from Gonzaga University where he completed his Masters in School Counseling. Cory currently serves as the Counseling and Postsecondary Coordinator for Colorado Springs School District 11, where he shares his passion for creating systemic change.