Group of GirlTREKkers jumping simultaneously

About Us

Our Team

GirlTREK is structured to deliver social impact through service and volunteerism.

Deeply inspired by the Civil Rights Movement, our operational structure uses three key levers: a highly-trained and incredibly talented volunteer corps of local volunteers, a distinguished board of directors, and a small and smart central leadership team. Our national leadership team includes national staff and the board of directors.

Staff

Tanya Morgan Dixon, M.Ed

Co-Founder & Chief Executive Officer

Morgan leads The Street Team at GirlTREK and leads the overall strategy for the organization and manages the senior leadership team. She develops partnerships, policy, culture, and programs. As a co-founder Morgan also serves as a spokesperson and fundraiser. Prior to GirlTREK Morgan served on the frontlines of education reform where she served as Director of New School Development and led the start-up of five public schools in collaboration with the NYC Department of Education with support from The Gates Foundation. With Co-Founder Vanessa Garrison, Morgan was named among the top 1% of social innovators in the world with fellowships from Harvard, Ashoka, Echoing Green and the Aspen Institute. They have two viral TED talks and are the co-hosts of Black-History Bootcamp, GirlTREK’s award-wining podcast. Morgan studied Political Science and American Studies at University of Southern California and earned a Master of Education in Public Policy, Admiration and Leadership at Seton Hall.

Vanessa Garrison

Co-Founder & Chief Growth Officer

Vanessa leads The Storytelling Team at GirlTREK where she builds brand, marketing and communications strategy, forges corporate partnerships and produces products and brandpromoting events to grow membership, generate revenue and inspire behavior change. As a co-founder she also serves as a spokesperson and fundraiser. Prior to GirlTREK, Vanessa led digital media at Turner Broadcasting for some of the world’s most recognizable brands including CNN, TNT and Sports Illustrated. The Co-Founders have been featured on The Today Show, CNN, in The Washington Post, The New York Times and named a “Health Hero” by Essence Magazine. Vanessa also spent time working to serve formally incarcerated women with Our Place, DC and serves on the board of The Essie Justice Group. She also sits on the board of Rails to Trails. Vanessa studied World Arts and Culture at UCLA and was a social innovation fellow at Harvard University

Kallima Clarke

Chief Financial Officer & Chief Operating Officer

Kallima leads The Sustainability Team at GirlTREK and leads finance and operations. In finance, Kallima supervises accounting, controllership, financial planning and analysis, audit, and treasury. In operations, Kallima leads impact management, compliance, human resources, internal systems, and technology. Kallima works with the growth team to support new ventures with business planning.

Prior to GirlTREK, Kallima spent 15 years leading finance and operations at Fortune 500 companies including, GE, IBM, and ESPN, where she led the Monday Night Football account.

In 2019, Kallima transitioned to Strategy and Consulting roles at Accenture, one of the world’s largest IT Services & Consulting firms. It was here she was able to leverage her extensive financial planning & analysis experience to focus on bold, large-scale finance transformations at some of the largest fortune 100 companies in the world.

Kallima holds a Bachelors of Science in Accounting & Finance from Syracuse University Martin J. Whitman’s School of Management and an MBA in Finance from the University of Connecticut

Ayanna Taylor

Chief of Staff

Ayanna leads the Talent, Development, Organizational Culture and Strategy, and Program Innovation functions at GirlTREK. In collaboration with the CEO, she oversees external civic and philanthropic partnerships, talent recruitment, strategy implementation, new program development and internal systems and processes that enhance the employee experience and quality of GirlTREK’s programming.

Prior to GirlTREK, Ayanna was a pioneer in education reform with a nearly 30-year career in K-16 education as a classroom teacher, professor, textbook publisher, and education consultant. Most recently she was the VP of Program and Innovation at a nonprofit supporting Black teachers in the US South and served for 9 years as a Clinical Associate Professor of English Education at NYU Steinhardt School of Education, Culture, and Human Development, where she continues to serve as an adjunct professor. In 2016, Ayanna launched Access Educational Advisors, LLC, an educational consulting firm. The diversity of clients and projects she worked on through her consulting company, along with varied professional experiences helped Ayanna hone the skills and expertise she now uses in her role as GirlTREK’s first Chief of Staff.

Ayanna sits on the board of NJ LEEP, a college access program in Newark, NJ and the Somerset (NJ) County Youth Services Commission. Ayanna holds a Bachelor of Arts in English Literature from The University of Pennsylvania, a Masters in Public Administration from Rutgers University, and an Ed.D. in Leadership and Innovation from NYU. She is a proud member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated and The Links, Incorporated. As a wife and mother to two adult children and one teenager, Ayanna is grateful to have the opportunity to serve Black women through GirlTREK at this point in her personal and professional life.

Josh Nesbit

Chief Technology Officer

Inspired to contribute to the next chapter of the Civil Rights Movement, Josh Nesbit joined GirlTREK as its first Chief Technology Officer. Prior to joining GirlTREK, Josh was an Entrepreneur-in-Residence and Technologist-in-Residence at Emerson Collective. In these roles, he harnessed technology for community organizing and advised Hope Credit Union, the largest Black-owned credit union in the US. He also served as Senior Advisor to the Community Health Acceleration Partnership and developed a mutual aid platform with doulas and other birth workers. Previously, Josh co-founded the technology nonprofit Medic and served as its CEO for 11 years before transitioning to the organization’s board. While leading Medic, Josh worked alongside community health workers and a global team to improve health in the hardest-to-reach communities. Today, Medic’s open-source software helps 50,000 community health workers as they care for more than 25 million people in Africa and Asia.

Josh is an Ashoka Fellow, PopTech Social Innovation Fellow, Echoing Green Fellow, and Rainer Arnhold Fellow. He served on the Board of Directors for Developing Radio Partners and IntraHealth International. Josh was selected by Devex as one of 40 Under 40 Leaders in International Development, received the Truman Award for Innovation from the Society for International Development, and was named by Forbes as one of the world’s 30 top social entrepreneurs. In 2014, Medic received a Skoll Award for Social Entrepreneurship. In 2016, Josh accepted a Muhammad Ali Humanitarian Award. Josh studied global health and bioethics at Stanford University, where his qualitative research focused on pediatric HIV/AIDS in Malawi.

Tyreen Taylor

Executive Assistant To The Chief Growth Officer

Marcie Thomas

Director Of Digital Engagement

Marcie L. Thomas is the Director of Digital Engagement at GirlTREK, where she manages our social media spaces and supports the Storytelling Team. Before joining our team, she worked in the automotive, food packaging, and insurance industries. She continues to serve as the founder and leader of Brown Girl Collective, a digital space for Black women.

A long-time Trekker, Marcie’s first official role was as the City Captain for Savannah, GA. She has also been a Neighborhood Captain, Crew Leader, Joy Brigade volunteer at the Stress Protest, and most recently, Special Impact Coach for her sorority, Sigma Gamma Rho.

Originally from Cleveland, Ohio, Marcie spent seven years in the United States Air Force. While in the military, she earned a BBA in Marketing from Campbell University and a Master’s in Management and Human Resources Development from Webster University. She also has a Master’s Degree in Interactive Marketing from Walsh College.

When she’s not serving the women of GirlTREK, Marcie spends her time volunteering across the Atlanta metro area, reading, painting, creating playlists, attending concerts, tending to her plant babies, visiting museums, or planning new adventures.

Deondra Wilkins

Lead Artist and Art Director

Deondra Wilkins, MA, is a registered Art Therapist and Artist located in Virginia. Prior to her current position as the Lead Artist and Art Director for GirlTREK, Deondra worked as a full-time Art Therapist at a military installation. In her own art practice, Deondra uses digital drawing, painting, and drawing materials that express her experience as a Black woman.

Hailey Darby

Director Of Program & Community Partnerships

Hailey joins the GirlTREK national team as the National Field Director and West Coast Regional Coach. With a passion for working with the younger generation, Hailey uses her faith in Jesus to be a guiding force of justice for Black women and girls and looks forward to building GirlTREK’s presence across the West Coast and caring for our GirlTREK members across the nation. Since joining GirlTREK as a volunteer in 2016 with her mom and two sisters, Hailey has truly experienced what happens when Black women walk. Through her volunteer work with GirlTREK, Hailey has climbed mountains, both literally and figuratively, towards her own healing. Women being transformed, families being renewed, and communities being ignited is what she deeply desires for all black women to experience.

Hailey currently resides in Houston, Texas, but her Southwest Louisiana roots follow her wherever she goes. Hailey is most joyful when spending time with her sisters and taking walks along Louisiana’s country roads.

Carla E. Harris

VP of Member Care

Carla joined the GirlTREK national team in 2017 as National Director of Volunteer Support and now serves as our VP of Member Care where she ensures, as the largest and most inspiring movement for Black women’s health, that GirlTREK is caring for and providing world-class service to our awesome staff, valued members, dedicated volunteers, community, allies, partners, and friends.

Before joining our team, she served in an inspiring volunteer role for 2 years as GirlTREK’s City Captain in Atlanta where she inspired a state-wide takeover and led the growth of the entire state of Georgia.

Carla brings with her over 25 years of customer service experience. Her front-line experience as a committed volunteer, work as Sony’s Customer Service Manager, and serving on an elite leadership team managing, supporting, and providing specialized care to Avon Products Global Million Dollar sales representatives has equipped her with the highest level of customer excellence, care, and customer service experience that is needed in this role to elevate our org-wide culture as a leader in community care and customer service.

In her role, she develops and consults with other members of the leadership team to build and implement GirlTREK’s org-wide care strategy and manages all aspects of community care, and support.

Carla manages a beautiful and brilliant team of regional and state coaches whose role is to support local leaders across the nation in our quest to take over “1000” of the Blackest neighborhoods across the nation. She is responsible for the overall performance of our regional and state coaching staff and the processes necessary to achieve the highest levels of success.

Carla adores her 4 adult children and loves traveling, walking, cooking, dancing, painting, crafting, and gardening. She is from Cleveland, Ohio but resides in Atlanta, Georgia with her husband of over 36 years.

Her GirlTREK superhero name is “Cosmic Carla,” and her superpower is being a thoughtful and caring leader.

Siobhan Ollivierre

Special ASST. To Ceo

Siobhan’s 15 years of experience in Human resources creating, updating, and applying all HR policies and company guidelines while leading the day-to-day HR support focusing on employee relations, investigations, training, and coaching along with her 6 years of experience as a dedicated GirlTREK organizer in Harlem, New York supporting the movement as a volunteer has uniquely set her apart to serve in an inspiring dual role on the GirlTREK National Team.

In her role as the Executive Assistant to the CEO, Siobhan manages the day-to-day partner/client/colleague relations at GirlTREK. She efficiently manages inquiries and offers support where needed to ensure smooth and efficient operations for the office of the CEO.

In her role as the MidAtlantic Regional Coach for Delaware, Maryland, Washington DC, and Virginia, she skillfully manages a team of leaders who serve as state coaches across her region which includes the selection, onboarding, budgeting, time management, organizing walks in strategic areas and building local partnerships just to name a few.

In addition to her love of hosting training treks, give back laps and justice treks, she enjoys hiking, walking, reading, studying history and traveling.Siobhan currently resides in Baltimore, Maryland and is a MPA graduate of Brigham Young University and received her BS in Sociology.

Cynthia Thompson

VP of Organizing

Cynthia Thompson is the National Field Director, with a special emphasis in Black Churches. Cynthia has been advocating, championing, organizing, and serving Black women and girls since 2013 with GirlTREK.

Cynthia is a member of Greater Bethlehem Temple Apostolic Faith Church of Jackson, MS, where her pastor is Bishop Robert N. Fortson, Sr. She is a finance coach and coordinator for her church’s Finance Ministry. She is also the ministry leader of the “Fitness for His Glory” Ministry, the church’s Fitness Ministry. Cynthia is also a community organizer and activist in Jackson, Mississippi, and has served on the Jackson Public School Board as a Trustee Board Member since October 2020; and she has worked with various School’s PTSAs & Booster Clubs. Cynthia is happily married to Elder Emon Thompson, Sr.; they have been married since 1992 and are the proud parents of 7 children and two grandchildren (5 daughters, two sons, a daughter in love, and two granddaughters). She currently serves with her husband in several Neighborhood & Homeowner Associations and ministry at their church with the media, finance, and fitness ministries.

Cynthia is a graduate of Jackson State University with a BS in Psychology. Her work history, over the years, has included working as a Children & Youth Behavior Specialist, Child Protection Social Worker, Adult Protection Worker, Assistant Communication Director, and Administrative Office Assistant.

Cynthia wears many hats and finds joy and fulfillment in them all. One thing she is most proud of is that she is an active trekker and the transformation trekking has made in her life personally and her family’s lives! She uses trekking as meditation, prayer, and inner reflection time; it is her fellowship and inspiration time and time of balancing, healing, and renewing! She treks daily, she treks to live, and live life more abundantly!!! She is excited about empowering others to have this same success in expanding the joy that grows for each woman who develops the habit of walking as part of their self-care.

Morgan E. Dixon

Director Of Business Operations

Also known as ‘Rev. Morgan’, ‘MD’ joins the GirlTREK national team as the Director of Business Operations.  After over two decades in Church Administration, MD brings an attention to detail fueled by a passion for excellence, and commitment to the Black community.  Since becoming a GirlTrekker in 2012 as a way to personally reconnect to her own self-care, MD has worn many hats leading winning church teams and inspiring others to join the movement and prioritize their own health.  She has witnessed women’s lives be empowered and transformed simply by walking.

She received her Bachelor of Arts in Music Education from Morris Brown College, a Master of Arts, Entertainment & Media Management from Columbia College Chicago and a Master of Divinity from McCormick Theological Seminary.  She is an active member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.

MD is a Midwesterner and resides in Chicago.  She is an avid music lover, foodie, sports fan and sunshine seeker!

Chyna Johnson

Director of Technology Solutions and Innovation

Chyna-Lloyd Nicole Johnson serves as Director of Data Management at GirlTREK. She joined GirlTREK in 2017 as the 2017 Summer Fellow while completing her graduate degree at Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. In her role as a summer fellow, Chyna worked on the planning and execution of GirlTREK’s annual national church walking challenge PrayerTrek.

Today, she is responsible for the overall management of GirlTREK internal systems, information management, and administrative program support that supports an effective and high-functioning national staff.

Chyna is originally from Columbus, Ohio. She received her Bachelors of Arts in Chemistry and African & African American Studies from Berea College in Berea, Kentucky and earned her Master of Public Health from Tulane School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. She now resides in the Atlanta area.

Nyra Govan

Program Manager - Youth Engagement

Nyra Govan joins GirlTREK as the College Engagement Program Manager. With a focus on encouraging healthy behavior change in the lives of college-aged women, Nyra uses her passion for fitness and health to inspire and welcome young women nationwide to join the GirlTrek movement. She is a recent graduate of Claflin University where she earned a degree in Human Performance and Recreation. During her matriculation at Claflin, she was a member of the Alice Carson Tisdale Honors College, a McNair Scholar, and a GirlTrek HBCU Fellow.

 

In addition to her powerful work at GirlTREK, Nyra has recently accepted an opportunity to obtain her Master’s in Public Health with a concentration in Physical Activity and Health. In her free time, Nyra is committed to providing health and fitness opportunities to her local community. She also serves as the Founder and CEO of Vigor Figure Fitness, which she founded in 2020.

Roni Zeiger

Director of Product Development

Roni brings his passion for building community-centered technology to GirlTREK as its first Director of Product Development. He recently served as Head of Health Strategy at Facebook, where his work focused on improving the peer support provided in health-related Facebook Groups and on enabling global health NGOs to utilize Facebook’s tools to disseminate high quality health information during the COVID-19 pandemic. Prior to Facebook, he was the co-founder and CEO of Smart Patients, a software company that builds online peer support programs for patients and caregivers. Previously, he was Chief Health Strategist at Google. Roni also practiced medicine for nearly two decades, in both urgent care and primary care settings. He earned his MD at Stanford University and completed his internal medicine residency at the University of California, San Francisco. He has served as a clinical instructor of medicine at Stanford University School of Medicine and received a master’s degree in biomedical informatics from Stanford.

Board of Directors

Tulaine Montgomery, CEO, New Profit

Board Chair

Tulaine is an entrepreneur, educator, writer, organizer, and currently serves as CEO of New Profit, a philanthropic organization that supports high-impact social entrepreneurs creating solutions to systemic challenges in America by leveraging their proximity to the genius, assets, and vision of the communities they serve. She was a key architect of New Profit’s proximity strategy, a $100M effort launched in 2018 to address the systemic funding gap faced by Black, Latinx, Indigenous, rural, and other overlooked social entrepreneurs. She also led initiatives at New Profit focused on strengthening pathways to opportunity for underserved youth, driving resources and support to entrepreneurs impacted by the American legal system, and building a more diverse, equitable, and inclusive organization and philanthropic sector. Tulaine serves as the Board Chair of GirlTREK, the largest health nonprofit dedicated to Black women and girls in the United States, and is the host and executive producer of Say More with Tulaine Montgomery, a podcast that brings together influential leaders from different identities, generations, and sectors for radically candid, action-oriented, and joyful conversations around how we can design and build a thriving society.

US Surgeon General Regina Benjamin

Board Member

Dr. Benjamin served as the 18th Surgeon General of the United States. She is currently the Chair of Public Health Sciences at Xavier University. She is a recipient of the MacArthur Genius Award, NAACP Image Award, Kellogg National Fellowship, Nelson Mandela Award for Health and Human Rights, Rockefeller Next Generation Leader Award and has served on the boards of Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, Kaiser Family Foundation, and Morehouse School.

Dr. Gary Bennett

Board Member

Dr. Bennett is a professor at Duke University and directs Duke’s Global Digital Health Science Center and Obesity Prevention Program – where he designs, tests, and disseminates industry-leading obesity treatments for the primary care setting and digital health. He has authored more than 100 papers on the social determinants of obesity & the effectiveness of intervention strategies.

Chaula Gupta

Board Member

Chaula is VP of Program Investments at The Chicago Public Education Fund. She was founding Managing Director of Social Entrepreneurship & Innovation Initiative at Teach For America; launched a new Social Innovation Award for early-stage seed investments, created design-thinking trainings for educators, and coached alumni entrepreneurs to raise more than $10 million collectively to launch new social ventures.

Rita Johnson Greene

Board Member

Rita Johnson-Greene leads the US Commercial Operations team at Spark Therapeutics. She is a successful business leader with 15 years of progressive finance, resource allocation, sales and strategic business planning experience with several world class organizations.

Rita began her career in strategic consulting within Accenture ‘s pharmaceutical practice and developed business cases and financial models for new business ventures. She went on to manage the finances of AstraZeneca’s six billion dollar Nexium brand and served as a member of the Commercial Operations Leadership team.

Rita earned her MBA in Finance and Strategic Management from The Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania. Rita acquired her undergraduate degree in Electrical Computer engineering from Drexel University, where she met her husband of 14 years. They live in Drexel Hill, PA with their two daughters, Leah and Maya.

Qiana Conley

Board Member

Qiana began her career in music in 1999 at Epic Records in Promotions/A&R while contributing to album projects by Michael Jackson, Jennifer Lopez and B2K. In 2011, Qiana founded Cue the Creatives where she began Music Supervising on projects such as Nickelodeon’s How To Rock, Lifetime’s holiday feature Seasons of Love starring Taraji P. Henson, Gladys Knight & Method Man. Currently, Qiana is producing/directing “The Untitled TLC Documentary,” which follows the journey back to the music for the iconic pop girl group, after a 20-year lapse, as they take on the challenges of making their final album.

Serita Cox

Board Member

Serita is the Co-Founder & Chief Executive Officer of iFoster – where she brings her personal experience in foster care and her executive-level management experience leading and consulting both Silicon Valley Fortune 500 companies and organizations in the non-profit sector. Before launching iFoster, Serita provided strategic counsel to some of the largest philanthropic foundations and non-profit services for at-risk youth as a management consultant with the Bridgespan Group. Serita has been recognized as a White House Office of Social Innovation Citizen Innovator, an Echoing Green Fellow, and an American Leader of Change.

Deonta Wortham

Deonta leads the strategic direction and integration of RockHealth.org’s strategy alongside the organization’s CEO, Board, Initiative Leads, and team members. Deonta previously held portfolio investing, advisory, and field leadership positions at New Profit, a venture philanthropy fund, and academic research and accelerator management positions at Emory University’s Goizueta Business School. He has also served as a featured contributor to +Acumen, has published research in the Stanford Social Innovation Review, was a 2022 Aspen Ideas Health Fellow, and is an Advisory Committee Member to Impala. Deonta is a graduate of Manhattan College, where he received a B.A. in International Relations with minors in Economics and Philosophy.

Kathryn Schotthoefer

Kathryn Schotthoefer is an American film and television executive. She founded Original Media Ventures, a studio focused on developing film and TV projects from underrepresented creative voices. Previously of film studios such as Warner Bros, Twentieth Century Fox, and New Line Cinema, and former President of M&C Saatchi’s boutique creative agency Heavenspot, which partnered with major entertainment and lifestyle brand clients on integrated digital strategy, product launch strategy, social media strategy, social media marketing, social media management, product development, research & fan analysis, social CRM, and enterprise-level social strategy consulting.