▶Artavia Berry, Executive Director
Artavia Berry is a proven leader in the non-profit sector who is known for her passionate and visionary leadership style, dedication to youth development issues, and accomplishments with start-up and turnaround non-profit initiatives in urban communities. She brings to SSL a unique combination of business development, fund development and non-profit management skills which has yielded excellent fundraising results, sound program performance improvements, and operational effectiveness at each point of service.
During her first executive appointment at Chicago Scores, Artavia expanded a start-up program to serve over 300 students, and diversified the funding portfolio by creating flagship special events and cultivating a donor base of individual, corporate, foundation and celebrity supports such as Stephen King, Amy Tan and Scott Turow. At Christ the King Jesuit College Prep, Artavia served as Director of Corporate Work Study where she attracted new donors and retained 99% of the corporate donor base, representing several million dollars in operating revenue for the school.
Over the past 19 years, Artavia has also served in executive roles at LaSalle Senior Center, Building with Books, Public Allies Chicago and Meals on Wheels where she has managed multi-million dollar budgets, managed a staff of 50-plus employees and over 100 volunteers, and interfaced with top-tier, C-Level leaders from hundreds of corporations and foundations throughout the greater Chicago area.
Reared in Chicago, Artavia received her Bachelors of Arts in Sociology from Loyola University Chicago and was trained in non-profit management and community development at Public Allies Chicago under the tutelage of Michelle Obama. She has also earned a Bachelors of Arts in Theology and a Masters of Divinity from Grace Christian Seminary, working with such notable individuals as Rev. Dr. Addie Wyatt, Rev. Dr. Leon Finney, and Rev. Willie Barrow.
▶Rose Lynn A. Abesamis-Bell, Evaluation Manager
Rose Lynn joined Super Stars Literacy in 2006 and has held several positions within the organization including Co-Program Director and Staff Training Director. She has over 13 years of experience teaching socio-economically and ethnically diverse students. Rose Lynn holds a Masters of Arts in Education from Claremont University, a B.A. in Sociology from Pepperdine University, and a Reading Specialist Credential from California State University of the East Bay, Hayward.
▶Marie Broek, Oakland Program Manager/Director of Training
Marie will be managing our programs at Garfield Elementary and Think College Now. Marie brings nearly 15 years of combined experience as an elementary classroom teacher in Minnesota and at the Jerusalem School in Palentine; as Director of Boy Scouts in San Leandro & Oakland; and researcher at WestEd. She holds a degree in Elementary Education from Bethel University.
▶Katie Brym, AmeriCorps and Government Contracts Manager.
Prior to joining Super Stars Literacy, Katie spent two years serving with AmeriCorps*VISTA in Rhode Island, where she helped to create partnerships between higher education institutions and k-12 schools. Katie has a B.A. in Theater Design and Technical from the University of New Hampshire. Her passion for service and community building led her to the Super Stars Literacy AmeriCorps Program.
▶Jennifer Graves, Grants Manager
Jennifer has been involved with Super Stars Literacy since 2004. From 2004-2008, she was a volunteer member of the Junior League of Oakland-East Bay’s Super Stars Literacy Program Committee, assisting with field trips, program event coordination, and fundraising. In 2008, when SSL separated from the JLOEB, she joined the SSL staff as the Grants Manager. In that role, she coordinates the entire grant funding process, serves on the Board’s Resource Development Committee, oversees the annual gala planning, and serves as a project manager for various staff and Board projects. Jennifer has a B.A. in Psychology from Loyola Marymount University.
▶Julie Huson, Newark Program Manager
Julie has over 25 years of teaching experience in public and private schools in California. She holds a California Multiple Subjects teaching credential and BA from San Francisco State University, and a MS Degree in Education from Dominican University of California. Julie received the Fulbright Distinguished Award in Teaching in 2011 and spent six months in Sheffield, South Yorkshire, England developing curriculum to encourage tolerance for migrating populations in the UK and US. She also received the Life Guard Teacher Fellowship at George Washington’s Mount Vernon in 2015, where she wrote a read-aloud play and story for children. Julie recently relocated to Newark after living in Marin County for nearly 30 years, and is excited to work in her new community to promote equitable educational opportunities for children while also encouraging young adults to pursue careers in teaching.
▶Carly Maurano, Hayward Program Manager
Carly is a dedicated educator, committed to creating opportunities for young people and their families. Carly’s work and interest in social change has taken her to Paraguay, the Plains, Georgia, and California. A graduate of the University of Nebraska with a B.S. in Middle Grades Education, Carly earned a Master’s Degree in Reading, Language, and Literacy at Georgia State University.
▶Daniel Braga Lawlor, Development Manager
Dan’s career in community work has led him to deeply engage in both direct work and behind the scenes organizing in Southern New England, the United Kingdom, and the San Francisco Bay Area. A graduate of Brown University and the Harvard Graduate School of Education, Dan’s professional work is to foster connected communities of social change and common purpose. At Super Stars Literacy, Dan’s portfolio focuses on individual giving, special events, and partnership projects, such as the Advisory Council and Young Professional and Alumni Network.
▶Maia Wachtel, Volunteer Coordinator
Maia joined Super Stars Literacy as an AmeriCorps member in August 2015. She graduated from UC Berkeley in 2014 with a BA in Geography with an emphasis on the geography of politics, society, and culture. Prior to joining SSL, she worked as a freelance cartographer and did a brief stint in Washington, DC as a research intern at the National Geographic Society. She has a passion for education, and as a Bay Area native, is excited to work with Super Stars Literacy to promote educational equality in the East Bay.
▶Marissa Wagner, Program Operations Manager
Marissa joined University of Louisiana Lafayette AmeriCorps in 2003 while she was still in college. The program focused on after-school tutoring and had very similar goals to those of Super Stars Literacy. Since that time, Marissa has carried the AmeriCorps motto of “Getting Things Done” with her in all of her life’s pursuits. Prior to joining SSL, she worked with several other nonprofits in her home state of Louisiana. Marissa has a B.A. in Political Science and loves being involved in the community. Her background in accounting and her “can-do” attitude makes her a perfect fit for the Program Operations Manager position.