Our Board of Trustees
Dr. Donna Elder
Thrive Board of Governors
Dr. Elder is the Department Chair of Teacher Education at National University and a highly experienced educational leader. Dr. Elder was the Principal of the Corinne A. Seeds University Elementary School at UCLA (now known as the UCLA Lab School), and served as a District Superintendent for 15 years in the San Bruno School District, the Orchard School District and the Luther Burbank School District. She worked as a classroom teacher for at the elementary, middle and high school level; served as a Principal in the Palo Alto Unified and Duarte Unified School Districts, and was the interim Executive Director of a charter school. She is a frequent speaker and author on teacher effectiveness and coaching, as well as instructional methodologies. Among numerous professional associations, Dr. Elder served as the President of the International Association of Laboratory and University Affiliated Schools. Dr. Elder received her Bachelor of Science Degree from Washington State University, a Master’s in Education, Curriculum and Instruction from Texas A&M University, an Administrative Credential from Whittier College and her doctorate in Educational Leadership from the University of La Verne.
Kerry Flanagan serves as the chief of staff of the California Charter Schools Association, a membership organization supporting California's 1,130 charter schools serving more than 500,000 students.
Kerry began her career in public education in 1991 as a secondary education teacher in Virginia. She then worked as an education consultant supporting various reform efforts in traditional urban and suburban public school districts in California, Arkansas, Louisiana, Michigan and Florida. Kerry worked at San Diego City Schools for several years in various positions where she was responsible for strategic planning, organizational development and the authorization and oversight of the district’s charter schools. She served as the chief of staff for her last 1.5 years with the district.
Kerry received her B.A. in Secondary Education, Social Studies from Virginia Wesleyan and a M.A. in Political Science from San Diego State University.
Ben Boyce comes from a long line of educators, which surely fuels his passion to educate the public on the most challenging issues facing San Diego and our state. He holds a management position with one of San Diego’s top public affairs firms, bringing to his clients more than a dozen years of experience heling many of California’s top businesses and public agencies achieve their objectives by building consensus and seeking creative solutions.
Ben has led several successful land development outreach programs in both Northern and Southern California, helping clients to win approvals for more than 15,000 homes across the state. His strategic outreach programs and materials have helped water and wastewater providers effectively communicate with more than 6 million Southern California ratepayers. He has been recognized with more than 20 awards for his efforts, including top outreach program in the state and the nation's best website for a government utility.
Ben has also successfully managed crisis communications for several public-agency and private-sector clients, and has advocated on behalf of his clients in a number of daily newspapers, trade publications and broadcast interviews. His efforts to support residents of a crumbling apartment complex were recognized as Orange County's 2008 crisis PR of the year. Ben is active in the San Diego and Orange County business communities. He serves on the Board of Directors of the San Diego County Taxpayers Association and was previously a founding director of Community Roots Academy charter school in Aliso Viejo. He also served two terms on the Board of Directors of the Orange County chapter of the Public Relations Society of America.
Thomas Aurelio Davis, Consultant to Board of Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents (ALAS) and the California Association of Latino Superintendents and Administrators (CALSA)
Thomas Davis has over thirty years of experience in education. After receiving his B.S. degree in Biology at the University of San Diego in 1974, he taught secondary school Life Science, Biology, Bilingual Science and Spanish courses in both private and public school systems in the San Diego area for fifteen years. In 1988, Tom co-wrote and managed an Eisenhower Grant from the Department of Education to help restructure the science curriculum in the Sweetwater Union High School district’s ten middle schools. That experience led to his moving into the K-12 instructional software and service business. Since 1990, Tom has worked for a number of companies in various capacities, selling and marketing educational software and service solutions. In 2005, Tom formed a consulting business, (Net4EdAccess, LLC) which focuses on connecting business to education, executive school superintendent searches, the achievement gap and providing solutions for school systems in the following areas: English Language Learners, Students with Special Needs and Students At-Risk of Dropping Out. Tom currently serves as a consultant to the Board of both the Association of Latino Administrators and Superintendents (ALAS) and the California Association of Latino Superintendents and Administrators (CALSA). Tom is also a Board member of Computers 2 San Diego Kids, a San Diego non-profit working to bridge the digital divide with low income families and those less fortunate. He has also worked on behalf of the National Migrant Education Association and their Bi-National Conference. Tom is married and has three children.
Jacquie Furtado M.Ed.
Thrive Board of Governors
Associate Vice President, Strategy Management & Engagement – Ashford University
Jacquie has had the pleasure of providing cross-departmental leadership and support for educational institutions for over thirteen years. Her very purposeful journey has allowed her to collaborate and build consensus with every facet of an institution; guiding organizational strategy to ensure alignment, impact and successful execution of student focused strategic commitments. During her tenure, she has held leadership roles within Strategic Planning & Management, Academic Affairs, Institutional Effectiveness, and Student Affairs, allowing her to create and implement integrated strategy development and management solutions, lead student retention strategy, student programming, and have direct exposure and impact to all University departments. She thoroughly enjoys and understands the importance of cross-departmental collaboration to support student success. She has experience supporting traditional and nontraditional student populations as well as online and ground modalities and various course delivery models. Jacquie was a founding family member of Thrive Public Schools, participated on the initial Advisory Council and was a founding member of the Thrive Family Action Network. She also serves on the board of the San Diego Regional Economic Development Foundation. Jacquie has a Bachelor’s of Arts in Marketing Communications and Master of Arts in Educational Leadership. In addition, she is certified in integrated strategic planning and the Balanced Scorecard strategy execution framework.