Board of Directors
Bob Hannon is an attorney and Partner at Bradley, Arant, Boult, Cummings, LLP where he focuses his practice on the commercial finance and banking industry. Mr. Hannon was a 5th and 6th grade teacher earlier in his professional career in the Washington, D.C. public school system via Teach for America, and has remained passionate throughout his career about providing all students with a high-quality education. His tenures on various education-focused volunteer groups and boards include McNeilly Center for Children and The Belcourt Theatre.
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Malika Anderson is the Chief Portfolio Officer of the Achievement School District (ASD), where she leads the authorization and start-up support of charter school operators and the assessment and accountability system for all ASD schools. Ms. Anderson has 15 years of strategy, leadership development, performance management and operational redesign experience. She has led and consulted organizations undergoing significant transformation efforts in education, social service, healthcare, and commercial fields. Prior to becoming the ASD’s Chief Portfolio Officer, Ms. Anderson was the Director of School Turnaround for the District of Columbia Public Schools.
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Sylvia Flowers currently serves as Executive Director of Educator Talent at the Tennessee Department of Education. She executes the state’s strategy to improve recruitment and retention of effective teachers and manages a portfolio of strategic compensation pilot projects in approximately 18 districts. Previously, she served as Director of Technical Assistance at the State Collaborative on Reforming Education (SCORE), a nonprofit and non-partisan advocacy and research institution, founded by former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist.
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Dave Goetz currently serves as Vice President, State Government Solutions for Optum Government Solutions. From 2003 through 2010, Mr. Goetz served as Commissioner of Finance and Administration, where he was the chief fiscal officer and administrative official for the State of Tennessee. Prior to entering State Government, Mr. Goetz served as President of the Tennessee Chamber of Commerce & Industry, formerly the Tennessee Association of Business, Executive Director of the Tennessee Business Roundtable, Director of Government Affairs for the Tennessee Association of Business, and as the chief political reporter for WTVF-TV in Nashville.
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Mr. Hanson is Managing Partner of Hanson Wells Partners (HWP), a contrarian value investing partnership. Prior to founding HWP, Mr. Hanson was a Vice President at Deutsche Bank, responsible for providing investment banking advisory services to both public and private companies in the financial services industry. During his career at Deutsche Bank, Mr. Hanson advised specialty finance, asset management, insurance, and financial technology companies on the issuance of over $5 Billion in equity, debt and convertible securities. He also advised clients on numerous merger and acquisition transactions.
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Beth Jones was recruited to Vanderbilt University Medical Center in 2004 as the Director of Development for Neurosciences and Orthopaedics. In 2006, she was promoted to Executive Director of Development to lead fundraising activities for the Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center. Prior to joining the Development and Alumni Relations team at Vanderbilt University, Mrs. Jones worked in development at Baptist Memorial Healthcare Foundation and Porter-Leath Children’s Center in Memphis, Tennessee. She is an active member of the Rotary Club of Nashville and her son is a Valor Collegiate Academies scholar.
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Gatluak Ter Thach, PhD is the founder and current president and CEO of Nashville International Center for Empowerment (NICE). NICE ensures refugees and immigrants achieve their full potential now and for generations to come. He is also the author of My New American Dream and serves on a wide range of nonprofit boards in the community. He is married to his beloved wife, Nyakuma Ter Thach, and they are blessed with four beautiful children: Duang (a Valor Voyager Academy scholar), Ter Jr., Selena, and Pel Thach.
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Viraj Parikh is the Director of Finance of Edgenet, a Nashville-based software company majority owned by private equity firm Tenth Street Capital. Prior to that he was the CFO of LEAD Public Schools, Nashville’s largest charter school organization. Viraj and his wife Mridu moved to Nashville from New York City in 2005, when Viraj joined the hedge fund Courage Capital as their autos, steel, and industrials analyst. In 2008, he founded Vailwood Capital, an investment partnership and advisory firm. He and Mridu have two sons, Krishin and Vishal, who attend Valor Flagship and Julia Green Elementary, respectively.
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As Co-CEO of Project Renaissance, Justin manages the recruitment of great schools and educators for the city of Nashville. He was formerly Chief Operating Officer of the Tennessee Charter School Center. In this role, he led the Center’s incubation efforts, resulting in the development of 15 high-performing charter schools in Nashville and Memphis. Prior to coming to Nashville, Justin served as the Director of Education Programs for Volunteers of America of Minnesota. Justin also served as a Charter School Specialist in the Minnesota Department of Education and began his career as a middle school teacher through Teach for America.
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Rascoe Dean is a recent graduate of Vanderbilt Law School and is currently a law clerk for Judge Gilbert Merritt on the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit. Before law school, Mr. Dean spent two years as a 10th and 11th grade English teacher for Teach for America. Since leaving the classroom, Mr. Dean has remained passionate about ensuring that all students have the opportunity to receive a high quality education. He also serves on Teach for America’s Rising Leaders Board and volunteers for the Martha O’Bryan Center’s Post Secondary Success Mentorship Program.
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Michael Harmon is an attorney with Waller Lansden Dortch and Davis, LLP where he represents financial institutions, healthcare providers, and other businesses in commercial disputes. As a child of two educators, Mr. Harmon has long been an advocate for high-quality education. He is a graduate of Vanderbilt Law School, the Owen Graduate School of Management, where he received an MBA, the Australian National University, where he received a Master of Public Policy, and the University of South Carolina, where he received his Bachelor’s degree.
Associate Board Members