Contact

Meet the Team

Thomas J. Lasley

Chief Executive Officer

Email Tom
937-825-2200

Robyn Lightcap

Executive Director

Email Robyn
937-236-9965, ext. 2136

Ritika Kurup

Director of Early Learning

Email Ritika
937-524-5888

Kelly Geers

Workforce Development Director

Email Kelly
937-225-4603, ext. 3103

Marie Giffen

Director of Finance

Email Marie
937-236-9965, ext. 2258

Ashley Marshall

Director of Preschool Promise

Email Ashley
937-236-9965, ext. 2132

Charmaine Webster

Preschool Promise Program Manager

Email Charmaine
937-236-9965, ext. 2190

Te'Jal Cartwright

Preschool Promise Coordinator

Email Te'Jal
937-236-9965, ext. 2267

Cheryl Kern

Passport to Kindergarten Coordinator

Email Cheryl
937-750-2314

Kelly Berlin

Graduate Assistant

Email Kelly
937-236-9965, ext. 2137

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Thomas J. Lasley

Thomas J. Lasley II is the Chief Executive Officer of Learn to Earn Dayton. Previously the Dean of the University of Dayton’s School of Education and Health Sciences, he is Co-Founder of the Dayton Early College Academy and President of Air Camp, Inc. Tom serves on the boards of the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, Dayton Metro Library, Public Media Connect, the United Theological Seminary, and the National Council on Teacher Quality.

A member of the Governor’s Commission on Teaching Success (under former Gov. Bob Taft) and the Ohio Board of Regents’ Planning and Accountability Committee (under former Gov. Ted Strickland), Tom holds bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees from The Ohio State University.

Robyn Lightcap

Robyn Lightcap is the Executive Director of Learn to Earn Dayton. She is the lead staff person involved in creating a Montgomery County Preschool Promise, an initiative designed to ensure that every 4-year-old can attend at least one year of high quality Preschool.

Robyn serves on the Governor’s Early Childhood Advisory Council and is Vice-Chair of groundWork, Ohio’s early childhood advocacy organization. She has led complex projects in both the non-profit and for-profit sectors, including at IBM, Chicago’s Willow Creek Community Church, and Evenflo. She has a business degree from Wake Forest University.

Ritika Kurup

Ritika Kurup is Learn to Earn Dayton's Director of Early Learning. She leads the organization’s collective impact work around promoting equity, expanding out-of-school learning opportunities, combatting chronic absenteeism and improving 3rd-grade reading proficiency. In 2016, she was named an Annie E. Casey Foundation Children and Family Fellow.

Previously, she was the coordinator of a helpline for homeless children in New Delhi, India, and Executive Director of Miami County’s CASA/GAL program. Ritika has master’s degrees in social work from the University of Delhi and The Ohio State University and a master’s in public policy from Ohio State.

Kelly Geers

Kelly Geers is the Director of Workforce for Learn to Earn Dayton where she is leading the creation and implementation of the Dayton Regional Workforce Strategy and developing career connections between high schools and industry.

Previously, Kelly was the District Director for Congressman Mike Turner, and Director of Government Programs at the Dayton Development Coalition. She is a graduate of the University of Dayton where she studied political science and received her Master's of Public Administration.

Marie Giffen

Marie Giffen, a Certified Public Accountant, is our Director of Finance. She is an adjunct professor in accounting at the University of Dayton, where she received her Master's of Business Administration. Previously, Marie worked in both public and corporate accounting.

Ashley Marshall

Ashley Marshall is the Director of the Preschool Promise where she is leading the work to expand the program across the City of Dayton and to assist programs in improving their quality. Previously, Ashley was the Director of the University of Dayton’s Demonstration School, the Bombeck Family Learning Center. She is a graduate of the University of Dayton, where she studied early childhood education and received her Master's in Educational Leadership.

Charmaine Webster

Charmaine Webster is the Preschool Promise Program Manager and leads Learn to Earn Dayton's family and community engagement initiatives. Her work includes promoting awareness about the importance of kindergarten readiness by building partnerships that support families and children.

Charmaine has been a youth pastor, camp counselor and research assistant. A native of Cincinnati, she received her bachelor’s degree in public policy from Duke University and a master’s of divinity from Emory University.

Te'Jal Cartwright

Te'Jal Cartwright is the Preschool Promise Coordinator. A Dayton native, she received her bachelor's degree in English from the University of Dayton and is a proud alumna of the Dayton Early College Academy.

During college, Te'Jal was a lead tutor for Upward Bound and helped raise more than $70,000 in scholarships. After receiving her degree, she traveled to multiple universities as a program manager for fundraising phonathons.

Cheryl Kern

Cheryl Kern is Coordinator for the Passport to Kindergarten Program. She brings together community partners, teachers and families to create rich experiences for young learners, focusing especially on improving Preschoolers' language skills through dialogic reading. Cheryl, who received her degree in Special Education from Eastern Michigan University, is retired from Dayton Public Schools.

Kelly Berlin

Kelly Berlin is the Graduate Assistant for Learn to Earn Dayton. She received her B.A. in Psychology from The Ohio State University with minors in Education and Substance Misuse and Addiction. She attends graduate school at the University of Dayton where she is working toward her Ed.S. in School Psychology and will serve as the National Association of School Psychologists Student Leader for the 2017-18 school year.