Dr. Lora Hodges, Executive Director
Lora Hodges has been Center for Responsive Schools’ Executive Director since July 2012. Lora holds a doctorate in educational leadership and brings a wealth of knowledge, teaching experience, and expertise in organizational leadership and strategy to this position.
A lifetime educator, Lora has served in variety of roles in public education at the school, district, and university levels. From 2008 to 2012, she served as the Deputy Executive Director of the SERVE Center at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. There, Lora was responsible for overseeing PK-12 research, evaluation, and technical assistance programs funded through the US Department of Education’s Regional Educational Laboratory Program and the National Center for Homeless Education Program.
The third of four generations of educators, Lora has also served as a classroom teacher, principal, and assistant superintendent, as well as a District Senior Advisor for the Collaborative for Academic and Social and Emotional Learning (CASEL).
Over the course of her career, Lora has worked with a wide range of educators on improving schools and student learning outcomes and has received a number of recognitions for her school and district level leadership.
Corey L. Edens Sr., Director of Information Technology
Corey comes to Center for Responsive Schools after a successful tenure with Land of Lincoln Goodwill Industries where he served as the Vice President of Information Technology. He holds 8 prestigious blue ribbon awards for Technology Innovations from the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction, and the 2012 and 2013 Governors Technology Innovation Award for his implementations. Corey earned his Bachelors of Science in Computer Science and Mathematics from Fayetteville State University and a Masters in Management of Information Systems from Cambridge College in Cambridge, Massachusetts.
Dr. James C. Ellerbe, Director of Administration & Strategy
James joined CRS after retiring from the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction. During his career in North Carolina, James served in a variety of roles: from teacher to school administrator to state-level program director. The University Council for Education Administration recognized James with the Education Leadership Award for being strategic, intentional, and purposeful in supporting the continuous improvement of school administrators’ preparation programs as well as supporting school districts and schools to meet and exceed state/federal standards. It is that strategic and purposeful mindset that he brings with him to the CRS team.
Sarah Fillion, Director of Consulting & Certification
Sarah has extensive experience as a facilitator and developer of professional development for K-8 educators. Prior to becoming a director at Center for Responsive Schools, she served as a Responsive Classroom professional development designer and full-time consultant, working with schools throughout the US and in the international school community to create optimal learning environments for students. Formerly, she served as a teacher and teacher leader in urban and suburban schools.
Christine Freitas, Director of Publications
Christine comes to Center for Responsive Schools with over 20 years of educational print and media publishing experience. She is adept at creating innovative products and processes to help expand ideas for the way educators teach and learn. For nine years Christine produced hundreds of books and teaching materials for the K-3 early literacy market at Pioneer Valley Books. Prior to that she worked for both Pearson Learning and Thomson Learning (now Cengage Learning.) She is excited to be collaborating with a team of like-minded, mission-driven individuals, to continue her dedication to improving the educational experience.
Allison Henry, Director of Marketing and Client Services
Allison has extensive experience supporting customers as part of the school and district services team for over 9 years. She’s worked with hundreds of school and district leaders throughout the US and in the international school community to plan for beginning implementation and sustainability of Responsive Classroom. Prior to joining the staff at Center for Responsive Schools, Allison was an educator and counselor.
Karen Poplawski, Co-Director of Programs
Prior to becoming a director at Center for Responsive Schools, Karen was a Responsive Classroom Curriculum & Instructional Designer, and Consulting Teacher, working with educators worldwide to transform their school communities. Before joining the staff at CRS, she spent ten years as a classroom teacher, and seven years as a principal—utilizing Responsive Classroom techniques and practices in the classroom and in the two schools for which she was the founding principal.
Jazmine Tavenner, Co-Director of Programs
Jazmine brings an extensive knowledge of program development, as well as classroom experience, to the Director of Programs position. She first joined the Center for Responsive Schools as a consultant and program developer—playing a vital role in the development of Responsive Classroom programs. Prior to her time at CRS she spent six years as a second grade teacher in Chicago Public Schools, and two years in Guilford County Schools, North Carolina. Jazmine is currently enrolled as a doctoral candidate in educational psychology at Walden University.
Dr. Herb Turner, Principal Scientist
Herb is CRS’s Principal Scientist as well as an Adjunct Associate Professor at the University of Pennsylvania Graduate School of Education’s Quantitative Methods Division, where he teaches graduate-level courses in statistics and statistical programming. He has over 30 years of experience conducting empirical investigations consistent with scientifically valid research in education and related areas. During the past decade, he has contributed to innovative and cutting-edge initiatives designed to transform education research into an evidence-based, scientifically valid field.