We Are College Track

Commitment. Passion. Joy.
Authenticity. Excellence.

College Track is fiercely committed to ensuring that every one of our students earns a four-year college degree and with it, a future of their own design.

Realizing this goal requires the collective efforts of team members who are passionate about this work, derive joy from what we do, and engage in authentic relationships with each other and the College Track community of students, families and partners.

We are educators and mentors. We are marketers and fundraisers. We are financial gurus and data nerds. We are professional advisors and Salesforce navigators.

We are each others’ champions. We are a family.

 

Our Diversity, Equity & Inclusion (DEI) Philosophy

College Track’s mission to ensure our students earn a college degree calls us to disrupt historic injustices, racism, and systemic oppression. Too often, our institutions and systems limit students’ opportunities, rather than set them up for a life of self-determination and freedom. College Track’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion derives from our unwavering belief that all students can, and one day will, experience a world that honors their inherent talents, gifts, and knowledge. 

We believe diverse perspectives lead to stronger ideas, striking innovation, and effective practices, accelerating progress toward College Track’s mission. Therefore, we prioritize building diverse teams that reflect the experiences of our students to ensure our community shapes our approach. We also cultivate an inclusive environment and culture of belonging—a critical step in our pursuit of equity. 

College Track welcomes and reveres the spectrum of human diversity, and stands against bigotry, racism, sexism, heteronormativity, and all other biases that seek to undermine the dignity of all people.  The barriers our students and staff face are deeply entrenched in our society. Therefore, we regularly examine the impact of our policies, processes, and procedures, and refine  them to build a more equitable community.

 

Our Founding Story

In 1997, while advising high school seniors from East Palo Alto about the college admission process, Laurene Powell Jobs and Carlos Watson realized that students who wanted to be the first in their families to attend college received little or no guidance about how to get there. They also discovered that most students who were hungry for information and eager to attend college had not taken the classes necessary to qualify for admission to a California state university.

Recognizing that starting to work with seniors in their senior year was too late, the co-founders spent a year investigating area support programs and nonprofits that worked with teens. They found many programs for elementary and middle school students, but no comprehensive program supporting high school students. Organizations that served teens provided only limited service, focusing on one area, such as tutoring, or youth leadership, but never taking a comprehensive approach.

So, Powell Jobs and Watson created a program to address the community needs they had observed. That program was College Track, a comprehensive college completion program that works with students beginning in ninth grade of high school and continuing through college and beyond.

Our Team

Elissa Salas

Chief Executive Officer

Julia Chih

Chief Finance & Operating Officer

Leela de Souza Bransten

Chief Development & Marketing Officer

Angie Peluse

Chief of Regions

Jeannie Johnson

Vice President of Programs

Vishal Shah

Vice President of Org Performance

Jon Thornton

Vice President of Development

Lindsey Adams

Database Administrator

Jonas Aquino

IT Manager

Heather Berkley

Director of Strategic Initiatives

Tina Colby

Quality & Learning Director of Academic Affairs

Daryl Cook

Financial Planning & Analysis Manager

Joni Curtis

Board and Communications Manager

Elizabeth Dukovich

Grants Manager

Jessica Forsyth

Executive Assistant

Gabriela Garay-Ash

Accounting Manager

Stella Glodek

Director of Employee Experience

Atziry Gutierrez

Director of Marketing & Alumni Strategy

Janiece Hill

Management Fellow

Oliver Huang

IT Helpdesk Specialist

Katie Hooper

Director of Communications

Danielle Jarvis

Development Associate

Nadja Jepsen

Financial Programs & Scholarship Director

Katie Kantor

Senior Quality & Learning Program Manager

Brian Kramer

Grant Writer

Deena Mangrum

Talent Acquisition Director

Miccaela Montague

Quality & Learning Director, College Completion

Aja Moore-Ramos

Communications Manager

Robel Negussie

Controller

Kurstin Nelms

College Advising Manager

Siddharth Patel

Financial Analyst

Isabel Reyna

Data Analyst

Paul Rodriguez

National Operations Manager

Catie Steinman

Human Resources Generalist

Ryan Terada

Staff Accountant

Shria Tomlinson

Senior Director of Quality & Learning

Chris Valenzuela

Development Manager, Donor Stewardship

Darwin Velasquez

Dreamer Coordinator

Jonny Volan

Performance Manager

Shasta Weiss

Development Operations Manager

Russell Williams

Employee Support Specialist

Raynisa Wilson

Accounts Payable Specialist

Our Board of Directors

College Track is governed by a board of directors that bring together a wealth of experience in philanthropy, operational management, and development for non-profit organizations.

Laurene Powell Jobs
Chair and Co-Founder

David B. Singer
Vice Chair

Charles D. King
Vice Chair

Nancy Lue
Secretary

John Doyle

Andy Dreyfus

Lynn Feintech

Cynthia Keely

Darell Krasnoff

Debbra Lindo

Leo Martinez

Marc Mazur

Jonathan Mildenhall

Tony Prophet

will.i.am

Timothy C. Wu

Roger Zamora

Follow Our Work

Get acquainted with our staff, students, and partners on Instagram @collegetrack!