President & Executive Directorsdawson@e3alliance.org
President & Executive Director, E3 Alliance
Susan Dawson is a Texas entrepreneur, business, and civic leader. She founded and leads E3 Alliance, which has been recognized across the country for its ground-breaking work in systemic change for education. Susan has led multiple successful technology firms and served as Chair of the Greater Austin Chamber of Commerce. Her many awards include the Leadership Austin Polly Scallorn Award for Lifetime Achievement in Community Trusteeship, Austin Under 40 “Austinite of the Year,” Hero for Children by the State Board of Education, Austin Profiles in Power “Profile Leader,” Ernst and Young “Entrepreneur of the Year,” Dell Medical School Health Hero, the UT McCombs School “Trailblazer Award” for distinguished woman alumni in business and community, and CEO of the Year by the Austin Chamber. In 2011 the Austin Business Journal named Susan one of “Austin’s 30 Most Influential” leaders who have shaped Austin’s economy and culture in the last 30 years, and in 2019 she was named the national Cradle to Career Champion by StriveTogether. Susan earned a BS Cum Laude from Princeton University and an MBA with Highest Honors from UT Austin McCombs School of Business.
Kayla assists the development and fundraising efforts of E3 Alliance by providing donor database management, stewardship and solicitation support, and administrative support to the Development Team. She earned her master’s degree in Public Service and Administration, with a concentration on Nonprofit Administration from the Bush School of Government and Public Service at Texas A&M University. She also earned a bachelor’s degree from Texas A&M University. In her free time, Kayla enjoys reading, eating, volunteering, and spending time with close friends and family.
Jill is responsible for Accounts Payable, reconciliation and budget-to-actual reporting. She has over 15 years of experience in a variety of industries including banking and non-profit sectors. During tax season, Jill volunteers her time preparing tax returns for seniors and lower income individuals at Bell County community centers. She enjoys cooking and cheering her middle school son at tennis tournaments. Jill has BS in Accounting and is completing coursework to prepare for the CPA exam.
Continuous Improvement &
Marcella is helping create policy briefs and messaging for E3, as well as graphic design for the E3 Legacy Trust and other projects with the Blueprint team. She is a junior at Scripps College, pursuing a B.A. in History with a minor in Politics. She has been curious and passionate about education policy since her high school became a central issue for a bond proposition in Austin, and has spent the intervening years learning everything she can about education in Texas.
Director of Communications &
Director of Communications &
Alex is responsible for leading E3's communications, marketing, and community engagement efforts. He has over 15 years in communications and marketing for educational nonprofits. Before joining the E3 Alliance team, Alex worked for WGTE PBS, Trellis (formerly Texas Guaranteed Student Loan Corporation), and Austin ISD, where he led various marketing initiatives while also doing graphic design, video, and photography. Alex received his Bachelor of Visual Communication Technology from Bowling Green State in Bowling Green, Ohio, and also studied art, photography, and graphic design at the Studio Arts Center International in Florence, Italy.
Director of School Transformationtclement@e3alliance.org
Director of School Transformation
After 10 years in the private sector as a corporate trainer, Teri returned to education, determined to make a difference in the lives of students and communities through education. Teri’s passion for educational change led her to a variety of school leadership roles during her 10-year tenure in Texas public schools, and she earned certification as a Principal before joining E3 Alliance as a Project Manager in 2016. Determined to advocate and work for the success of all students, Teri is now a Director of School Transformation at E3, supporting schools and partnering with districts throughout the Central Texas region. Teri earned a Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Texas at Austin and a Master of Arts from the University of Houston-Victoria focused on History and Administrative Education.
Chief Operations Officer & Systems Managercclifford@e3alliance.org
Chief Operations Officer & Systems Manager
Cara is responsible for all financial information and office systems and processes and for coordinating project management systems and processes across all initiatives at E3 Alliance. Cara has over 25 years of experience in finance, information technology and management consulting. Prior to joining E3, Cara was employed by Whole Foods, Dell Computers, Price Waterhouse in senior management roles and leading teams in developing business systems and processes. Cara earned an MBA with a concentration in Information Systems from the University of Maryland Robert H Smith School of Business and a B.A. in Business Administration and Accounting from Gettysburg College. She is also a licensed CPA.
Director of Transformation Partnershipsldavis@e3alliance.org
Director of Transformation Partnerships
Lori Davis has served the Central Texas region as a professional educator for more than 20 years in the roles of Classroom Teacher, Special Education Teacher, District Behavior Specialist, Assistant Principal and Principal. Her relentless dedication to doing the right things for students resulted in a career of achievements, such as District Teacher of the Year, Special Educator of the Year and participation in the Raise Your Hand Texas Harvard Leadership Program. Lori now supports students in districts throughout the region and beyond as the Director of Transformation Partnerships for E3 Alliance. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Special Education from the University of Texas-San Antonio and a Master of Arts in Special Education at Texas State University.
Director of Community Solutionstdong@e3alliance.org
Director of Community Solutions
Thymai joins the E3 team with an extensive background in K-12 public education. She leads our Pathways of Promise initiative focused on math course pathways for students aligned with their college and career aspirations, our English Learner Collaborative, and our campaign around Missing School Matters. She completed doctoral studies in Adult, Professional, and Community Education from Texas State University in 2020.
Impact Network Coordinatorpflores@e3alliance.org
Impact Network Coordinator
Priscilla has provided leadership and assistance across Texas to improve educator quality for almost 25 years. Her experience stems from being a classroom teacher, campus administrator, and Gear Up state director, to serving as a senior policy advisor at the Texas Education Agency. Prior to joining E3, she supported the Texas Center for Educator Excellence (TxCEE) in equipping educators to improve student achievement by aligning district resources and increasing educator effectiveness through leadership training, coaching, and instructional support. Priscilla’s background includes the development of education policy in the areas of educator recruitment, preparation, professional development, and educator evaluation. She is a graduate of Texas A&M University-Kingsville where she earned a bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s degree in educational administration.
Emma Garrett serves as the Administrative Director for E3 Alliance and Executive Assistant for Susan Dawson. She coordinates E3’s Internship and Work Study program and assists with E3’s Operations, including staff onboarding. Prior to E3 Alliance, Emma practiced law in Central Texas, representing abused and neglected children. Her passion for improving education outcomes for all students led Emma to E3. She received her bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at Austin and her law degree from Texas Tech Law School. In her spare time, Emma enjoys cheering for her kids at their soccer games, reading, being with friends and helping them run for office, and hosting well-attended parties.
Director of Researchchamrock@e3alliance.org
Director of Research
Caitlin Hamrock joined E3 Alliance in 2014 while completing her PhD in Sociology at the University of Texas at Austin, and has been leading the research team since 2018. Her research focuses on postsecondary education and the transition to the labor market, as well as STEM education, dual credit course completion, teacher preparation programs, and socio-demographic inequality in education. She specializes in regression-based modeling, non-experimental causal research, and large scale administrative data analysis. Dr. Hamrock received a bachelor’s degree in Sociology with distinction from the University of Minnesota, and a master’s degree in Sociology from the University of Texas at Austin.
Director of School Transformationahavard@e3alliance.org
Director of School Transformation
As a Director of School Transformation, Amy provides guidance and support to campuses as they build systems to improve outcomes for all students. Amy has over 15 years of experience in education and is currently serving as a certified professional developer in the Strategic Instruction Model (SIM). In 2010 Amy became a Nationally Board Certified Teacher (NBCT) in Early Adolescent Mathematics from the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards (NBPTS). Previously, Amy worked as a SIM Instructional Coach, Mathematics teacher, and Interventionist within the Austin and Round Rock school districts. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in History from the University of Texas at Austin and a Masters in Teaching degree from City University of Seattle.
Leadership Austin Fellowthoran@e3alliance.org
Leadership Austin Fellow
A Leadership Austin Fellow at E3 Alliance, Tanja Horan is engaged as the Director of Transformation Strategy focused on coaching, capacity building, and scale of the E3 Solutions. As Principal at Tacosa 360 Consulting, Tanja works with organizations to connect their strategy to execution, positioning both the products and organization to drive growth and scale. Having worked with organizations ranging from startups to multinationals, Tanja has delivered products and strategic projects across AI & machine learning, Fintech, CPG, government entities, manufacturing, and health & wellness industries. She has led the product management at multiple SaaS companies as well as built and managed product management and international teams. Additionally, Tanja has coached startups on their pitches, messaging, and product management. She has also consulted with universities developing their entrepreneur incubator and entrepreneur education program. She holds a BA in Economics and English from Vanderbilt University and a MBA from the Carlson School of Management, University of Minnesota. One of Tanja’s personal passions is promoting and expanding STEM education.
Michelle brings more than 25 years to the E3 communications team, supporting education for the last nine years in non-profit fundraising and as a PTA legislative volunteer. Her background involves launching a foundation, serving as executive director, co-owning a marketing and communications firm, and working as director of corporate communications for five independent specialty corporations. Michelle’s experience has spanned a wide range of industries, including corporate aviation, security, chemical, food service, oil and gas and legal seminar services. She holds a bachelor’s degree from St. Edward’s University.
Maranda Joyce joined E3 after completing her Master of Public Affairs degree at the University of Texas at Austin. While in graduate school, Maranda worked with the Child and Family Research Partnership (CFRP), an independent evaluator of child and adolescent programs. Maranda has previous experience evaluating social programs in Texas, helping the City of Austin measure the effectiveness of workforce training programs, as well as independently evaluating a local nonprofit that provides parenting support to foster and adoptive parents. At E3 Alliance, Maranda provides research, data analysis, and data manipulation for the research team. Maranda earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Economics and Business with distinction from Southwestern University.
Senior Director of Community Solutionslkoenig@e3alliance.org
Senior Director of Community Solutions
For over 20 years, Laura Koenig has been working with families through direct child care, parent education, provider education, public policy and advocacy in Central Texas. In her early career, Laura worked in child care as an infant teacher. This work with children and families inspired her to pursue a systems change approach in early care and education through public policy. Most recently before joining the staff of E3 Alliance, Laura coordinated the Parents of Newborns project at FamilyConnections, providing education and outreach to over 7,800 new families annually. Prior to that, Laura was part of a community-wide initiative to improve access to quality, affordable child care, the Institute for Child Care Excellence, where she served as the policy and education specialist. Laura earned a BA, Plan II, Cum Laude, from The University of Texas of Austin with a concentration in Psychology. She also holds a master’s degree in public affairs from the LBJ School at The University of Texas, where she focused on child and family policy.
Sarah serves as the Administrative Assistant to the Collective Impact team. Sarah has over five years of experience working within nonprofits organizations and is passionate about creating change within the community. She has a deep appreciation for organization and takes great pride in supporting her fellow staff. Sarah has earned a Master's degree in Public Administration from San Diego State University and a Bachelor's degree in Women's Studies from California State University of Fullerton.
Rodrigo Lopez joined E3 after completing his undergraduate education at The University of Texas at Austin, where he earned Bachelor of Science degrees in Physics with honors and Astronomy with honors. As a first-generation college graduate, he knows firsthand the educational struggles many students face throughout their educational careers. Working under the Director of Research, Rodrigo is helping to effect positive change in the education of students through the analysis of educational data.
Director of School Transformationlmaynard@e3alliance.org
Director of School Transformation
Lety serves as the services coordination lead and supports campuses in the transformation project. After earning her undergraduate degree, Lety worked in nonprofit organizations for six years, running programs for youth placed by Children’s Courts, family, school, and communities before returning to education. She has over 15 years of experience in education and during that time received Teacher of the Year and Secondary District Teacher of the Year Awards. Lety has worked as a SIM (Strategic Instruction Model) instructional coach and English as a Second Language and Dual Language District instructional coach. She earned a Bachelor of Science degree in biology from the University of Texas at San Antonio and a Master of Education in educational leadership and policy studies from the University of Texas at Arlington.
Vice President of Investor Developmentknichols@e3alliance.org
Vice President of Investor Development
Karl Nichols has over 20 years of experience as a management professional with a proven record of leadership in the non-profit sector in the areas of educational and healthcare program management, administrative leadership, organizational partnerships, fund development, and civic engagement in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and now Austin, Texas. In Austin, Karl has worked in senior leadership roles with organizations such as: OneStar Foundation, Skillpoint Alliance, SafePlace, and more recently, the African American Youth Harvest Foundation. In his previous work, Karl was responsible for leading the strategic fundraising efforts of a local nonprofit and helped grow the operating budget by 54 percent in one year through the expansion of governmental contracts, increases in corporate and philanthropic giving, and launching annual giving and individual/major donor campaigns. Karl holds both a BA and MBA with a concentration in nonprofit management from the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee. Karl is happily married to Linda Nichols and resides in Austin, Texas with their three sons who all graduated from Round Rock Independent School District high schools and currently matriculate at Texas universities.
Chief Transformation Officermpope@e3alliance.org
Chief Transformation Officer
Matt Pope oversees the management and growth of our Transformation Services, providing proven, data-driven services to improve student outcomes across the state of Texas. Matt began his career as a middle school math teacher and an elementary learning facilitator in South Texas. Matt is also formerly the Principal of the award-winning Simon Middle School in Hays County. Under his leadership, Simon Middle School achieved recognition as a “2014 National School to Watch” by the National Forum to Accelerate Middle-Grades Reform. It was also chosen as a “SIM Impact School Award” winner by the University of Kansas Center for Research on Learning and was recognized as 2015 State of Texas “School of Character” by the Texas Elementary Principals and Supervisors Association. Matt has been recognized as an Impact Agent by Strive Together, and was honored as a Salud Hero from Salud America! for his work increasing the health and wellness of Hispanic Students. Matt was also highlighted by the Meadows Center for Preventing Educational Risk as a top secondary leader for implementing Response to Intervention, and has been featured in the Triune Magazine and the Association of Middle Level Educators national publication. Matt is an alumnus of Leadership Austin’s Essentials Class of 2016 and volunteers as the Regional Director of Raise Your Hand Texas. Matt holds bachelor's degree of Public Administration from Texas State University and a master's degree of Educational Administration from the University of Houston-Victoria.
Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives & Continuous Improvementjsaenz@e3alliance.org
Senior Director of Strategic Initiatives & Continuous Improvement
Prior to joining E3, Jennifer was the director of strategic partnerships and outreach for OnRamps, The University of Texas-led program established in 2011 to address the misalignment of academic expectations between high school and college. Serving tens of thousands of students, educators and school campuses across Texas, Jennifer helped grow OnRamps to be a statewide resource in the college credit-bearing space. A leading expert on postsecondary readiness, transition and persistence, Jennifer has spent the last 23 years working in both the private and public sectors in education, including Texas Education Agency. She is a graduate of Texas State University, and holds both a bachelor’s degree in education and a master’s degree in education, reading and administration.
Manager of Data Systemsjscott@e3alliance.org
Manager of Data Systems
Joshua Scott came to the E3 Alliance after being involved in the Austin Community College District’s Student Success Initiative as President of the college’s chapter of the Phi Theta Kappa Honor Society. His professional experiences range from developing software for legislative analysis to developing ice cream flavors at Amy’s Ice Creams.
Alex Sears obtained his bachelor's degree in Applied Computer Science from Northern Arizona University. Having previous experience with web and mobile-app development, Alex is helping create and support various software systems at E3 Alliance.
Lauren assists the regional collective impact cradle-to-career efforts by providing project coordination and grant management to E3 Alliance’s Learning Networks which work to build capacity around continuous improvement methodologies with local partners. Lauren started working within education by supporting efforts to increase the local workforce as part of a nationwide initiative funded by the Department of Labor. A requirement of that initiative was the expansion of the efforts into local area high schools to train students in Information Technology, Health Sciences, and Building Trades where Lauren worked for Austin Community College as a High School Programs Coordinator. Previously, she served three years as the Director of Business Development for a small business after earning a Master’s degree in Sociology from the University of Oklahoma and a Bachelor’s degree in Sociology with a minor in Psychology from the University of Central Oklahoma.
Director of Postsecondary Successitorres@e3alliance.org
Director of Postsecondary Success
Isaac Torres supports collective impact initiatives that focus on postsecondary success and career alignment in Central Texas. He works closely with the Austin College Access Network and other community-based organizations to scale partnerships with institutions of higher education throughout the state and ensure that all students—particularly low-income students and students of color—receive a high-quality education that leads to a successful career. Isaac joined E3 in 2017 after working on P-16 initiatives at the postsecondary level for more than 10 years. Isaac believes that higher education can provide the resources and support necessary for any student to realize their most ambitious life goals. His professional background is in research, education, and community engagement. Isaac holds Ph.D. and MFA degrees from Texas State University, and BA degrees from the University of Oregon.