Board of Directors

Victoria Bennett


Victoria Bennett is currently a second year law student at North Carolina Central University School of Law, where she is a Citi Scholar. Victoria was a member of the first graduating class of KIPP Gaston College Preparatory in 2009. In May of 2013, she received a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she also minored in Social and Economic Justice. As a member of the Robertson Scholars program, Victoria also attended Duke University, where she received a certificate in Child Policy Research. In addition to receiving the Robertson Scholars award, Victoria was also a Dell Scholar, a PEO International STAR Scholar, and a Council on Legal Education Opportunity (CLEO) Scholar.

During her undergraduate experience, Victoria served as a minority adviser for the UNC Center for Diversity and Multicultural Affairs and as a research assistant for the Duke Center for Child and Family Policy. She currently commits her time to serving her fellow citizens in Durham, NC. Victoria is a sworn Guardian ad Litem with the Durham County Courts, a domestic violence and sexual assault trained hospital responder and court advocate with the Durham Crisis Response Center, and a volunteer with Durham County Teen Court. She is passionate about justice and serving the people of her community. Victoria is a current member of the NC Bar Association Young Lawyer’s Division, the American Bar Association Law Student Division, the National Black Law Student Association, and the National Lawyers Guild.

Mary Brown


Mary Earle Brown recently retired with her husband to Chapel Hill after spending 23 years in Atlanta. A graduate of the University of North Carolina and the University of Virginia’s masters program in economics. Mary pursued a career in business journalism as a writer of economic publications for Chase Manhattan bank, a member of the staff of the Economy and Business Section of TIME and Economics Writer for the CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite. In Atlanta, she was executive director of the Japan-America Society of Georgia. Mary was a member of the board of the Margaret Mitchell House for almost a decade and served as its president, a member of the board of the Atlanta History Center and of the Cherokee Garden Library.

Minnie Forte-Brown

Vice President, Chair -Durham Public Schools Board of Education – Durham, NC

Minnie Forte-Brown, a Durham native, is a retired communications specialist and master teacher formerly in the Department of English and Mass Communications at North Carolina Central University. The DPS Board Chair is a member of the NC School Board Association Board of Directors and also serves as an officer for the National School Board Association. She is on the Steering Committee and Resolutions Committee and serves as the Vice-Chair for the Council of Urban Boards of Education. Additionally, she was appointed by former Governor Bev Perdue to the NC Council of the Status of Women and the Gang Advisory Task force. She is also co-founder of the East Durham Children’s Initiative (EDCI).

Tonza Ruffin-Buffaloe

Member, Attorney

Bio coming soon.

Bob Caudle

Member, Retired District Attorney – Halifax County, NC

Bob Caudle is the former Halifax County District Attorney. He is a native of northeastern North Carolina.

Jaideep Hebbar               

Member, Principal – Charter School Growth Fund 

At CSGF, Jaideep focuses primarily on supporting prospective investment candidates and existing portfolio members across the U.S. He also helps lead the Facility Fund.

Prior to joining CSGF, he served as Principal of North Cove Partners, a private equity firm that he co-founded in 2011. In addition, he spent 10 years at Merrill Lynch in private equity and investment banking. Over the course of his career, Jaideep has worked as a strategic and board-level partner to early-stage businesses, middle-market companies, and Fortune 500 firms. He also taught adult literacy classes in urban Philadelphia, New York City, and Stamford, CT for over 15 years. Jaideep earned a BS in economics and engineering from the University of Pennsylvania and is an Education Pioneers’ alumnus.

Honorable Judge Vershenia Moody

Secretary/Treasurer, District Court Judge – District 68

Honorable Judge Vershenia Moody serves District 6B as its first female District Court Judge and presides in District Courts in Bertie, Hertford and Northampton Counties. Formerly she was the Senior Assistant District Attorney in Halifax County. Judge Moody graduated from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science and a Minor in African American Studies. She obtained the Degree of Juris Doctor from North Carolina Central University School of Law. Judge Moody has two children enrolled at KIPP Gaston College Preparatory and is a native of northeastern North Carolina.

Gail E. Worthington

Member, Education Reform Advocate

Gail Worthington has worked for the past five years as a volunteer education advocate in support of initiatives aimed at eliminating the academic achievement gap. She is a former consultant to 50CAN (“Coalition for Achievement Now”), a non-partisan education advocacy organization working to promote education reform at state and local levels. Worthington has ten years of investment banking experience, specializing in corporate finance and interest rate risk managment. Ms. Worthington has an undergraduate degree from Bowdoin College and a Masters Degree in Developmental Psychology from Teachers College, Columbia University with a concentration in early childhood education.

Curtis Wynn

President, President and CEO of Roanoke Electric

Curtis Wynn has over 25 years of management experience and has served as the President and CEO of Roanoke Electric Cooperative and subsidiary organizations for the last 16 years. He is responsible for managing the day-to-day operations necessary to protect the long-term sustainability of the cooperative. In addition, Mr. Wynn serves on the following boards and committees: North Carolina Rural Economic Development Center; Natural Capital Investment Fund, CoBank Nominating Committee; and North Carolina Association of Electric Cooperatives. Mr. Wynn holds a Bachelor of Science Degree from Troy University.