KIPP Leaders

Our Leadership

KIPP Metro Atlanta Schools

Our executive leadership team members come from diverse backgrounds and bring deep experience in education, along with private and military experience to their work at KIPP. All of our team members share a common belief in our mission and our KIPPsters.

KIPP Metro Atlanta Schools leadership
KIPP Metro Atlanta Schools leader

Kinnari Patel-Smyth

Executive Director

Kinnari oversees all aspects of our regional academics, finances, and operations. She joined KIPP Metro Atlanta Schools’ team and family in 2012 as the Chief Academic Officer, a role she held for two years. Kinnari got her start in education as a teacher in both Fort Worth and Atlanta. After teaching for six years, Kinnari became a dean at Explore Charter School in Brooklyn. The following year, she was selected to participate in New Leaders for New Schools, a national principal training program that allowed her to complete her principal residency at Explore Charter School. Kinnari went on to serve as principal of the school for five years, after which she transitioned to Managing Director of Program for the Explore Network. Kinnari has a MSEd in Educational Leadership from Pace University in New York, and a BA in Elementary Education from Salisbury University in Maryland.

Angela Bond

Chief of Staff

Angela oversees strategic planning, regional data, board management, student support services, and cross-functional projects. She joined the KIPP Metro Atlanta Schools team in 2011 as the founding talent recruiter for the region, creating a centralized hiring process as the region grew. Most recently she served as the Managing Director of Talent and led the organizations talent team in attracting, developing, motivating, and retaining our faculty and staff. Angela got her start in education as an elementary school teacher in New Orleans. She received a dual BA in Government and Criminology from the University of Maryland. Outside of work, Angela enjoys spending time with her husband, son, and two dogs.

Ryan Hudak

Chief Operating Officer

Ryan oversees the business operations of our nine schools and regional office. Ryan began his professional career as an infantry officer in the U.S. Army. Following six years of military service, Ryan worked in Silicon Valley in various manufacturing and operations roles. After completing his MBA in 2005, he began a career in urban education reform focused on school operations. Ryan worked at Chicago Public Schools and DC Public Schools in various operations leadership roles and as an Associate Partner at NewSchools Venture Fund where he focused on investment strategy and management assistance for the firm’s Los Angeles ventures. Ryan joined KIPP Metro Atlanta as COO in 2016 after five years serving as COO at KIPP San Antonio. Ryan holds a BS in Economics from the United States Military Academy and an MBA from the University of Texas at Austin, and is an alumnus of The Broad Residency in Urban Education.

Jondré Pryor

Chief Schools Officer

Jondré is the Chief Schools Officer for all secondary schools in KIPP Metro Atlanta. Jondré previously served as principal of KIPP South Fulton Academy (KSFA) in East Point, Georgia, for nine years. Under his leadership, KSFA was recognized as a school of excellence in academics, athletics, and fine arts. He began his career in education as a 1994 Teach for America corps member in Oakland, California. In the past 24 years, he has served as an elementary school teacher, middle school mathematics teacher, instructional coach, director of curriculum and instruction, athletics coach, principal, and head of schools. Jondré has dedicated his life to assisting Black and Latino scholars to become critical thinkers, problem solvers, and socially intelligent citizens of the world. He graduated from Hampton University with a BA in Political Science and a minor in Law. Jondré takes the most pride in his role as a father to his daughter and his son.

Mini’imah Shaheed

Chief Schools Officer

Mini’imah is the Chief Schools Officer for KIPP Metro Atlanta’s primary schools. Previously she served as the head of schools for primary schools and the founding principal of KIPP STRIVE Primary School, KIPP Metro Atlanta’s first elementary school, established in 2012. Prior to the Fisher Fellowship, Mini’imah was a teacher in the 2001 Teach for America corps and an assistant principal for four years thereafter. Mini’imah earned her BA in English Literature at the University of Pennsylvania, her MAT in English Literature at Agnes Scott College, and a master’s degree in Educational Leadership at Georgia State University. She leads with love, using her experiences and expertise to support and develop KIPP Metro Atlanta’s principals as they work to bring to life every possibility and opportunity for Atlanta’s students. When not supporting her KIPPsters, big and small, Mini’imah gives her heart to her husband and two sons.

Courtney Bell

Managing Director of Talent

Courtney oversees all aspects of our regional recruitment, human resources, and teaching residency program. She joined KIPP Metro Atlanta Schools in 2012 as the Director of Human Resources, a role she held for six years. Courtney began her career at Laurel Baye Healthcare as a Human Resources Manager and later as the Human Resources Director. Courtney held several roles at American Express/Ameriprise Financial, including Recruitment Coordinator, Operations Manager, and Sr. Operations Team Leader, where she managed five branch locations in the southeast for five years. Courtney has her BS degree in Urban Policy Studies with a specialization in Human Resources from Georgia State University and a MBA from Shorter University in Rome, GA. She completed the Human Resources Management Program at Kennesaw State University and received a certificate in Human Resources. She currently holds a SHRM-CP certificate from the Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM) and a PHR certificate from the Human Resources Certification Institute (HRCI). She also received her mediation certificate from the Justice Center of Atlanta. She enjoys spending time with her family, reading and traveling the world.

Ra’Chel Ford

Managing Director of Regional Operations

Ra’Chel oversees nutrition, health, transportation, technology, and facilities for our nine schools and regional office. Ra’Chel began her career in financial services, spending 15 years in process and performance improvement roles with Bank of America. She began her work in education in 2012 with the Tennessee Department of Education where she served as the Chief of Staff for District Support, supporting every school district within the state. Ra’Chel joined KIPP Metro Atlanta Schools in 2014 as the Director of Campus Operations for KIPP WAYS Campus. Ra’Chel has a BS in Urban Policy Studies from Georgia State University, a MBA in Global Management from the University of Phoenix, and she is an alumna of the Broad Center’s Urban Educational Leadership Residency.

Dave Howland

Managing Director of External Relations

Dave supports the development, advocacy, marketing and communications, and KIPP Through College teams. Prior to this role, Dave was the Founding Principal of KIPP Metro Atlanta Schools’ first high school, KIPP Atlanta Collegiate, which opened in 2011. He began his career in education as a Teach For America – Metro Atlanta corps member, where he taught English at Booker T. Washington High School. He joined the KIPP team and family as the seventh-grade English teacher at KIPP WAYS Academy. Prior to founding KIPP Atlanta Collegiate, Dave spent a year with the KIPP School Leadership Program, where he trained and completed a residency to design the school. Dave was honored as the 2015 Atlanta Families for Excellence in Education Principal Award winner.  He earned a B.A. in English from the University of Rochester and a M.Ed. in Supervision and Education Leadership from National Louis University. Despite being an ardent fan of New England sports teams, Dave considers himself a proud Atlantan. He lives in Grant Park with his wife and three kids.

Crystal Nasir

Managing Director of Operations

Crystal supports the development of School Operations Leaders, drives all student enrollment activities, and works in close partnership with the Chief Operating Officer to oversee operations for all schools. Prior to this role, she served as the founding Director of Operations for KIPP STRIVE Academy, established in 2009, and KIPP STRIVE Primary School, established in 2012. Crystal began her career in education as a mentor and Assistant Program Director of The Marin City Children’s Program and then as an Administrative Lead of the Making Waves Education Program, both in California. She earned her BA in Business Administration with a Global Marketing concentration from Dominican University of California, and a Graduate Marketing Certification from the University of Phoenix. Crystal was recognized as one of the first Heart and SOL (School Operations Leader) award recipients by the KIPP Foundation and also by the Morehouse College Office of Community Service for her partnership work. With an intentional focus on operational excellence, she wholeheartedly believes in its direct connection to student achievement.

Kelly Shields

Managing Director of Finance

Kelly oversees all accounting, budget, and financial functions. Prior to joining the Atlanta Team & Family, Kelly was a member of the KIPP Baltimore team as Director of Finance and Administration.  Kelly’s background is in consulting and has worked at both Baltimore County Public Schools and DC Public Schools.  She is an alumna of both the Education Pioneers and Strategic Data Project fellowships.  Kelly is a two-time graduate of the University of Virginia, having earned her MBA at The Darden Graduate School of Business Administration.  She is deeply passionate about preparing the next generation of KIPP Metro Atlanta graduates for colleges and careers of their choice.

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