Community Learning Center in Philadelphia, PA

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Community Learning Center
2701 N. Broad Street
Philadelphia, PA 19132
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Carrie Kitchen-Santiago, Executive Director

Carrie has spent her entire career in the nonprofit and public service sectors. Most recently, she was the chief operating officer at Broad Street Ministry (BSM) in Philadelphia and served for three years as its managing director before becoming COO. At BSM, Carrie developed, implemented, and oversaw various strategic planning, program and partnership development, board development and stewardship, financial management, and fundraising initiatives, programs, and processes.

Carrie has considerable experience as a workforce development professional. She held two director-level positions at the Philadelphia Workforce Development Corporation (PWDC)(since renamed Philadelphia Works Inc.), leading systems development and training and policy. Before that, she was a manager of workforce development at Congreso in Philadelphia, one of the largest nonprofit social services agencies serving the Philadelphia Latino community. Carrie’s diverse background also includes leadership roles with the Greater Philadelphia High School Partnership at the University of Pennsylvania's Center for Greater Philadelphia and support for various national and local political campaigns.

Carrie holds a B.A. from the University of Pennsylvania and a master in public affairs and urban and regional planning from Princeton University, Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs.

Jeffrey Abramowitz, Director of Student Services

Jeffrey has a B.A. (political science) from Ohio State University and a J.D. from Michigan State University, Detroit College of Law. After practicing business law for more than 20 years, he moved into education. He was an adjunct professor of business law at the Keller Graduate School of Management at DeVry University and an instructor within the Department of Justice, where he taught more than 45 adult continuing education and institutional courses.

Dawn Hannah, Director of Education

Dawn holds a B.S. in Spanish from Georgetown University and an M.A. in linguistics from Stanford University.  She has served as an associate director of education, assistant director of instructional quality and professional learning, program manager, manager of information services, and education and training coordinator in adult literacy agencies in Philadelphia. She also served as a project manager for research projects at the University of Pennsylvania’s National Center on Adult Literacy and has served as adjunct faculty for Community College of Philadelphia’s ESL, GED, and developmental English courses.

Eileen Kenney, Director of Development and Communications

Eileen holds a B.A. magna cum laude in speech (rhetoric and communications) from the University of Pittsburgh and a J.D. from Temple University School of Law. She has 15 years of experience directing marketing and communications at two major Philadelphia law firms. She also has 10 years of professional experience in continuing legal education. Eileen is a member of the State Bar of Pennsylvania and practiced law for several years in Philadelphia.

Carol S. Miller, Director of Operations

Carol obtained a B.S. in education magna cum laude from Millersville University of Pennsylvania and an M.B.A. from Villanova University, where she was a member of the Phi Kappa Phi and Beta Gamma Sigma National Honor Societies. A former middle school language arts teacher, Carol had a 25-year career in management at a large corporate law firm. She has also had broad, in-depth experience as a volunteer for nonprofit organizations, domestic and international.

Rebecca Wagner, Project Lead, Facilitation and Consultation Project

Becky Wagner is the state-appointed project lead for the Facilitation and Consultation grant awarded to CLC, one of seven leadership projects funded through the Bureau of Postsecondary and Adult Education of the Pennsylvania Department of Education. In this role, Becky leads the project and works with agencies across the state as they implement new knowledge and skills to support continuous program improvement.  Before this, Becky was the executive director of CLC from 2008-2016. She has extensive experience in adult education as well as teaching experience in science in several Pennsylvania school districts. Additionally, she was a clinical chemist at St. Joseph’s Hospital and Health Care Center, and a clinical chemistry instructor at Harrisburg Hospital School of Medical Technology. Becky holds a B.A. in medical technology from Shippensburg State University, an M.S. in medical technology from the State University of New York, Buffalo, and a D.Ed. from Pennsylvania State University Harrisburg.

Ivry Bland, Career Coach

Ivry earned a B.A. in management from Strayer University. Ivry came to Community Learning Center from a charter school in Philadelphia where she was an assistant learning coach to primary-level students. Ivry also has 13 years of customer service experience for a major telecommunications company where she gained skills in the employee hiring process, interpersonal communications, and team leadership.

Gianna M. Brisbone, Teacher

Gianna received her M.S. in secondary education from the University of Pennsylvania and her M.S. and B.S. in biology from Delaware State University Dover. Gianna’s teaching experience includes teaching math enrichment for the School District of Philadelphia and biology, environmental science, physical science, and algebra at two Philadelphia charter schools.  Before teaching, she was a researcher at Thomas Jefferson University and Delaware State University.

Kieran Farrell, Career Coach

Keiran has a B.A. in Latin American studies from Fordham University. She has a variety of experience working for many nonprofits, including a maternal wellness center where she was a resource coordinator; Project H.O.M.E. where she was a support staff supervisor and residential case worker; and a transitional housing program for the mentally ill where she was a program aide.

Melrona Gordon, Administrative Assistant and Pearson Vue Test Center Administrator

Melrona Gordon assists in the operations and administration of CLC.  She is also a certified test administrator at the Pearson Vue-Authorized Test Center located in CLC’s West Philadelphia location. As a Pearson Vue test administrator, Melrona administers computer-based tests, including certification and licensure exams, across numerous industries. Before working at CLC, Melrona was a Certified Nursing Assistant (C.N.A.) and worked in the food services industry.

Patricia Haggerty, Teacher

Patty has B.A. degrees in art and biology from Rutgers University. Prior to CLC, Patty worked as an art teacher, a weight loss counselor, and a pre-school assistant. She also has experience in the food service industry. Before teaching at CLC, she was a CLC classroom volunteer.

Marcus Hall, Teacher

Marcus obtained his bachelor of business administration and is currently enrolled in the MBA program at Saint Joseph University Haub School of Business. His past teaching positions include GED math instructor and teaching assistant for GED and professional development at two other Philadelphia nonprofits, as well as teacher of fourth and sixth grade science.  Most recently, he was a program manager at the American Emerald Awards Foundation in Philadelphia.

Clarece Hicks, myPLACE Learning Coach

Clarece attended Community Learning Center and obtained her Commonwealth Secondary School Diploma.  Before working for CLC’s myPLACE Campus, Clarece worked in customer service for more than 10 years.  

Joanne Laub, Teacher

Joanne is a graduate of the University of Virginia with a B.A. cum laude in chemistry. Joanne worked at Merck & Co. as a medical program coordinator for the clinical pharmacology department and as a chemist in the medicinal chemistry department. Currently, she is the leader and treasurer of La Leche League of Philadelphia. She is also a co-founder and former organizer of the Penn Alexander School Run for Arts and Sciences fundraising event. Joanne began at CLC as a volunteer tutor.

Lindsay Liprando, Teacher

Lindsay earned a bachelor's degree in neuroscience and psychology from the University of Pittsburgh and an M.Ed. in reading, writing, and literacy at the University of Pennsylvania. She has worked in adult education since 2006 and has experience as a counselor at a mental illness facility. She is also a board member and the treasurer for Books Through Bars.

Daniel Waters, Teacher

Dan obtained a B.A. from The George Washington University. He received a Certificate in TESOL in 2013 from Trinity College in London. Before joining Community Learning Center, he was an English language instructor at the American Language Center and a teacher of English as a second language for several language schools in Prague.