Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer
Jonah Edelman, an advocate for public education, is the co-founder and Chief Executive Officer of Stand for Children, an influential voice for students with affiliates in 11 states. Stand for Children’s mission is to ensure that all children, regardless of their background, graduate from high school prepared for, and with access to, a college education. To date, Stand for Children’s eleven state affiliates (AZ, CO, IL, IN, LA, MA, OK, OR, TN, TX, and WA) have won more than two hundred victories that have impacted the lives of millions of children.
Shannon CampionChief of State Operations
Shannon joined Stand in 2002 after working for Senator John Kerry (D-MA) and working for Common Cause on campaign finance reform. Starting as an Organizer and then Portland City Director, Shannon built the Portland Stand Chapter to over 1,000 dues-paying members and over 20 leaders. Shannon moved to Seattle to launch the Washington state affiliate in 2007. During her 6 years as Executive Director, Stand Washington was instrumental in among other things, passing an updated definition of basic education, passing landmark teacher and principal evaluation legislation, and establishing greater interventions into chronically under-performing schools. Shannon joined Stand for Children’s executive team in 2013 and serves as the Chief of State Operations.
Jacqui DortchDirector of Family Engagement
Jacquelyn Dortch was born and raised in the Austin community on Chicago’s west side. Her parents were 15 and 17 years of age at the time of her birth. Jacquelyn’s life was immediately plagued by the prescribed perils of living in an impoverished community and being reared by teenagers. Fortunately for Jacquelyn she lived in a community where principals and teachers believed in moving beyond the office. When her mother’s elementary school principal learned that she had given birth, he made a house visit. He simply told Jacquelyn’s mother and father, “no matter what, stay in school and make sure these children have a quality education.”
Karen HansenVice President of Family Engagement
Karen grew up in the Northeast and went on to major in Business at the University of New Hampshire. After graduating Karen lived on Nantucket, supervising two hotel properties, before settling in Boston and transitioning to a travel technology company. Throughout the years, she progressed in her career to become a holistic talent management professional as a Director of Human Resources and Learning & Development. Craving a change from the corporate world, she chose Stand for Children as her way of linking her personal passion and her professional career.
Kerry MollVice President of Policy & Advocacy
Kerry grew up in Los Angeles, Chicago and Indiana, but has called Austin home for over 15 years. As a lifelong educator, Kerry has been a teacher, coach, department chair, school leader, university researcher, non-profit partner and overall education policy nerd. Prior to joining Stand as the VP of Policy and Advocacy, Kerry founded the consulting group Intersection Education, developed expertise in teacher and leader preparation and evaluation through her work in two non-profits and on numerous commissioner appointed advisory committees in Texas, received her doctorate in K12 Leadership from the University of Texas at Austin, and spent ten years working in public schools, mostly at the high school level. When Kerry isn’t geeking out over policy, she spends time with her husband and three young daughters and volunteers with the United Way, Mobile Loaves and Fishes, and the Girl Scouts of Central Texas.
PAM WELCHChief Operating Officer
Pamela is a lifelong Oregonian. Her diverse background as an entrepreneur, corporate executive, and community volunteer include leadership experience in the operations and/or accounting/finance areas with Nike, lucy activewear, and Portland General Electric. Pamela is currently serving as the Board Treasurer for the Oregon College of Oriental Medicine and as an Advisory Board member for the YWCA of Portland (previously serving two terms as Board President). Pamela has also served as an Advisory Board member of the Portland Playworks affiliate and she worked with Portland’s Outside/In to develop Virginia Woof, a successful dog daycare serviced by at-risk youth.