Meet the team behind the Jacksonville Public Education Fund.
Rachael Tutwiler Fortune is the President of the Jacksonville Public Education Fund, where she leads the organization to help ensure every student in Duval County attends a high-quality school. Having served in government, non-profit, district and school-based roles, Rachael draws upon significant professional experience at all levels of the education system. She is a proud Jacksonville native and product of Duval County Public Schools.
Rachael began her career as a Duval County Public Schools teacher at S. P. Livingston Elementary School through Teach for America - Jacksonville. Afterward, she led JPEF's community mobilization efforts, launching the ONE by ONE campaign to mobilize stakeholders to develop a shared vision for local schools.
Rachael left Jacksonville to pursue a master’s degree in Education Policy, Organization and Leadership from Stanford University. Upon graduation, she served as an Education Pioneers Fellow at the Oakland Unified School District to improve community school strategic planning across the district.
Rachael was selected a Presidential Management Fellow and served as a Program Officer at the U.S. Department of Education in Washington, DC, where she managed a portfolio of multi-million-dollar Race to the Top grants during the Obama Administration. Following her fellowship, she joined the senior leadership team at America's Promise Alliance as a Senior Director responsible for leading the GradNation Campaign. She returned to Jacksonville and JPEF in 2017 as Executive Vice President before stepping into the President role in November 2018.
In addition to her master’s, Rachael holds a bachelor's degree in political science from the University of North Florida, where she served as the second African American female Student Government President and joined Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. She serves on the Board of Directors of Jewish Family and Community Services and is a member of the Women’s Giving Alliance. She was recognized as a member of Leadership Florida Education Class of 2018 and served on the City of Jacksonville's 2018 Task Force on Open Government. She is happily married to her husband, Emmanuel, and is the proud mother of their son, Nicholas.
firstname.lastname@example.org | cell: (904) 352-6897
As JPEF’s Vice President, Coretta Hill works to drive effective implementation of JPEF's strategy to make a deep and measurable impact on school quality through management and support of the organization's talented program team. She partners with JPEF President Rachael Tutwiler Fortune to guide the organization's overall operational effectiveness.
Prior to joining JPEF, Coretta served as Vice President of Volunteer and Community Engagement at the United Way of Northeast Florida for 10 years. She has also served as Executive Director of the March of Dimes in Buffalo, New York, Marketing Director and Adjunct Professor at Central Texas College in Japan, and in roles that allowed her to direct campaigns and communications for the Albany, Georgia, city government and United Way in Jacksonville and in Albany.
Her skillset and professional expertise span strong strategic planning, management, fundraising and communication competencies. She earned an MPA in Non-Profit Management from Albany State University, and a BA in Mass Communications with a focus on Public Relations from Fort Valley State University.
She is a member of the 2019 Leadership Jacksonville Class, a Community Coach with the Nonprofit Center for Northeast Florida and serves on the Board of Directors for Changing Homelessness, Inc.
Dr. Kimberly Allen leads JPEF’s research, data and evaluation work, helping to inform Jacksonville education leaders and community members about opportunities to improve school quality, student outcomes and evaluating the effectiveness of JPEF’s programs.
Kimberly grew up in Jacksonville and attended Duval County Public Schools. Kimberly attended Florida State University, where she earned two bachelor’s degrees in psychology and family and child sciences and a master’s degree in family and child sciences. During her undergraduate studies, Kimberly worked on campus to improve the mental and emotional well-being of FSU students and interned with a non-profit mental health facility in Jacksonville. Kimberly also interned with the Early Learning Coalition of Leon County, assisting with school readiness activities and prekindergarten enrollment.
After graduating from FSU, Kimberly was accepted to a doctoral program in human development and family sciences at the University of Georgia. She worked in a federally funded research center that worked exclusively with African-American families on research projects, prevention and intervention studies. While there, Kimberly worked on several manuscripts and presented findings at national and international conferences. Kimberly later transferred back to FSU, where she continued her work as a research assistant before earning her doctoral degree in human sciences and family relations.
email@example.com | cell: (904) 710-4984
Laura Alrutz leads JPEF’s policy and advocacy work, tracking policy developments at the local and state level and informing JPEF’s advocacy strategy.
Laura is a Jacksonville native and a proud product of Duval County Public Schools. Laura attended the University of Florida, where she received her bachelor’s degree in History with a minor in Art History. After college, Laura returned to Jacksonville and taught 6th grade World History at Ribault Middle School as a Teach For America corps member. During her time in the classroom, Laura developed a passion for providing excellent educational opportunities for students. Shortly after, Laura attended Vanderbilt University Law School and received her Juris Doctorate in 2015. She then practiced education law for a firm in Nashville, representing multiple school districts across Tennessee and developing policy for the state.
Laura and her husband, Zach, are proud parents of their daughter, Sloane.
firstname.lastname@example.org | cell: (904) 894-6228
Zachary Champagne leads JPEF’s teacher leadership work, including the yearlong EDDYs Experience to celebrate, elevate and empower Duval County’s Teachers of the Year.
Before joining JPEF, Zak spent 13 years as an elementary school teacher with a specialization in math and science. During this time, he received many state and national awards for excellence in teaching, including the Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching, Duval County Teacher of the Year and Finalist for Macy’s Florida Teacher of the Year. After his time in the classroom, Zak spent six years as a researcher at the Florida Center for Research in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics at Florida State University. Zak is very active with local, state and national organizations, including as a founding member and past President of the Duval Elementary Mathematics Council, past President of the Florida Mathematics Presidential Awardees Association and President of the Florida Council of Teachers of Mathematics. He also serves on the Editorial Board of Teaching Children Mathematics, an elementary mathematics journal published by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.
email@example.com | cell: (904) 635-3142
Stephanie Garry Garfunkel joined the Jacksonville Public Education Fund as Director of Marketing and Communications in July 2018.
Stephanie attended public schools in Citrus County, Fla., and graduated from the University of Florida (UF) with degrees in Journalism and English and a minor in Spanish. At UF, she worked as a copy editor, reporter and news editor at the Independent Florida Alligator, ultimately serving as editor-in-chief, and interned as a reporter for the Tampa Bay Times and the Miami Herald, where she wrote front-page stories about local news, the Florida Legislature and social issues. After graduation, Stephanie worked as a staff writer for the Tampa Bay Times before joining the U.S. Peace Corps as an education volunteer, supporting teachers and students in public schools in El Limón, a rural town in the Dominican Republic. She holds an MA in Communication from Johns Hopkins University, and has worked in communications for Boston-based nonprofits including Partners In Health and the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, where she was most recently Senior Managing Editor. She has continued her volunteer work by tutoring immigrant high school students in Cambridge, Mass., and building alumni support for the Independent Florida Alligator. Stephanie lives in Murray Hill with her husband, David, and daughter, Lucia.
firstname.lastname@example.org | (352) 359-2393
A Jacksonville native, Kristal Hance supports operations at the Jacksonville Public Education Fund as the Office and Fund Development Associate.
Kristal has over ten years of experience in nonprofit administration, beginning with the American Cancer Society, where she held positions in the areas of income development and office management. Before entering the nonprofit sector, Kristal taught dance and coached gymnastics, encouraging students to follow their dreams and achieve their individual goals.
Kristal lives in the Maxville area of Jacksonville with her husband, Daryl, who she met her sophomore year at Ed White High School.
email@example.com | cell: (904) 655-0723
Dr. Maira Martelo leads JPEF’s community mobilization initiatives, including convening community stakeholders through ONE by ONE events and Parents Who Lead, an initiative in partnership with Duval County Public Schools, the Jacksonville Public Library and the Kids Hope Alliance.
Maira grew up in Cartagena, Colombia, and has more than a decade of teaching experience as a college professor in Colombia, Mexico and the United States. She also has worked as a research consultant in Colombia and Mexico, evaluating several programs that involved community engagement.
She has lived in Jacksonville for more than 12 years, getting to know the Hispanic community through her work as a contributing writer for Hola Noticias, the local Hispanic newspaper, as well as her engagement in several Hispanic organizations. During her time in Jacksonville, Maira completed a doctorate in educational leadership at the University of North Florida, writing her dissertation on early literacy practices at home and beliefs about education among the Hispanic community in Jacksonville. Based on the results of her dissertation, Duval County Public School created the first bilingual Voluntary Prekindergarten Program at West Riverside Elementary School. Maira also worked as an assessment assistant at the College of Education and Human Services at the University of North Florida. She has served as a board member of the First Coast Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and has chaired the Achieving The Dream Scholarship for Hispanic students for the last three years. In addition to her doctorate, Maira holds bachelor's and master's degrees in communication. Maira mentors high school students who are pursuing their college education and also mentors through Generation Wow. She also volunteers with the Refugee Program at Catholic Charities. Maira recently received the 2017 NFL Hispanic Heritage Leadership Award for her contributions to the Hispanic community in Jacksonville.
firstname.lastname@example.org | cell: (904) 351-6671
ReGina Newkirk joined JPEF as the Director of Development in July 2017. She has over fifteen years of fundraising experience, including her service as Executive Director of Rocketown in Nashville, TN, and Director of Development, Communications, and Community Relations of Whitman-Walker Clinic in Washington, DC. At Rocketown, ReGina was responsible for overseeing the $1.2 million organization, as well as successfully managed a $7.4 million capital campaign. During her tenure at Whitman-Walker Clinic, she was responsible for all fundraising, which resulted in approximately $14 million annually. This included major donors, direct mail, individual gifts, public and private grants, planned giving, and special events. Before her work at Whitman-Walker, ReGina served as the director of grants and corporate relations for the YMCA of Metropolitan Washington where she oversaw all grant requests, grants management and corporate sponsorship proposals. She more than doubled the grant dollars raised in her first year and she increased federal funding by 500 percent.
Most recently, ReGina has been serving the educational needs of children in the classroom. She joined Teach for America in 2013, where she served as an elementary school teacher to Title I students in Oklahoma City. Her students made significant gains in math and reading, and she was an integral part of improving her school’s grade from an F to a C. She then moved to Jacksonville to teach for two additional years, working as a 5th grade math teacher at KIPP Impact Middle School and a 4th grade math teacher at Andrew Robinson Elementary School.
ReGina was born in Fort Collins, CO, and raised in Nashville. She graduated with highest honors from New York University with a B.F.A. in dramatic writing. She received her master’s degree in communications from the University of Tennessee.
email@example.com | cell: (615) 516-8004
Carly Yetzer is JPEF’s Manager of Finances and Operations and serves as Executive Assistant to Rachael Tutwiler Fortune.
Carly grew up in southeastern Wisconsin and is the product of a public school education. She graduated from the University of Wisconsin in Madison in 2005 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in French and International Studies. In 2006, Carly joined the Teach for America corps in the San Francisco Bay Area teaching 4th grade at DJ Meyer Elementary School in San Jose and then 6th grade English Language Arts at KIPP Bayview Academy in San Francisco. During that time, she earned her California Preliminary Teaching Credential through Alliant International University.
In 2008, Carly moved to Jacksonville where she worked as an Assistant Director at Huntington Learning Center, where she managed operations and tutored students. Carly joined the JPEF team for the first time in March of 2010 as Operations Associate and later became Finance Manager. In 2014, Carly moved back to the midwest and made the decision to stay home with her children before returning to JPEF as Finance Manager in 2017.
While in Jacksonville, Carly served on the Teach for America Jacksonville Alumni Board and volunteered as a mentor with Achievers for Life at Matthew Gilbert Middle School and Take Stock in Children at First Coast High School.
firstname.lastname@example.org | cell: (415) 971-5130
Learn about which schools would be renovated under proposed plans for improving Duval County's aging school buildings.
In JPEF's 2019 Public Perceptions Poll, participants said teachers, parents and school leaders have the biggest impact on school quality.
85.1 % of students district-wide graduated high school in 2018, a record high.