Doug is a experienced systems-level leader driven by his background as an educator. He is a thought leader in launching district partnerships and designing innovative network models. Over the last two years, Doug has supported districts across the state to launch over 20 new partnership networks that have increased access to great schools for thousands of Texas students and families.
Doug’s journey in education began as a Teach for America corp member in Dallas, TX where he served as a middle school teacher in a Title I school. Upon completing his corp experience, Doug completed his MBA at Rice University as part of the university’s education entrepreneurship program (REEP). He also served as a teacher and administrator with YES Prep Public schools, leading the launch of Fifth Ward High School.
Prior to launching the School Innovation Collaborative, Doug served as the Assistant Director for the Texas Education Agency’s Division of System Support & Innovation where he designed and launched multiple state-wide education reform initiatives aiming to empower school leaders and educators.
Brian has been the principal at Lamar Elementary for the last five years and last year started a new role as the Network Director of the Lamar-Bowden campuses. He previously spent eight years in North East ISD where he taught at the elementary level in special education and general education before working as an assistant principal.
Sonya Mora is a nationally-recognized turnaround principal with over 20 years of experience as an instructional leader. As the founding director of the Gates-Cameron network, she is committed to scaling the impact of the network to expand access to high-quality schools in Texas. Prior to launching the network, Sonya served as the principal of Gates Elementary, leading the turnaround of one of San Antonio’s most under-performing schools. During this turnaround, the campus performance in Math and Reading grew by over 2 grade levels while the campus improved from a “F” to an “A”-rated campus.
During this period of rapid growth, Gates was serving as a beacon of what is possible for urban schools across the district. She designed, implemented, and led multiple aggressive initiatives, which led to improved academic performance resulting in over 15 campus distinction designations from 2016 to 2019.
Sonya has been an educator in San Antonio ISD for 20 years. She is a graduate of the University of Texas at San Antonio (UTSA) where she earned a Bachelor of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies with a concentration in early childhood and a Masters of Education in Educational Leadership. Her passion for curriculum and instruction led her to earn another Masters in Education in Elementary Math at Texas State University.
Agueda Cantu prides herself in serving bilingual and dual language students for twenty years in San Antonio, Texas. She served as a member of the Bilingual Redesign Committee that developed the district-wide Dual Language program for SAISD. Her experience in teaching English Language Arts and Spanish Language Arts include leading the Dyslexia instruction by using Really Great Reading (RGR) and Esperanza programs. She prides herself in her extensive knowledge of various behavior management philosophies such as SEL, Restorative Practices, PBIS and Capturing Kids’ Hearts. Her leadership philosophy states that all students can learn if they have caring, well-trained educators that have growth mindsets and are willing to serve their school community in a strategic and compassionate manner.
Mrs. Cantu is a life-long learner that is willing to take the extra step to lead by example and learn from all those around her. A testament to this is her selection into the Tomorrow’s Leaders program at Trinity University of which she will receive her MEd in Instructional Leadership in the summer of 2020. In addition, she received the honor of being selected to accept the first distinguished, educational leadership award, John H. Moore and Thomas J. Sergiovanni Educational Leadership Award, presented by Trinity University in the Spring of 2020.
Along with her experiences in education Ms. Cantu received an MBA from the University of Incarnate Word and served as Associate Director of Admissions at the institution. She has experience in marketing, sales and management in corporations such as Frito-Lay and Airborne Express. .
Mrs. Cantu is excited to begin serving as Chief of Staff for SIC. She looks forward to being part of this progressive team that believes in developing all students, faculty and staff into successful 21st century learners.
Katerina brings 12 years of professional experience in public education to the School Innovation Collaborative team. She obtained a Bachelor of Science (Biology) degree from the University of Washington and later completed a two year Teach For America teaching commitment with YES Prep Public Schools in Houston, TX. It’s with YES Prep, through TFA, where Katerina found her calling for social justice through education.
Katerina held several leadership roles with YES Prep in the form of Operations Manager and Dean of Instruction, while attaining principal certification and an MBA degree from Rice University.
Katerina later moved to Austin, TX, where she continued her career in education with another charter school system – IDEA Public Schools. Prior to joining Doug Dawson, Katerina served as consultant, working with the Texas Education Agency and School Innovation Collaborative.
Megan has been a high performing teacher in the district. With both high achievement and student growth, she has a deep understanding of what quality curriculum and instruction look like. Alongside high quality instruction, Megan has implemented social-emotional learning and project-based learning into her educational philosophy as methods to ensure the needs of the “whole child” are met, while providing students with 21st century skills that help students understand their ability to make change in the world around them. Over the course of the last few years, Megan has established herself as a teacher leader, through coaching and mentoring, as well as curriculum development for the district. Educational experiences in a variety of contexts have strengthened her belief that all students deserve a quality education rooted in strong curriculum and instruction.
Megan began teaching preschool afterschool and through the summers over fifteen years ago, then full-time after graduation. She shifted to teaching middle school in Providence, Rhode Island through Teach for America after having children. During this time she earned her Masters in Teaching from Rhode Island College. She later moved to San Antonio teaching in upper elementary grades and was named Lamar Teacher of the Year in 2019. Currently, she is a doctoral candidate at Walden University, completing her EdD in Curriculum, Instruction, and Assessment. In addition to her education experiences, Megan holds a Bachelor’s in Human Development and Family Studies, as well as an Associates in accounting.
Monica has serviced students and families for ten years in the San Antonio community. She has worked with children that come from Dual Language backgrounds, special needs and at risk behaviors. Her experience in collaborating with the Community in Schools programs, the ACE after school care and PTA association has allowed her to create partnerships with students and their families. Due to her diligence in reaching out to every member of the school community through her home visit initiatives students and families needs have been met.
Monica prides herself in founding the annual Culture & International Festival at a partnership school. This Festival brought together community organizations, family participation and students authentic work to enrich and learn about cultures represented in the school and the world. She also began the “Voice in A Tile” project where parents were invited to express their sentiments about the importance of SEL through artwork and quotes created in the school ceiling tiles.
Monica graduated with a Bachelors of Education degree from the University of Texas in San Antonio where she participated in the BESO Organization working to improve the lives of Dual Language/ Bilingual students.