Meet the Leading Equity Center Team

We provide practical strategies and inspiring stories to help educators create a powerful sense of belonging in their schools, ensuring all students thrive and succeed.

Read Dr. Eakins' Bio

Darlene Reyes, MA., Student Equity Instructor

Darlene Reyes is a first-generation Salvadoran-American. Darlene advocates for educational equity for students of all backgrounds especially students with layered identities such as students of color, first-generation, and low socioeconomic backgrounds.

LaWanda Wesley, Ed.D., Early Childhood

Dr. LaWanda Wesley serves as Oakland Unified School District's Director of Quality Enhancement and Professional Development of Early Education. 

Margaret Harris, Content Creator

Margaret's expertise includes content creation and instructional technology coaching. 

Yujia Ding, Ed.D., STEM and Accessibility Specialist

Dr. Yujia Ding is a scientist by training and a passionate educator with the hope of making science accessible to all individuals, regardless of abilities.  

Lewis Eakins, Ph.D., DEI and Threat Assessment Specialist

Dr. Eakins has over 40 years of law enforcement experience and has served for several years as a trainer and consultant with the U.S. Department of Education in the areas of K-12 Behavioral Intervention Teams and Emergency Operations planning. 

Jenn Gallup, Ph.D., Special Education, and UDL Specialist

Dr. Jenn Gallup is passionate about helping children with disabilities through the many transitions in life and helping educators harness the power of technology to support greater inclusion and access to the curriculum through UDL.

Brandon White, Curriculum Specialist

Brandon White is an educator, poet, and former middle school ELA teacher. He is an expert in curriculum assessments and creating content for student empowerment. 

Kelly Cross, Ph.D., LGBTQ+ and STEM

Dr. Cross has conducted workshops on managing personal bias in STEM, online and in-person, in addition to faculty training on power and privilege. Her research interests include diversity and inclusion in STEM, intersectionality, teamwork and communication skills, assessment, and identity construction. 

Carol Collins, Ph.D., Leadership

Dr. Collins, prepares graduate candidates for the principalship and superintendency in the state of Illinois. Her research incorporates intersectionalities of race and gender in educational leadership and schooling experiences.