Alabama Afterschool Community Network
Felicia Simpson serves as the Network Lead for the Alabama Afterschool Community Network (ALACN), promoting high-quality afterschool programs and summer learning across the state. She is also the Director of the Office of Expanded Learning and Community Supports in the College of Education at the University of Alabama. Felicia has over 23 years of experience in education. She has served as a teacher, administrator and director in K-12 schools. She works diligently with the Governor’s Administration, State Department of Education, Office of Early Childhood Education and numerous other organizations to create awareness around the impact before/afterschool and summer programming has for Alabama students, families, and communities. Felicia is a graduate of Jacksonville State University, University of Alabama, and completed her Education Policy Fellowship at Furman University.
Dr. Michael Daria
Tuscaloosa City Schools
Director of Strategic Initiatives
Tuscaloosa City Schools
Andrew Maxey is frankly a little obsessed with what he views as critical issues in education: effective assessment and grading practices, middle-level practice actually informed by a deep knowledge of young adolescence, educational leadership and the complexity of teaching and the ongoing deprofessionalization of teaching in the last few years. He has spent a great deal of his time over the last five years studying what works in the summer space and leading transformative practice in his district to make summer valuable to student learning instead of threatening to it. He considers it his moral obligation to ask questions, take risks and protect/advocate for those in his sphere of influence. As the father of three girls who have started a collective eleven-year passage through their teen years, he is doubly committed to advocating for the improvement of public education; for the sake of their children.
Director - Technical Training
National Summer Learning Association
Senior Vice President - Policy
Erik Peterson joined the Afterschool Alliance in July 2009 and coordinates and advances the Afterschool Alliance’s policy efforts at the federal level by helping develop policy goals and implementing strategies that advance access to quality afterschool and summer learning programs for all. Erik works to build and strengthen relationships with policy makers and allied organizations to increase public support and funding for out of school time programs.
Vice President - Research
Nikki joined the Afterschool Alliance in June 2012. In her current role, Nikki coordinates, manages, and advances the Afterschool Alliance’s research efforts, including developing the organization’s research goals and agenda and effectively communicating findings on afterschool and summer programs to policy makers, afterschool providers, advocates, and the public. Current major research initiatives that are a part of Nikki’s portfolio include America After 3PM, a longitudinal study of how children in America spend their hours after school, and Afterschool in the Time of COVID-19, a multi-wave tracking survey documenting the pandemic’s impact on the afterschool field.
Victoria Wegener has extensive expertise in system and coalition building, collective impact, capacity building, and partnership cultivation and development. She is a master trainer and facilitator, known as being a national expert in the field of afterschool and youth development. Wegener supports the design and strategic implementation of the technical assistance infrastructure for the 50 State Afterschool Network funded by the C.S. Mott Foundation. Her recent work supports the design and implementation of the Millions Girls Moonshot funded by STEM Next, Intel Foundation and Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation. Wegener was named one of the Most Influential Leaders in STEM in 2015 by the National AfterSchool Association. Previously, Wegener was a Senior Associate for the strategic communications firm of Fowler Hoffman, LLC working in the areas of partnership development, strategic communications and coalition building. Wegener is a former Senior Consultant and Senior Associate for The Finance Project, serving as manager for national technical assistance and training projects. Wegener holds a master's degree in Social Work from the National Catholic School of Social Service at The Catholic University of America.
SPARK 21st CCLC Director
Tuscaloosa City Schools
Lindsey Blevins currently serves as the school counselor and SPARK 21st CCLC after school director at Skyland Elementary School in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. She serves on the Tuscaloosa City Schools district level team for summer learning. She has been working in the out of school field for eight years and has experience with grant writing, program development, and program implementation. She was awarded the 2021 Charles Stewart Mott Award by the Alabama Community Education Association.