The Board of Directors of the Carr Educational Foundation (Daraja’s parent organization) is represented by experienced professionals in a variety of fields including education, special events, public relations, and strategic planning. It is a board dedicated to raising the funds necessary to build a strong foundation for Daraja, ensuring success long into the future.
Lee Ann Patterson
Lee Ann Patterson graduated from Davidson College with a BA in Economics. After college she taught Government Studies to high school students through the Close Up Foundation in Washington, D.C. She also spent a year teaching English at Kangubiri Girls’ High School outside Nyeri, Kenya. She returned to the U.S. to pursue a MS in Agricultural Economics from Michigan State University. Later, she traveled to Malawi and Zimbabwe to do a study for the United Nations Development Program and took a job at the USDA Foreign Agriculture Service to work on the Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations. In 1991, She returned to the University of Pittsburgh to get her Ph.D. in International Relations and was awarded a Fulbright Fellowship to do her dissertation research on biotechnology policy at the Commission of the European Union. She and her husband live in Los Altos, California with their two daughters. In her free time she enjoys reading and attending performing arts events. She also volunteers for a wide variety of organizations in her local community.
Suzanne joined the board in 2009 after her first trip to Daraja with her daughter, a member of the Woodside Priory School’s Daraja Club. She holds a BA in Drama from UC Irvine, and as an actress has performed in theaters across the globe. She has taught drama and music to elementary school students, and was fortunate to hold an improvisation workshop with the Daraja students during the school’s first year. As a parent of two teenagers, Suzanne has served on PTA boards at the local and regional level where she managed diverse groups of volunteers. Suzanne lives in Los Altos, California with her husband, Scott, two teens, and two mostly well-behaved dogs.
Diane is currently the Controller with Litman Gregory Asset Management in Larkspur, CA. Prior to joining Litman Gregory she managed the accounting and human resources at Paradise Foods in Corte Madera. Prior to that Diane was the Controller for Terrace Consulting in San Francisco and an Accountant for Arthur Andersen & Co. in the audit and tax divisions in San Francisco. She is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley (BS – Accounting and Finance). Diane is also a Big Sister with the Big Brothers Big Sisters of the North Bay. She lives in Marin with her husband and two sons. In her free time she enjoys hiking and biking. Diane joined Carr Educational Foundation and the Daraja Academy in 2012 as the Board Treasurer.
Director/Daraja Academy Administrator
Jason Doherty grew up in northern California, and received his BA in International Relations at University of San Diego in 1998, then moved to Tanzania to teach at a secondary school. During those 6 months, Jason discovered his passion for teaching. Upon returning home, he earned his teaching credential at Dominican University in 2004 and taught in the public school system for 6 years as a mentor teacher. He was selected as Solano County’s Teacher of the Year in 2007. In 2008, he moved with his wife, Jenni, to Kenya to start Daraja Academy.
Director/Daraja Academy Administrator
Jenni Doherty grew up along the Rocky Mountain Range but moved to Northern California soon after meeting her husband, Jason. She graduated from Sonoma State University in 2004 with a BA in English Literature. She put her education to use as a Research Associate at WestEd, an educational consulting firm based in San Francisco, California. She was directly involved in the planning, execution, and evaluation of several research projects for the California Department of Education Child Development Division. In 2008, Jenni moved with her husband, Jason, to Kenya to start Daraja Academy. She won the prestigious 2010 Soroptomist Ruby Award for women working to improve the lives of women around the world.
Ebele Okobi-Harris is Director of Yahoo!’s Business and Human Rights Program, leading Yahoo!’s efforts to promote privacy and free expression on the Internet. Before joining Yahoo!, Ebele was a corporate securities and mergers & acquisitions attorney at Davis Polk & Wardwell in New York, Paris and London, an attorney fellow at Consumers Union (a consumer rights advocacy non-profit) in San Francisco, a director of Advisory Services at Catalyst (a non-profit with the mission of advancing women in business) in San Jose and Amsterdam and at Nike’s EMEA headquarters as an MDP focused on marketing and business development in Africa.
Ms. Okobi-Harris earned a BA in Psychology from the University of Southern California, a JD from Columbia Law School and an MBA Certificat des Études from Hautes Études Commerciales de Paris. She has been on the Carr Educational Foundation board since January 2012.
Mo Virani currently serves as the Chief Operating Officer and Chief Financial Officer of Northgate Capital, LLC in Danville, CA. Mo has an extensive background and over 30 years of experience in senior management positions in the high tech and private equity sectors. Prior to Northgate, Mo worked for organizations including Mohr, Davidow Ventures, Softbank Corp/Ziff Davis, Sun Microsystems, and Hewlett-Packard. He holds an M.B.A. from Stanford University. Mo is married to his wife Vivienne, has two children. While he now calls San Francisco his home, Mo was born in Kenya and lived there through his high school years. In his free time, he enjoys playing squash, traveling, and supporting girls education. Mo has been a board member of Daraja Academy since January and has been an advisor for over five years.
Bob is a Physics and Mathematics teacher at Woodside Priory School in Portola Valley, California, and has over 10 years of teaching experience in both public and private high schools. He has a BS in Physics from UCLA and an MBA in Finance from Wharton. Before finding the joy of working with teenagers, Bob had a 20 year career as an executive in both large and start-up high technology companies in Silicon Valley. He lives in Los Altos, California with his wife Jane and has two children.
Mark has been teaching high school science for the past 25 years, the last 23 at Marin Academy, where he currently teaches biology. He holds the school’s H.D. Thoreau Faculty Chair for promoting education for sustainability and interdisciplinary teaching and learning. Mark is a Teacher Advisor for the award winning Web sites, Understanding Science.org and Understanding Evolution.org and has served as the High School Director for the California Science Teachers Association. He has received numerous awards including an award from the National Science Teachers Association for innovative teaching strategies in high school science.
In addition to his service on the Carr Educational Foundation Board, Mark has worked in volunteer leadership roles for the Insight Garden Program at San Quentin State Prison, Marin Organic, and the Advisory Board of Teens Turning Green. Mark and his sweetheart wife, Johanna Brandriff, live happily in San Rafael with their three cats and many other pets.
Tara graduated with magna cum laude honor from Loyola Marymount University and earned her BA in Theater and minor in Business Administration. Tara moved back to the Bay Area after graduating and started working in the hospitality industry – planning fundraisers, weddings and corporate events. She feels honored to use her expertise to benefit the girls of Daraja.
Deb currently serves as the head of Girls’ Middle School in Palo Alto, California. Prior to GMS, Deb served as Dean of Students at Castilleja School. Previously, she was Class Dean and teacher at Westlake School for Girls and its successor, Harvard-Westlake School.
Deb received a BA in history from the University of Southern California and a Masters in School Administration from Pepperdine University. She has a teaching credential from the University of California, Berkeley. Deb joined the Carr Educational Foundation board January 2012.