The Every Girl Can™ Learning Institute, Inc. (EGCLI) was incorporated in Maryland on March 10, 2015 and received non-profit status in September of that year. Based in Silver Spring, Maryland, USA, EGCLI is committed to enriching the lives of girls to soar and thrive. Our two-fold mission is to provide girls life skills enrichment programs that help ensure their success in school, career and community; and to give them experiences, exposure and tools that build confidence, a positive self-image, respect, trust and integrity in their everyday lives.
EGCLI made its public debut as the new sponsor of the Every Girl Can™ Conference (formerly the Every Girl Can™ “SMART Image” Conference under the management of KYMS Image International, LLC). Themed Girls Rising Through Leadership, the 8th Annual Conference for girls in 5th to 8th grade and women took place on Saturday, May 7, 2016 at Montgomery College, Health Sciences Center, Silver Spring/Takoma Park campus. The event was free for girls and supported in part by the generous donation of time and resources by Montgomery College, dedicated business and professional women as well as sponsors under the guidance of the EGCLI Board of Directors.
EGCLI founder and president, Yasmin Anderson-Smith, first created Every Girl Can™ as an after-school enrichment program at Takoma Park Middle School (TPMS) in 2007 during her first term there as PTA co-president. http://bit.ly/1UNJArq. Yasmin responded to the need for a new after-school program for girls at TPMS with the words, “I can do it.” In 2008, Yasmin launched the Every Girl Can™ “SMART Image” Conference (held at Riderwood in Silver Spring, Maryland) in order to include other professional women and reach even more girls. In 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013 and 2014, conferences were held at Bowie State University in collaboration with the Henry Wise Wellness Center. The 2015 conference, themed, Your Future is STEMtastic, was held at Montgomery College. Please watch the conference video here http://bit.ly/1JiKwOt and visit our Videos page to view more clips of past conferences.
Board of Directors
Yasmin Anderson-Smith, Colesville, MD – Founder/President
Yasmin Anderson-Smith is an award-winning speaker, trainer, coach and published author who earned her graduate degree from Howard University. Yasmin ignites and inspires young and mid-career professionals to soar and shine with distinction and gain competitive advantage in today’s crowded global business marketplace. A former management professional, Yasmin re-branded her career in 2007 as an entrepreneur. Her leading-edge experience in workplace excellence training, personal branding, professional development and civility skills helps college students, business women and young professionals sharpen their skills in career-readiness and advancement. Known as a leader in her field, Yasmin brings high enthusiasm, insight and inspiration to all her programs in order to touch the hearts and minds of participants. In 2007, Yasmin created Every Girl Can™ to help teen girls project confidence, practice civility and embrace a healthy body image. Yasmin has published several articles, a white paper and blogs on business image, personal branding and civility http://bit.ly/1lbhjYh and is co-author of the books The Power of Civility and Executive Image Power. This Jamaican-born Maryland resident is the mother of three college graduates who are MCPS graduates.
Lorna Olajumoke Anderson - Treasurer, Bowie, MD
Lorna Olajumoke Anderson, MS Accounting / Financial Management – Bowie, Maryland
Lorna is a professional with over twenty years of accounting experience, sixteen of which have been in management positions. Lorna has a broad range of accounting experience based on her work in government contracting, credit union banking, automotive manufacturing and mortgage finance with the giant corporation, Fannie Mae. In 2014, Lorna left Fannie Mae and began working as a consultant. Most recently she worked as an accounting consultant at Howard University. Prior to majoring in accounting and business management at a university in the US, Lorna earned a two-year diploma in Civil Engineering studies at a polytechnic institute in Great Britain. Born and raised in London, she has lived in the US for over 35 years and is the mother of three adult children. She loves to entertain, travel and is very active in her church.
Katherine Bessell Wurzburg, Los Altos, CA - Secretary
Katherine uses her marketing and leadership expertise to assist professional trade associations and nonprofit educational and charitable organizations with branding, event planning and leadership training She honed her leadership skills volunteering for nonprofit educational and charitable organizations including the Junior League, Stanford University Cantor Arts Center, Forging Connections, Rebuilding Together, Association of Image Consultants International, Rising International, and Ms. Magazine. Katherine is the co-author of Executive Etiquette Power, the Fundamentals of Leadership Nominating Manual for the Junior League of Palo Alto-Mid Peninsula and The Restaurateur’s Easy Guide to Do-It-Yourself Public Relations.
Tena Raglin, Elgin, IL
Tena’s more than 30 years’ experience in educational instruction, administration, and leadership has given her the opportunity to interact with thousands of students and to formulate insights into effective relationships for learning and leading. She is currently the Student Experiences Coordinator (Latin America Region) for K12 International Academy, an International Educational Community, headquartered in Herndon, VA. K12 provides educational first-point-of-contact support to international families including individualized educational plans leading to graduation. Prior to that, she served as President of Forging Connections, a non-profit organization focused on teaching youth how physical, intellectual, emotional, cultural and social well-being are interconnected and can lead to healthy, successful lives that strengthen families, schools, and communities. Tena is a Certified Trainer for Color Code International.
Tahlee Mambia, Upper Marlboro, MD
Tahlee Mambia, MPH, has spent many years mentoring and supporting the development of young girls. Born and raised on the south side of Chicago, Tahlee began mentoring and tutoring children at the local Boys and Girls Club. She continued mentoring while in college with the “Dr. Betty Shabazz Delta Academy”, whose mission is to groom young 8th grade girls to be leaders in their community. Tahlee was also a mentor with the “TALKS” mentoring program, a curriculum-based program that help steer young boys and girls through middle school by sharing wisdom. Upon relocating to Maryland, Tahlee became a mentor and coach with the Anne Arundel chapter of Girls on the Run. Tahlee holds a Bachelor’s of Science in Communications from the University of Illinois at Champaign, Urbana and a Master’s of Arts in Advertising and P.R. from DePaul University. Currently she is a Diabetes Care Specialist with Novo Nordisk Inc.
Elecia James, Washington DC Area
Elecia James, M.Ed., is Chief of Staff for The National Council of Women of America, a think-tank that features keynote speakers and experts who provide innovative solutions to power the full expression of women’s rights across America. She has 28 years experience in education as a principal, teacher, guidance counselor, and supervisor of performing arts. She served on the events production team for the Essence Women’s Empowerment Leadership Conference, the African American Film Festival, the Congressional Black Caucus, and the 44th Presidential Inauguration. Elecia is the co-producer for “Black Girls Unscripted”, an organization dedicated to empowering girls and young women of color globally through a documentary and related educational programs. Her proudest achievement is the development of a mentoring program for low-income youth focused on academic achievement, and personal and cultural development. Elecia remains committed to being an ambassador for minority and disadvantaged girls and young women, globally.
Victoria Heyliger, Esq., Columbia, MD
Victoria is an attorney and owner of Heyliger Law Offices. Utilizing the more than 20 years of finance, business, project management and tax experience, HLO assists clients in practice areas that include Estates and Trusts; Probate; and Traffic/DUI/DWI. Victoria volunteers with Maryland Volunteer Legal Service to provide pro-bono legal representation to Marylanders with limited income. In this capacity, her focus is guardianship, tax controversy and contract matters. Victoria believes that self-esteem must be addressed at an early age to help girls deal with home, school and societal challenges.
Latrice D. Morgan-Adejumo, Greenbelt, MD
Latrice D. Morgan-Adejumo has been supporting the development of non-profit organizations for over a decade. This includes her work with the National Society for Black Engineers, Girl Scouts, GEM Girls and several faith ministries. Latrice is the former business development specialist and parent advocate for the Patriots Technology Center. She is passionate about empowering women and girls from around the world. In pursuit of her degree in electrical engineering, Latrice has studied at Morgan State University and is currently attending Prince George’s Community Collge. She is the proud mother of six children.
Youth Advisers to the Board
Crystal Jackson, B.A.
Crystal Marie Jackson is a 2010 graduate of Elizabeth Seton High School and a Spelman College Alumna, Class of 2014. At Spelman she completed a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology with a minor in Japanese Studies. Crystal is currently employed by KIPP DC as an Office Manager at Grow Academy in Northwest Washington DC. She has a passion for providing developmental support to growing organizations. Crystal has been a volunteer with the Every Girl Can Conference since 2014 and a youth adviser to the Board of Directors since 2015.
Onyinye Nworokie, B.A.
Onyinye Nwokorie is a graduate of Springbrook High School and Towson University. At Towson, she earned two Bachelor of Arts degrees in Communication Studies and Mass Communications with a concentration in Strategic Public Relations. While at Towson, she served as vice president of the Collegiate Chapter of the National Council of Negro Women. Nworokie has been a volunteer with the Every Girl Can Conference since 2009 and a youth adviser to the Board of Directors since 2015. Nwokorie is passionate about empowering young girls and women in mind, body and spirit.
L. Isabelle Blackwood-Ellis, PhD – Clinical Psychologist, Co-Owner, Psychological and Educational Associates
Gillian Cadogen, CPA – Accountant
Dawnielle Farrar-Gaines, PhD – Senior Materials and Mechanical Engineer, Johns Hopkins University, Applied Physics Lab
Elaine Knight, PhD -Research Scientist, NIH
Claire Nelson, PhD – Engineer and Futurist, Sagient Futures
Chu Chu Onwuachi-Saunders, MD, MPH – Pediatrician, Public Health Consultant and Author
Paulette Watson, PhD – Former Educational Consultant, Massachusetts, Board of Education
Girls in 8th to 12th grade and college students may send a message of inquiry/interest to EGCLI secretaty, Katherine Wurzburg at firstname.lastname@example.org