Jon Naphin has been the Chairman of LaAmistad since the organization’s founding
in 2006. This role is the highlight of a lifelong commitment to volunteerism. Previously,
Naphin held leadership positions in local chapters of Literacy Volunteers of America,
Junior Achievement, and Sigma Chi Fraternity. He and his wife, Angela, serve as
Elders of the Peachtree Presbyterian Church and are active in their community.
Mr. Naphin is originally from Niagara Falls, Ontario, and has lived in Atlanta for
25 years. Mr. & Mrs. Naphin have two children attending Atlanta Public Schools.
He is a Vice President with TalentQuest, a national provider of human resources
consulting and technology tools. Prior to joining TalentQuest in 2001, Jon held
management positions in organizations such as General Motors, ADP, and Peachtree
Software with responsibilities covering sales, marketing, product management, and
He earned his Bachelor of Industrial Administration degree from Kettering University
(formerly General Motors Institute) in Flint, Michigan and his MBA from Harvard
Cat McAfee was born and raised in Attleboro, MA. After completing high school, she
moved to Atlanta and attended Kennesaw State University. After a year, she transferred
to Dekalb College where she received an associate’s degree in business administration.
She then transferred to Georgia State University to continue her undergraduate in
finance. After college, she started her own corporation, 13 Stories, LLC and toured
all over the US for over a decade as the lead guitarist for 13 Stories.
McAfee also worked for Fundraising and Management Counsel as a Program Director
in charge of management and execution of capital campaigns for non-profit organizations
for nearly ten years. In 2000, she began working at The Gym at Peachtree as the
Director of Skating and Roller Hockey and created one of the most successful hockey
programs in Atlanta. Until 2005, McAfee taught skating to the LaAmistad children
and helped find scholarships for the most advanced participants to attend camps
or play in competitive leagues. In 2005, she became the Director of Athletics for
In August 2007, McAfee became the Director of LaAmistad. She continued to study
Spanish and has completed more than 300 hours of study at an accredited Spanish
School, Instituto Chac-Mool in Cuernavaca, Mexico. In July 2012, McAfee was promoted
to Executive Director of LaAmistad, Inc. Her responsibilities now include future
growth planning, program replication, team leadership, fundraising, and management
of volunteers and classrooms. Using what she has learned from her certification
in Developing Capable Young People, her studies of Teach for America applications,
and her experiences in fundraising, McAfee continues to take LaAmistad to even higher
Her passion for the students, the families, and service to the community fuel her
continued study and research of effective avenues of communication and learning
between different cultures. When Ms. McAfee is not at LaAmistad, she loves playing
guitar, singing, salsa dancing, wakeboarding, snowboarding and hockey.
Wesley Dennard was born and raised in Atlanta, Georgia, having attended Peachtree
Presbyterian Church, LaAmistad After School’s original location, since childhood.
Dennard graduated an Alpha Omega from The Westminster Schools in 2002. After high
school, he moved to Charlottesville, Virginia to attend the University of Virginia,
where he earned a Bachelor of Arts in Environmental Science after inclusion on the
college’s Dean’s List.
After his schooling at the University of Virginia, Dennard moved to Asheville, North
Carolina where he served as Education Liaison and After School Program Group Leader
at The Salvation Army Boys & Girls Clubs of Buncombe County. He was responsible
for the reconstruction of the organization’s website, analysis of student measurables,
and the scholastic performance of elementary school students.
In 2009, Dennard volunteered at LaAmistad After School @ Peachtree Presbyterian
Church for several months and fell in love with the program. After moving back to
Atlanta from Asheville in March 2012, Wesley joined LaAmistad, Inc. to serve as
Glynis Terrell became a member of the LaAmistad English for Successful Living program in September of 2011. Prior to joining the team at LaAmistad, she worked for many years as an educator in public college and adult education. Her experiences have prepared her well for role as Director of the Adult ESL program.
Terrell was raised in Atlanta, GA. She received her undergraduate degree from Clark College in Elementary and Middle Grades Education and her M.A. in Reading from Atlanta University. Further studies in English as a Second Language were completed at the University of West Georgia (formerly West Georgia College). After working as a teacher for a number of years, she returned to school to earn an Ed.S. in Administration and Supervision from Troy University (formerly Troy State University) in Phoenix City, Alabama.
Ms. Terrell enjoys traveling and has visited many places to study how languages are learned and to observe and record cultural similarities and differences. She hopes to one day write about her adventures and findings. When not traveling, she spends much of her time volunteering as a Court Appointed Special Advocate for Children (CASA).
You can find Mike Joiner at LaAmistad every afternoon. He has volunteered with LaAmistad for the last 5 years and his dedication to the program is unparalleled.
Mr. Joiner brings to LaAmistad a critical management knowledge born of a long and rich history in business, including his recent role as owner of Performance
Systems Inc., a dealer of custom-engineered robotic equipment.
Prior to founding Performance Systems in 1995, Mr. Joiner served as managing partner of JEBCO Packaging Systems Inc., which custom-designed packaging
machinery, from 1990 to 1995.
Mr. Joiner has held sales and marketing positions in the packaging industry since 1972, when he completed six years of service as a pilot in the U.S.
Air Force, where he achieved the rank of Captain. His subsequent experience includes sales management for Gulf States Paper Corp, American Can Co., and
five years as director of marketing for the automated packaging segment of American National Inc.
Mr. Joiner holds an MBA from the University of North Dakota, and a BBA in Marketing from Texas Christian University. Born in Texas, Mike is married to
Joanne and they have two grown daughters.
Angharad Chester-Jones joined LaAmistad in the Fall of 2012 as The Program Director
for LaAmistad Atlanta, Georgia. She has recently relocated to Atlanta from Charleston,
SC. Prior to her position with LaAmistad, she worked in Marketing and PR for a Child
Advocacy Center in Charleston and before that she spent the majority of her professional
career in Charleston working for the exclusive Sanctuary Hotel at Kiawah Island
Golf Resort. In this capacity she managed the food and beverage marketing for the
hotel, created and managed some of the hotel’s community outreach involvement, and
assisted in overseeing all aspects of the Gourmet and Grapes yearly food and wine
fundraising event for the Hollings Cancer Center.
Chester-Jones spent quite a bit of her free time volunteering for a variety of non-profit
organizations in the Charleston, which also allowed her to maintain her public relations
and communications skills, and interest in non-profits, arts, and culture. Prior
to working at the Kiawah Island Golf Resort, Chester-Jones resided and worked in
Greenwich, CT. She worked for the Historical Society of Greenwich and as an assistant
to an interior designer, covering projects for Arabian, Egyptian, and French clients.
Previous to this, Chester-Jones worked in marketing for several financial companies
in Barcelona, Spain.
Angharad graduated from the College of Charleston in 2003 where she earned both
a B.A. in Spanish and a B.S. in Media Communications, and minored in Latin- American
Caribbean Studies. She spent 5 years living and working abroad in such locations
as London, Barcelona, Santiago, Chile; and Deia, Majorca. During this time she immersed
herself in learning about other cultures, taking in the arts, fashion, languages,
and architecture that flourished in many of the cities she lived in.
Chester-Jones is a dual citizen of the United States and Great Britain. In her spare
time she enjoys running, dancing, yoga, tennis, swimming, paddle boarding, and reading
both serious and light fiction and non-fiction.
Miss Jeannene O’Connell is from Naples, Florida and has lived in Atlanta for four
years. She graduated from Florida Gulf Coast University with a B.A. in Exceptional
Student Education and an ESOL endorsement. She began her career in education at
Golden Gate Intermediate Center (Naples, Florida) as a 5th grade ESOL teacher. After
an inspirational first year, she transitioned to Oakridge Middle School where she
was an 8th grade Co-Teacher and Case Manager (Naples, Florida). As a Co-Teacher,
Miss O’Connell provided students with the accommodations, resources, academic and
social/emotional support they required to be successful students. She created Individual
Education Plans for students to appropriately support their individual learning
needs in the general education classroom and monitored their progress throughout
the school year. She communicated with parents daily to enable them to be their
child’s strongest advocate.
School administrators and parents observed Miss O’Connell’s passion, dedication
and motivation and encouraged her to further her education and advocate for students
and families at a higher level. With the support of school administrators and the
parents of students she earned a Master of Education with a focus on School Administration
on June 28, 2008 from Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida. Shortly after graduation,
Miss O’Connell relocated to Atlanta, Georgia to begin a new chapter in her life
as an educator and advocate.
Miss O’Connell relocated to Atlanta, Georgia in July, 2008 to follow her dream and
become a more diverse educator and advocate. Miss O’Connell has experience teaching
in Fulton County as an 8th and 6th grade Co-Teacher and case manager. After two
years in Fulton County, she helped to open a Charter School in South Atlanta as
the Education Coordinator. Miss O’Connell’s life was forever changed by the students
and families at the Charter School and it ensured her that she is an educator of
Miss O’Connell continues to be inspired by the dedication, motivation and generosity
from all the people whom support LaAmistad. Her experience as an educator, case
manager and administrator provide her with the knowledge and experience to be an
affective advocate for all LaAmistad students. Miss O’Connell will continue to make
a difference in the life of a child by advocating for the students at LaAmistad.
She is proud to join LaAmistad as the Education Specialist and will share her knowledge
to support LaAmistad’s extraordinary program.
"Education is not preparation for life; education is life itself"