Tyler Driscoll

Tyler Driscoll, an alumnus of LDR, serves as a facilitator and coach for the program. Previously, Tyler served as executive director for Public Allies CT and worked for Teach For America CT where he developed values-based leadership programming for members, alumni and staff. He began his work in the nonprofit sector as an AmeriCorps member serving in Washington, DC with City Year. Tyler is a graduate of the University of Connecticut is passionate about challenging deeply-held assumptions about leadership and bringing diverse individuals together to learn from one another and enhance their impact.

Carrie Kramer

Carrie Kramer, an alumna of LDR, serves as a coach to program participants. She most recently was the Director of Brain Injury Services at the Brain Injury Alliance of Connecticut (BIAC.) Carrie has worked as a professional in the disability community for the past 24 years. She is a Certified Rehabilitation Counselor, holds a Master's Degree in Rehabilitation Counseling from New York University, and is a Certified Brain Injury Specialist. She is also an adjunct professor in the Counseling and Family Therapy Department at Central Connecticut State University. When not working, she can be found frolicking with her spouse and four boys.

Nicole Lindsay

Nicole Lindsay serves as an advisor to the LDR Program. Nicole is currently the Deputy Director of The ZOOM Foundation and previously directed several leadership development programs for the foundation. Nicole earned her BS from the University of Connecticut and JD/MBA from the University of Virginia, and has held various senior roles in business, nonprofit and academia. Before joining The ZOOM Foundation, Nicole served as the founding Executive Director of New York Needs You, a nonprofit that supports first-generation college students in realizing their college and career ambitions, growing the organization to an eight-person staff with a $1.2MM operating budget. She is the author of (April 2014). Nicole currently serves on the University of Virginia Darden School Board Of Trustees and the Board of Directors of New York Chapter of the UConn Alumni Association. She is licensed to practice law in Connecticut and Georgia.

Meghan Lowney

Meghan Lowney is Founder of the LDR Program and serves as the founding Executive Director of The ZOOM Foundation, a Connecticut family foundation that focuses its philanthropic investments on innovative change efforts that have the high potential for sustainable impact, particularly in the areas of education and the environment. Meghan is committed to helping emerging leaders and nonprofit organizations increase their impact. Previously, Meghan founded and led a leadership and organizational development company, Ripple Effect Consulting, and served for ten years as the Executive Director of Operation Hope of Fairfield, a nonprofit working to end homelessness. In recognition of her work, Fairfield University bestowed upon her an Honorary Doctor of Laws degree in 2007. Meghan earned her BA from Boston College, and a Master of Social Work degree in Community Organizing from the University of Connecticut School of Social Work. She has served on numerous boards and committees,and currently serves on the boards of the Connecticut News Project/CT Mirror, Connecticut Housing Finance Authority and Public Square Partnership.

Eric Rey

Eric Rey serves as a facilitator and coach for LDR. He is currently the Quality Assurance Manager at Christina Community Action and a workforce development consultant. Previously, Eric was program manager for ReEntry Works, a nonprofit focused on employment for previously incarcerated individuals, and for Bridgeport-based Career Resources, Inc. (CRI), a workforce development agency. He also worked on similar employment issues at City Hall of New Haven. Born and raised in New Haven, Eric graduated from Career HS and earned his BA in Psychology from the University of Connecticut

Tanya Smith

Tanya Rhodes Smith serves as facilitator of LDR Waterbury and as a coach to individual participants. She is Director of the Nancy A. Humphreys Institute for Political Social Work and visiting lecturer at the University of Connecticut School of Social Work. There, she teaches Program Planning and Evaluation, Political Advocacy and Political Social Work. Previously, Tanya has worked at The Center for Family Justice, the Bridgeport Child Advocacy Coalition, and Person to Person, developing deep expertise throughout her career in policy development, nonprofit administration, and community organizing, and serving as a passionate advocate for children and families in the Bridgeport area. She currently serves on the Board of Directors for the Bridgeport Child Advocacy Coalition. Tanya has been a mentor with Big Brothers Big Sisters since 2008. Tanya earned both her BS in Economics and her MSW from the University of Connecticut. 

Elizabeth Torres

Elizabeth Torres is the Chief Executive Officer of Bridgeport Neighborhood Trust and is responsible for achieving BNT's mission to strengthen Bridgeport's neighborhoods. Liz is passionate about community development and providing high quality affordable housing to people that need it most. She is a product of subsidized housing and knows firsthand the stability that affordable housing provides a family and child and is driven to ensure that others have the same opportunity as she did. Since coming to BNT as its first full-time staff member in 2005, Liz has grown BNT from a one woman show to a team of 21 staff members.  Under her leadership, BNT has become the leading nonprofit development agency in Bridgeport developing over 200 units of affordable housing and managing more than 140.  In addition, BNT's operations includes a Homeownership Academy that offers pre purchase homeownership education and foreclosure prevention services.  Liz remains active in her community and serves on the Board of Directors for The Connecticut Housing Coalition and Bridgeport Regional Business Council. Liz was a member of the first LDR cohort and now serves as a coach.

Fahd Vahidy

Fahd Vahidy serves as a coach to LDR participants. He currently serves as a philanthropic advisor to the Graustein Family, with responsibilities ranging from the management of their charitable giving to support of their programmatic initiatives such as co-leading the Community Leadership Program. Fahd is on the board of several local and statewide nonprofits in Connecticut and has held management and executive management positions in the nonprofit sector. As a consultant, he's advised on programmatic innovation and social enterprise development, talent development, interpersonal dynamics, organizational culture, and systems-level advocacy and impact. He received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Connecticut. When he's not fly fishing on the Farmington River, you can find Fahd at home in West Hartford with his wife and their two cats, Kubla and Romeo.

Anne Watkins

Anne Watkins is an LDR facilitator and coach to ZOOM Fellowship and Organizing Prize cohort members. She is principal and founder of Watkins Strategy Group and has held multiple leadership positions in the nonprofit sector. Anne garnered extensive leadership development and facilitation experience with diverse communities in her roles as community organizer, community foundation CEO and director of programs, executive director of a small nonprofit and individual coach. She served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Mali and has an MPH from Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine and a BA in Psychology from Boston University. Anne lives in New Haven, CT.

Ellie Webb

Ellie Webb, an alumna of LDR, serves as a coach to participants. She is the Managing Director of Teacher Leadership Development for Teach For America (TFA)—Connecticut, a nonprofit organization that seeks to end educational inequity for K-12 students through developing a force of leaders that make dramatic academic and personal growth with students in the classroom and lead the charge towards educational equity at all levels.  Ellie co-leads the coaching component of TFA—Connecticut’s program and is responsible for cultivating and developing a team of coaches who empower teachers as leaders.

Prior to joining staff in 2011, Ellie taught 3rd and 4th grade in Hartford as a 2008 Teach For America Connecticut corps member. After experiencing the benefits of having a coach herself and leading teachers in content learning, Ellie realized she wanted to take on a coaching role full time. She finds great joy and fulfillment from being a part of other peoples’ growth and development. She earned her BA in sociology and education from the University of California, Irvine. She is currently working towards her Professional Coach Certificate through the Columbia Coaching Certification Program.