OUR LEADERSHIP TEAM
Dustin Church, Director of Finance and Operations
Prior to starting at Catalyst, Dustin was the Director of Finance and Administration for Engineered Software in Lacey, WA. While at Engineered Software, Dustin focused on operational efficiency, policy and process improvement, business systems development, and financial analysis. In his time at Engineered Software, he implemented many new policies and practices to ensure compliance with state and federal laws as well as improve operational efficiency. Prior to Engineered Software, Dustin was an executive team leader of logistics and operations at Target. He helped develop new operational procedures for the logistics team, to help improve guest experience as well as overall operations of the business.
Dustin graduated in June of 2019 with an MBA in Finance from Washington State University. He also obtained a Bachelor's Degree in Accounting from Saint Martin's University. In his free time, Dustin loves to spend time with his wife, 2 children, and 2 dogs, exploring the pacific northwest and traveling.
Dustin can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Tatiana Epanchin, Co-Founder
Prior to launching Catalyst Tatiana was the Head of Program at School Leader Lab, a school leadership development program, Tatiana was the Bay Area Regional Superintendent for Aspire Public Schools. As principal, her school increased its academic performance index by 150 points, more than three times the state average increase. She was awarded the National Title I Distinguished School Award for closing the achievement gap, an honor bestowed upon only 1 out of over 9,600 schools in the state. She began her teaching career with Teach for America in New Orleans and has also served as a social worker in Contra Costa County working on intensive family preservation cases. She is driven by her passion for justice in our country and how we can make individual contributions to change in our local context. She believes we each have a critical role to play, and that anything is possible in Washington––a state full of innovation and creativity. In her free time, she loves exploring the Puget Sound region with her family.
Tatiana can be reached at email@example.com.
Amanda Gardner, Co-Founder
Prior to launching Catalyst Amanda was the VP, Schools at Innovate Public Schools. In this role Amanda founded Innovate's World-Class Schools Fellowship, a year-long school design program helping to redesign and launch new, equity driven schools. Amanda also designed and launched Innovate's Charter School Entrepreneur-in-Residence program. Before coming to Innovate, Amanda was the founding Principal of UP Academy Charter School of Boston, a highly successful turnaround school committed to improving educational outcomes for all students. In the school’s founding year, students at UP had the highest student growth percentiles in middle school math in the entire state of Massachusetts and, in 2014, was named a Commendation School by the Massachusetts Department of Education, an accolade reserved for schools that are beating the odds with students.
Amanda was also the Founding Principal of Boston Preparatory Charter Public School (BPCPS) in Hyde Park, Massachusetts. 100% of the school’s founding class earned proficient or advanced on all state required high school tests and students in the middle school have consistently outperformed students across the state in virtually all grade levels and content areas. In 2009, BPCPS was named as an EPIC Gold Gain school, a honor bestowed to 5 schools across the country.
Amanda can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Taj Wallace, Office Manager
Taijai (Taj) was born in Elizabeth, NJ, and migrated to the Pacific Northwest in 2012. For the past twelve years, she has served as an exceptional Executive Assistant in the state of Colorado and Washington.
In her previous employment, she founded Diversity , Equity and Inclusion (DEI) initiatives/resource groups designed to promote a diverse, non-biased work environment for all. She considers herself a "sports aficionado", an avid music lover, and an animal lover.
Taj joined Catalyst because she wants to be part of giving our scholars the best education to succeed in life.
Taj can be reached at email@example.com.