Shawntelle L. Fisher
Elder Shawntelle L. Fisher is a highly anointed and very influential leader, speaker, teacher, and dancer who serves with excellence and integrity. She holds both a Bachelor in Educational Studies and a B.S. in Media Studies from the University of Missouri St. Louis and two Master degrees at Washington University and Eden Theological Seminary. She is the founder and CEO of a non-profit, The SoulFisher Ministries and has a passion to see lives transformed and restored. Through her own struggles and pitfalls in life she was guided by caring members in the community to a path of restoration and possibilities. Through The SoulFisher Ministries she is spreading hope and empowering youth and those formerly incarcerated, to be positive productive, and socially responsible members in the community.
Board of Directors
Elizabeth M. Gassel Perkins, Ed.D.
Campus President & Chief Academic Officer
St. Louis Community College-Florissant Valley
Elizabeth Gassel Perkins, Ed.D., serves as the campus president and chief academic officer for St. Louis Community College-Florissant Valley. In addition to her role as campus president, she serves as the administrator for the College’s dual credit, dual enrollment, and early college partnerships and leads several district-wide taskforces and standing committees. Dr. Perkins also serves as an Executive Board Member for North County, Inc., and on committees for the Greater North County Chamber of Commerce (GNCC). She is a former board member of the St. Louis County Workforce Investment Board and GNCC. Dr. Perkins has been recognized by the Christian Hospital Foundation as a Drum Major Award recipient in 2021 and by North County Churches Uniting for Racial Justice and Harmony with an Outstanding Education Award in 2019. Dr. Perkins earned her doctorate in leadership with an emphasis in higher education from Valdosta State University. She earned her bachelor's degree summa cum laude in English from the University of Montevallo, where she also earned a master's degree in English.
Melvin D. Kennedy
Mr. Kennedy has been admitted to practice law in Missouri and Illinois since 1993. Mr. Kennedy has represented both employers and employees in employment discrimination cases. For fourteen (14) years, he worked as a Senior Trial Attorney for the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC). As an EEOC attorney, Mr. Kennedy litigated employment discrimination lawsuits in federal courts throughout the Midwest. Since 2013, Mr. Kennedy has litigated in both state and federal courts on behalf of employees who were discriminated against by employers or prospective employers.
In addition to being an experienced trial attorney, Mr. Kennedy is also an experienced mediator and arbitrator. He has successfully mediated lawsuits filed in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri, Missouri Circuit Courts and hundreds of charges of discrimination filed with the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission. In addition, Mr. Kennedy has arbitrated dozens of consumer disputes filed with the Better Business Bureau and pursuant to litigation class action settlement agreement.
Dr. Jasmine Lewis, Ed.D.
Executive Director of TRIO Programs
Harris-Stowe State University
Dr. Jasmine Lewis is a dynamic leader dedicated to fostering educational equity and empowering underserved communities. As the Executive Director of TRIO Programs at Harris-Stowe State University, she oversees federally funded initiatives catering to middle and high school students from Riverview Gardens, Normandy, Jennings, and Ferguson-Florissant, as well as college students. Previously, Dr. Lewis served with distinction in the United States Army National Guard, where she honed her leadership skills and commitment to service.
Dr. Lewis's earned both a master's and doctorate in education from the University of Missouri-St. Louis. Throughout her academic career, Dr. Lewis has been committed to leveraging her knowledge and expertise to break down barriers to educational attainment and create pathways to success for all students.
With her unique blend of military discipline, academic prowess, and unwavering dedication to community empowerment, Dr. Jasmine Lewis continues to be a beacon of hope and inspiration for students and educators alike.
Board Member Emeritus
Prosecuting Attorney, St. Louis County
Wesley Bell is the Prosecuting Attorney for St. Louis County, Missouri. He is the first African American to hold this office. Wesley unseated a 28 year incumbent by a 14 point margin. As a leader in criminal justice reform, Wesley is an advocate for ending mass incarceration, reforming cash bail, and rebuilding trust between communities and the prosecutor’s office. Central to his reforms is a system for deferred prosecution and diversion treatment. His office is designing a prosecutor led program to increase public safety while reducing incarceration. He graduated from Lindenwood University and the University of Missouri-Columbia law school, Wesley represented hundreds of disenfranchised clients as a Special Public Defender in St. Louis County. Throughout his career, Wesley has led his own criminal defense practice and served as a criminal justice professor and municipal court judge. He served as a Ferguson City Councilman from April 2015 to December 2018.
Community Development Manager (MO, IL & IA) Regions Bank
Eric Madkins, joined Regions in March 2014 and is responsible for community development and CRA initiatives in Iowa, Illinois, and Missouri, which involves developing partnerships with business groups both internally and externally to assist in successfully identifying CRA lending opportunities, investments, and services. Madkins serves on the bank’s Market Executive Leadership Team. Prior to assuming his current role, Madkins served as Division Operating Officer and member of the Urban League of Metropolitan St. Louis’ senior management team, which entailed oversight of the agency’s housing and community development portfolio and Fannie Mae’s St. Louis Mortgage Help Center. Madkins has won several awards for his work in affordable housing and has over 15 years as a community development practitioner. Madkins earned a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science with an emphasis in Public Administration from the University of Missouri-St. Louis and holds two Master degrees from Webster University in Communications and Business Management and Administration.