National Office Staff

The Cristo Rey Network national office is comprised of 16 subject matter experts, based in Chicago, who create and deliver programming that fuels the quality and vitality of the movement.

Jane E. Genster, President and CEO

Jane E. Genster was named President and CEO of the Cristo Rey Network in November 2014. Prior to her appointment, she served for more than 14 years on the senior leadership team at Georgetown University, first as Vice President and General Counsel, and later as Senior Counselor to the President.

Ms. Genster has a longstanding relationship to Cristo Rey. She has served as a member of the Cristo Rey Network Board of Directors and as the organization's liaison to Georgetown University, where she oversaw the University's annual summer bridge program for Cristo Rey and KIPP students. Ms. Genster's work has strengthened the Network's university partnerships and deepened the relationship between the Network and Georgetown, where 53 Cristo Rey alumni are currently Georgetown undergraduates and 21 have earned Georgetown undergraduate degrees.

Ms. Genster has combined a distinguished legal career with extensive experience in the fields of education and non-profit governance. Earlier in her career she served as associate counsel for The Washington Post, Washington counsel for NBC, associate at Williams & Connolly LLP, special assistant to the Deputy Attorney General of the United States, and law clerk for Judge Charles Renfrew of the United States District Court for the Northern District of California. Ms. Genster also taught as an adjunct professor at Georgetown University Law Center and as a lecturer at the University of Virginia School of Law.

Ms. Genster has long been a champion of Catholic education and an advocate for expanding educational opportunities for low-income students. In addition to her work at Georgetown, which also included serving as Interim Executive Director of the Center for Social Justice Research, Teaching and Service, she was Vice Chair of the Board of the Nativity Miguel Network of Schools and Board President of the Holy Trinity School. She also has served on the boards of several other elementary and secondary schools, including the National Cathedral School and Beauvoir School, both of which she chaired. She also served on the board of the DC Promise Neighborhood Initiative, Inc.

Ms. Genster received her undergraduate degree from Princeton University and her law degree from the University of Virginia. She is the mother of four adult children.

John P. Foley, S.J., Chair Emeritus and Chief Mission Officer

A Chicago native, Father Foley entered the Society of Jesus in 1954. He earned a BA in Latin from Xavier University in Cincinnati and holds an MA in Sociology and an M.Ed. from Loyola University in Chicago. From 1961 to 1995 he served the Jesuit missions in Peru, working primarily in education. He served as President of two of Peru's Jesuit K-12 schools.

He returned to Chicago in 1995 to collaborate in establishing Cristo Rey Jesuit High School. He was named President of the school in 1996 and served for eight years. During his tenure, he oversaw the effort to establish the school, hiring of all personnel, student recruitment, and the construction of 150,000 square feet of classroom and recreation space. Father Foley raised more than $26 million during this eight-year term and left Cristo Rey Jesuit High School with a $2 million endowment. More importantly, he established the tradition and spirit of a school that has become a national model. In January of 2005, he assumed the presidency of the Cristo Rey Network of which he is presently Chair Emeritus.

For his efforts in pioneering a new model to prepare disadvantaged students for success in college and beyond, Fr. Foley has been profiled in national media outlets as well as the recipient of numerous awards. These include seven Honorary Doctorates, the National Catholic Education Association Seton Award, and the Presidential Citizens Medal from President George W. Bush.

Teaching and Learning

George V. Fornero, Ed.D., Chief Academic Officer

Dr. George V. Fornero joined the Cristo Rey Network in July 2015. As Chief Academic Officer, he directly supports the leadership development of Network principals as well as the strengthening of classroom teaching and learning through regular school visits, ongoing curriculum development, and professional development activities for both teachers and school leaders.

Prior to this role, Dr. Fornero served for nine years as the Superintendent of Schools for Township High School District #113. Prior to District #113, he worked for eight years in the Ann Arbor, Mich. Public Schools, initially as Deputy Superintendent for Instruction and later as Superintendent. Dr. Fornero has served in a variety of positions during his 40 years in education, including as an elementary, middle, and high school principal, summer school director, middle school Dean of Students, and elementary, middle, and high school teacher. He was also an adjunct professor in Educational Administration at Wayne State University, the University of Detroit/Mercy, and National Louis University. He has also worked as a consultant with U.S. Department of Education's "Blue Ribbon Schools" program.

Dr. Fornero earned his doctorate in Educational Administration at Loyola University Chicago, and his master's degree in Educational Administration and bachelor's degree in Elementary and Special Education were earned at Northern Illinois University. He has also completed graduate course work at Harvard University

Michael Heidkamp, Director of Leadership Development and Support

Michael Heidkamp rejoined the Cristo Rey Network in July 2016 after serving eight years in Chicago Public Schools both as an assistant principal and as a principal. As Director of Curriculum and Instruction, Michael works to support the leadership development of Network principals and assistant principals as well as the strengthening of classroom teaching and learning through school visits and the design and implementation of professional development for Network administration and faculty.

Michael began his professional career as a history teacher and football/basketball coach at Loyola Academy in Wilmette, IL. After two years of teaching and coaching, Mike spent a year in Tacna, Peru working with Habitat for Humanity and teaching English. After returning to Chicago, Michael joined the founding staff of Cristo Rey Jesuit High School, where he worked for six years. He continued his work with predominantly first generation, college-bound students as Academic Dean at Josephinum Academy where the school, during his tenure, dramatically increased the percentage of students gaining acceptance into four-year institutions. Michael has also worked as an adjunct professor teaching courses in Social and Cultural Studies in Education at DePaul University. Michael earned a B.A. in History and English from Williams College and he earned an M.A. in Social and Cultural Studies from DePaul University.

Kenneth Hutchinson, Director of College Initiatives

Kenneth Hutchinson joined the Network in September 2015. As the Director of College Initiatives, Ken is responsible for providing support to college counselors and alumni advisors and all Network initiatives and programming focused on improving Cristo Rey students' college match, access, and persistence outcomes.

Ken began his professional career serving as the Co-Coordinator of African American Recruitment for Northwestern University's Undergraduate Admission Office. He traveled nationally recruiting and presenting to constituents, evaluating applications for highly selective admissions, building relationships with community based organizations, and helping first generation students find a sense of community and comfort on campus. He has extensive experience promoting college access and success for non-majority and underserved urban high school students at the national level. He previously served Urban Prep Academies for nine years as a founding counselor and Director of College Counseling Programs where he structured Urban Prep’s college counseling model and led a citywide team of counselors resulting in seven years of 100% college acceptance to 4-year colleges with a 95% college enrollment average.

A first generation college student and native Chicagoan, Ken earned a Bachelor’s of Science in Education and Social Policy and a Masters in Communication from Northwestern University. He also obtained a certificate from Harvard University's Institute for Urban School Leaders in 2012.

Patrick Dunphy, Director of Program Management

Patrick joined the Cristo Rey Network in April 2008. He was drawn to the organization by his Jesuit education in both high school and college, having graduated from Marquette High School and Marquette University. He has held several different roles throughout his tenure. Immediately prior to joining the Cristo Rey Network, Patrick provided research and records management support for a law firm. He has previously held an internship with the Massachusetts Secretary of State's Office, Elections Division, and participated in a one-year mentorship program designed to offer advocacy and support to children and families in need.

As Director of Program Management, Patrick is responsible for establishing and implementing organizational standards and strategies for the delivery of consistent and quality programs in support of Cristo Rey schools. In addition to providing high-level curricular and associated project support to the Academic and College Initiatives team, he works closely with all departments in the Network office to develop and execute large-scale professional development offerings, cohort convenings, and mission effectiveness reviews.

Corporate Work Study Program

Dan Walsh, Senior Vice President of Corporate Work Study

As the Senior Vice President of Corporate Work Study, Dan supports teams of Corporate Work Study Program executives at the 32 Cristo Rey schools and 3,000 corporate partnerships across the country. He leads CWSP professional development, national accounts and initiatives to increase student workforce readiness.

Dan joined the Cristo Rey Network team in 2014. Prior to that he served as the Interim President of Cristo Rey Jesuit in Houston, Dan had been the school's Director of the Corporate Work Study since the school's inception in 2009. Dan led the establishment of partnerships with 132 blue ribbon Houston corporations that annually generates $3 million towards students' private college preparatory education. Dan worked in marketing and management at Coca-Cola North America for over 11 years. Dan is a Northwestern Kellogg Marketing MBA graduate and he received his Bachelor of Business Administration from the University of Notre Dame. In the Spring of 2012, Dan graduated from the Center for Houston's Future Business/Civic Leadership Forum.

School Growth

Brian D. Melton, Chief Network Growth Officer and General Counsel

Brian Melton joined the Cristo Rey Network in July 2013 as the Director of School Growth. Brian's role has since expanded to include serving as General Counsel of the Network, and in January 2016 he was appointed to the position of Chief Network Growth Officer. Brian is responsible for guiding and directing the Network's strategic plan for growth both in terms of new schools and increasing enrollment in existing schools. From 2013 to 2017, Brian also served as counsel and project lead on the creation of the Cristo Rey Institute, a Public Juridic Person (PJP) of Pontifical Rite, officially Decreed under Canon Law by the Vatican on March 19, 2017. He brings more than thirty years of experience in the legal profession to the position.

Prior to Cristo Rey, Brian was a founding partner of Shackelford, Melton & McKinley, LLP. He served as President of the Dallas Bar Association and Chair of the Dallas Bar Foundation. He has extensive experience in non-profit management and serving as legal counsel to numerous organizations. Brian's background in education includes serving as Chair of the Education Task Force of the Greater Dallas Chamber of Commerce, Chair of the Dallas Bar Association's annual Community Symposium for Justice in Education, and Board Chair of St. Rita's School in Dallas.

Brian earned a B.A. in History from Spring Hill College, his J.D. Degree from S.M.U. Law School and his Master's Degree in Contemporary Spirituality from Loyola University Chicago.

Constance Croghan Martin, School Growth Project Manager

Constance Martin joined the Cristo Rey Network in May 2015 as the School Growth Project Manager. She is responsible for managing the ongoing, day-to-day execution of the feasibility studies and new schools in launch year to ensure the schools in development follow the Cristo Rey Network Mission Effectiveness Standards.

Since graduating from Fordham University, Constance has worked for Catholic education both in and out of the classroom, most recently at Cristo Rey Jesuit High School (Chicago) for three years in the Corporate Work Study Program. At Cristo Rey in Chicago she managed relationships with business partners, facilitated daily program logistics, provided job counseling, and trained students. She is currently a candidate in DePaul University's Master's in Teaching and Learning, Secondary Education.

Mission Support and Operations

Mark Bazin, Chief Technology Officer

Mark Bazin joined the Cristo Rey Network in 2015 as the organization's inaugural Chief Technology Officer. Mark leads development and implementation of major technology projects across the Network, and advises schools on their internal operations. He also develops technology partnerships at a national level, and leads national IT-strategy.

No stranger to Cristo Rey, Mark was the founding Director of Information Technology at Cristo Rey Jesuit in Houston. Mark earned his undergraduate degree in information systems management at St. Mary's University and his master's degree at Carnegie Mellon University. He previously served as the network and desktop systems manager at Strake Jesuit College Prep in Houston and as an information security and computer forensics analyst at Ernst & Young in Chicago.

Meagan Chuckran, Director of Performance Measurement

Meagan Chuckran joined the Cristo Rey Network in September 2014 as the Data and Assessment Manager. In her current role as Director of Performance Measurement, Meagan is responsible for the collection, analysis, and communication of Cristo Rey Network data as well as supporting schools in developing tools to use data more strategically to improve performance. Prior to joining the Network, she served as Strategy Manager for World Business Chicago, leading initiatives for regional economic growth which brought together public, private, and civic sector leadership around shared priorities such as efficient freight movement and local business investment. She also spent several years working with International Partners in Mission, a Cleveland-based nonprofit which supports projects serving children, women, and youth around the world. Meagan holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from the College of the Holy Cross and a Masters of Public Policy from the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy.

Melissa Kinzler, Director of Finance and Strategic Initiatives

Melissa joined the Cristo Rey Network in July 2013. As the Director of Finance and Strategic Initiatives, she manages the Network's finance and human resources functions. She is also responsible for various key organizational initiatives, providing project management and implementation support.

Prior to joining the Network, Melissa worked in beauty care brand marketing at Alberto Culver. In that role, she managed several new product launches, supported a major brand relaunch in 30 countries and led cross-functional teams in the management of daily operations for a large skin care business. Melissa had previously worked in strategy and operations consulting at Deloitte where she advised clients on supply chain cost reduction and post merger integration. Melissa is a member of the Leadership Advisory Council at Cristo Rey Jesuit High School in Pilsen and has completed volunteer consulting work for educational nonprofits. She obtained her BSBA from the Washington University Olin School of Business and her MBA from the Northwestern University Kellogg School of Management.

Jazmin Fermin, Finance and Performance Measurement Associate

Jazmin Fermin joined the Cristo Rey Network in January 2016 as the Finance and Performance Measurement Associate. She is responsible for managing the Network's day-to-day finance and human resources functions, as well as supporting the Director of Performance Measurement with data collection and analysis. Prior to joining the Network, she was a Client Associate at a research consulting firm. There she worked side by side with consultants analyzing and delivering competitive, market data in order to identify market opportunities and provide actionable advice to clients on improving performance.

Jazmin earned a Bachelor's of Science from Fairfield University and is a proud Cristo Rey New York High School alumna.

Jennifer Aguilar, Administrative Associate

Jennifer Franco joined the Cristo Rey Network in April 2016 as the Administrative Associate. She coordinates logistics for professional development meetings and conferences, and she collaborates with college initiatives and the admissions team for various projects.

Prior to joining the Network, she was an IT account executive for higher education institutes. Throughout her college career she was an intern in various educational nonprofits such as Big Shoulders Fund. Jennifer graduated from DePaul University with a Bachelor’s in Business. She is the proud sister of a Cristo Rey Jesuit High School (Chicago) student.

Fundraising and Communications

Brenda Morris, Director of Advancement

Brenda Morris joined the Cristo Rey Network in August 2009. As the Director of Advancement, she manages the Network's development and marketing communications efforts.

Prior to joining the Network, Brenda was the Assistant Manager of Marketing and Communications for The Chicago Lighthouse for People Who Are Blind or Visually Impaired. She oversaw the organization's online communications, community tours/presentations, as well as assisted with media relations and executing special events.

Brenda has previously served on the Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) 60th Anniversary Committee and the PRSA Advocacy Committee. Today, she serves on the Board of Advisors Marketing Committee for the Archdiocese of Chicago's Catholic Charities and its Junior Board. Brenda graduated from Columbia College Chicago with a major in marketing communications, concentration in public relations.

Seanna Mullen Sumrak, Advancement Officer

Seanna Mullen Sumrak joined the Cristo Rey Network in June 2015. As Advancement Officer, she works in communications and development using her skills to promote the work and mission of the Cristo Rey Network. She is responsible for managing a number of the Network's communications platforms including social media and the website. In addition, she supports the Director of Advancement in fundraising efforts. Before coming to the Cristo Rey Network, Seanna worked for the Jesuit Schools Network heading their social media efforts and writing and editing for the website and their many publications.

Seanna graduated from Boston College with a Bachelor's in English and a concentration in Women's Studies and received her Master's in Women's Studies with a Nonprofit Management concentration from George Washington University. In between, she was a Jesuit Volunteer in Sacramento.

Powered by Finalsite