Dr. Lauryn Mascareñaz
Dr. Lauryn Mascareñaz has California roots and a Southern soul. She holds a BA in Ethnic Studies and an M.Ed. in language, literacy and culturally responsive teaching, both from the University of Colorado. Lauryn earned her Ed.D. in Leadership and Organizational Systems from Vanderbilt University. She is co-owner at RISE DEI where she works with organizations to strategically plan their DEI work and confront roadblocks that are unique to their community. She believes in utilizing anti-racist pedagogy to address institutional inequities. Lauryn is a career educator who spent ten years as a teacher before working as a teaching specialist at Learning for Justice and as Director of Equity Affairs in Wake County. She is interested in school funding reform, immigrant rights, and being the best mother she can be. Lauryn is the author of Evident Equity, A Guide for Creating Systemwide Change in Schools.
Christina Spears grew up listening to gospel & hip-hop music in a holler in NC’s Appalachian Mountains. A graduate of Meredith College’s Master of Arts in Teaching program with a K-12 Special Education licensure, she currently works as a Coordinating Teacher in the Office of Equity Affairs for Wake County Public School System and a business owner and consultant at RISE DEI. As a DEI professional, Christina’s expertise includes building district-wide support systems for educators focused on culturally sustaining instructional practices that disrupt inequities and transform school systems. She’s interested in the intersections between Black feminism, hip-hop, and education. She is also an adjunct professor in Meredith College’s Education Department. Christina is currently pursuing a PhD in Cultural Foundations from UNC-Greensboro.
Ryan serves as a school administrator whose primary focus is on cultivating the genius of every student he encounters through the development of effective instructional practices and progressive systemic change. Ryan provides expertise in designing relevant professional learning opportunities for adult learners with a focus on restorative justice and culturally responsive teaching. As a restorative justice practitioner, he uses restorative practices as a guide to ensure fair and equitable opportunities for his community. His background is in elementary education but has served in multiple capacities at the secondary level. Ryan earned his Bachelor's in Physical Education from Albion College, Masters in Elementary Education from Grand Valley State University, as well as a Master’s in School Administration from East Carolina University.