Board of Directors

Prior to joining the faculty Duke, Alexandra was part of the founding team of Student U, in Durham, NC. Alexandra served the organization as Director of Operations, Founding High School Program Director, Inaugural Chief Program Officer, and Executive Director. During this time, Student U built a 11 year pipeline of supports, changed its mission, acquired a 55 thousand sq ft building, brokered a 11-million-dollar renovation project without debt, implemented structures to increase collaboration and shared decision making across the organization, and became a people of color lead organization at the Board and staff levels. She is most grateful and proud of the relationships she built with students, parents, co-workers, and the broader Durham Community.

Currently, Alexandra serves as Associate Professor of the Practice in the Hart Leadership Program housed in the Sanford School of Public Policy. When she is not teaching, Alexandra continues to exercise her leadership muscles by serving on the following boards: MDC (Finance Committee Chair), The Beautiful Project, DataWorksNC (Board Chair), The Triangle Community Foundation (Outreach Committee). She is also the founder and principle of AnchorED Coaching and Consulting. Alexandra is also a trained Duke Health and Wellness Coach.

Alexandra is a proud immigrant from the Ivory Coast, child of a first-generation college student and the second of seven children.

Ambassador James A. Joseph is Emeritus Professor of the Practice of Public Policy at the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University. Leader in residence for the Hart Leadership Program for many years, he was founder of the United States – Southern Africa Center for Leadership and Public Values at Duke and the University of Cape Town.

Ambassador Joseph has served in senior executive or advisory positions for four U.S. presidents, including appointments by President Jimmy Carter as Under Secretary of the Interior and President William Clinton as U.S. Ambassador to South Africa.

In 1999, the Republic of South Africa awarded Ambassador Joseph the Order of Good Hope, the highest honor bestowed on a citizen of another country. In 2008, he was inducted into the Louisiana Political Hall of Fame and in 2010 he was honored by the United States Peace Corps for his life-long contributions to voluntarism and civil society.

After graduating from Southern University and Yale, Ambassador Joseph began his career at Stillman College in Tuscaloosa, Alabama in 1963, where he was founding co-chair of the local civil rights movement. A frequent speaker to academic, civic and religious audiences, he is the author of three books, The Charitable Impulse, Remaking America and Leadership as a Way of Being. His fourth book, Saved for a Purpose: A Journey from Private Virtues to Public Values, was published by Duke University Press in 2015. He is the recipient of nineteen honorary degrees and his undergraduate alma mater, Southern University, has named an endowed chair in his honor. The Board of Directors of the Council on Foundations appointed him President Emeritus and the Association of Black Foundation Executives established the James A. Joseph Lecture on Philanthropy. He is also chairman emeritus of the NHP Foundation.

Amir Farokhi is Director of the Corporate Council at CARE USA and serves on the Atlanta City Council. He has served as a Director of Strategy at Boston Consulting Group’s BrightHouse division; Chief Operating Officer of College Advising Corps, an education non-profit; Founder and Executive Director of GeorgiaForward; and, as an attorney with an international law firm.

 A graduate of Duke University and Duke University School of Law, he was a 2011 Marshall Memorial Fellow and Term Member with the Council on Foreign Relations. He lives in Atlanta with his wife, their dog, and two cats.

Veteran nonprofit leader Darrin Goss Sr. serves as president and CEO of Coastal Community Foundation since 2015. The foundation empowers individuals, families and organizations to make a lasting impact through permanent, endowed funds for charitable giving. It serves the low-country of South Carolina counties of Beaufort, Berkeley, Charleston, Colleton, Dorchester, Georgetown, Hampton, Horry and Jasper.

Mr. Goss brings years of professional experience in higher education, government, and industry to this work. He previously served as head of the Capital Area United Way in Baton Rouge, La., led community impact at the United Way of Greenville County and directed multicultural affairs at Wofford College. Prior to that, he implemented training programs for Sunoco Inc.

Raised on James Island, S.C., Mr. Goss is a graduate of Wofford College and North Greenville University, and a United States Army veteran. He is also a graduate of The Riley Institute’s Diversity Leadership Initiative and Clemson University at the Falls Leadership Summit.

Josh Carpenter, Ph.D., is a Non-resident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institute where he works with the Metropolitan Team on economic development for cities in America’s Heartland. Formerly, he led Innovation and Economic Opportunity for the City of Birmingham, Alabama. Prior to joining city government under Mayor Randall Woodfin’s administration, Josh was a former English and theater teacher as well as football and baseball coach in rural Alabama where he was named the state’s “Teacher of the Year” in 2012. In 2014, Josh founded and led a statewide nonprofit that received national attention to sign people up for the Affordable Care Act: training and mobilizing

700 college students to insure nearly 100,000 Alabama residents. A Rhodes Scholar, Josh earned his master’s in comparative social policy and doctorate in political economy at the University of Oxford, where his dissertation earned a Democracy Fellowship from the Social Science Research Council. Josh also serves as a board member for the American Association of Rhodes Scholars, the Birmingham Promise, Birmingham Corps, and an advisor to the Harvard-Bloomberg Mayor’s Initiative for inclusive economic development. Josh resides in Birmingham with his wife, Nicole, and their daughter, Clare.

Juan currently serves as Trinity University’s President’s Special Advisor for Inclusive Excellence responsible for the administration, management, coordination and implementation of campus-wide programming and policy to support inclusive excellence.

He also is the Ron Calgaard Distinguished Professor of Practice in the Political Science Department where he teaches urban and presidential politics, state and federal elections and campaigns, urban education, community building, and leadership. He is helping Trinity develop national leadership and community building initiatives.

Juan recently received a presidential appointment by President Joe Biden to serve on the Commission on Presidential Scholars.He also served on the Biden-Harris Transition Team as a member of the Arts & Humanities Agency Review Team where he led the Public Media portion of the team.

Prior to Trinity, he was Senior Vice President of Station Services at PBS, where he collaborated with more than 160 PBS stations across the country to strengthen their connections to their local communities and to each other as a national public media network.

In the Obama Administration, Juan served as Executive Director of the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics, where he designed and led the first-ever White House Hispanic Policy Conference along with a series of White House Hispanic Community Action Summits.

Juan was the third Latino awarded a Rhodes Scholarship. He graduated from Harvard College with a Bachelor of Arts in Government. He also holds a Master of Arts in Politics, Philosophy & Economics from The Queen’s College, Oxford University, a Juris Doctorate from Stanford Law School, and has been admitted to the Texas Bar.

Kweku Forstall has been the director of the Atlanta Civic Site of the Annie E. Casey Foundation since 2014. The Annie E. Casey Foundation is devoted to developing a brighter future for millions of children at risk of poor educational, economic, social, and health outcomes. Its work focuses on strengthening families, building stronger communities, and ensuring access to opportunity, because children need all three to succeed.

Since 2001, the Atlanta Civic Site is a place where the foundation has a long-term commitment to improving the futures of at-risk children and their families in five neighborhoods just south of downtown Atlanta—Summerhill, Capitol Gateway, Peoplestown, Adair Park, Pittsburgh, and Mechanicsville.

Prior to the Annie E. Casey Foundation, Mr. Forstall served as the startup Executive Director of Year Up Atlanta from 2008 to 2013. From 2000 to 2008 he was the founding Executive Director of Project GRAD Atlanta, Inc., a public-school reform initiative operating in partnership with the Atlanta Public School system. He has also served as a Vice President for Community Investments for the United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta, and Director of the Emma and Joe Adams Public Service Institute at Morehouse College. Forstall began his career in 1985 as a staff and managing attorney with Atlanta Legal Aid Society.

In addition to serving on the MDC board, he is on the Executive Committee and Board of the Aerotropolis Atlanta Alliance. He also is a Foundation Center South Advisory Board member, an Atlanta CareerRise Leadership Council member, and a Friend of the A-Lab/Center for Civic Engagement at Oglethorpe University, all in Atlanta.

Mr. Forstall and his wife, Adrienne, live in Tucker, Ga., and have three adult daughters.

Richard Ammons is Senior Consultant and Principal at Marts & Lundy, a strategic fundraising consulting firm.  Marts & Lundy pairs its client focused and collaborative approach with a comprehensive suite of strategic consulting, analytical, and communications services to help mission-driven organizations build the capacity needed to achieve their highest potential through the delivery of customized sustainable philanthropic solutions.

Richard has more than 30 years of experience as a higher education advancement professional.  Before joining Marts & Lundy, he was Associate Dean for the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University. Prior to his work at Duke, Richard served for seven years as vice president for development at Colby College, managing the College’s $370 million comprehensive campaign. Richard also held leadership posts at Macalester College, Morehouse College and the Paul Nitze School of Advanced International Studies at The Johns Hopkins University.

Richard is currently a member of the board of trustees of the University of the South (Sewanee), the Episcopal Parish Network and a member of the vestry at St. Philip’s Episcopal Church, Durham.

Raised in Atlanta and New York City, Richard completed his undergraduate degree at Amherst College and earned an MBA at Stanford University. He resides with his wife, Noel James, in Durham, North Carolina.

Susan T. Gooden, Ph.D., is dean and professor of the L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs at Virginia Commonwealth University. She is an internationally recognized expert on social equity. Gooden is an elected fellow of the congressionally chartered National Academy of Public Administration and is past president of the American Society for Public Administration. She is the Vice-President of the Network of Associated Schools of Public Policy, Affairs and Administration (NASPAA). Her books include Global Equity in Administration (2020); Why Research Methods Matter (2018, Melvin and Leigh); Race and Social Equity: A Nervous Area of Government (2014, Routledge); and Cultural Competency for Public Administrators (2012, Routledge). Her research has been funded by several organizations including the Russell Sage Foundation, the Kellogg Foundation, the Smith Richardson Foundation, MDRC, and the Manhattan Institute for Policy Research.

Gooden was appointed to the Commission on Peer Review and Accreditation, the accrediting arm of the Network of Associated Schools of Public Policy, Affairs and Administration. She has previously served as an elected member to the national policy council of the Association for Public Policy Analysis and Management. She was appointed to the Virginia Community College System board and served as board chair. She currently serves on the board of the Virginia Retirement System. A native of Martinsville & Henry County, Virginia, Gooden earned an A.S. in Natural Science from Patrick Henry Community College, a B.A. in English from Virginia Tech, and an M.A. in Political Science from Virginia Tech. She received her doctorate from the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs at Syracuse University.

Dr. William Spriggs is a professor in, and former chair of, the Department of Economics at Howard University and serves as chief economist to the AFL-CIO. In his capacity with the AFL-CIO, he serves as chair of the Economic Policy Working Group of the Trade Union Advisory Committee (TUAC) to the OECD, and on the board of the National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER). He also serves on the Advisory Board to the Minneapolis Federal Reserve Bank Opportunity and Inclusive Growth Institute and is on the editorial board for the Public Administration Review.

From 2009 to 2012, he served as assistant secretary for the Office of Policy at the Department of Labor, having been appointed by President Barack Obama and confirmed by the U.S. Senate. At the time of his appointment, he also served as chairman of the Health Care Trust for UAW Retirees of the Ford Motor Co.; chairman of the UAW Retirees of the Dana Corporation Health and Welfare Trust; vice chair of the Congressional Black Caucus Political Education and Leadership Institute; on the joint National Academy of Sciences and National Academy of Public Administration’s Committee on the Fiscal Future for the United States; senior fellow of the Community Service Society of New York; and served on the boards of the National Employment Law Project and very briefly for the Eastern Economic Association. He is a member of the National Academy of Social Insurance and the National Academy of Public Administration.

He graduated from Williams College in Massachusetts and holds a doctorate in economics from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.