Dr. Shonnika Henry is a native of Jacksonville, Florida. Due to her father’s military service, her family lived in Hawaii, Oklahoma, and Washington State before returning home to Jacksonville to plant permanent roots. Academically, she matriculated at The University of Florida, Jacksonville University, and Clark Atlanta University earning a Bachelor of Science Degree in History, Master's Degree in Leadership and Learning, and Doctoral Degree in Educational Leadership. Dr. Henry’s career in education began 13 years ago in Duval County as an English Language Arts Teacher. There, her 9th grade students consistently demonstrated reading gains of 90% and greater on the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test. During her tenure, she also served as a Duval County Curriculum and Writing Team Leader and a Teach for America candidate mentor before transitioning to middle school. At the middle school level, she continued her growth in curriculum and leadership. She became a member of the Charter Schools USA Quest Team as an Academic Coach, where she worked to improve instructional effectiveness and ensure appropriate implementation of mandated instructional strategies. In 2015, Dr. Henry relocated to Georgia, to accept the opportunity to serve as an elementary Early Intervention Program Specialist and later a School Improvement Coach for Fulton County Schools and pursue her doctoral degree in Educational Leadership from Clark Atlanta University. Upon completion of her doctoral degree, Dr. Henry relocated to Chicago, IL, the third largest school district, to serve as the Director of Curriculum and Instruction for a charter system. Dr. Henry’s service as an educator is guided by her desire to support, develop, and inspire others; she serves the Lionel Hampton Fine & Performing Arts School Community as the Principal.
Tamara’s work has focused on economic development, with an emphasis on youth, labor market, post-secondary education, non-profit and workforce development. Tamara is most proud of her service as a mentor to youth and the impact she has had in changing the trajectory of their lives into opportunities that would otherwise be inaccessible.