FOUNDING SCHOOL LEADERSHIP TEAM
Natalie Morosi, Founder and Executive Director
Dr. Natalie Morosi has spent her career as a teacher and school leader in bilingual educational settings, first as a classroom teacher for nine years in a traditional public school in Nashville, and later as the founding Lower School Director of a small independent American school in Madrid. Natalie holds a BS from Furman University in Psychology and Spanish, an MAT from Belmont University, and an Ed.D from Vanderbilt University in K-12 Education Leadership and Policy. Natalie’s graduate and professional work have focused on the academic, social, and cultural benefits of bilingual education, as well as drivers of school choice within educational systems.
Natalie has engaged in conversations with families and educators for over a decade about the need for an intentionally diverse bilingual school option for Nashville's growing and increasingly multicultural population. She is grateful for the opportunity to develop and launch Aventura Community School through the Diverse Charter Schools Coalition's UnifiED School Launch Fellowship. Natalie's two children are future Aventura students!
Katie Castellon, Lower School Co-Director
Katie Castellon joins Aventura with over a decade of international volunteering and educational experience. After graduation from the University of Notre Dame with a BA in Sociology and International Peace Studies, Katie spent five years in Cochabamba, Bolivia volunteering at a local orphanage and teaching at the American International School of Bolivia. During that time, she also obtained her MEd from George Mason University in Curriculum and Instruction. Katie moved to Nashville in 2015 as a founding member of Valor Voyager Academy's team where she spent six years as a teacher and Assistant Principal.
Coming to the field of education with a background in social work, Katie has always advocated for the importance of educating the whole child and a commitment to education as a tool for social justice. Katie is passionate about the unique educational model of ACS and building a school she will be excited to send her own children to!
Diana Aguilar, Director of Family Engagement and Operations
Diana Aguilar has had the honor of working with Nashville families for more than a decade. She taught elementary grades and served as a parent outreach translator for MNPS. Diana moved from South America to complete her higher education at Lipscomb University and graduated with a BA in Spanish with English and Education minors. Diana also worked as a Human Resources Manager while finishing her MEd in Instructional Practice with a focus on teaching English as a second language at Lipscomb University.
Diana has always been passionate about bilingual education not only because it provides many advantages at a personal and professional level, but it also helps build meaningful relationships. As a mother of two, she is excited about Aventura's unique approach to purposeful academics and its emphasis on global competence. Diana is thrilled that students and families will get to come together to form part of this amazing community where everyone feels welcome and can support one another.
FOUNDING BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Alex L. Lorenz, Board Treasurer
Alex grew up and lived in Cordoba, Argentina until he moved to the US in 2004 to start his accounting career. He holds degrees in Accounting and Business Administration and worked for Deloitte and Touche as a Certified Public Accountant. His years of experience as a financial auditor of multinational companies give him the competence, knowledge, and experience needed to provide professional, high-quality accounting and consulting services.
Jessie Garcia Knowles, Board Chair
Jessie is the executive director of the Tennessee Latin American Chamber of Commerce. She previously served as an assistant dean of students at Lipscomb University and as director of Latino Achievers with the YMCA of Middle Tennessee. Garcia Knowles has served on boards and committees of several civic institutions, including TLACC, the Nashville Public Library and Metro Nashville Public Schools. She is fully bilingual, and enjoys building community engagement around effective storytelling and authentic relationships.
Karla Vázquez Moreno, Board Secretary
Karla is a native Spanish speaker from Mexico City. As the Donor Organizing Officer for the Youth Engagement Fund she implements strategy and infrastructure for resource building and organizational sustainability. Karla served as the Senior Manager of Institutional Giving for the United We Dream Network, where she managed the grants portfolio of more than 60 funder relationships, confirming over $30M for the immigrant rights movement. She has worked in a consulting capacity for grant writing, management, & institutional stewardship.
Lindsey Harris, Board Vice-Chair
Lindsey is a Nashville native with degrees in Spanish Teaching and Nonprofit Leadership. She led the Tennessee Immigrant and Refugee Rights Coalition (TIRRC) as Project Manager helping to build the fundraising and development program. Later, as Operations Director, she strengthened TIRRC’s organizational capacity and developed strategies for long-term sustainability. In 2014, she was named TIRRC’s Co-Executive Director, a title she held for six years, before leaving TIRRC in 2020 to start her own nonprofit consulting practice.
Stuart Burkhalter, Board Member
Stuart practices complex commercial litigation. He has experience in both state and federal court, as well as private arbitration, on matters including commercial contract disputes, employment and non-compete issues, residential and commercial real estate disputes, parent-company liability matters, and intellectual property litigation. He frequently represents providers in managed care disputes and other litigation. The Tennessee Bar Association awarded him the 2018 Justice Joseph W. Henry Award for Outstanding Legal Writing.
Todd Dickson, Board Member
Todd is founder and chief executive officer of Valor Collegiate Academies. Since its inception, Valor has been the top performing academic charter network in Tennessee. Valor has also developed a nationally recognized comprehensive human development approach, Compass, which is a key driver of the organization’s success. Before starting Valor, Todd spent 12 years at Summit Public Schools in the Bay Area of California. Under his leadership, Summit was named one of the “Top 10 Transformational Schools” in the country by Newsweek.
Veronica Uribe, Board Member
Veronica Uribe was born and raised in Mexico City and received a full tennis scholarship to study a Bachelor’s in Finance at Tennessee Technological University. Veronica completed her undergraduate degree and began studying her MBA as her Finance career took off. Her work experience has given her a broad knowledge of finance, accounts receivable, corporate business, consulting, banking, outreach, marketing, language and interpreting, as well as teaching. She is currently the Relationship Manager at Bank of America and has been active in the Nashville community throughout the years in volunteer and community outreach roles.
The Aventura Board of Directors holds monthly meetings on the third Wednesday of the month. Scheduled 2021 meeting dates:
October 20, 8pm
November 17, 8pm
December 15, 8pm
If you wish to attend a meeting please contact firstname.lastname@example.org to confirm the meeting time, location, and agenda.