Our Team

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Chris Carlson
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Co-Founder & Chief Executive Officer

Chris Carlson is the Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Fulcrum.  Chris is skilled at using individualization to develop and leverage the strengths of those around him to maximize outcomes. His highly personable nature helps him manage Fulcrum's client relationships, develop values-based strategies for school partners, and guide Fulcrum's organizational vision keeping our school partners at the forefront.

Prior to co-founding Fulcrum, Chris served as the Principal of Chicago Collegiate Charter School, leading it to a Level 1+ rating (the highest rating given to Chicago Public Schools) two years running. He was also a founding teacher at Gary Comer College Prep, a campus of the Noble Network of Charter Schools, where he later served as the school's first Alumni College Coordinator supporting students' transition to and through college.

 

Chris holds a B.S. in Biology from Indiana University, and a M.A. in teaching from National-Louis University. He also participated in the Fisher Fellowship for school leaders.

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Katie Immen
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Senior Director of Partner Support

Katie Immen is a Milwaukee-based Senior Director of Partner Support.  In her role, Katie finds great fulfillment when partnering with teachers and school leaders to refine and strengthen instructional practices.  Katie is driven by a belief in the limitless capacity for greatness that all leaders, teachers, and students have, and she works each day to ensure she is providing support that is meaningful, clear, and customized to the specific strengths and needs of the classrooms she is in. With compassion and urgency, Katie supports teachers and leaders to achieve their goals and maximize impact on student learning and development. 

 

Before joining Fulcrum, Katie served as a teacher and instructional coach across charter, public, and private schools in Chicago, Seattle, and Milwaukee. 

 

Katie holds a B.A. from Marquette University, a M.A. in Teaching from National-Louis University, and an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership from Seattle University. 

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Valencia Koker
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Director of Partner Support

Valencia Koker is a Chicago-based Director of Partner Support. She takes pride in her role as a transformational leader with over a decade in the field of education. Valencia is a Wisconsin native and spent her early years as a teacher in Milwaukee and Racine. Wen she was accepted into New Leaders, she relocated to Chicago and served as the Resident Principal of Lindblom Math and Science. Immediately following her residency, Valencia was the founding principal of McNair School of Excellence.

 

Prior to joining Fulcrum, Valencia had also served in the capacity of an Executive Director of a charter school and most recently, as the proud principal of Dewey School of Excellence . She takes pride in leadership development and that of others with experience as a New Principal mentor, Chicago Leadership Collaborative Mentor Resident Principal and a participant in the 2019-20 Chicago Principals Fellowship cohort, a partnership between Northwestern University, Chicago Public Schools and the Chicago Public Education Fund (The Fund).

 

Before beginning her career in education, Valencia served in the United States Air Force and is a proud recipient of the Air Force Achievement Medal. She is also a dedicated wife, mother and has been a member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated for over a decade.

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Katie Meyer
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Chief Program Officer

Katie Meyer is a Milwaukee-based Chief Program Officer. Katie collaborates with teachers, instructional leaders and principals in both Milwaukee and Chicago schools. As a developer and problem-solver, Katie enjoys cultivating teacher potential to continually strengthen and develop their practice. When thought-partnering with teachers and school leaders, she embraces the challenge of analyzing symptoms, brainstorming possible causes and attempting different solutions to find the best one to improve instructional outcomes for all students.

 

Before joining Fulcrum, Katie served in public and charter schools in Washington, DC, as a Special Education teacher, Reading Specialist, Response to Intervention (RTI) Coordinator, and Instructional Coach.

 

Katie has a B.A. from University of Wisconsin-Madison in Psychology & Criminal Justice, and a M.Ed. in Literacy Curriculum & Instruction from American University.

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Chandra Sledge Mathias
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Senior Director of Partner Support

Chandra Sledge Mathias is a Chicago-based Senior Director of School Support. Chandra utilizes her strengths as a relationship builder and arranger to help principals and instructional leaders improve efforts in their unique school contexts. She values meaningful and purposeful professional experiences for educators that will build their capacity for powerful interactions with students.

 

Before joining Fulcrum in 2019, Chandra served as an English teacher, assistant principal, principal, Network Manager, and Director of Curriculum in several states including MD, NC, IL, DE, and TN. Most recently she was Founding Principal of a charter high school in Memphis, TN.

 

She holds a B.A. in English Secondary Education from North Carolina Central University, an MSA from North Carolina State University, and an Ed.D in Administration and Supervision from Loyola University Chicago.

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Phasha Spencer
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Director of Partner Support

Phasha Spencer is a Chicago-based Director of Partner Support. She is a visionary leader with more than 16 years of experience in the Ed-Nonprofit and Higher Ed industry. She thrives at partnership engagement and stewardship, organizational development and strategic implementation. As an organic connector, change agent and problem-solver, Phasha is deeply committed to cultivating great leaders, building capacity and individual strengths on teams and serving as an ideator. As a witty, fun-loving team player, Phasha finds tremendous joy in advocating for others, which is rooted in her passion for dismantling systems of oppression and facilitating meaningful conversations that promote self-reflection, self-actualization and awareness.

 

Before joining Fulcrum, Phasha served as the Director of Education Partners at Mursion, Inc.. While at OneGoal, she served as a Director of Partnership Development and Support on the National Program Team, as well as a Director of School Partnerships for the Chicago region.

 

Phasha holds a B.S. from Norfolk State University, a Historically Black University in Norfolk, Virginia and an M.S. from Roosevelt University in Chicago. She is also an emerging Voiceover Artist, trained through Acting Studio Chicago, with experience as a Narrator for a Chicago-based e-learning company. 

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Cal Wysocki
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Founder & President

Cal Wysocki is the Founder and President of Fulcrum Education Solutions. Cal uses his strengths in strategy and ideation to support the Fulcrum team in developing high-quality support strategies for school partners, manage the day-to-day operations of the organization, and set larger vision and direction for Fulcrum’s growth and impact.

 

Prior to founding Fulcrum, Cal’s experience as an instructional leader at the school and district level allowed him to see the specific problems that Fulcrum now works to solve in schools. He worked in the Chicago Public Schools Central Office managing the city’s Early College STEM Schools, served as Lead Dean of Instruction in the Noble Network of Charter Schools, and trained hundreds of beginning teachers as a Curriculum Specialist and Curriculum Coordinator through Teach For America.

 

Cal holds a B.S. in Chemistry and French from the University of Wisconsin - Madison and a M.A. in teaching from National-Louis University.

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Rickie Yudin
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Chief of Staff

Rickie Yudin is our Chief of Staff after working with us as a Chicago-based Senior Director of School Support, working primarily with School Leadership teams on strategy, instruction, and implementation of instructional priorities. He’s a deliberative, context-based leader who focuses on facilitative coaching and authentic learning to develop the capacity of the individuals and organizations he works with. Rickie also oversees Fulcrum's strategic priorities.

 

After spending nearly a dozen years in schools, with half of those in school-leadership, including as the principal of Namaste Charter School, he moved to the start-up world and led the business and academic side of Learnmetrics, a school performance data analytics company, as the Chief Academic Officer.

 

Rickie holds a B.S. in Economics and History with a minor in Spanish from Vanderbilt University, a M.Ed. in Elementary Curriculum and Instruction from UNLV, and a M.A. in Education Administration from Dominican University.