Staff

Durham’s Partnership for Children Staff

Debbie Abdallah

Operations Specialist (Ext. 230)
debbie@dpfc.net

Debbie is responsible for providing administrative support to the Partnership along with assisting the finance department and purchasing. She earned her Associate’s degree from Wake Technical Community College in Office Administration. She has years of experience in working with children under the age of 5 and working in office administration. Prior to working for the Partnership, she worked at Wake Technical Community College and Durham Technical Community College.


Jessie Beacham

Program Coordinator (Ext. 229)
jessie@dpfc.net

Jessie is a program coordinator with a Smart Start portfolio, and she is also responsible for program planning and evaluation of the DELTA collaborative. DELTA is a United Way collaborative that provides wrap-around services for young children and their families in targeted school zones in Durham. Prior to moving to Durham and joining the Partnership, she worked at the United Way of Pitt County in Greenville, NC. Jessie received her Bachelor’s and Master’s of Social Work from East Carolina University.


Laura Benson

Executive Director (Ext. 234)
laura@dpfc.net

Laura is the senior executive responsible for leading all aspects of the Partnership, from day to day operations to long-range strategic direction. She is accountable to the Board of Directors and works closely with all Board-level committees to ensure that Partnership activities advance the mission and adhere to management standards of excellence. Laura works to build and maintain strong relationships with local and state partners to maximize collaboration among programs and facilitate efficient use of community resources. She holds a B.A. from Wesleyan University and a Master of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary in New York. Laura brings more than 13 years of nonprofit leadership experience to the Partnership, with expertise in program initiatives for low income families, children and vulnerable populations.


Candice Blount

NC Pre-K Program Specialist (Ext. 226)
candice@dpfc.net

Bio coming soon!


Mary Jane for web1
MaryJane Dunn

Contracts and Accounting Coordinator (Ext. 220)
maryjane@dpfc.net

Mary Jane is responsible for reviewing and executing all contracts for the Partnership, and assists the Finance Director in a variety of accounting functions. Mary Jane has a bachelor’s degree from Salem College and received her accounting education from NC State University. Prior to joining the Partnership, Mary Jane held a variety of accounting positions including public, corporate, governmental and nonprofit.


Brittany Gregory

Program Coordinator (Ext. 224)
brittany@dpfc.net

Brittany is responsible for program planning and evaluation of Durham’s Transition to Kindergarten Initiative. She works collaboratively with Durham Public Schools to implement activities that will help 4-year-olds have a smooth transition into the kindergarten setting. Prior to this position, Brittany worked in elementary education for six years. She was an elementary school teacher for Wake County Public Schools, as well as an elementary success coach in Durham. Brittany has a bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education with a minor in Linguistics and Communications from UNC-Greensboro and will soon have a master’s degree in Public Administration from NC State University.


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Danielle Johnson

Director of Early Childhood Systems  (Ext. 225)
danielle@dpfc.net

Danielle is the Director of Early Childhood Systems and is responsible for providing oversight for programs within the Program and Evaluation department. These programs include Smart Start, Durham Early Head Start, NC Pre-K, Transition to Kindergarten, and other community initiatives. Previously, Danielle served as the NC Pre-K Manager with the Partnership.  She brings years of experience in early childhood development, Early Head Start/Head Start, and nonprofit management to the Durham community.  She received her Master’s in Education from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington and her Master’s in Public Health from Hunter College, City University of New York.


Sandra staff pic WEB
Sandra Roberts

Finance Director (Ext. 223)
sandra@dpfc.net

At the Partnership, Sandra manages the fiscal operations, which includes allocations to funded partners and NC Pre-Kindergarten sites, state contracts and other accounting processes. Sandra possesses more than 20 years experience in all aspects of accounting and fiscal management in the public sector. She worked for another partnership in North Carolina and was former CFO of a nonprofit in the Los Angeles area with a mission to end homelessness. Sandra earned a bachelors degree in Business Administration/Accounting from California State University, Dominguez Hills.


Taylor Webber-Fields

Training & Community Engagement Coordinator  (Ext. 222)
taylor@dpfc.net

Taylor Webber-Fields is a University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill alumni with six years of community engagement and non-profit work experience. Her passions revolve around community building efforts that respond to the need for social literacy, access to resources and racial equity. Taylor comes to the Partnership as the Training & Community Engagement Coordinator bringing her creative workshop design, facilitation skills, and commitment to real-world education in support for service providers working with underserved populations.


JamekaWells WEB
Jameka Wells

Program Coordinator  (Ext. 214)
jameka@dpfc.net

Jameka is a Program Coordinator with a focus in NC Pre-K. She is involved in the screening of parents and children and handling NC Pre-K scholarship information. She holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and Spanish education.


Elaine Zukerman

Communications Manager  (Ext. 221)
elaine@dpfc.net

Elaine is responsible for communications for the Partnership, including public relations, visual communications, social media, website maintenance, and community outreach and event planning.  Prior to joining the Partnership, she worked in public relations and marketing for the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, as well as an entertainment media company in Nashville, TN. Elaine received her bachelor’s degree from UNC-Chapel Hill in the School of Journalism and Mass Communication, with a concentration in public relations.