Meet The Team

The Ron Clark Academy has assembled a faculty of master educators who have different teaching styles but a shared objective: to demonstrate how to improve student engagement, increase academic rigor, and create a school climate and culture that leads to success for all learners. In other words, we strive to create an environment that exemplifies everything we believe that a school should be, and then we open our doors to share our methods with others in hopes that they, too, will do the same. Our entire staff is committed to fostering a dynamic, passionate learning environment where every child is valued, challenged, loved, and nurtured.

Founders

  • Ron Clark

    Ron Clark

    Founder And Mathematics Teacher

    Mr. Clark has been called "America's Educator." In 2000, he was named Disney's American Teacher of the Year. He is a New York Times bestselling author whose book, The Essential 55, has sold over 1 million copies and has been published in 25 different countries. He has been featured on The Today Show, CNN, and Oprah, and Ms. Winfrey even named him as her first "Phenomenal Man." His classes have been honored at the White House on three separate occasions. Ron's teaching experiences in New York City are the subject of the uplifting film, The Ron Clark Story, starring Matthew Perry, better known as Chandler from Friends.

  • Kim Bearden

    Kim Bearden

    Cofounder, Executive Director, and Language Arts Teacher

    Kim Bearden was selected from over 70,000 nominations to be honored as the Disney American Teacher Awards Outstanding Middle School Humanities Teacher. The Milken Family Foundation selected her as one of 155 teachers from across the nation to receive the Award for Excellence in Education, and she was chosen from among 7000 teachers as Teacher of the Year in Cobb County, Georgia. Ms. Bearden is a member of the Leadership Atlanta Class of 2008, and she received the Phoenix Award from Mayor Shirley Franklin for her dedication to education. Women Works Media Group named her one of Georgia's Most Powerful and Influential Women.

    Over the past twenty-eight years, she has been a teacher, instructional lead teacher, curriculum director, school board member, staff development trainer, and middle school principal. Her bestselling first book, Crash Course: The Life Lessons My Student Taught Me, was published in July of 2014.

 

Master Educators

  • Joyce Bailey

    Joyce Bailey

    Spanish Teacher

    Ms. Joyce Estrada Bailey received her undergraduate degree from Georgia Southern University and is currently working on her Masters Degree in Curriculum and Instruction at Jones International University. Over the past five years, she has taught eighth grade language arts and English as a Second Language (ESL) courses. She has a proven track record of increasing student performance in writing and reading. Mrs. Estrada Bailey uses rigor, passion, and creativity to increase student engagement inside and outside of her classroom. Integrating music and technology into the classroom are her favorite strategies to utilize during instruction. She holds levels 1, 2, and 3 of IB Certification.

  • Susan Barnes

    Susan Barnes

    Language Arts and Literature

    Ms. Susan Barnes has taught language arts, creative writing, and literacy in Brooklyn and Harlem since 1996. She is a gifted staff development trainer, artist, singer and performance poet. Driven by the philosophy that ‘language is art,’ she uses her love of the arts to create language experiences that illustrate how skilled expression conveys, explores and documents the human condition. This maxim takes center stage at the Writers’ Block Party, an event co-hosted by the mentors at Verbal Eyze to connect aspiring writers to the talented poets, musicians and artists who make up Atlanta’s Art Community. The resolve to help young people discover their voice has led her to begin work on her first novel, a fiction work exploring the role of cultural identity in changing times. She earned her B.A. in English from Stony brook University and an M.F.A. in Creative Writing from Brooklyn College.

  • Brandon Fleming

    Brandon Fleming

    World History Teacher

    Mr. Brandon Fleming will be moving here from Virginia, where he taught high school social studies. He has been recognized as one of Central Virginia’s Significant People. At the age of 21, Fleming founded S.Y. Scholars Program, Inc., a non-profit college preparatory and leadership development institute for public and private school students in Central Virginia. Fleming received his Bachelor of Arts degree in English Education from Liberty University. Fleming's path to discovering his passion for education has been a journey of overcoming obstacles and failures. Here is a part of his inspirational story:

    Fleming matriculated to college in pursuit of athletics, but became a college dropout after sustaining a career-ending knee injury. The next 2 years of his life were spent as a factory worker where he endured 12-hour shifts on an assembly line. It was this painful experience that induced an awareness of the importance of education. After realizing the mistake in forfeiting his education, his passion for academia was birthed through his quest for readmission into college. After given a second chance, Fleming completed 4 years of college in only 2.5 years, and dedicated his life to helping kids avoid sharing his negative experiences.

    As a junior undergraduate student Fleming founded S.Y. Scholars, a non-profit organization that exists to train students to be the world’s next leaders. Fleming has been successful in transforming at-risk students into high-performing college prospects, many who have gained the attention of Ivy League institutions.

  • Pamela Haskins

    Pamela Haskins

    Language Arts Teacher

    Originally from Clarksdale, MS, Pamela Haskins moved to Atlanta to earn a Bachelor's Degree in English from Spelman College. She went on to earn her Masters in Secondary Education from the University of Phoenix where she learned the immense benefits of technology in the educational arena. Before coming to the Ron Clark Academy, Mrs. Haskins worked for the Atlanta Public Schools for 12 years as an English Language Arts teacher in both the middle school and high school levels where she focused on developing the writing skills of her students.

    While working with her own students, Mrs. Haskins offered professional development for pre-service and novice teachers in the areas of writing and using complex texts for the Common Core Standards implementation. Because of her work, she has also been recognized by several civil organizations for her service to the students of Atlanta. Mrs. Haskins desires to stay on the cutting edge of education. She believes that parents are the underdeveloped force that can change education for the better. Mrs. Haskins lives in Ellenwood with her husband and 3 beautiful children.

  • Nicholas Jones

    Nicholas Jones

    Mathematics Teacher

    Nick Jones was named the Newton County High School Teacher of the Year for 2013-2014. Nick has experience teaching high school mathematics, and he holds a B.B.A in Business from the State University of Georgia, a M.S. in Education from Troy University, and his Ed.S. in Educational Leadership from Liberty University. He also holds certifications in both Gifted and Special Education. He is the recipient of several grants, and he has presented as several conferences. His energy and enthusiasm are contagious.

  • Dr. Camille Jones

    Dr. Camille Jones

    Mathematics Teacher

    Dr. Jones was born in Naperville, IL but later traveled to Atlanta where she received her Bachelor of Science Degree in Mathematics from Spelman College.  She then taught high school mathematics for seven years in the Atlanta Public School system, where she was recognized as Teacher of the Year in 2005/2006.  Dr. Jones graduated from Georgia State University with a Masters in Mathematics Education in 2003 and obtained her National Board Certification AYA Mathematics in 2006. While earning her Doctorate of Education degree in Mathematics from Teachers College Columbia University (2011), Dr. Jones gained experience working with elementary school children in mathematics. During this time, she also taught as an adjunct mathematics professor for Argosy University Online and trained teachers online through MyLivePD on tutor.com. She has over 13 years experience teaching mathematics, over 6 years experience training teachers, and over 4 years experience in administration. Currently, Dr. Jones is a Georgia math finalist for the 2013 Presidential Math and Science Teaching award.

  • Hope King

    Hope King

    Reading Teacher

    Hope King is an award-winning educator from Anderson, South Carolina where she teaches reading and ELA at the Ron Clark Academy. She received her bachelor's degree from Anderson University in Early Childhood Development and Elementary Education, and her Master of Education in Reading Instruction from Clemson University. In 2010, Hope was awarded the Debra Peebles Golden Deeds Excellence in Teaching Award by her district, an award selected by district administration and peer teachers.

    After teaching for five years in various grade levels, Hope had a desire to begin transforming teaching and instruction outside of her own classroom. She began developing resources for teachers that break the traditional mold of instruction and facilitates new ways of planning to bring passion and energy into the classroom. She established her own business, and Hope’s resources and strategies have since impacted thousands of students and classrooms around the world. At the Academy, Hope serves also as the sponsor for the cheerleading, dance, and track teams. She resides in East Atlanta with her husband and their dog.

  • Wade King

    Wade King

    Social Studies/Math Teacher

    Mr. Wade King attended Anderson University, where he received both his undergraduate degree and his Master’s Degree in Educational Administration and Supervision. Mr. King has been recognized as a District Choice Teacher and Teacher of The Year. A former college wrestler, Mr. King shared his expertise at the high school level and was awarded as the Region Coach of the Year. His students’ outstanding achievement scores and growth on standardized tests were some of the highest scores in the state of South Carolina. Mr. King attributes his students’ success to a “no excuse” policy that he models himself. The relationships he fosters with his students, their families, and community is the driving force behind his teaching. Mr. King’s classroom is filled with music, engagement, rigor, and discipline. He strives to prepare his students for their futures and not their pasts, while also placing an emphasis on global learning. Mr. King and his wife currently reside in East Atlanta with their dog.

  • Ken Townsel

    Ken Townsel

    Science Teacher

    Mr. Townsel is an accomplished educator who has taught advanced placement physics, biology, chemistry, and earth science. Mr. Townsel is a former Teacher of the Year, Science Coordinator for DeKalb County Schools, and Science Coordinator for the Global Thinking Project, where he took students to St. Petersburg and Moscow, Russia, to live and work with Russian students and teachers on environmental issues that have an impact of the earth. Mr. Townsel obtained a Master’s Degree in Education from Cambridge College in 2000. Most recently Mr.Townsel has worked as a physical science instructor at the Fernbank Science Center.

  • Ben Walker

    Ben Walker

    Physical Education Teacher
 

Staff

  • Kenneth Adams

    Kenneth Adams

    Tutoring And Mentor Services

    In May 2009, Mr. Adams received his Bachelor of Arts Degree in Sociology from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, with a minor in African American Studies. During his collegiate years, Adams was involved with UNC at Greensboro’s Student Activities Board, working in a Supervisor role for the campus Game Room.

    Mr. Adams is a former student of Ron Clark’s. He has traveled to several places around the world with Clark including: South Africa, Costa Rica, Japan and England. Adams was born in Oklahoma, and then moved to Aurora, North Carolina as a child. His family still resides in Aurora.

  • Joey Barr

    Joey Barr

    Finance Manager

    Mr. Barr joined the RCA Family as a part-time employee on September 1, 2007. Mr. Barr handles the day-to-day accounting operations for the school including accounts payable, budgeting and payroll. Mr. Barr started his own firm, Barr Marketing, Inc. in 2004.

    Barr Marketing is a managing agency for Ron Clark's books and merchandise sales. Prior to Barr Marketing, Mr. Barr worked 7 years in the finance industry with Regional Acceptance Corporation - a subsidiary of BB&T. Mr. Barr graduated from East Carolina University in 1997 with a BSBA in Finance.

  • Junior Bernadin

    Junior Bernadin

    Technology Manager

    Mr. Junior Bernadin joined The Ron Clark Academy family in June of 2009. Originally, from Miami, FL. Mr. Bernadin completed his undergraduate degree in 2008 from the Florida State University. In spring of 2012, Mr. Bernadin received a Master of Science in Information Technology Management from Regis University. In 2012, he was the recipient of the FSU Alumni Association Thirty Under Thirty award, Denver Chapter of ISACA Scholarship, and the Creative Research Fellowship for the 7th District of Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc. Mr. Bernadin was also a 2012 Inductee of Alpha Sigma Nu National Honors Society.

    Mr. Bernadin currently holds certifications as a Microsoft Certified Professional, Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist, and Promethean Certified Installer. In his role as Technology Manager, Mr. Bernadin provides all system support to the Academy as well as maintaining and managing all levels of technology integration within the school. Mr. Bernadin is also working in the classroom support the award winning Reading Plus program. In conjunction with his daily duties at RCA, Mr. Bernadin spends additional time after hours serving as a coach for the RCA Robotics team and as a Advisor for the RCA Essentials Step Team. Furthermore, he serves as a member of the Promethean Administrator Advisory Committee. Prior to RCA, Mr. Bernadin was worked a Customer Support Specialist for Handshake Software, Systems Field Engineer at a DELL Service Center, and Technology Support Specialist at Infinity Software

    Mr. Bernadin is a member of the Omega Psi Phi Fraternity, Inc., as well as the National Society of Black Engineers. He enjoys mentoring young people and volunteering his time with organizations including (but not limited to): The American Red Cross, YMCA, The Boys and Girls Club, Habitat for Humanity, Ronald McDonald House, Children’s Miracle Network, Big Bend Cares, Kids Incorporated, and the Leon County Humane Society. Mr. Bernadin currently resides in Atlanta.

  • Kirk Brown

    Kirk Brown

    Director Of Development

    Mr. Kirk Brown joined the Ron Clark Academy in August 2013 after five years with United Way of Greater Atlanta. In his last role, he had tremendous success managing and raising more than $8 million annually from top companies, including Accenture, Equifax, Delta Air Lines, Newell Rubbermaid and SunTrust. With Kirk’s professional fundraising expertise, the organization was able to improve the lives of hundreds of individuals and families throughout the metro Atlanta region. Kirk’s career at United Way also included many leadership roles as the Loaned Executive Program Chair, Internal Campaign Co-Chair, cross-functional team member—tasked to create the United Way Young Professional Leaders group and he served on the marketing Digital Strategy Team.

  • Lazarus Bruner

    Lazarus Bruner

    Head Basketball Coach

    Mr. Lazarus began volunteering at RCA in October of 2007. As he began to build relationships with the faculty, students, and parents, it became evident that he was called to serve the needs of this one-of-a-kind school. His desire grew to become an educator to help advance the dreams and goals of the students. With a background in high school and collegiate athletics, his vision was to use sports and physical education as a means to supplement students' academic education.

    As Mr. Bruner is also the head coach of the boys basketball program, he designed a comprehensive program that stressed the importance of conditioning healthy habits that are beneficial to student/athletes. His mission as the head basketball coach is to develop high-performing student/athletes who are just as successful and talented academically as they are athletically.

His foundation is in his faith and his family, which is composed of his virtuous wife of 8 years and their 3 awesome children (2 boys and a girl). He holds a B.A. in Organizational Leadership and is soon planning on pursuing his master's degree.

  • Adrea Latalladi

    Adrea Latalladi

    Development Officer

    Adrea Latalladi is the Development Officer at RCA. She comes to us from Girl Talk, Inc. where she served in many development capacities as a volunteer for the youth organization.

    Prior to that, Adrea taught Advanced English at a private middle school in Marietta, Georgia while also contracting as a remote grant writer for a nonprofit organization based in Tallahassee, FL. Interestingly enough, Adrea actually began her career as a newspaper reporter here in Georgia where she covered big local stories.

    She hails from Greenwood, Mississippi where she obtained her bachelor's from Mississippi State University and her master's from Western Governors University. Adrea has a passion for working on behalf of our youth and I know you'll all love her warm and bubbly personality. She and her husband currently reside in Sandy Springs.

  • Chrissi Major

    Chrissi Major

    Creative Marketing

    Chrissi Major joined RCA in 2012 after 7 years with Promethean as Head of Global Branding and Photography. Through the partnership with Promethean and RCA, Ms. Major has been connected with RCA since the school opened.  She has designed the RCA newsletter, volunteered and built relationships with the staff and students over the years. Now as an RCA staff member, she continues to help with marketing the Academy.

    Ms. Major has a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Appalachian State University in Graphic Design. She recently completed her second Ironman race, a long-distance triathlon that is 140.6 miles of swimming, biking, and running

  • Johnny Mills

    Johnny Mills

    Facilities Maintenance Manager

    Mr. Mills is an integral part to day-to-day operations of the Academy. In his role, Mr. Mills makes sure the school building, its climate and the entire school campus is operating at top-notch. Mr. Mills also works closely with general contractors in managing RCA’s future building projects. Mr. Mills lives in metro-Atlanta with his wife and children.

  • Renita Mosley

    Renita Mosley

    Office Manager

    Renita Mosley has been in Administrative Services for the past 26 years at Bellsouth and has an extensive background in Project Management, Executive Secretarial Support and Business Operations. Renita attended Arizona State University where she majored in Journalism/Public Relations. An Atlanta native, she is involved with numerous community organizations. She is a Court Appointed Special Advocate for the Fulton County Juvenile Court, she conducts a home-based adult literacy program, and she also teaches Junior Achievement classes. At the corporate level, Renita has spearheaded several programs to eradicate homelessness and teenage pregnancy, and she has developed mentorship programs to offset reading/writing deficiencies among elementary and middle school students. Renita has served as a BellSouth representative to the United Way, and she has also served as their Job Shadowing coordinator for their local high school program.

  • Kennedy Reddick

    Kennedy Reddick

    Assistant

    Kennedy Reddick, Jr. is a graduate of the HBCU Fayetteville State University with a BS degree in Psychology. He taught at Torchlight Academy Elementary School in North Carolina, working with 3rd and 1st graders, prior to making the move to Atlanta. He is grateful to be a part of the RCA team to mentor, motivate, and inspire RCA's students. 

  • J.Amezqua

    J.Amezqua

    Graphic Designer

    J.Amezqua is an award winning photographer, graphic designer, and painter who creates beauty through art and technology. He attended the Art Institute of Atlanta and is founder and owner of Jamezqua.

  • Aungelita Williams

    Aungelita Williams 

    Educator Training Coordinator 

    Ms. Williams graduated from Auburn University in 2001 with a B.S. in Management Information Systems and an MBA from Troy University in 2002. For over nine years she worked as an analyst in business operations and risk management before obtaining her mathematics certification

    Ms. Williams is passionate about empowering both students and adults. She worked for Kaplan as a teacher, tutor, and trainer. She was awarded Kaplan Teacher of the Year in 2009 for preparing students for pre-college testing. Most recently, she taught Advanced Algebra and PreCal/Trigonometry to high school juniors and seniors.  At RCA, Ms. Williams coordinates the educator training program, The RCA Experience, and the National Educators’ Conference. She is currently pursuing her Masters of Education from Troy University.

 

Meet our Trustees