We here at dfoww, Incorporated pride ourselves on being an inclusive opportunities educational, nonprofit charity organization and employer. Inclusion at dfoww, Incorporated is about creating a culture where people’s differences are welcomed!
Ms. Yhillisia Townsend – Chairwoman of the Correspondence Committee
Ms. Yhillisia Townsend resides in Niagara Falls, New York. Yhillisia is an avid reader and a literary advocate. She has volunteered for nonprofit organizations and is currently a volunteer for the Niagara Falls, New York Public School System.
Yhillisia is a mentor to underprivileged youth and volunteers her time assisting low income families secure resources to satisfy their food insecurity challenges. Currently she works with the elderly and disabled seniors residing in her community. Ms. Townsend loves to bring smiles to others. Yhillisia is completing her bachelor degree at Bryant and Stratton College.
Mr. Lorando Lockhart – Chairman of the Editing Committee (Editor-In-Chief)
Lorando started writing early in life having been taught how to spell before he entered kindergarten. His introduction to the written language began with his aunt teaching him how to spell his name when he was about four-years-old. From there, he quickly learned to spell everyone’s name in his grandmother’s house. While his older cousins were at school, he began reading books he found around the house.
By the time he was in elementary school, his teachers were encouraging his gifts. Throughout middle and high school, Lorando would become a member of the newspaper and yearbook staff where he had the opportunity to sharpen his writing skill. When he entered college at Claflin University, Lorando knew he would major in English. He was taken under the wing of Vivian Glover, a former NBC Field Producer who further pushed the him to learn as much as he could about sentence construction and the storytelling arts. He took the craft seriously and graduated before joining The Greenville News as a staff writer. Lorando would go on to cover several small cities within Greenville South Carolina, During his 10-year tenure, he covered city government, elections, the local police beat and entertainment.
Following his journalism career, Lorando went on to become a business owner. As a business owner he wrote procedures for banks, edited books, created work instructions and website content for local start ups. He just completed editing his eighth book and is currently working on his first novel. He also splits his time between Atlanta, Georgia and Greenville, South Carolina as a technical and proposal writer. Lorando has spent the past 20 years working as a professional writer and is now looking for opportunities to teach others the craft he learned so many years ago. While he understands writing is not everyone’s passion, he does realize the importance of knowing how to correctly express and document thoughts through the written word.
Dr. Corine T. Ferebee – Marketing and Social Media Outreach Committee
Dr. Corine T. Ferebee is a pharmacist, entrepreneur, consultant and health advocate. She holds a Doctorate of Pharmacy degree from Xavier University of Louisiana, College of Pharmacy and a Bachelor of Science in Medical Technology from Medical College of Georgia.
Dr. Ferebee has practiced pharmacy for over 10 years where she has maintained several leadership roles. Dr. Ferebee has additional certifications in Personal Training, Medication Therapy Management (MTM) and Advanced Nutrition.
Dr. Ferebee was born in Augusta, Georgia and now lives in the Atlanta area. She enjoys the arts and reading and has a desire to help youth experience those things as well. Dr. Ferebee understands the importance of education and continues to make volunteering in the community a priority.
Ms. Maiya Hawkins – Editing Committee
Maiya Hawkins grew up in the Philadelphia suburbs and graduated from the University of the Arts in 2016 with a BFA in Writing for Film and Television. However, her writing journey began at age 9 when she decided to try her hand at novel writing; the product of which was her first handwritten book entitled, “Unicorn Island.” The calling of writing as a medium to express herself comes as no surprise considering that she was named after Maya Angelou. Since childhood, she’s grown in her passion and is now writing and producing films and shows.
Ms. Hawkins has been active in the childcare industry for over 10 years and relishes bringing writing and her love of children under one roof. From volunteering at after school programs, to private nannying and preschool teaching, she believes in and advocates for the importance of educating children academically, emotionally and creatively. She hopes to incorporate this passion in all areas of her work including supporting the dfoww cause and through the stories she develops through her production company, the Mandala Project.
Ms. Ronda Spencer – Teaching Committee
Ms. Spencer is a native of Augusta, Ga currently residing in the Metro Atlanta Area. She graduated from Davidson Fine Arts Magnet High school, received her B.A in Social Psychology from Augusta State University and then earned her M.Ed. from Augusta State specializing in Special Education.
As a former mental health clinician of 5 years and a special educator for over 18 years she maintains that all students can learn with access to the correct tools. She believes that nurturing the whole child is pivotal in meeting the educational needs of students. Ms. Spencer is currently an Administrator for a behavior based therapeutic program that provides services to local school districts in the Metro Atlanta area.
Having a strong foundation in literacy has the ability to impact lives. Ms. Spencer looks forward to sharing her ideas and working with others as it relates to connecting children and their parents to valuable resources in the community through dfoww.
Mr. Travis Evans – Marketing and Social Media Outreach Committee
Mr. Evans has studied video, graphic design, mathematics, and photography. In doing so, he learned to build websites and the other social media platforms. He has written one book and was the IT person at his former job. Additionally, Mr. Evans has tutored students of all ages in math, reading, and computers.
Having previously founded a non-profit, he has also worked for a nonprofit organization for five years and has been on the board of two other non-profits. Now, Mr. Evans looks to assist dfoww, Inc. in the areas of graphic design, photography as well as video editing and shooting. His motto is each one support one, and his personal passion center on supporting others, so they may prosper.
Dr. Nana Adwoa Bekoe – Correspondence Committee
Born and raised in Ghana, Dr. Bekoe is a pharmacist currently residing in Sicklerville, New Jersey. Dr. Bekoe has been a philologos and a bibliophile since her early childhood, where she could always be found with her nose buried deep in a book.
Dr. Bekoe earned her doctorate in pharmacy from the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy. Dr. Bekoe is also certified in Medication Therapy Management (MTM) and a certified Cardio Pulmonary Resuscitation (CPR) Trainer with the American Red Cross.
Dr. Bekoe enjoys breaking down complex ideas into easily digestible components that everyone can understand as a community pharmacist with the Perfecting Health Ministry at her church. She looks forward to doing the same with dfoww, Inc.
Mr. Jamaal Francis – Marketing and Social Media Outreach Committee
New York City resident Mr. Jamaal Francis serves as a Vice President at J.P. Morgan Chase & Co., where he manages successful teams and partnership initiatives. Mr. Francis has over 18 years of experience in the financial services industry with expertise in customer identification, anti-money laundering and process improvements.
Mr. Francis has held various leadership positions throughout his career, including his role as a departmental Procedural Advisory Committee member.
Amongst a gambit of volunteering experience, he found his niche in mentoring to both colleagues and inner-city youths of color. Mr. Francis mentored with the Young Men’s Initiative and was previously awarded Partner in Education by the New York City Mentoring Program for his dedication to the community.
During his teenage years, Mr. Francis left St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands to live in New York. Much of his adolescent years were spent living in economically disadvantaged areas. He owes many of his achievements to programs like dfoww, Inc. and hopes to provide similar opportunities to today’s youth.
Mr. Francis earned a Bachelor of Business Administration degree in Human Resource Management from the Zicklin School of Business at the City University of New York, Baruch College. He enjoys reading, martial arts, traveling, hiking and outdoor water sports.
Mrs. Shameka Terrell – Teaching Committee
Mrs. Terrell was born and raised in Norfolk, Virginia. The University of Maryland Global Campus alum obtained her B.A in English and graduated Summa Cum Laude. She is a member of the Phi Kappa Phi, Sigma Tau Delta and Alpha Sigma Lambda honor societies. Mrs. Terrell is an entrepreneur and mother of two who enjoys homeschooling her children. She is also an education advocate who believes knowledge has the power to break down barriers. Since graduating, she has embarked on a journey to fulfill her dream of becoming an author. She is an avid reader and draws inspiration from authors such as Audre Lorde, Octavia E. Butler, Alice Walker and Toni Morrison. By joining dfoww, Incorporated, Mrs. Terrell hopes to help others expand their influence as she looks forward to adding value to her community.