During the month of October, Girls Inc. of Memphis salutes our Board of Directors, all strong, smart and bold members of our community. Our board is a committed group of corporate and community volunteers who are passionate about our mission and its impact on the city of Memphis. To ensure that the voices of our girls and parents are heard, we recently added three special positions to our board–two girls and a parent.
You can see the makeup of our entire board here on our website.
Look below to meet four new board members as well as the new girl and parent representatives. Help us welcome them!
Ashlei Williams is a Memphis native who is passionate about the well being of girls and women. She graduated from Spelman College and earned a master’s from Northwestern University and has been putting her skill as a writer to work for more than a decade, telling stories for business, philanthropic, minority and academic audiences. She’s worked as a social media coordinator and editorial director, as well as doing freelance media relations and creative writing for a boutique marketing agency. In 2016, she started her own firm, GJC Publicity, which focuses on editorial, public relations, marketing, advertising and creative storytelling for a variety of clients. In addition to serving on the Girls Inc. of Memphis board, she has been involved with NEXUS Leaders, Junior League of Memphis, STS Enterprise Corporation, the Memphis chapter of the National Alumnae Association for Spelman College and the Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc.
“My passion always shines through when it comes to girls and women,” she says. “The foundations of multiple societies are rooted in gender bias. So, to recognize confidence in someone who looks like me is always motivating. It is intangibles such as this that attract me to the board of Girls Inc. of Memphis. I am excited to contribute to work that will impact subtle aesthetics that will ultimately allow these girls to showcase themselves as whole.”
Cathy Lu is a Wealth Financial Planner for First Horizon Advisors who believes that encouraging girls is important for all communities. Originally from China, she is fluent in Mandarin and Cantonese. In her current role she is providing financial planning and investment advisory service to high network clients. She is also responsible for researching, developing and presenting investment strategies and retirement planning. Prior to this role, Lu was a Senior Credit Consultant in the Credit Administration & Analytics department, where she developed and maintained analytic tools, reports, and other intelligence capabilities to support many different lines of business. She earned her Masters of Arts in Economics from The University of Tennessee at Knoxville and was a double major at State University of New York at Stony Brook studying Economics and Statistics. In addition to Girls Inc. she works with Ballet Memphis, Dixon Gallery and Gardens and the Memphis Chinese Association.
“Every girl should believe she can achieve whatever she wants,” she says, “as long as she works hard, finds a sponsor and does the right thing.”
Deveney Perry is a Girls Inc. of Memphis alumna who wants to give back to the program. She is the Director of Advocacy at BLDG Memphis, where her role includes facilitating policy support, capacity building and community engagement to community development corporations, stakeholders and initiatives around equitable economic investment into Memphis neighborhoods. She is a graduate of Spelman College where she earned a Bachelor’s degree in political science. She previously worked with the City of Memphis, where her policy research was instrumental in the restructuring of the City’s business development services. In addition to Girls Inc., Deveney serves on the Neighborhood Preservation Inc. advisory board and the Shelby County Mayor’s Young Professionals Council. In 2020, she was recognized as part of The Memphis Flyer’s Top 20 Under 30.
“As a Girls Inc. of Memphis alumna, its mission of being strong, smart and bold has been a grounding influence in my life for almost 20 years,” she says. “Gratefully, I look forward to pouring back into the organization as a board member.”
Kerry Jackson is a financial advisor who helps her clients to meet their goals and achieve financial independence. A native Memphian and a 2008 graduate of The University of Toronto, Kerry has been in the industry for more than 10 years, all of which have been at Memphis’ only all female financial planning firm – Fish and Associates – where she is a partner. As the Lead Advisor and Director of Client Services, Kerry manages the day-to-day tasks of financial planning while overseeing the client service staff. She specializes in serving the firm’s young professional clients, providing them with financial planning services and investment guidance. She holds her CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ designation, is a Chartered Retirement Plan Specialist®, and a Certified Student Loan Professional. In her free time she likes to volunteer with the local animal shelter as a foster mom for dogs throughout the year.
She sums up her passion for Girls Inc. of Memphis and its mission by quoting Pakistani activist Malala Yousafzai: “We cannot all succeed when half of us are held back. We call upon our sisters around the world to be brave – to embrace the strength within themselves and realize their full potential.”
Bethany Daniels is one of our new girl representatives. She’s 16 and a junior at Crosstown High School. After graduation, she wants to go to college, study medicine and become a doctor. When she’s not doing school work, she likes to play video games and exercise. Her favorite activities at Girls Inc. are basketball and playing board games with her friends.
“What I love about Girls Inc. is that they teach you important life lessons that you’ll need either now or in the future.”
Robin Mungin, also a girl representatives, is a senior at Central High School and she’s been active at Girls Inc. for two years. After she graduates, she plans on attending an HBCU and studying psychology. She dreams of becoming a lawyer and working alongside Bryan Stevenson at the Equal Justice Initiative. She says Girls Inc. has taught her to work with others and use her voice for good.
“Girls Inc. has made me into a stronger woman than I was before. I am constantly learning about new opportunities and being encouraged to work smarter and harder to succeed.”
And last but not least is our new parent representative, Teresa Mungin. Teresa is mother to three daughters and says that GIrls Inc. has been an amazing experience for all of them.
Born and raised in Memphis,, she is a graduate of University of Memphis with a BA in Criminal Justice. She looks forward to working with Girls Inc. and making sure her daughters and other girls feel Strong, Smart and Bold.
“Girls Inc., to me, is a much-needed outlet and a safe space for young girls.”