In January, we welcomed Veronica Calderon as Chair of our Board of Directors. Heading into her sixth year of serving on the CIS Board, Calderon’s passion and commitment to CIS are unparalleled. Calderon recently shared why this leadership opportunity with Communities In Schools is especially meaningful for her:
“As I begin my term as Board Chair, it marks an extraordinary time when my advocacy, life, and passion for education have come full circle,” Calderon said. “As a graduate of the Charlotte-Mecklenburg School system, the daughter of an educator, an immigrant, and a former ESL student, I have gained a more profound understanding of our students’ obstacles and needs.”
“When I was introduced to CIS six years ago, I vividly recall stating, ‘I wish I had had a CIS Site Coordinator when I first came as a newcomer (immigrant) to CMS!’ I am so happy that today I can say I am helping provide the CIS experience and support from our amazing team of Site Coordinators to thousands of students across CMS, many of whom come from backgrounds similar to my own.”
“I am looking forward to working with our board members and the CIS team to ensure that all, especially the most vulnerable students in our community, have equitable opportunities and the support and resources they need to succeed in school and in life,” Calderon added.
Calderon’s professional career has centered around diversity, equity and inclusion roles. Currently she is Chief Inclusion, Belonging and Equity Officer with DeVry University. With DeVry she also leads the University Relations operations that includes Internal Communications, University Alumni Relations, and the DeVry Scholarship Fund. Prior to DeVry University, Calderon held leadership positions in similar DEI roles with Truliant Federal Credit Union, Aldersgate Life Plan Organization, Atrium Health System, and Wells Fargo Bank.
Calderon has received multiple awards recognizing excellence among women in business and in the Latinx community, including from UNC-Charlotte (“Empowering Latina Women of the Year”) and La Noticia news magazine (“Business Women of the Year”). Most recently, she received the Women in Business Achievement Award from the Charlotte Business Journal (2022) and was named to the “Diversity Impact 50 List” by Career Mastered magazine in 2022.
On a personal note, Calderon loves spending time with her family, traveling around the world to new places — and re-visiting places that have left a significant impact on her due to cultural experiences there. Calderon also loves to cook and enjoys re-creating dishes from her childhood.
Click here to see the full list of our current Board of Directors.