About Us

Our Mission & Vision

The CMS Foundation works to generate financial investment to support Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools and develop a community-wide culture of schoolanthropy—the support of public education. Our mission is to serve as the trusted bridge between CMS and the donor community. We are dedicated to:

  • People – Cultivating a spirit of generosity and professional support for CMS educators
  • Power – Being a catalyst for achieving system-wide dreams, goals and objectives
  • Purpose – Developing a countywide culture of support for the children of CMS

Our vision is that Charlotte-Mecklenburg is a national leader in public education where teaching is an iconic profession and opportunity abounds for every child.


The knowledge and skills required to succeed in our global society continue to evolve, and so do the needs of our education system. Public funding alone is not sufficient to provide our students and teachers the opportunities they need and deserve. It takes the support of our entire community. In our unique position as the bridge between Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools and the philanthropic community, we leverage and steward private dollars to help the district achieve its strategic goals. We work to ensure that private investments have a meaningful, sustainable impact on public education in our community.

Board of Directors

Courtney Ramey, Board Chair
Executive Director, Jabian Consulting

Doug Benson
Senior Vice President & In-House Counsel, Foundation For The Carolinas

Adam Bernstein
Senior Vice President, Chernoff Newman

Melissa Buchanan
Senior Vice President, Community Relations, LPL Financial

Gerard Camacho
Assistant Vice President, Workforce Development, Atrium Health

Ann B. Clark
Executive Leadership Coach

Scott Culpepper
Regional Vice President, Jackson National Life Distributors

Sandra Holub
Executive Director, Albemarle Foundation

Lindsay Hawfield Jones
Community Advocate

Kathryn Kissam
Co-Founder, Carolina Youth Coalition

J. Brandon Neal
Senior Vice President & Deputy Chief Legal Officer, Novant Health

Pepe Porrata
Senior Vice President, Head of PVSI Contrail Strategy & Transformation, Wells Fargo 

Thomas Scrivener
Consumer, Small Business & Wealth Management Operations Executive, Bank of America

Greg Skidmore
Partner, Robinson Bradshaw

Bernie M. Washington
Deputy Chief of Staff, Novant Health

David Webb
Partner, Berkeley Capital Advisors

Earnest Winston
Superintendent, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools


Sonja Gantt

Executive Director


(980) 343-0084

Ashelyn James

Foundation Manager


(980) 343-0955

Debbi Daniels

Senior Administrative Assistant


(980) 343-0399