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TCSA announces new fellows for the 2019-2020 Teacher Advocacy Leadership Institute

October 7, 2019

The Texas Charter Schools Association is proud to announce 25 fellows have been accepted to the 2019-2020 Teacher Advocacy Leadership Institute (TALI). This highly selective fellowship is in its second year and has doubled the number of fellows to meet growing demand.   

 The purpose of the fellowship is to help educators gain a more thorough understanding of charter school laws and to teach them how to advocate for policies that advance the charter school movement in Texas.  

Fellows will receive extensive advocacy and communication training and will learn how to engage legislators, testify before legislative committees, respond to action alerts, write op-eds, and engage fellow teachers on issues that concern charter schools, students, and teachers. 

The names of 2019-2020 TALI Fellows are: 


  • Tanya Reyes, Harmony Science Academy 
  • Aryn Van Steijn, Chaparral Star Academy 
  • Mark Rogers, Austin Achieve Public Schools 
  • Miriam Rodgers, Meridian World School 
  • Jennifer Cephus, KIPP Austin Leadership Elementary 


  • Amber Frasher, Harmony Science Academy 


  • Benjamin Prior, Legacy Preparatory Charter Academy – Mesquite 
  • Brandi Weaver, Legacy Preparatory Charter Academy – Plano 
  • Elena Creixell, Great Hearts – Irving
  • Sondra Hopper, Education Center International Academy 
  • Rachel Barrett, Leadership Prep School 

El Paso 

  • Valerie Astorga, Harmony School of Innovation 
  • Marilyn Owens, Harmony School of Excellence 


  • Abigail Solis, YES Prep  Hobby 
  • Byron Hannah, YES Prep – Fifth Ward 
  • Camedra Jefferson, YES Prep  District
  • Debbie Ramos, YES Prep – Brays Oaks
  • Jillian Suan, YES Prep – White Oak
  • Mandy Peyrani, Harmony School of Endeavor 
  • Ryan Martinez, YES Prep – Brays Oaks 
  • Tamira Samuel, YES Prep – Northline 
  • Ricca R Dickens, YES Prep – District 

San Antonio

  • Chanel Ashley, Harmony School of Innovation 
  • Jennifer Aceves, School of Science and Technology
  • Brandon Aniol, Great Hearts – Northern Oaks

We are excited to welcome this new class to TALI and thank them for their commitment to advocate for our charter schools and our students!

For more information about the program, please contact Shree Medlock, Vice President of Strategic Engagement for the Texas Charter Schools Association. 



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