Damien Perez, Board Chair
Damien Perez is a veteran of the United States Air Force, serving over 20 years in the field of aviation. As a military leader, he has led military aviation maintenance squadrons across multiple airframes and systems from large transport fixed-wing to rotary-wing special operations aircraft. His efforts directly impacted and supported such units as the 82nd Airborne Division and Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC). Damien currently serves as a Middle and High School Administrator for a Project-Based Learning Charter School in Sanford, NC. He also serves NCPMI as Vice President of Certifications, Military Community Member, PMI Course Instructor, and Project Management Institute Educational Foundation Liaison. A native of New Jersey, Damien now calls North Carolina home, settling here after military retirement. He most enjoys family time with his five children and wife of over 16 years.
Siobhan Brewer, Vice Chair
Siobhan Brewer has been an educator for 17 years; she began her teaching career in Craven County, where she taught high school English and Theatre Arts for ten years. Currently Siobhan is the Director of Teaching and Learning Lenoir Community College, where she is also the Faculty Onboarding Specialist and an English instructor. Siobhan is active in the New Bern arts community, and she serves on the Youth Educational Theatre Committee at New Bern Civic Theatre. She is currently pursuing her Ed.D in Educational Leadership at UNCW. Siobhan is married with two children and two dogs, and New Bern has been her home for the last 15 years.
Greg Sims, Treasurer
Greg Sims lives in New Bern with his two young children, where they have lived since 2018. He is an experienced senior project manager in the retail fixture industry and can leverage those skills to be an asset to Riverside Leadership Academy through construction, finance, and governance. Greg is also the co-founder of local band Bridge Atlantic, performing all over town and beyond. He is excited to be a part of the team of dedicated people committed to bringing school choice to Craven County!
Alexandra Ranieri, Secretary
Alexandra Ranieri has worked in education for 14 years. For ten of those years, she contributed to the Craven County school system as a high school English teacher and as a high school counselor. Concurrently, she assumed the position of an adjunct English instructor at Craven Community College. Presently, Alexandra is the Director of Advising and Academic Success at Lenoir Community College in Kinston, NC. Beyond her professional commitments, she actively participates in the New Bern theatre community, where she sits on the board of the New Bern Civic Theatre. Alexandra is also currently pursuing her Ph.D. in Community College Leadership at Old Dominion University. She met her husband, in Craven County in 2009, and they live in New Bern with their two children.
Dee Taylor is a New Bern resident who is active in Craven County education through volunteerism, public awareness, and resolution of issues. Dee has a 15-year-old daughter who attends New Bern High School. She also hosts a weekly show on New Bern Live called Parent Talk. This show features all aspects of kids and parents. The success and the struggles. Dee is passionate about the future of our youth and ensuring a safe, educational environment for all children no matter what the socioeconomic situations may be. Dee is also a competitive cheer coach who helps mentor children aged 10-18.
Erika Butters brought her creative spirit to New Bern in 2018, where she now calls home with her husband, and their two children. With a career as a cruise ship performer spanning eight years, she has shared her artistic talents around the globe. Locally, she co-founded the band, Bridge Atlantic, and has performed in numerous theatrical productions at the New Bern Civic Theatre. Her dedication to the community extends beyond the stage, having previously served as the Director of Development at the New Bern Civic Theatre, where she played a pivotal role in raising funds for this non-profit organization. Her commitment to philanthropy is further exemplified through her volunteer work with various fundraisers in town. In addition to her artistic endeavors, Erika is a passionate advocate for accessible project-based education, tirelessly working to make learning more engaging and inclusive for all.