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Darren Patin
Board Chair

Darren Patin is an attorney with Hailey, McNamara, Hall, Larmann & Papale, L.L.P., and serves as Board Chair for Élan Academy.  A native New Orleanian, he brings his strong legal leadership and deep community networks to support the success of Élan Academy.

Roger Watkins
Vice-Chair & Treasurer

Roger Watkins is a Sr. Business Banker with Capital One, where he works with local businesses and nonprofit organizations to help them reach their financial goals. He brings knowledge in finance and operations, as well as a strong commitment to supporting the success of Élan Academy.

Jonathan Stewart
Parent Representative | Director`

Jonathan B. Stewart is the President and Chief Executive, of Jonathan B. Stewart Insurance Agency, Jonathan is responsible for producing sales in different insurance lines such as auto, homeowners, flood, life, and health insurance.  Jonathan is married to Candace and they have two sons that attend Élan.

Daphine Barnes

Daphine Barnes is a Site Mentor with the Norman C. Francis Teacher Residency at Xavier University of Louisiana. In this capacity, she strives to enhance the teacher pipeline through training, coaching, and mentoring teachers for placement in our local charter schools. A native New Orleanian, Daphine is a proud graduate of St. Mary’s Academy and is a devoted member of St. Raymond –St. Leo Catholic Church.She is a devoted educator and is proud to bring her experience as a highly successful classroom educator, school leader, and district leader to serve as a member of the Academic Committee on Elan’s Board.

Gary Briggs

Gary Briggs, a New Orleans native, serves as Systems Impact Director at New Teacher Center, a nonprofit that works to disrupt the predictability of educational inequities for systematically underserved students by accelerating educator effectiveness. Gary earned a B.S. in Political Science from Texas Christian University and an Ed.M from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. He is a proud member of Alpha Phi Alpha, Fraternity, Inc where he serves on the local chapter’s educational committee. Gary is eager to support Elan's wonderful mission of providing robust learning experiences to our young people.

Jeremy Thibodeaux

Jeremy Thibodeaux is a partner in Ericksen Krentel, LLP’s Accounting and Audit Services Section, where he oversees the quality and timeliness of services to many of the firm’s audit clients. Jeremy’s current specialty is on accounting and auditing for nonprofit entities, with a particular focus on charter schools. As the firm’s Quality Control Partner, Jeremy leads the A&A Services Section’s audit methodology with a focus on future of audit initiatives, data analytics, and the use of technology to drive a more creative and innovative audit practice. Jeremy is also an active member of the community serving on various civic and professional boards throughout his tenure at the firm. Jeremy was born and raised on the west bank of Jefferson Parish, where he continues to live with his wife, Kelly, and their three kids, Liam, Crawford and Leni.

Steven Brown

Steven Brown is a veteran educator who brings rich experience from his thirty-five year, K-12 career. Steve is a teacher at heart; however, for the last two decades, his focus has been on school wide student achievement.   During the last few years, he has worked in New Orleans as a consultant and a charter schools administrator. Now “semi-retired”, Steve continues to be passionate about both teacher and student learning.

Scot Rademaker

Dr. Scot Rademaker is currently the Dean of the College of Education and Behavioral Sciences at Nicholls State University. Dr. Scot Rademaker earned his Ph.D. in curriculum and instruction in special education at the University of South Florida. Throughout his graduate work in psychology, Dr. Rademaker worked as a reading interventionist and school psychology intern. In his personal time, Dr. Rademaker enjoys spending time with family and friends, travelling, and scuba diving.


Erin Marrero-Savoie is the Director of Regional Programs with Teach For America Greater New Orleans. In this role, she works to strengthen TFA’s relationship with other community organizations and to develop additional training and programming to enhance the skill set of incoming and current corps members. Erin is a native New Orleanian and a graduate of Cabrini High School. With an undergrad in Economics and a MBA from Tulane University, she is thrilled to share her experiences on the board and to serve Elan for years to come.

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