Chief Executive Officer
Erika Halstead is the CEO of Minds Matter. Her career traverses the whole educational cycle, from bilingual elementary school teacher to university lecturer in literature, from curriculum development to delivery to evaluation. She has been part of the Minds Matter community since 2009, first as a volunteer, then a Board member, and later as Executive Director for the NYC chapter from 2015 to 2023. Previously, she served as the Senior Program Officer at Humanities New York where she directed youth and community engagement initiatives, including award-winning programming for Latine and American Muslim communities. Erika is also an expert facilitator and master trainer, with experience teaching hundreds of people to lead meaningful dialogue in their organizations and communities. Erika holds a BA from the University of Texas at Austin and a EdM from Teachers College, Columbia University. A proud Colombian-American, she was named a “40 Under 40 Rising Star” by the Hispanic Coalition of New York in 2018 and an inaugural member of the Pinkerton Advanced Leadership Network for nonprofit leaders of color in 2020.
Data & Operations Manager
Casey has worked with nonprofits for over a decade, both as a consultant and as a volunteer. After graduating from the University of Texas at Austin, she spent a couple years working in exhibit development and artifact preservation in museums before finding her passion by helping nonprofits work smarter with the aid of technology.
She is an avid traveler and adventurer and recently spent 13 months at McMurdo Station in Antarctica, hanging out with penguins and staring at the Southern Lights. If you've got an extra ticket to Mars, she is interested. Until then, she calls Portland, Maine home.
A Pennsylvania native, Stef relocated to Chicago in 2020 to become the Senior Program Manager of Ally Learning and Pathways at Public Allies Chicago. During her time there, she designed and implemented a leadership development curriculum for AmeriCorps members, while supervising and coaching them through their terms of service. Prior to working with Public Allies, Stef was the Summer Camp Director at a non-profit summer camp in Pennsylvania from 2011 until 2020. While there, she gained a breadth of experience: from hiring and onboarding to program development and operations, and everything in between. She has also worked as a freelance graphic designer, an email marketing manager, and a website designer and editor for various nonprofit organizations. Stef holds a degree in Art Education from Kutztown University of Pennsylvania. She lives in Chicago with her wife, Erica, and a silly little dog named Pippin.
Assistant to the CEO
Correne Reyes is the Assistant to the CEO at Minds Matter National. As a former educator, her journey has been defined by a dedication to fostering positive change in the realm of education. Correne holds a Bachelor of Arts in Elementary Education from Loyola University Maryland and a Master of Arts in Politics and Education from Teachers College, Columbia University.