WakeUP Wake County Staff



Karen Rindge, Executive Director          

Email: karen@wakeupwakecounty.orgTel: 919.828.3833

Karen has worked with WakeUP since its inception in 2006.  She spent 10 years in Washington DC working in non-profit advocacy and grassroots organizing and as a legislative aide to NC Congressman James McClure Clarke. She is a graduate of UNC-CH and the University of Zimbabwe. Mother of two, she volunteers in their Wake County schools.



Tappan Vickery, Outreach Director

Email: tappan@wakeupwakecounty.orgTel:919.859.2177

Tappan has a decade of experience in grassroots civic engagement programs and strategy.  She settled in Raleigh in 2009 to start her family due to the region’s wonderful reputation for public schools, job opportunities and green space.  She is a graduate of Sewanee: The University of the South and holds a Masters of Business Administration, with a concentration in Marketing from Golden Gate University.



Patty Williams, Program Coordinator, Great Schools in Wake          


Patty has lived in Wake County for almost 20 years and has long been an education activist.  She’s been with Great Schools in Wake since the beginning (November 2009).  Prior to joining GSIW, Patty spent 20+ years in marketing communications.  She is a graduate of Amherst College and holds a Masters degree in Public and Private Management from Yale University.


Board of Directors


Executive Committee:


Daniel Kadis Chair


President, Centrex Properties, Inc.; Partner, CommunitySmith, LLC; Board of Directors, Triangle Land Conservancy

Margaret Newbold, Vice-Chair

Associate Director, Conservation Trust for North Carolina

Karen Kemerait, Secretary 

Attorney, Styers, Kemerait & Mitchell; zoning, utility and land use law

Anne-Lise Knox Velez, C0-Treasurer 


NCSU Graduate Student, Public Administration

Tom Rhodes, Co-Treasurer


Chaplin Rex Hospital; former Minister, Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Raleigh

Cory Branch

Manager for a network engineering team, AT&T; Member, Raleigh Transit Authority board

Yevonne Brannon

Director, NCSU Center for Urban Affairs; Chair, Public Schools First NC; Chair, Great Schools in Wake;  former Chair, WakeUP Wake County; former Commissioner, Wake County Board of Commissioners

Beverley Clark

Mediator in Wake County; former SE Regional Attorney for The Nature Conservancy; former member Wake County Board of Education

Tayon Dancy

Product Development Team Lead, IBM; Owner, Give Life Family Care

Karen Kemerait

Attorney, Styers, Kemerait & Mitchell; zoning, utility and land use law

Frank Harmon

Principle, Frank Harmon Architect PA; LEED AP green architecture firm

Julia Lee

Public affairs and marketing consultant; former Director in the Office of the Governor; Wake County Guardian ad Litem

Dani Martinez-Moore

Director, Immigrant and Refugee Rights Project, NC Justice Center

Ashton Mae Smith

Associate Project Manager  - SaaS Division, Citrix; Member, Raleigh City Museum board

Nilesh Surti

Civil Engineer, NCDOT; Chair, SEANC Council; Garner Concerned Citizens

Al Swanstrom

Retired IBM business executive; former member Wake County Planning Commission




Board of Advisors


Cynthia Ball

Tom Bradshaw

Norm Camp

Larry Dickens

Abeni El-Amin

Greg Flynn

Anne S. Franklin

Greg Hatem

Bill Holman

Robin Hammond

Sig Hutchinson

Matty Lazo-Chadderton

Brent Laurenz

Don Mial

Paul Morris

Susan Parry

Phil Poe

John Shaw

Anna Stein

Nina Szlosberg

Susann Wigger