Chief Executive Officer
Bridget Laird is the CEO of WINGS for kids. WINGS is an award winning after school social and emotional education program. It has received numerous accolades including: 4-star rating by Charity Navigator; featured by Edutopia, George Lucas’ education foundation, as a “School that Works”; featured in Mario Morino’s “Leap of Reason: Managing to Outcomes” and Paul Bloom’s “How to Scale Your Social Venture” as an example of a performance-driven, outcome-oriented nonprofit organization.
Bridget has been with WINGS since 1998 working alongside WINGS’ spirited founder, Ginny Deerin. Through the years, Bridget has helped to develop all aspects of the organization, from program/curriculum development to spearheading grant and research applications to growth strategies, replication, and scaling. During this time, she and our founder were leading the charge in bringing social and emotional skill development to kids in elementary schools and working toward efforts to bring SEL to the forefront of education today. Bridget took over as CEO in January 2011. Since her tenure, WINGS expanded to Atlanta, GA and Charlotte, NC - increasing the number of kids served by 300%. Her oversight ensures fiscal responsibility of our multi-million dollar budget.
She is advisory board member for Sports Challenge and recently served as a board member of the local chapter of Reading Partners. She's a member of the 2015 Liberty Fellowship class and a Leap of Reason Ambassador. She has an undergraduate degree in Parks and Recreation from North Carolina State University and a master’s degree in Education, with a concentration in School-age Development from Concordia University in St. Paul, MN. Bridget has a daughter and son.
Chief Strategy Officer
Julia is the Chief Strategy Officer at WINGS for kids. Since July 2011 she has launched WINGS’ expansion efforts across the southeast with the CEO, and worked alongside the senior team to ensure the WINGS model has been replicated with fidelity and quality. She evaluates current and future growth opportunities for WINGS, develops partner relationships, and builds the necessary internal infrastructure and resources necessary to support growth. Julia’s experiences range from the nonprofit to small business industries, and includes work as a federal government attorney. She has an undergraduate degree from the University of Maryland Baltimore County and a J.D. from the University of Maryland School of Law.
Chief Administration & Finance Officer
A WINGer Since 2009
Adam joined WINGS in 2009. Prior to doing so, Adam worked in commercial real estate development and received his MBA from The University of North Carolina’s Kenan-Flagler Business School. He also taught sixth grade and coached the school’s cross country team. Outside of work, Adam enjoys spending time with his wife and children, eating good food, running and riding his bike.
Chief Program Officer
A WINGer Since 2002
Nicole has spent the last 10 years creating, implementing, evaluating and delivering the WINGS for kids curriculum. Before WINGS, she counseled youth and their families during two years at the South Carolina Department of Mental Health and has a juvenile justice degree from Shippensburg University. In addition to working tirelessly for WINGS, Nicole is invested in the schools in which the programs operate, serving on several committees and school improvement councils. In 2009 she was recognized as a promising leader on the “Forty under 40” list in the Charleston Regional Business Journal. She anxiously looks forward to the day WINGS flies to her hometown, Philadelphia!
Chief Development Officer
Jolie Logan is the Chief Development Officer at WINGS for kids. Jolie, former CEO of the Charleston non-profit Darkness to Light, brings experience in fundraising, partnership development, and grants management to the position.While President and CEO of Darkness to Light, a non-profit working to prevent child sexual abuse, Logan led development and business strategy, growing the organization’s revenue by 44%. Logan also served as the organization’s Chief Operating Officer, overseeing all day-to- day operations, managing federal grants, and the organization’s budget. Logan previously served as the Managing Director of the Commonwealth Financial Group, advising businesses and individuals in the areas of wealth management, and founded HR On-Call, a human resource infrastructure and oversight company for small to medium-size businesses. Jolie is a graduate of Converse College in Spartanburg, South Carolina and holds several investment, securities, and financial licenses.
Director of Communications & Engagement
For eight years, Liz has worked to connect and promote WINGS to foundations, corporations, and individuals who care about the well-being of kids. A graduate from the College of Charleston's Arts Management program, Liz began her career in the arts before joining WINGS in 2007 as an Administrative Assistant. Now, as Director of Engagement, Liz helps grow WINGS’ base of supporters and circle of influence while driving broader and deeper awareness through communication and brand. She is a 2012 Charleston Regional Business Journal's "40 Under 40" winner for her efforts in development and marketing and is the VP of Professional Development for the Association for Fundraising Professionals Lowcountry Chapter. In her free time Liz likes to cook, write letters, travel, and spend time with dogs.
Atlanta Executive Director
A WINGer Since 2013
Denise took flight with WINGS in 2013. Prior to joining WINGS, she served as a nonprofit consultant where she assisted clients with board governance issues, fundraising strategies, training, and leadership development. Denise held prior positions at the Martin Luther King, Jr. Center for Nonviolent Social Change, the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation, and the Interdenominational Theological Center. She hails from Santa Cruz, CA, and is an alumna of Spelman College
Charlotte Executive Director
A WINGer Since 2015
Annie Burton assumed the role of Charlotte Executive Director with WINGS for kids in November 2015. She has spent the majority her career in higher education spearheading efforts to promote college and career readiness for middle and high school students; most recently as Executive Director for School and Community Engagement at UNC Asheville. In that role, Ms. Burton enhanced and forged new relationships for the campus with the local and regional school districts on issues, such as teacher professional development, college readiness and access, including broadening the pipeline of academic supports in anticipation of an evolving demographic of students entering college in our new knowledge-based economy. Ms. Burton has conducted research work, including qualitative and quantitative analysis on college perceptions of middle school students from urban and rural communities and has presented at international forums such as the Engagement Scholarship Consortium’s annual meetings aimed to promote the practice, study and research of engagement on college campuses around the globe. She is past Vice Chair of the University of North Carolina’s seventeen campus Engagement Council. Ms. Burton is former Executive Director of the W.E.B. Du Bois Institute for African and African American Research at Harvard University, the nation’s oldest research center of its kind, dedicated to the study, research and scholarship of the African Diaspora. She has worked with school districts in Baltimore, Boston, Cleveland, Philadelphia, and throughout Western North Carolina and has over seventeen years of experience in corporate fundraising, grant writing, strategic planning, program development, research and evaluation. She holds a Bachelors of Science, Cum Laude, from Harvard University in Social Sciences. Ms. Burton enjoys spending time with her two sons, Domenic and Carrington, is active in civic engagement, including the United Way Women’s Leadership Society and is a former Tocqueville Society Member.