President: Genaro Stewart
A native of Atlanta, Georgia, Genaro Stewart is the President of the Thursday Network, the young professionals auxiliary of the Greater Washington Urban League. Professionally, he serves as a senior Foreign Policy Advisor to the Office of the Secretary of Defense. In this capacity he provides advisory counsel to the White House, Pentagon and National Security Council concerning national security policy considerations and emerging international geopolitical issues. Genaro has also served as a visiting lecturer at the U.S. Naval War College in Rhode Island and as a graduate-level course advisor at Duke University. Prior to relocating to Washington, D.C. he spent a considerable amount of time working abroad in over 20 countries ranging from Afghanistan to the stunning and scenic geography of East Africa.
When Genaro is not engaged in international affairs, he is very passionate about young male mentorship and professional development. He previously served as Personal and Professional Development committee chair and is an active participant in the 100 Black Men of Greater Washington’s Leadership Academy. His selfless service isn’t limited to his community but he is also a U.S. Navy veteran. Genaro’s extensive leadership experience is a welcomed addition to our executive board, and he is excited to serve and broaden relations in his role as President.
Vice President: Halimat "Derin" Oduye
A native of Austin, Texas, Halimat "Derin" Oduye is the Vice-president of Thursday Network, the young professionals auxiliary of the Greater Washington Urban League. Professionally, Derin works at Discovery Channel where she manages digital marketing content.
Derin also brings over five years of digital fundraising, lobbying and political organizing experience from the public and non-profit sectors. Prior to relocating to Washington D.C. Derin served as an Americorps Member and in 2018 she was selected as the National Americorps Member of the Year.
When she’s off the clock, she keeps busy performing poetry, mentoring, and volunteering within the community.
Treasurer: John Houston
A native of Montgomery County, Maryland, John R. Houston is the Treasurer of Thursday Network, the young professional's auxiliary of the Greater Washington Urban League.
Professionally, John serves as a Budget Technician for WSSC Water. In this capacity, his primary role is to provide budgetary analysis for two divisions within the organization, with budgets totaling over $1 million. John also brings over 10 years of finance, accounting, fundraising, and political organizing experience from the public, private, and non-profit sectors. In addition to his business background, he has served in leadership capacities with non-profit organizations, such as Big Brothers Big Sisters and Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.
John obtained a Bachelor of Science degree in Finance from Hampton University and enjoys outdoor activities, traveling, and playing the saxophone in his spare time.
Policies & Procedures: Ashley Michelle Williams
Ashley Michelle Williams, serves as the Parliamentarian of Thursday Network, the young professionals auxiliary of the Greater Washington Urban League. She is a native of Bullcity (Durham, North Carolina). She earned a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy and a Bachelor of Science in Economics from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and Juris Doctorate degree from Regent University School of Law. Professionally, she serves as a staff attorney at a prominent civil litigation firm in Washington, DC. In her free time, Ashley enjoys traveling, reading, binge watching Grey's Anatomy, and building equity within the African American community. She looks forward to using her time and talents to serve Thursday Network and the DMV area.
Personal & Professional Development Chair: Art Jones
Arthur T. Jones, IV was born in Tallahassee, Florida. He later moved to Atlanta, Georgia where he was raised by his parents to serve within the metropolitan community. From 2011-2015, Arthur T. Jones, IV attended Georgia Southern University, Savannah Campus and participated in the the 100 Black Men of Savannah, Collegiate 100, Student Government Association, the Wind Ensemble and the ROTC program as a scholarship Cadet under 6th BDE Task Force in Savannah, GA receiving a commission into the US Army Component as a Medical Services Officer.
1st Lieutenant Jones received a Bachelor’s Degree in Public/Community Health Sciences from Georgia Southern University, Armstrong Campus in Savannah, GA December 2015. He is currently enrolled in University of Maryland Global Campus’ Masters of Business Administration. He is a military graduate of the Leadership Development Advancement Course; AMEDD Basic Officer Leadership Course; Health Services Planning, Operations, Intelligence, Security & Training Course; Unit Administrator Basic Course; Reserve Component Silver Siege Officer Training Course; Basic Airborne Course; the Action Officer Integration Course, and Equal Opportunity Leaders Course.
1st Lieutenant Jones’ Military awards and decorations are: the Army Commendation Medal, Army Achievement Medal, Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Global War on Terrorism Service Medal, Reserve Components Achievement Medal, Army Service Ribbon, Reserve Components Overseas Training Ribbon and The Basic Parachutist Badge.
Membership Chair: Ashley Shuler
What gets her blood pumping? → People & Policy. Ashley’s “why,” in life is centered on serving others. Ms. Shuler’s superpower centers on people, processes, and outcomes. She has served in various roles in nonprofits, thinktanks, and government agencies applying strategic planning, project management, and managing initiatives that help organizations reach their goals. As a servant leader, Ashley is a member of the Fairfax County NAACP, Thursday Network, and member of the Juvenile and Domestic Relations District Court Citizens Advisory Council, Northern Virginia Black Chamber of Commerce. In her professional career, Ms. Shuler serves as Policy Specialist for the Policy Implementation and Dissemination within Federal Student Aid (FSA). Additionally, Ashley is the Principal of Shuler Strategies Group LLC, where she provides project management consulting services for creatives, content creators, small business owners, and teams.
Originally from Northern Virginia, Ashley holds a BA in Government from The College of William & Mary in Williamsburg, Virginia and graduated from George Mason University, School of Public Policy.
Community Service Events Chair: Terah Speigner
Terah Speigner is a transplant to D.C. from Cleveland, OH. She is a passionate and community-oriented individual, who believes that anyone can make a difference, and everyone should try. Her dedication to giving back to the community has led her to become the Community Service Events Chair for this year's 2021 – 2022 term. She is a proud alumna of Case Western Reserve University, where she received her MBA in Nonprofit Management.
In her free time, she enjoys going to museums, trying new food and wine, binging reality tv shows, and exploring speakeasies with friends.
Community Service Programs Chair: Tamaria Kelly
A native of Buffalo, New York, Tamaria Kelly is the Community Service Program Chair of Thursday Network, the young professional’s auxiliary of the Greater Washington Urban League. Professionally, she serves as a senior Analyst to the Office of the Inspector General (OIG) of Transportation. In this capacity, she conducts performance audits related to aviation. Tamaria has also served as a Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) Keyworker and Coordinator for her agency’s Community Service Coalition. In 2018, she was awarded the OIG Public/Community Service Award for demonstrating exceptional dedication to the community. Tamaria earned her B.A. from the University at Buffalo, The State University of New York (SUNY) where she majored in Sociology and minored in African American Studies. She also earned a Master of Public Administration (MPA) and Certificate in Nonprofit Management and Leadership from SUNY Binghamton University.
Tamaria has been a dedicated community servant since her high school years. She has volunteered in various capacities for Everybody Wins DC, Lutheran Services in America, NativityMiguel Middle School, Science First Hand Collaborative of Buffalo, United Way of Asheville & Buncombe County, United Way of Buffalo & Erie County and Big Brothers Big Sisters. She has been acknowledged for her exceptional community service and research by several organizations such as the Uncrowned Queens Institute for Research & Education on Women, Inc., BLACK GIRLS ROCK!, Inc., and the Buffalo Urban League, where she received a college scholarship and later became a member of the organization’s Young Professionals network.
Tamaria has been a member of Thursday Network since 2017. As Community Service Program Chair, she is looking forward to serving on our executive board and engaging with TN members and the community at large.
Pride of the Movement: Antonio Ferguson
Contact: email@example.comAntonio has been a member of Thursday Network since 2018. He was drawn to TN due to its focus on civic engagement and community service. He sat on the Civic Engagement committee for the 2018-2019 term and was awarded the Civic Engagement Committee Member of the Year award for his service. He is thrilled to be chairing the Pride of the Movement subcommittee. As a member of the LGBTQIA+ community, he is excited to help TN become a more inclusive environment for all Black young professionals. Antonio is currently a Senior Analyst for PGIM Real Estate, where he helps finance affordable housing projects around the country.
Public Relations Digital Media Chair: Greg Wayne
Gregory is a federal contractor serving as a video production specialist and post-production coordinator for a United States government agency. He also works as an independent producer and videographer-- most recently filming social media ads for a major retailer and co-producing creative content for social media influencers. Gregory, affectionately called G. Wayne, is a Washington D.C. native and a Norfolk State University alum. He's currently a graduate student at American University where he is working towards a Masters of Arts in Producing Film, Television, and Video.
Social & Cultural Chair: Kris Hibler - Smith
Kristopher Hibler- Smith serves as the Social Cultural Chair of Thursday Network, he is a native of Maryland. After graduating from Pepperdine University (2014), he began working in Business and Legal Affairs in the entertainment industry (TV). During his time in Los Angeles, he started a Flea market for Black owned businesses called Nothing But B.L.K. (Black Business, Black Love, Black Kulture). Kris currently works as a Project Manager on Pepco's Capital Grid Project in Washington, DC.
Though he is back in the DMV, he is still able to do what he loves and that is support small business owners and set up markets in communities that are rooted in our culture. Kris is passionate about providing opportunities for growth, exposure and profit for Black owned businesses.