Executive Leadership Council


President: Derin Oduye

Contact: president@thursdaynetwork.org

A native of Austin, Texas, Halimat "Derin" Oduye is the president of Thursday Network for the 2022 - 2023 Executive Leadership Council. In the past 4 years, Derin has served as Vice President and Fund Development Chair of Thursday Network where she has implemented a variety of innovative programming such as a grant writing training where 500 people where in attendance. As a strategic thinker she has created a Board handbook in order to seamlessly transition the incoming Executive Leadership team. Her extensive experience has equipped her to elevate the standard of excellence of Thursday Network.

Professionally, Derin works at Warner Bros. Discovery 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 serves as an advisor for the Urban Professionals Community. 


Vice President: Kristi Miller

Contact: vicepresident@thursdaynetwork.org

Kristi is a young professional and plant mom who has worked in the Non-profit Education field for over 10 years. When she’s not working with young people you can find her spending time with her family and friends. One of her favorite things to do is work and give back to communities and TN has afforded her an extra opportunity to do that. She enjoys Thai food, K-pop dramas, and board games!


Treasurer: John Houston

Contact: treasurer@thursdaynetwork.org

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.


Parliamentarian: Monique Toussaint

Contactparliamentarian@thursdaynetwork.org

Monique S. Toussaint is a senior career leader for the White House Initiative on Advancing Educational Equity, Excellence, and Economic Opportunity for Black Americans where she manages the operational duties of the Initiative (i.e. strategic planning, project management, programming, etc.) and facilitates relationships with internal and external stakeholders. Her primary focus includes highlighting resources at the U.S. Department of Education and at other federal agencies that enhance the programs, practices, and policies at institutions that serve the Black community.

Passionate about empowering others, she is an Executive Leadership Coach and President of Monumental Business Solutions, LLC., a Group Coach for the Office of Personnel Management’s (OPM) Presidential Management Fellows (PMF) Leadership Development Program, an Executive Coach for the Treasury Executive Institute, was an Adjunct Math Instructor for the Adult Basic Education program at Prince George’s Community College, received the 2013 Martin Luther King, Jr. Drum Major for Service President’s Volunteer Service Award, Past President of the Rotary Club of Dupont Circle in Washington DC, an inaugural member and Professional Development Co-Chair of the YWCA - National Capital Area’s Young Women’s Leadership Council, and was recognized for Leadership in the 2017 Who’s Who Among Young Professionals by the National Urban League Young Professionals (NULYP).

Monique has been a member of Thursday Network: Greater Washington Urban League Young Professionals Auxiliary for almost a decade, was one of three finalist for the Luminary Award at the Inaugural Spirit of Service Awards Ceremony in 2014, a panelist for the December 2016 GBM on planning for success in 2017, July 2018 Member of the Month, bEastCon 2020 Planning Committee member, and has served on both the Community Service and Personal and Professional Development (PPD)Committees. This servant leader also served as the Speaker Lead for the 2021 NULYP Whole Woman Summit and was a NUL Conference 2022 planning committee member.

Monique is currently pursuing a doctorate in Organizational Change and Leadership from the University of Southern California, is a 2021 Alumni of the Excellence in Government Fellows Program, holds a M.A. in Education and Human Development from George Washington University and a B.S. in Business Administration from the Kogod School of Business at American University in Washington, DC. She enjoys serving others in business and in ministry.


Civic Engagement Chair: Nadia Levine

Contact: civic@thursdaynetwork.org

Nadia Levine is a policy analyst working with the World Trade Center Health Program for over a decade and is now supporting the Policy Office after many years with the Medial Benefits and Claims Unit. Nadia also co-leads the Employee Engagement Committee which fosters a safe space for employees to discuss inclusion, diversity, and disparities as they may affect the workplace. Her roles at her 9-5 may be a bit more serious but Nadia is a vibe. Nadia isn't new to Urban League. Growing up in Harlem, Urban League played a role in her development and awarded her a scholarship for college. It was only right that she joined the DC chapter. Since joining Thursday Network, Nadia has contributed her skills to the PR Digital/Marketing Committees. Nadia takes pride in being a member of this great organization and working alongside all of its members.


Community Service Events Chair: Taria Poteat 

Contact: csevents@thursdaynetwork.org

Taria Poteat is a West Palm Beach, FL native who moved here to the DC metropolitan area 3 ½ years ago to jumpstart her federal career in public health. Taria currently works for the Health Resources and Services Administration where she is as a Public Health Analyst and Program Specialist for the Bureau of Primary Health Care serving over 1500 community health centers in the nation and its territories. Taria received both her Bachelor of Science degree in Healthcare Management and Master of Public Health degree in Epidemiology and Health Policy, from thee Florida A & M University. In Taria’s work, she is dedicated to addressing public health inequalities through education and training, as well as policy research and interpretation. Additionally, Taria brings a passion for serving those who are underserved and overlooked, and anticipates incorporating a mental wellness aspect within TN’s existing Community Services events and programs. Outside of Taria’s professional life, she enjoys DIY projects, thrifting, resume building, event planning, and mixing fancy cocktails.  


Community Service Programs Chair: Brion Baylor

Contact: csprograms@thursdaynetwork.org

Brion Baylor is a DC native who strives on finding ways to preserve the DC area through community service while building relationships to keep advancing the city forward in a more equitable society for all social classes. Professionally, he is a technology specialist. Assisting in technical support on printers, A/V systems as well as pre/post set up and breakdowns for live events in the classroom/office settings.


Fund Development Chair: Emily Collier

Contact: funddevelopment@thursdaynetwork.org

A native of Dayton, Ohio, Emily Collier is the Fund Development Chair of Thursday Network, the young professional’s auxiliary of the Greater Washington Urban League. Professionally, Emily is a Workforce Engagement Planner at Meta, where she serves an engagement consultant, managing strategic headcount planning for the company. Emily also brings over 10 years of professional organizational experience from leading large-scale scholarship fundraising, political awareness and involvement activities, and leadership roles. She is a proud and active member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., where she lends her service and time towards voter education and awareness. Prior to relocating to Alexandria, VA, Emily spent 14 years as a civil servant for the United States Air Force and Internal Revenue Service. When she’s off the clock, she loves being active whether exercising or outdoor activities, traveling, and being an amazing dog mom. Emily's motto is to not take life so seriously; life is serious enough, we don't have to contribute to it, so smile, laugh and live!


Personal & Professional Development Chair: Gregory Wayne

Contact: ppd@thursdaynetwork.org

Gregory is a federal contractor serving as an Audiovisual Production Manager and the 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 is the owner of Flights & Coffee Productions LLC which supports small and large scale productions filming in the National Capital Region. Gregory is a Washington D.C. native and a Norfolk State University alum. He is also a graduate of American University’s School of Communication with a Masters of Arts in Producing for Film, Television, and Video.


Public Relations Marketing Chair: Jael Louis

Contact: pr@thursdaynetwork.org

Jael is here to ensure the story of the Thursday Network reaches its audiences and beyond. A mission-driven communicator, storyteller, and strategist, Jael works with nonprofits, public figures, and socially responsible businesses ready to inspire their audiences to act on pressing issues. Jael is a native New Yorker residing in Washington, DC and an alumna of Georgetown University. You may find Jael on stage at an open mic near you.


Thursday Network

Greater Washington Urban League Building

2901 14th Street NW
Washington, DC 20009
General Body Meetings occur on the 4th Thursdays of the month at 6:30p.

About Us

Founded in 1992, Thursday Network is comprised of over 200 young professionals committed to serving the Washington Metropolitan area through community programs and partnership that address the Empowerment Goals of the National Urban League. The mission of TN is to provide a forum for young adults, ages 21 – 40, to focus their energies on community service, professional development, and political involvement.

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