Executive Leadership Council

President: Genaro Stewart

Contact: president@thursdaynetwork.org

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: Nancy Joseph

Contact: vicepresident@thursdaynetwork.org

A native of Boston, Massachusetts, Nancy Joseph is the Vice President of Thursday Network, the young professional's auxiliary of the Greater Washington Urban League. Professionally, she serves as contract support as a senior Stakeholder Management Analyst with Potomac Wave Consulting at the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), specifically the Office of Customer Engagement and Strategic Communication. In this capacity, she is tasked with consulting and managing business relationships amongst senior leaders within the Agency. Nancy has served in various capacities as a government consultant for 10 years. She obtained a bachelor's degree in Business Management from American International College and a master's degree in Leadership from Northeastern University. 

Nancy has been a longtime dedicated community servant; she is passionate about doing her part and being the change she wishes to see in her communityNancy has been a committed Urban Leaguer for over 10 years, she previously served as a Public Relations Chair within the Boston and the D.C. chapters of the Urban League Young Professionals auxiliaries. She has also volunteered in various capacities for NAACP Boston, Haiti Renewal Alliance, and YMCA youthNancy is also a proud member of the illustrious Northern Virginia Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated where she currently serves on the Social Action Committee. 

Nancy’s true passion lies in motivating others to be the best versions of themselvesAs an Empowerment Coachcertified by the International Coaching Federation (ICF), Nancy finds joy in helping others facilitate their own discovery. She truly believes change begins with self and can ultimately build and shape communities for the better.

Secretary: Brittany Bell

Contact: secretary@thursdaynetwork.org

A Native of Akron, Ohio, Brittany Bell now calls Washington DC her home.  She earned her bachelor's degree in Business Communication from Kent State University and currently works as an administrator for the Facilities Planning & Management Division of Prince George’s Community College.  Her ultimate goal is to influence and inspire positive change in our communities through education.  

Her passion lies in social injustice and serving her community through education awareness and resources.  In her free time, Brittany is involved with her church, where she belongs to the Young Adult Ministry. She also volunteers as a Reading Partner for the District of Columbia’s school-aged children.   Brittany loves giving back any way she can through community service and loves to support entrepreneurship and inspiring entrepreneurs.

Her most recent endeavor is she received her Fashion Stylist certification from one of the top schools for styling, School of Style, in Los Angeles, CA. She uses her fashion stylist degree to serve as a personal stylist.

Civic Engagement Chair: Kawanza Billy

Contact: civic@thursdaynetwork.org

Kawanza Billy is the Civic Engagement Chair of Thursday Network, Greater Washington Urban League's young professional auxiliary. She is Founder and Social Impact Strategist at K.Billy Push, a consulting company dedicated to creating and improving social initiatives. She’s been a member of Thursday Network since 2016, graduate of the Fall 2018 cohort of The Washington Bureau Advocacy Certification Program and  2019 Volunteer of the Year for Thursday Network.

Kawanza received her B.A. from The City University of New York at John Jay College where she majored in Political Science concentrating in Urban and Community Affairs. Kawanza started her career supporting former Public Advocate and current New York Attorney General Letitia James with outreach coordination in Southeast, Queens, Harlem and Brooklyn. Since her time is Washington, DC , she has served as the Director of Enrollment at Momentum Education where she coordinated outreach, built strategic partnerships and managed community engagement. She also supports local advocacy initiatives related to education, environmental, and health policy. Kawanza is known for her ability to utilize her creativity to foster new programs and systems that impact experience, sustainability and visibility. She’s a leader who gravitates towards opportunities to provide resources and support to those in need.

When Kawanza isn’t igniting the light in others, she is serving as Washington, DC Chapter Leader for the National Cervical Cancer Coalition and facilitates a civic engagement and leadership workshop for young people.

Community Service Events Chair: Whitney Celestin

Contact: csevents@thursdaynetwork.org

Fund Development: Derin Oduye

Contact: funddevelopment@thursdaynetwork.org

Derin Oduye works in the Intelligence Publishing  and Ad-Operations team at Politico. A native of Austin, Texas, Derin graduated from Texas A&M University with a Bachelors of Arts in Political Science in 2016. Before relocating to Washington DC, she served as an AmeriCorps member as the Volunteer and Outreach where she was responsible for coordinating the volunteer program and building partnerships. In 2018, she was selected as the National AmeriCorps Member of the Year.

When she’s off the clock, she keeps busy performing poetry, serving as a mentor for Big Brother Big Sister, and volunteering within the community. Derin is theFund Development Chair for the 2019-2020 ELC year.

Membership Chair: Harper Matthews

Contact: membership@thursdaynetwork.org

Harper Matthews is a southern California native, world traveler, and avid foodie.  As a two-time graduate of Pepperdine University, earning a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a minor in Ethnic Studies and a Masters degree in Education, Harper has a love for student affairs and a deep passion for student identity and leadership development. After working in college admission and dedicating her graduate research to better understanding student retention and success, especially amongst students of color, Harper felt called to a career in student affairs. . She currently is the Program Manager for Pepperdine University's Washington DC study away program where she oversees student affairs, program management, and building operations.  Inspired by the many inspirational women in her life, Harper spends much of her free time giving back to organizations that aim to build strong women. Harper currently serves on the young professionals board of Girls on the Run Montgomery County. Additionally, as a dedicated member of the Gamma Phi Beta Sorority, she serves as a lead facilitator, presenting on a variety of leadership development topics at various conferences and workshops around the country. 

Harper plans to bring her deep value for building authentic community and her skills in recruitment, retention, and member experience to the position of TN’s Membership chair during the 2019-2020 term. 

Personal & Professional Development Chair: Antwion Jefferson

Contact: ppd@thursdaynetwork.org

Born and raised in Prince George’s County, Antwion Jefferson serves as the Personal and Professional Development Chair of Thursday Network, the young professionals auxiliary of the Greater Washington Urban League. Professionally, he serves as Executive Assistant to the VP of Community Engagement, Advocacy, and Government Affairs at Children’s National Hospital (CNH). In this role, he oversees the fiscal budget, leads administrative operations and facilitates efforts to address the social determinants of health through government organizations and community partnerships under the umbrella of the Child Health Advocacy Institute.  

Prior to joining the CNH, Antwion served as Deputy Project Manager for Zimmerman Associates Inc. (ZAI), a government services contractor dedicated to providing technology-enabled solutions in processing management and customer satisfaction to the Library of Congress. He also oversaw multiple projects and served as a primary liaison between ZAI and the Library of Congress. Antwion earned a Bachelor’s of Applied Science in Business Administration with a minor in Sociology from University of Maryland University College (UMUC) and an Associate’s of Applied Science in Business Management from Prince George’s Community College.

Public Relations Digital Media Chair: Brian Tolbert

Contact: prmedia@thursdaynetwork.org

Brian Tolbert is a multi-disciplined designer with a unique experience of working with some of the world's largest brands all the way down to single entity start ups to reach a variety of audiences. Brian has over a decade of experience developing brands and developing visual experiences. As PR Media chair, he will draw on that experience to contribute to Thursday Network in a meaningful way. Brian is working on implementing a 7-step social media marketing and optimization strategy to increase engagement with our current audience and grow beyond our existing base. Brian is focused on working with our membership body and executive committee to curate dynamic & highly engaging content to expand awareness of the Thursday Network, Greater Washington Urban League and NULYP.

Social & Cultural Chair: Briana Lynch

Contact: social@thursdaynetwork.org

Briana Lynch is a dynamic leader and go-getter from the southern suburbs of Chicago, Illinois. She is an alumna of the University of Missouri with a degree in Biological Sciences. During her time as an undergrad, she was involved in many scientific research activities including completing three research internship programs — two at the University of Missouri studying medicinal plants and one at Harvard University studying environmental nanoparticles. She also volunteered in many activities including the local food bank, the Ronald McDonald charity house, and the Dream Outside the Box program where she performed experiments with kids in the classroom. Additionally, Briana also traveled abroad to Nicaragua and Ghana as a volunteer to provide health care needs as a triage nurse and public health educator in underserved villages.

After graduation, Briana completed Post-Baccalaureate education through the National Institutes of Health Infectious diseases branch at Johns Hopkins University. There she studied cross-sectional incidence of HIV infections, and conducted DNA sequencing and analysis of HIV to investigate disease progression of the virus in Baltimore, Washington DC, and various African countries. Briana presented her work at the Conference of Retroviruses and Opportunistic infections in 2016 and was published in the Journal of AIDS research and Human Retroviruses in 2017 as a first author. Soon after completing her Post-Baccalaureate, she continued her passion in the field of science as a Scientific Information Analyst at the National Institutes of Health in Bethesda, Maryland where she works with experts in scientific policy through congress to report, analyze and budget areas of scientific research.

Outside of work, Briana currently volunteers as a mentor to young black women in science through a program called Elevate and offers free tutoring to Howard students majoring in Biology. Briana hopes to one day pursue a graduate degree in Data Science and Analytics and to become a college professor and mentor to young black students in STEM. In her free time Briana enjoys working out, event planning, and traveling. She also hopes to teach aerobic classes and to open a healthy, affordable grocery store in a black community.

Community Service Programs Chair: Currently Vacant

Treasurer: Currently Vacant

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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