President's Challenge - Advisors

(Note: For information on the 2022 challenge, please visit the President's and Chancellor's Challenge.)


Coaching Session Sign-Up

  • To sign-up for coaching sessions, please contact Nadine Desmarais, executive assistant to the Office of Economic Engagement at Teams are encouraged to sign-up as soon as possible, as participation in sessions will occur on a first-come, first serve basis. 

The coaches are serving three purposes in supporting the teams:

  • As community members, partners, and faculty experts, they have been invited to bring their unique experience to inform the development of team proposals.
  • During sessions, they will be asked to provide a bit of their own background, and experience related to the topic, and then respond to questions/ideas that teams are considering.
  • They will not be a part of the selection process and have no additional role in the President’s Challenge beyond serving as another supportive person in the development of proposals.

 2021 Coaches

Andre DouglasAndre Douglas, Senior Director of College Access & Success Services, Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee

Andre’s Bio

“Tomorrow is not promised. Live your best today!  If I can help somebody as I travel along, then my living shall not be in vain.” Those words are what Andre lives by and strives to encourage others to do. Described as a champion for students, Andre was born and raised in Milwaukee, WI, and is proud to be a product of Milwaukee Public Schools & TRIO Programs. Andre, a first-generation college student, graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications. Andre received his Master of Science degree in College Personnel Administration from Concordia University-Wisconsin. He has held previous positions at the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater, Blackhawk Technical College, and Marquette University. Andre currently serves as the Senior Director of College Access & Success Services for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Milwaukee. Andre has made it his mission to help get students to and through college as debt-free as possible. His mission in life is to help other people find theirs.

Tell us one new thing you’ve learned or observed about MKE during this time.

During the past year, our nation has experienced many challenges; Milwaukee is no different. As we continue to be the center of social justice movements, poverty, and education inequities, we have many problems that will take our entire community to address. During the pandemic, I realized just how much technology equality impacts the educational needs of students. We assume that everyone has technology or access at home, but COVID taught us differently. The need for technology access for all students is so desperately needed. Our department loaned out over 100 Chromebooks to students since March of last year. With the help of Spectrum (offering free internet for a season), and many schools offering hotspots, students could have the technology needs. Although helpful, many students didn’t receive their technology until it was too late. The term “summer melt” isn’t new to educators, but “COVID melt” is something that we’ll all have to address for years to come in the education service industry.


Monday, March 8, 2021 – 9:00-10:00am

Friday, March 12, 2021 – 9:00-9:30am

Monday, March 29, 2021 - 3:00-4:00-pm


Martha BarryDr. Martha Barry, Chief Racial Justice Officer, YWCA Southeast Wisconsin

Martha’s Bio

 Martha Barry is a white woman deeply committed to ending racism. She is a racial justice trainer, connector, bridge builder, and dedicated leader. Her social justice journey in California and Wisconsin eventually led her to 15 years of work in a corporate HR department as trainer, leadership developer and coach. Her 11 years with the YWCA Southeast Wisconsin have allowed her to hone her pursuit of racial justice by building community, creating curriculum addressing racism, and advising nonprofit and business leaders on next steps in their racial equity efforts. Her path has required empathy and patience with people on the journey to eliminating racism. A strong advocate and facilitator, Dr. Barry has influenced many leaders in nonprofits, businesses, governmental and interpersonal roles to address the impact, roots and manifestations of racism. Unlearning Racism: Tools for Action is an opportunity to educate our communities about racism and individual and institutional roles in addressing it. Dr. Barry has her B.S. from Edgewood College, M.S. from University of Wisconsin-Madison, and her Ph.D. from Cardinal Stritch University.


March 15, 2021, 2:00-5:00pm

March 29, 2021, 3:00-4:30pm