Our Team

Jen Baker
Executive Director

Jen came to the organization in 2002 as an AmeriCorps member and served two years while completing her Bachelor’s of Social Work at the University of Cincinnati. She fell in love with the community and her experience led her to earn a Juris Doctorate from UC in 2007. After law school, she decided to return to education rather than practice law because she believes education is the key to transforming our city. Jen always says she never feels like she “goes to work,” which allows her to truly enjoy her time at home with her three children and various stray animals who need a place to be loved.

e: jen@emcincy.org

Emily Eskridge
Chief Financial Officer

Emily worked in the nonprofit sector for 6 years before joining the team at Education Matters in 2008. She is driven by a strong passion for people and community. Her belief in complete transparency in the non-profit sector makes her one of the strongest professionals in non-profit finance. On a daily basis, Emily manages our accounting and supports our operations staff.

e: emily@emcincy.org

Paige Jessee
Director of Education

Paige is a native of Cincinnati and holds a Bachelor of Arts from the Ohio State University and a Master of Arts in education policy from Loyola University Chicago. After completing her graduate degree, she served in various AmeriCorps programs and worked in the Office of Admission at Cincinnati State. During her time at Cincinnati State, Paige became connected to, then, Lower Price Hill Community School. She immediately fell in love with the organization and neighborhood. Paige believes in the value and potential of all individuals and feels a responsibility to leverage her privilege to positively impact the lives of others.

e: paige@emcincy.org



Kai Porter
Education & Training Counselor

Kai is new to Cincinnati, but not to community-based nonprofits, assisting people who want to further their education, and social justice. She previously has worked at nonprofit organizations focused on inner city youth and Latino immigrants, as well as a college focused on new media and arts. She is originally from Florida and has a Bachelor of Arts in English and Communications. In the summer of 2016, she decided to move to Cincinnati to do a second year of Notre Dame AmeriCorps at Education Matters (she previously served in Florida). She is excited to take on a role that intertwines her professional background and social values.

e: bridge@emcincy.org

Kyle Beck
Program Manager

Kyle received his Bachelor in Business Administration degree from the University of Kentucky.  Through his leadership role in a student organization and his experiences while studying abroad in South America, he realized his desire to dedicate his career to improving the communities of Greater Cincinnati.  After serving a year in AmeriCorps as a GED class instructor, he recognized his passion for teaching and saw that removing barriers to education was the best method to accomplish this goal.  He joined Education Matters’ team in 2014 and has been developing our English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) program.

e: kyle@emcincy.org

Daveen Knue
Program Coordinator

Daveen grew up on the west side of Cincinnati. In June 2012 she graduated from the University of Cincinnati with a BA in Psychology and a minor in German Studies. Daveen has worked in the nonprofit world since graduation, serving in AmeriCorps for two terms; the first with Public Allies Cincinnati, and the second in the Education Forward program here at Education Matters. Daveen’s nonprofit interests include outreach, education, and women’s issues.

e: daveen@emcincy.org


Erica Ninneman
Program Manager

Erica grew up in Dayton but calls Cincinnati home. She fell in love with Education Matters as soon as she walked through the doors. If she’s not making students laugh, she’s busy emphasizing the importance of pursuing education at any stage in life. Recently enrolling back into college after growing a greater appreciation for education, Erica is pursuing a bachelor’s in education.

e: erica@emcincy.org

Sarah Groeschen
Lead Tutor

Sarah is currently a student at the University of Cincinnati and is majoring in Criminal Justice with a focus in mathematics. Her real passion is in teaching and she has enjoyed working at LPHCS for over 4 years. She is motivated by her students’ stories of struggle and success and is inspired every day to help build the confidence of each student that walks through the door. Her goals are to make students feel comfortable learning at the school and to show them that they are capable of passing the GED test.

e: sarah@emcincy.org

Aisha Jordan

Aisha joined the Education Matters team in 2012 as a work study student from Xavier University. She is currently pursuing her CPA to accentuate her accounting degree. She continues to love the community and vision of Education Matters, and strives to educate those around her to be empowered to accomplish their goals.

e: aisha@emcincy.org

Destiny Simoné
AmeriCorps Member Instructor

Destiny is an AmeriCorps member through our partner Notre Dame AmeriCorps. She graduated from the University of Toledo with her Bachelor’s in English. Hoping to obtain her Master’s in Education, she aspires to work within the inner city. After learning about Education Matters and its mission, she was immediately draw to the school. Destiny believes her service year will not only be a great opportunity to gain inner city experience, but also a great opportunity to help those who are passionate about their personal growth.

e: destiny@emcincy.org


Kelli Gleiner
Grants and Communications

Kelli is a Cincinnati native, artist, and author of two children’s books. She has taught art in the Cincinnati Public Schools and in studios around town, developed products for and coordinated events at blue manatee children’s bookstore, and has had her fiber art work showing in galleries in Cincinnati and beyond. Her passion for the work of Education Matters brought her back into the workplace after staying home with her young son.

e: kelli@emcincy.org

Patty Heideman
Childcare Provider

Patty is a Cincinnati native. She has been happily married for 34 years and has 2 children and 4 grandchildren. Her passion has always been to work with and help young children. She earned her GED at Education Matters and received her Child Development Associates degree through Cincinnati State. She has been employed at Education Matters for 16 years.

e: patty@emcincy.org