About Us

Photo of Schinnell Leake - Founder of EoB

Schinnell Leake
Our Founder and Executive Director

Schinnell Leake has always enjoyed creating events that are special and unique - parties that both children and adults remember.

As the former owner of Extra-Ordinary Moments, a for-profit entity that provided imaginative and unique children's birthday parties, she set out to provide the same types of birthday parties for children who were experiencing homelessness in the Washington metropolitan area.

As a mother, Schinnell knows how important it is for her children to feel confident and have self-worth. After learning that more than 2,000 children live in homeless shelters throughout the Washington D.C. area, Schinnell started the nonprofit, Extra-Ordinary Birthdays, the only organization of its kind in the capital area that throws personalized birthday parties for homeless children to make them feel recognized and valued. Using her party-planning background, Schinnell has thrown more than 800 birthday parties and currently partners with homeless shelters and organizations that serve the homeless in D.C., Maryland and Virginia.

Executive Board

Abiola Akala

Abiola Akala is an innovative and goal oriented professional with over 10 years of experience in the financial services, Federal Government, technology services, business analysis and consulting industries.

Abiola Akala is an innovative and goal oriented professional with over 10 years of experience in the financial services, Federal Government, technology services, business analysis and consulting industries. Currently in the role as Senior Financial Management and Risk and Control analyst, he participated supporting the Sarbanes Oxley compliance processes; provide financial oversight of IT initiative and Business valuation. Previously held IT Finance and Budget management position with the Government Accountability Office. These experience provide the opportunity to be adept in strategy development, financial oversight and gave me the opportunity to lead and excel in analyzing and improving financial technologies, recognize opportunities to increase organization growth by outlining and executing on defined strategic goals and objectives.

Melissa Amos

A New Orleans native and graduate of Howard University, Melissa joined Extra-Ordinary Birthdays in 2012 as the volunteer Social Media Coordinator. She fell in love with the organization and its mission and has volunteered with EOB in various capacities since then.

A New Orleans native and graduate of Howard University, Melissa joined Extra-Ordinary Birthdays in 2012 as the volunteer Social Media Coordinator. She fell in love with the organization and its mission and has volunteered with EOB in various capacities since then. From assisting at parties to creating and running the Extra-Ordinary Readers Program, Melissa is excited to join the EOB Board. She is an Education Research Analyst at the Office of the State Superintendent of Education. Her background in data management and process improvement sparked her interest in managing Extra-Ordinary Birthday’s donor and volunteer database; she currently serves as the volunteer CRM Administrator. Melissa is also a proud and active member of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Incorporated.

Robert Caldwell

Robert Caldwell currently works at the Bipartisan Policy Center as a Donor Relations Manager where he supports efforts to secure funding required to develop and implement bipartisan legislation.

Robert Caldwell currently works at the Bipartisan Policy Center as a Donor Relations Manager where he supports efforts to secure funding required to develop and implement bipartisan legislation. In addition to managing communications, events, and marketing for BPC’s Development Department, Robert also plays a key role in the execution of messaging to BPC’s constituency of diverse non-profit, corporate, and individual philanthropists. Robert first came to the Washington metro area as a John Glenn Fellow through the Ohio State John Glenn College of Public Affairs. Upon graduating magna cum laude from Ohio State, Robert received a Bachelor of Arts in Public Affairs with minors in Economics, Nonprofit Management, and International Development. Robert was a Division 1 student athlete and received honors as an Ohio State Scholar Athlete, Big Ten Conference Distinguished Scholar, and Ohio State Buckeye Power Club Awardee. Robert also served as a Volunteer Consultant for the Deaf Services Center in Columbus, Ohio, and served on the Junior Board of the National Kidney Foundation of Central Ohio.

Phillip Cherfrere

Phillip Cherfrere is an entrepreneur and business owner with over 18 years of online marketing and consulting experience. He has dedicated much of his time working in the public and non-profit sector.

Phillip Cherfrere is an entrepreneur and business owner with over 18 years of online marketing and consulting experience. After earning his undergraduate degree from Dartmouth College and his MBA from the University of Florida, he has dedicated much of his time working in the public and non-profit sector including the Broward Sheriff's Office in Florida. As well as, spending some time as the Public Relations Specialist for Sunrise Community, Inc. a non-profit organization dedicated to providing residential and habilitation services for people with a wide range of intellectual and physical disabilities. In addition to his consulting business, he currently serves as the Chief Operating Officer for The Cherfrere Law Group in Miami. He is a welcome addition to the EOB board and his varied skill set is a valuable asset in helping EOB continue to grow and flourish as it accomplishes its mission to inspire moments of delight in the lives of homeless children.

Tiffany Hawkins

Tiffany’s first experience with Extra-Ordinary Birthdays was on a Saturday that held 5 consecutive parties at one of our D.C shelters. She knew immediately she wanted to do more. Within a few months she became a party planner.

Tiffany’s first experience with Extra-Ordinary Birthdays was on a Saturday that held 5 consecutive parties at one of our D.C shelters. She knew immediately she wanted to do more. Within a few months she became a party planner. She quickly realized that it was important to bring EOB across the river into Virginia where she resides with her family and works as a government contractor. After her first year of volunteering she found herself wanting to become more involved with helping the organization with efficiencies and data organization. Her love for structure along with her degree in Computer Information Systems were skills she wanted to bring to EOB. In her free time, she enjoys creating and sharing her handmade cards.

Emmanuelle Klossou

Emmanuelle Klossou is Senior Principal at Colm Research Group, and currently works on several social justice issues, including homelessness, diversity, equity, and inclusion.

Emmanuelle Klossou is Senior Principal at Colm Research Group, and currently works on several social justice issues, including homelessness, diversity, equity, and inclusion. Emmanuelle is a native New Yorker, having emigrated to Brooklyn with her parents from Brussels, Belgium. Emmanuelle returned to New York City upon graduation from Hartwick College, and joined the research team at Vera Institute of Justice in New York City. She worked as research analyst, leading the fieldwork for two Vera Institute demonstration projects. Emmanuelle began working on issues of homelessness in Washington, DC, when she was contracted to lead enrollment efforts at Bright Beginnings, Inc. Emmanuelle became Associate Professor of Criminal Justice at Stevenson University in Baltimore, where she taught for nearly ten years, before launching Colm Research Group in 2018. Emmanuelle earned her doctorate in Criminology & Justice Policy at Northeastern University in Boston, and now lives in the District of Columbia with her partner and two dogs.

London McCloud

London McCloud is an international trade professional with experience in the private and public sectors. Currently as a trade specialist for the Department of Transportation, London works to ensure compliance of projects financed by the Export-Import Bank with a specialization in maritime and shipping in West Africa.

London McCloud is an international trade professional with experience in the private and public sectors. Currently as a trade specialist for the Department of Transportation, London works to ensure compliance of projects financed by the Export-Import Bank with a specialization in maritime and shipping in West Africa. Previously, London worked for the Liberian International Shipping and Corporate Registry (LISCR) where she managed off-shore corporations on behalf of the Liberian government. London is committed to raising awareness for diversity and women’s issues through education initiatives. She leads the Women of Carroll (High School) Mentoring program and serves on the Carroll Alumni Board and the American University Alumni Board. London is a graduate of American University with a BSBA in International Marketing and Minor in Japanese. She obtained her MBA from the University of Maryland University College and completed project management coursework at Georgetown University.

Nkiruka McGinnis

Nkiruka S. McGinnis is the director of the annual campaign at Towson University. Dr. McGinnis is a dedicated fundraising professional with extensive experience in individual giving, donor and volunteer engagement, and staff management.

Nkiruka S. McGinnis is the director of the annual campaign at Towson University. Dr. McGinnis is a dedicated fundraising professional with extensive experience in individual giving, donor and volunteer engagement, and staff management. She is interested in making a community-relevant impact through non-profit and education- related organizations. Her career in annual giving spans over 15 years beginning as a student caller at the University of Pittsburgh to her current position at TU. Dr. McGinnis currently leads a fundraising team to increase annual financial support year over year. She is also tasked with identifying, recruiting, and developing volunteer teams to successfully support alumni, parent, and faculty and staff fundraising campaigns, as well as manage the Founders Society leadership giving program including all donor and prospect engagement and communication activities. Dr. McGinnis holds a BA in Sociology from the University of Pittsburgh, an MSc. in Management (Healthcare) from the University of Maryland Global Campus, and a Ph.D. in Health Services from Walden University.

Jolene McNeil

Philly native and American University grad, Jolene has paved a 20+ year trailblazing career as an events architect A Certified Meetings Professional. She has planned events for audiences of up to 20,000 attendees and has held leadership positions with the American Psychiatric Association, the Biotechnology Innovation Organization and the Bipartisan Policy Center.

Philly native and American University grad, Jolene has paved a 20+ year trailblazing career as an events architect A Certified Meetings Professional. She has planned events for audiences of up to 20,000 attendees and has held leadership positions with the American Psychiatric Association, the Biotechnology Innovation Organization and the Bipartisan Policy Center.

Jolene's true passion is serving the community. In addition to multiple community service chair appointments, she is the founding Chair of the American University Black Alumni Alliance, and a past member of the American University Alumni Board. Since 2016, she has served as the Board Chair of Extra-Ordinary Birthdays.

In her spare time, she spoils her 7 nephews and 4 nieces.

Keith Olfus, Sr.

Keith Olfus, Sr. was born and raised in Washington, DC. He is in his 17th year of service as AVP/Assistant Comptroller with Industrial Bank. He is involved with preparing financial statements, dealing with internal and external auditors, and federal regulators.

Keith Olfus, Sr. was born and raised in Washington, DC. He is in his 17th year of service as AVP/Assistant Comptroller with Industrial Bank. He is involved with preparing financial statements, dealing with internal and external auditors, and federal regulators. He works closely with the Chief Financial Officer on writing policy and procedures for the organization, as well as serving as a member of the FINANCO Committee for Industrial Bank.

Working for a community bank, he has had the opportunity to teach financial literacy at several of the local high schools and women’s shelters. He also served on the Board of Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Prince George’s County, an agency that provides a voice to children in the foster care system, for six years. For the past ten years, he has also worked as a youth mentor and basketball coach for the First Baptist Church of Glenarden (FBGC), where he has helped mold young boys and girls spiritually and physically. After working with CASA and FBGC, he feels that working with Extra-Ordinary Birthdays gives him the chance to continue enriching the lives of children.

Kathryn Procope

Mrs. Kathryn Procope is the head of school at the Howard University Middle School of Mathematics and Science in Washington D.C., where she guides students in the 6th through 8th grades to academic excellence in STEM.

Mrs. Kathryn Procope is the head of school at the Howard University Middle School of Mathematics and Science in Washington D.C., where she guides students in the 6th through 8th grades to academic excellence in STEM. A native of Brooklyn, New York, Mrs. Procope earned a bachelor’s degree in mathematics from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, a masters’ degree in middle grade mathematics from George Washington University and an executive master’s degree in educational leadership from the Georgetown McDonough School of Business. She is currently a doctoral student at American University. Education is a second career for Mrs. Procope, having spent over 30 years in information technology. As the Head of School at the Howard University Middle School of Mathematics and Science and the 2020 recipient of the NASSP Digital Principal of the Year award, Mrs. Procope facilitates the partnerships with the schools on the Howard University campus, providing her students with opportunities to expand their learning in college classrooms. Mrs. Procope actively supports the school’s staff because she believes that they are on the front line of education and she truly believes we are all responsible for the success of the children in our community. Mrs. Procope is active in her church, the City of Praise Family ministries where she teaches computer skills to seniors, supports the Road to College program, City Kids Children’s church and manages the church bookstore. Mrs. Procope is an alumnae member of the Federal City Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta where she supports the community work as a Delta Dear.

Andrea Shearin

A Compliance Policy Specialist with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Andrea is responsible for establishing supervisory policy regarding community reinvestment and fair lending laws and regulations.

A Compliance Policy Specialist with the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency, Andrea is responsible for establishing supervisory policy regarding community reinvestment and fair lending laws and regulations. She is also responsible for developing bank examination procedures, examiner tools, and training, and providing guidance and clarification in these areas to examiners and the banking industry. A graduate of James Madison University, Andrea boasts more than two decades in the financial services industry and is designated by the Institute of Certified Bankers as a Certified Regulatory Compliance Manager. She has served on various boards and committees of organizations focused on community service and believes that EOB is building a positive future for homeless children.

Danielle Zonis

South Philadelphia born and raised, Danielle Carrozza Zonis currently serves as the leader of the Information Technology Project Management Office at the global law firm, Morgan Lewis. Danielle brings to EOB almost 25 years of Organizational and Business Process Management along with a Technology background.

South Philadelphia born and raised, Danielle Carrozza Zonis currently serves as the leader of the Information Technology Project Management Office at the global law firm, Morgan Lewis. Danielle brings to EOB almost 25 years of Organizational and Business Process Management along with a Technology background. Danielle holds her PMP certification from the Project Management Institute and is an active member of many organizations such as the Society for Human Resource Management, the American Institute of Technology, Women in Technology, Women Who Code (Phila) and the Girl Scouts of America. Danielle has a unique blend of knowledge and sweat equity in several areas such as Compliance, Human Resources, Strategy, Project Management, and Business Relationship Management that will be valuable to the future of EOB. Danielle has said, “My mother impressed upon us that we were gifts from God, and if God decided the Earth needed one of “Us” then we were sure as heck going to celebrate that. My parents sacrificed so much and worked so hard to let us know that we were absolutely something worth celebrating. We were enough.” Danielle, her husband Ed and their daughter Jasmine Faith, reside just outside Philadelphia and work together as a family to serve not only their local community but children and families around the world who might not have “enough”. Danielle believes every single child should feel the warmth of being celebrated and shesays she is honored to be a part of EOB where t hat is happening every day.

Honorary Board Members

Holly Morris

Holly is an award-winning journalist for Fox 5 in Washington DC. She currently anchors their early morning weekday newscast as well as co-hosts a daily talk show called Good Day DC. She has worked in news ever since graduating from Duke with a Civil and Environmental Engineering degree. Originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, Holly’s news journey has included stints in Steubenville, Ohio and Lexington, Kentucky before landing in the nation’s capital where she has been for the last 20 plus years. Her work has earned her numerous Emmy Awards and a pair of Edward R. Murrow Awards. When not working, Holly loves nothing more than being with her husband, Thomas Espy, and their son Hayden. 

Shawn Yancy

Shawn Yancy is a primary anchor at Fox 5 news in Washington, DC. Her 2nd day on the job became her first big story in Washington: the 9/11 terrorist attacks. You can catch Shawn weekdays anchoring the 6, 6:30, 8, 10 and 11pm newscasts. Shawn’s 25+ years as broadcast journalist have allowed her to share and tell meaningful and impactful stories about the people and community she serves. Her experience has earned her a number of prestigious journalism awards including: the Edward R. Murrow Award for an investigative series at the National Institutes of Health and multiple Emmy Awards. 

Shawn is an advocate of giving back. She was instrumental in creating a mentorship program for young single mothers in Pittsburgh, Pa. In 2010, Shawn founded Girls’ Night Out by Shawn Yancy Inc., a 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to improving and empowering the lives of women and children in need. Shawn is a member of the board of directors for A Wider Circle and an advisory board member for Extra-Ordinary Birthdays. She also served on the boards for Dress for Success DC and The St. Ann’s Center for Children Youth & Families. Along with her fellow DC newswomen, Shawn helps spearhead an annual breast cancer fundraiser for local cancer charities serving the underserved. 

Shawn is also a professional artist with clients nationwide. She’s the creative force behind her own art and design firm. She’s also a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated. 

In her spare time, Shawn loves to read, travel and spend time with her husband and sons. She also loves really spicy food, sushi, and jelly belly sours… but not necessarily in that order.

Her favorite saying is: “If the dream is big enough, the facts don’t count”. It’s a phrase her mother has been instilling in her for as long as she can remember. It’s a reminder that all things are possible with God’s help.

Team Members

Tiffany Graber

Volunteer Engagement Coordinator

Arrien Davison

Extra-Ordinary Readers Program Coordinator

Tanesha Graham

Extra-Ordinary Moms Parent Representative

Talisa White

Marketing and Social Media Coordinator

Nyequai Harte

Public Relations