Dr. Nzinga Foluke-Henderson, Ph.D.
Executive Director

Retired 32-year NYC Department of Educator, educational administrator and private school teacher

Sanyakhu Sheps-Amare
Chairman & Acting Secretary

Sustainable Business Development Advisor, Team Builder, Entrepreneur

Cathy Oliver
Acting Treasurer

Retired NYC Department of Education Coordinator of RSE TASC, a NYS-funded Special Education Resource Center

Dr. Cheryl E. Temple-Journiette, Ed. D., NCC.
Board Member

Education Consultant & Mentor

Utcha Sawyers
Board Member

Social Justice Advocate

Winsdy Antoine
Board Member

School Dean & Educator

About SICLD’s Founder & Executive Director

Dr. Nzinga Foluke-Henderson

A devoted educator since 1982, Dr. Nzinga Foluke-Henderson has served in various roles supporting the education of children. From teaching elementary and middle school students to professional development specialist for K-12 teachers and school administrators in private, independent, and public schools, she has also written English Language Arts curriculum in her career. Additionally, Dr. Foluke-Henderson fulfilled supervisory roles on the school, district, and central levels at the New York City Department of Education, one of the largest school districts in the country.

Having earned several degrees of higher learning (BA in Political Science-Pre-Law [1976] and MS in Social Service Agency Counseling [1978] from the University of Dayton, a post master’s certification in Administrative and Supervision [2002] from the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts, and a Ph.D. in Education from Walden University [2007]), Dr. Foluke-Henderson continues to value learning and acquiring new skills. As a perpetual learner, she is pursuing her interests in learning Spanish, film, and flute.

Dr. Foluke-Henderson’s enduring aspiration to contribute something substantial to the lives of our youth has materialized in several ways. Her dissertation, Self-Concept, Ethnic Identity, and World View of African American Males in Urban America (2007) and founding and leading several parent collaborative programs for youth—Inner-Outer Beauty for Teen Girls (circa 1996), Male Development Program (1998-2001), and the Gemstones programming for girls (Book Club, Gemstories, and Brain and Body Enhancement [2016-present]) are signatures and demonstrations of her dedication for the development and cultural education of our youth.

After 32 years of employment with the New York City Department of Education, the largest school district in the US, in 2014, Dr. Foluke-Henderson retired from her service and endeavored to embark upon new opportunities to support youth and families. For women, she has initiated the Legacy Wellness Book Club (2019). Appreciating life, she enjoys spending time with her husband, son, daughter and son-in-love, three grandchildren, close friends, and spiritual community.

Board Member Bio

Cheryl Elaine Temple-Journiette

Cheryl Temple-Journiette is a fervent proponent of educational innovations and cultural responsiveness within educational institutions and community organizations.  She views these through the lens of inclusiveness, economic parity, and equal access for all students.

A native of Philadelphia, Pa., her personal narrative is rooted in the resilience of her forebearers.  One of six children, Cheryl’s family instilled in her a great appreciation for knowledge and self-determination.  Her parochial education shaped her intellectual prowess while stressing the importance of moral development and community service.  Cheryl is a product of the Civil Rights Era, which introduced her to the glaring social, political, and economic disparities of Black people in the community. 

These events led her to embrace her African heritage through involvement in local student and community organizations.  It shaped her love for African culture and philosophy. Cheryl attained academic degrees from Howard University, Antioch University and The George Washington University. This preparation provided her with wholistic life experiences that shaped her career path.  She has served in various capacities as a therapist, educator, professional school counselor in Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington, DC, and Maryland.

As a Student Services Specialist, Cheryl’s career was defined by an involvement in multifaceted school and community programs geared to nurturing students’ personal development and academic excellence.  In her multiple leadership roles, Cheryl is best known by her peers as a champion of innovative program development, student advocacy, and as a change agent for systemwide educational policies and procedures.

Dr. Temple-Journiette has been recognized for her contributions and service throughout her career.  Some of her notable leadership roles include School Board Chair of Kamit Institute for Magnificent Achievers (KIMA) Public Charter School, President of the Maryland Association of Pupil Personnel Workers.  Throughout her career, she coordinated professional conferences, facilitated workshops for her peers and colleagues and served as an adjunct professor at The George Washington University. 

Cheryl is a loving wife, mother, and grandmother with a lust for life.  She is an active member of her religious organization.

Board Member Bio

Utcha Sawyers

Utcha Sawyers has been awarded and recognized by Toronto Foundation as one of Toronto’s Vital People, she is currently the Executive Director at the BGC East Scarborough (BGCES) & MAAT Youth Innovation & Cultural Centre (MYICC). Her desire and commitment to increasing equitable access to advancement opportunities focuses on those most marginalized and underserved, with a passion that stems from her devotion to increasing the visibility and addressing the issues of social inequities, specifically within racialized, and lower-income communities.

As a leading Canadian advocate for food justice, food democracy, and cultural humility towards BIPOC children, youth, and families both locally and internationally, Utcha has most recently lead the development a series of localized and sustainable community food access initiatives to enhance food security development across East Scarborough. The new Eatable Classroom at the BGCES is a fusion of a commercial grade kitchen and a food literacy learning

centre animated to support and improve the local food IQ and increase access to food skill training for local children & youth facing food insecurity. The Eatable Classroom at BGCES prepared over 12,460lbs in 2020 of prepared meals through its Harvest Kitchen & Emergency Food Access programs, delivered and shared across East Toronto weekly.

During her time with BGCES Utcha has expanded Childcare & Early Learning services to include infant care, and culturally focused early learning centre with food literacy and access goals for all programs and services. In the fall of 2019 she also founded the MAAT Youth Innovation & Culture Centre (MYICC) Toronto’s first youth dedicated cultural centre that prioritizes Black, Indigenouos, and People of Colour (BIPOC) youth Mentorship, Arts, Academics, and Technology access, MYICC also serves as an incubation space for Youth led food innovation.


Spirituality ~ Character Development ~ Discipline ~ Cultural Awareness ~ Empowerment


Exploring identity and how to shape ourselves into wholesome beings through unique teachings and practices that foster fortitude.

Character Development

Fostering care, compassion, respect for self and others; and bolstering inner traits and behaviors that support accountability, individual, and group success.


Nurturing self-management and focus for the betterment of one’s self and community.

Cultural Awareness

Exploring and learning lessons from ancient, historical, and contemporary cultures, and from the values, actions, and practices our ancestors instituted to maintain innovation and legacy.


Recognizing our ability to accomplish all that we will and persevere to accomplish; taking initiative, and expanding the notion of achievable possibilities.