Board of Directors

Board Meeting Information Is Available Here

You may email the Board Chair at


Mr. Steven Baratte is the Managing Director, Communications, Southern California, for the California Charter Schools Association. He leads branding and communications work in Southern California to enhance public opinion, support and awareness and deepen knowledge of charter schools. Steven has more than two decades of public relations and communications experience. Prior to joining CCSA, he spent nearly 10 years with the education non-profit Advancement Via Individual Determination in its marketing and communications department. Steven also served as acting director of communications for the San Diego Unified School District. A transplant from New Jersey, he earned his bachelor’s degree in communications from the University of San Diego.


Mr. Showley was born and raised in San Diego and currently lives in Clairemont with his wife and daughter. He enjoys most sports, particularly volleyball and golf, and also has an interest in photography. He is a 2002 graduate of Pepperdine University with a degree in Business Administration. Mr. Showley was also a member of the nationally ranked Men’s Volleyball team at Pepperdine. In 2006, Mr. Showley received a Masters of Business Administration (MBA) in Finance from the University of San Diego. In 2008, he earned a graduate certificate in Financial and Tax Planning from San Diego State University. In 2009, Mr. Showley completed the rigorous coursework and examination requirements to earn his CFP® designation. Mr. Showley is a financial advisor at a local financial planning and investment firm where he has served clients in the areas of financial planning and asset management since 2006.


Ms. Marisa Alvarez is a San Diego native who holds a Bachelor of Science in Health Education and Bachelor of Arts in Spanish with a Minor Holistic Health, both which she received from San Francisco State University. She has worked as a Bilingual Health Coach where she helped clients develop measurable short and long term goals in the areas of nutrition, exercise, weight management, stress management, management of chronic conditions, and smoking cessation. Ms. Alvarez is currently completing two Masters Degrees from San Diego State University: a Masters Degree in Public Health in Health Promotion and Behavioral Science and a Master’s Degree in Latin American Studies.


Mrs. Baldwin is a top-tier MBA graduate with a proven record of exceeding sales and marketing goals in a rapidly changing environment. She has over fifteen years of experience leading sales teams, managing product launches, implementing change programs and stabilizing end of life products. Mrs. Baldwin is a versatile leader adept at leading front line staff or presenting to C-level management. She currently works for Cox Communications and serves her community on two other boards: Kids Included Together and Sparrow’s Hope.


Mr. James Melton is a San Diego native. He holds a B.A. in Political Science, with an emphasis in International Relations/Middle Eastern Studies, from the University of Puget Sound in Tacoma, WA. Before attending college, he was recruited to play basketball, which he did for a period of time for the university, but eventually walked-on to the football team. Mr. Melton suffered a freak leg injury his senior year of college, and after graduation he found CrossFit. He’d picked up every bad habit from poor diet to barely any physical activity imaginable. However, he fell in love with the competitiveness, camaraderie, and healthy living style that CrossFit promotes instantaneously. Mr. Melton has been a part of the CrossFit community for three years, coaching at CrossFit Mission Gorge for two of those. Mr. Melton holds certificates for: CrossFit Level 1 Trainer; USAW Sports Performance Coach; CrossFit Endurance and he plans to continue furthering his knowledge base. Mr. Melton’s goal is to help enrich children’s lives by giving them access to healthy lifestyle decisions, opportunities for fun fitness, and a balanced education.


Ms. Aarti Patel is a San Diego native. She was born and raised in the hospitality industry and after a couple of decades of working in that industry, she decided to take the knowledge and skills she learned and apply them in education. Currently, Ms. Patel is a staff member at Empower Charter School. She holds a B.A. in Educational Studies and a M.Ed. in Instructional Design from Western Governors University. Ms. Patel is currently completing a second master’s degree in Educational Leadership from San Diego State University. Additionally, she serves her community on another board: Castle Point Foundation.


Ms. Anna Viettry is a San Diego native who currently works as financial representative for Modern Woodmen of America, a fraternal financial service organization. As part of her career, she helps individuals, families, and businesses create a secure financial future while planning social, educational, and volunteer events for her members.  She is a former collegiate basketball athlete and alumna from Point Loma Nazarene University holding a Master of Science in Integrative Wellness and a Bachelor of Arts in Exercise and Sport Science with a minor in Business Administration. She is a multifaceted individual, leader, and team member, and her passions have led her to be involved in several organizations that develop an empowering and serving culture in our community.


DEMI BROWN, M.Ed. – Founder

Mrs. Demetria Brown is a native San Diegan who holds an Administrative Services Credential and has been honored to lead Empower Charter School since its inception. Prior to Empower, Mrs. Brown enjoyed a decade long career of teaching, she holds a Masters of Teaching with an Emphasis in Language Arts Instruction. Her teaching credentials include a Multiple Subject Clear Credential and Single Subject Authorization in English, and she has taught most grades from Kindergarten to Grade Eight throughout San Diego County.   Mrs. Brown founded Empower Charter School because she simply wanted a school like this to exist for her own children.  In her spare time, Mrs. Brown enjoys spending time with her husband and staying active. Mrs. Brown was a recipient of the ING Unsung Heroes Award in 2014 and recognized for her leadership in biliteracy at the 2016 San Diego County Office of Education’s Annual Dual Language Symposium.


Jeff and Mikki Martin are the Co-Founders of the CrossFit Kids Physical Education program, which has been used internationally in both gyms and schools. They also co-own a CrossFit Affiliate gym. Mr. Martin brings over thirty years of coaching experience to our team and both Mr. and Mrs. Martin have attended and worked at dozens of CrossFit Level One and specialty seminar courses including gymnastics, nutrition, and mobility. The Martins were named Directors of Youth Training and Youth Programs for CrossFit Headquarters in 2011. Part of their responsibilities include traveling internationally to speak on several CrossFit global initiatives: CrossFit for Hope including Infant Swimming Resource (ISR), school construction in Kenya, the CrossFit for Hope fundraising project in support of St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, and SAT prep for college-bound teams. While CrossFit Kids is already in place in over 1,300 schools around the globe, they are excited to see the program be implemented in each and every school that teaches kids and parents about leading healthy lifestyles.


Mr. Wilson has been active in the charter community for over a decade. He serves as the Chief Organizational Officer and is one of the original founders of the King-Chavez Neighborhood of Schools. The unique King-Chavez program founded on love has received local, state, and national recognition for its academic and cultural excellence. Mr. Wilson has been integral to the start-up, development and scaling of over 20 California charter schools.


Amanda Allen has lived in San Diego her whole life, and is a parent and attorney. After earning both her Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and her law degree in Business Law at University of California, Los Angeles, she has established herself in the legal field in San Diego as a brilliant business lawyer and a recognized advocate for justice. In May 2013, Mrs. Allen was the recipient of the C. Hugh Friedman award, which is given in recognition of a Lawyer’s Club member who is a champion in advancing the club’s mission and who has demonstrated leadership and professionalism within the San Diego legal community. She is passionate about living a healthy and active lifestyle, pursuing collegiate sports while at UCLA and presently participating in local fitness competitions and events. She is currently involved with several local organizations that celebrate women and charities and is always eager and willing to contribute to a better future for our children.


Ms. Mattefs holds a Bachelor of Letters and Science degree in Journalism and Mass Communications, with a Concentration in Broadcast Journalism. She currently works as the Marketing Director for an auto dealership where she develops and manages the implementation of marketing plans and promotional projects. She also collaborates with credit unions and is in charge of the public relations and business development for the company. Ms. Mattefs is also a website designer and graphic artist.


Mrs. Cristina Metcalf holds an Administrative Services Credential and served as the Director of Curriculum and Instruction at a dual-language immersion charter school in Los Angeles. She earned a Masters Degree in Education and a BCLAD Multiple Subjects credential from UCLA. She completed a Bachelor’s Degree in Latin American Studies with a minor in American Studies at Columbia University. Mrs. Metcalf is experienced in both the research and application of dual-language immersion programs. She is currently a Curriculum Developer of Common Core State Standards for Mathematics and leads the writing of curriculum as well as professional development of 350 teachers, administrators, and district leaders.


Dr. Alessandra Wall is a licensed clinical psychologist in private practice in San Diego. She obtained her undergraduate degree in Psychology from Duke University and her doctorate in Clinical Psychology with a specialization in Child and Adolescent Psychology from the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas. Dr. Wall has been in private practice for the past nine years; she specializes in the fields of Child and Adolescent psychotherapy, Parenting, the treatment of depression and anxiety disorders as well as eating disorders. She recently became the Lifestyle and Nutrition coach as well as Marketing Director at CrossFit Elysium in North Park. She is currently working on developing her practice to include a secondary branch, which would focus on helping people identify unmet needs and restore balance to their daily lives.


Ms. Wilson holds a Master’s in Public Administration from the University of New Mexico where she did extensive research on social determinants of health and the importance of access to healthy food options for elementary school age children. Her graduate studies prepared her for her work as a School Account Manager with Revolution Foods, a company dedicated to ensuring access to healthy food for all school age children. Prior to moving back to California, in 2010, she worked for an insurance brokerage firm in New Mexico that insured all charter schools and various public school districts throughout the state. Previously, Ms. Wilson was a legislative advocate and government consultant for 18 northern California county governments. She successfully lobbied over 800 pieces of legislation relating to everything from health and human services issues to rural road development. In 2003, Ms. Wilson earned her B.A. in Organizational Studies from Pitzer College, and has spent the last ten years gaining valuable work experience in the private, public and non-profit sectors. Currently, she volunteers with the International Refugee Committee as a Teaching Assistant and is TESOL certified. She has a passion for health and fitness and believes healthy life-long habits begin in childhood!

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