Managing Partner & Co-Founder
Prior to founding The Drexel Fund, John worked at the Leadership Roundtable with a focus on Catholic schools. At age 34, John became one of the youngest Catholic school superintendents in the country in Paterson, New Jersey where his work was featured in the Time magazine article “Looking for Solutions to the Catholic School Crisis.” John began his career in education as a high school teacher in Baton Rouge, Louisiana as part of the 4th cohort of teachers in the Alliance for Catholic Education. John earned a B.A. in economics, history and government from the University of Notre Dame, as well as an M.A.T. from the University of Portland and a M.P.P. from Harvard’s Kennedy School of Government. John is an Aspen-Pahara Institute Fellow.
Mark joins The Drexel Fund after 10 years at the helm of the nonprofit Philadelphia School Partnership (PSP), which raised more than $120 million to invest in the creation, expansion and transformation of 70 public and private schools. During that period, the number of students attending high-achieving schools in Philadelphia nearly doubled. Prior to PSP, Mark worked in a partnership development role for Christ the King Prep School, a Cristo Rey Network-affiliated Catholic high school in Newark, NJ, and served as a member and four-year president of the South Orange-Maplewood (NJ) Board of Education. Earlier, Mark worked as a reporter, editor and publisher. He co-founded a literary entertainment magazine called Book, which became a finalist for a National Magazine Award. Mark holds degrees from Northwestern University and Georgetown University.
Aarushi joins The Drexel Fund as a recent MPA graduate of Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs where she specialized in economic development and strengthened her quantitative analysis skillset. During this time, she also built experience in the American education policy and philanthropic landscapes through various internships. Prior to graduate school, Aarushi built and launched an education technology tool for English as a Second Language, which is used by 10,000+ private and public school students across India. Aarushi earned a B.A in Economics from the University of Delhi.
Founders Program Director
Eric joined The Drexel Fund in July 2022 after guiding River Montessori High School – a Drexel Fund portfolio member located in South Bend, Indiana – to a successful launch in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic. In addition to co-founding a school that was the beneficiary of a Drexel Fund startup grant, he is a former recipient of a Drexel Founders Program fellowship (2019 – 2020). Prior to engaging in his work to launch River Montessori, his career included being a tenured university professor, serving as a development director at a private Pre-K through Grade 8 school, launching a consortium of Montessori schools, and founding a voice analytics tech startup. Eric possesses a B.A. (‘02) from Bethel University (Indiana) with a double major in Biblical Literature and Mathematics as well as an M.A. (‘05) and Ph.D. (‘08) in General Linguistics from Indiana University (Bloomington).
Director of Operations
Heather comes to Drexel after being an administrator for eight years at Good Shepherd Montessori School in South Bend, IN. She is a product of 16 years of Catholic, private education, which has driven her passion for supporting the private school sector. The call to serve children has also always been a driving force in her life’s path. Both in her professional and personal life (as a wife and mother), Heather strives to be the behind the scenes, thread/glue that keeps all the pieces together. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology from Saint Mary’s College. In her spare time Heather can be found launching professional fireworks, and kayaking the St. Joseph River.