Board of Directors


Chynna A. Phillips

Chynna A. Phillips, MSW, MPH is the Director of Research and Policy at the Sisters of Charity Foundation of SC whose mission is aimed to reduce poverty in South Carolina. In this role she works on the Foundation’s public policy and advocacy work collaborating with leadership to strategically set policy priorities and bring awareness to systems-level poverty drivers. Additionally, she provides hands-on support to and interaction with community, state, and national stakeholders. Chynna previously lead the South Carolina Statewide Kinship Care Council. Currently, Chynna serves as an advisory board member for the South Carolina Collaborative on Race and Reconciliation at the University of South Carolina, a national advisory group member for Generations United, and Diversity Task Force Member of the Midlands Business Leadership Group.

Chynna Phillips has been recently named the “Top 20 under 40, Young Adult Honorees” in 2020, only six months after she was named Columbia Business Monthly “Best and Brightest: 35 and Under” Class of 2019. Chynna also serves her community as the chair of the 2020 Census Complete Count Committee for the City of Columbia Appointed by Mayor Steve Benjamin. Chynna is a graduate of Xavier University where she received her Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and the University of South Carolina where she obtained her Master of Public Health with an emphasis on Health Service, Policy and Management and Master of Social Work.

Micheal Strange

Michael C. Strange has over 30 years of experience in the banking and affordable housing industry. Currently, he served as the Executive Vice President for Community Development and Public Affairs. He has worked for Security Federal Bank for a total of eight (8) years, previously as a commercial lender. Previously, he served as Executive Director for TN Development, Columbia Housing Development and Eau Claire Development Corporations for the City of Columbia for eight years. All three entities are 501 c(3) affordable housing component units for the City of Columbia with combined assets totaling $19.5 million. In this role he was responsible for property management and development of multi-family housing, single-family housing for homeownership, home rentals and commercial development. He is certified as an Economic Development Finance Professional (EDFP) with the National Development Council. His previous banking experience, all in commercial lending, includes Vice President at Security Federal Bank, VP at Wells Fargo and VP at Bank of America. He attended NC A&T State University with a concentration in Finance and is currently an active member in the South Carolina Association of Community Economic Development, National Development Council and the International Economic Developers Council. Michael also currently serves as Youth Leader for The Brook Church. He is married to Gilbrina Strange and they have two children Christian and Jordan.

John Loveday

John is an education expert with both practitioner and private-sector experience with proven results in fiscal management, project management, as well as talent acquisition and retention efforts. With well-established relationships across the South Carolina education sector and beyond, along with extensive community engagement experience, John adepts at executing creative and strategic campaigns, in order to promote organizational growth and success.

Riddhi Bais

Riddhi Bais is part of the Response to Intervention (RTI) team at Pontiac Elementary in Richland Two. Riddhi provides math and reading intervention support to students with learning needs. Prior to moving to Columbia, Riddhi worked as a 7th grade math teacher at an all-boys public middle school in Kentucky where she also completed her Masters in Education at Bellarmine University. Prior to teaching, Riddhi served in both the nonprofit and for-profit sectors. She completed her undergraduate degree in Business Administration at the University of Texas and her MBA at Columbia University. Riddhi resides in northeast Columbia with her two young children and husband.

Aditi Srivastav

Dr. Aditi Srivastav is the Director of Research at Children’s Trust of South Carolina. She leads mixed methods research efforts on adverse childhood experiences (ACEs), race equity, community mobilization, and public opinion to improve family and community resilience. Her research has has been published in several well-respected peer review journals. In her role, Dr. Srivastav oversees the South Carolina ACE Initiative and KIDS COUNT South Carolina, in which she directs all data dissemination and translates research for organizational strategy, community action and social change through community training, data visualizations, issue briefs, data profiles, blogs, and one-pagers.

Dr. Srivastav is involved in several Columbia area initiatives. In 2018, she helped launch Resilient Richland, a initative focused on addressing ACEs. She currently serves on the mayor appointed City of Columbia Complete Count Committee. She is also a new board member on Columbia Opportunity Resource. Finally, Dr. Srivastav volunteers as Chief Strategy Officer for Empower SC, a new social justice organization focused on a more equitable South Carolina.

Brenton Brown

Skilled in policy analysis and stake-holder advocacy, Brenton is a professional committed to ensuring community growth and development. His leadership abilities have been utilized to make policy recommendations, programmatic evaluations, and research-based community advocacy initiatives.

In his current professional role, as Chief of Staff for the South Carolina Commission for Minority Affairs, Brenton provides strategic counsel to the agency's Executive Director and Board of Commissioners. In addition to providing strategic counsel, he oversees inter- and intra-agency projects and tasks, and create and maintain cross-departmental relationships to ensure success. Furthermore, Brenton is the agency’s governmental affairs and community advocacy liaison, which includes developing its legislative and policy agendas; and partnerships with other state agencies, federal agencies, elected officials, the business community, and community and civic organizations.

Brenton has demonstrated success in finding solutions for social, economic, and political issues, and experience solving organizational and situational challenges. Furthermore, he has extensive experience working as a liaison between program administrators and stakeholders to achieve demonstrable results and organizational improvement.

Other professional experience and abilities include public speaking and professional development facilitation, with a focus on the analysis of local ordinances, and state and federal rules, regulations, policies, and laws.

Maria Owens

Maria Owens, Director of Strategic Partnerships for Richland School District Two, has served in education for over 15 years. After graduating from Clemson University with a degree in Management, Maria worked as a banking executive before switching careers to teach elementary music and later to serve as Outreach Officer for the Richland Two Institute of Innovation. In her current role, she seeks to build enduring and mutually-beneficial partnerships between the school district and community. Maria and her family live in Blythewood, SC.

Troy Sheppard

Troy grew up in North Carolina and graduated North Carolina A&T State University in 1984. For well over a decade Troy has managed a number of financial institutions. Currently, he is the owner and mortgage loan originator at i3 Mortgage, LLC.