Crystal Everett

Phase II Facilitator

Crystal Everett, born and raised in Kansas City, Missouri, has over a decade of experience in education spaces, holding roles with organizations such as Kansas City, Missouri Public Schools, 20/20 Leadership, and Girl Scouts of NE Kansas & NW Missouri.

Crystal earned degrees in Public Relations and Sociology from Drake University and a Masters of Education from Northern Arizona University.

In addition to serving as facilitator for PLTI since 2018, Crystal recently released her first children’s book, Mari and Mommy Move it!, inspired by her daughter and her love for dance.

PaKou Her

Phase I Facilitator

PaKou Her is Principal of Tseng Development Group, a consulting firm that provides lectures, trainings, skills workshops, organizational development, transformational leadership coaching, and grassroots strategy development designed to build racial justice and create systems change.

PaKou holds over 25 years of anti-racism organizing experience, a decade of which was as Director of the national racial justice training program at Crossroads Antiracism Organizing and Training. She’s also held leadership positions at,, and UltraViolet. She is currently the Director of Influencer Engagement at ParentsTogether where she works to shape policies and culture that help all families thrive.

Born and raised in the Midwest, PaKou takes great pride representing AAPIs living in the nation’s midsection, and believes there are invaluable stories to be told by People of Color living in the most rural areas of the United States. She lives in KCMO with her spouse and two children.

Julie Holland

Founder & Director

Julie Holland is proud to lead PLTI-KC and support parent leaders on their advocacy journeys.

Previously, Julie served as education advisor to Kansas City Mayor Sly James. Under his leadership, she authored and spearheaded 15+ plans, applications, and projects that propelled initiatives with new strategies and funding, including a $300M tax plan to expand access to high-quality, affordable pre-K.

She has also worked at the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, the Make-A-Wish Foundation, and congressional offices in Oklahoma and Washington, D.C. She holds a BS from Oklahoma State University, an MPA from Syracuse University, and a doctorate in law and policy from Northeastern University.

Julie is an appointed commissioner of the Kansas City, Missouri Brownfields Commission, and a local leader with Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. She has been a reading mentor, her favorite weekly activity, with Lead to Read KC since 2014. She is a Greater Missouri Leadership Challenge alumna and a Harry S. Truman Scholar.

Julie and her husband live with their two sons in Hyde Park.

Asia Jones

Digital Communications Manager

Asia is passionate about creating engaging content and employs multichannel communication to build up genuine relationships internally and externally.

A Kansas City, Missouri native and University of Missouri Journalism School alumna — Asia started this journey in a Fortune 500 company and soon after transitioned to a local government organization where she cultivated communication to boost employee morale. After leaving that position, she started her own content creation business where she now works with small businesses, nonprofits, entrepreneurs and 501(c)(4) organizations to enhance their brand connectivity.

Denesha Snell

Phase II Facilitator

Denesha Snell, a Kansas City native, is program director for American Public Square. Denesha has devoted her career to address community issues including parent advocacy, cultural diversity, causes of health disparities, violence prevention and improving relationships with community and civic partners. She holds a BS from Tennessee State University and a Masters of Education from Rockhurst University.

Annie Watson

Phase I Facilitator

Annie currently serves as Principal Associate at School Readiness Consulting, an early childhood consulting firm that integrates strategic thinking, best practice, and evaluation to transform early learning and affirm the right of all children to thrive. Annie has a wide range of early care and education experience, including classroom teacher, education coach, pedagogical consultant, and nonprofit leader. She brings expertise in early childhood program development, coalition building and collective action, and a strong background in the design and facilitation of professional learning experiences for early childhood professionals at all levels.

At SRC, Annie provides technical assistance and strategic planning support to public, private, and non-profit organizations working to advance early childhood policies, investments, and systems-building efforts. She specializes in translating a commitment to equity into meaningful outcomes and synthesizing multiple stakeholder perspectives to generate practical solutions that inform program and systems development.

But, perhaps most notably, Annie is a mom to four amazing mixed-races Asian kiddos who keep life VERY full.

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