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Adrian Smith

Adrian Smith is the visionary force behind the operational and educational success of LITE Memphis, serving as the Director of Operations and Education for over six years and currently as the Interim Executive Director. With a tenure spanning more than half of the organization's decade-long journey, Adrian is not just an integral part of LITE Memphis; he's a driving force in its evolution and impact.


As an innovative thinker and creator, Adrian has consistently demonstrated the ability to turn ideas into impactful programs. His role as the Director of Operations and Education is a testament to his commitment to pushing the boundaries of traditional education and operational practices. Adrian's forward-thinking approach has played a pivotal role in positioning LITE Memphis as a leader in youth entrepreneurship.


In his multifaceted role, Adrian oversees the programmatic success of key initiatives, including the Youth Entrepreneurship Program, Alumni Engagement Program, and Community Workshops. His ability to implement and execute high-level programming has been a cornerstone of LITE Memphis's growth and influence.


Adrian's leadership extends beyond the organizational realm. He is a mentor, collaborator, and advocate for youth empowerment. Through his strategic vision and hands-on approach, he ensures that LITE Memphis not only meets but exceeds its goals in fostering entrepreneurship, creativity, and leadership skills among young individuals.


Under Adrian's guidance, LITE Memphis has flourished into a dynamic hub of innovation and learning. His dedication to the organization's mission and his deep understanding of the local community have been instrumental in shaping a decade of success, and he continues to pave the way for even greater achievements in the years to come.



Katyana Dandridge

Kat Dandridge serves as the Alumni Engagement Coordinator for LITE Memphis, bringing passion, dedication, and a wealth of experience to empower youth in the alumni community.


With a background in education and community engagement, Kat plays a crucial role in developing and executing LITE Memphis programs. Her commitment to fostering entrepreneurship among young individuals has significantly impacted the organization's mission.


In her role as Alumni Engagement Coordinator, Kat oversees the coordination of our Alumni Engagement Program (AEP), ensuring a seamless and positive experience for participants. Her work primarily focuses on providing YEP alumni with access to business coaching and opportunities for professional growth, including mentorship, vendor opportunities, additional funding, and internship placements. Kat's ability to connect with alumni and foster an inclusive environment reflects her dedication to empowering them to achieve their career goals.


Kat's journey with LITE Memphis is marked by her innovative approach to program development. She is instrumental in creating engaging curricula, organizing impactful events, and providing mentorship that goes beyond traditional boundaries. Her dedication to nurturing the next generation of entrepreneurs aligns perfectly with the organization's vision.


Outside of her role, Kat actively participates in community initiatives, embodying the values of leadership and service. As a Program Coordinator, she continues to inspire both participants and colleagues alike, contributing to the overall success and growth of LITE Memphis.


Raven Parker, MUEd.

Raven Parker, a Licensed Educator and Lead Program Coordinator at LITE Memphis, is dedicated to empowering young entrepreneurs through safe and nurturing learning environments.

With a background in education, Raven's passion lies in cultivating conversations around entrepreneurial success. Under her guidance, LITE Memphis assists young entrepreneurs in discovering their strengths, unlocking their potential, and pursuing their entrepreneurial goals.

In her role, Raven establishes innovative teaching methods and provides compassionate mentorship. She recognizes the importance of building trust and fostering a sense of belonging in the entrepreneurial space, which empowers participants to develop businesses that authentically express their passions.

Beyond her responsibilities as Lead Program Coordinator, Raven is a strategic thinker, proactive problem solver, and diligent advocate for adolescent success. Through her collaborative and interactive approach, ensuring participants receive support from day one, LITE Memphis fulfills its mission of equipping Black and Brown students with the skills to create wealth through entrepreneurship.




Althea Young, the visionary founder and owner of NoBasisCo., brings her extensive supply chain management and fashion manufacturing expertise to LITE Memphis. With a passion for customizable apparel and merchandising, Althea is eager to inspire and empower entrepreneurs through her creativity and entrepreneurial spirit. As a Business Coach at LITE Memphis, she specializes in one-on-one coaching sessions, providing personalized guidance to entrepreneurs as they refine their business concepts and develop strategies for sustainable growth




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Gardner Story

Gardner Story is a seasoned Administrative Assistant with an impressive 10-year career dedicated to providing essential support and maintaining organizational efficiency. Her commitment to excellence and attention to detail has made her an integral part of our team.


Throughout her career, Gardner has honed her administrative skills, contributing significantly to the smooth operation of various departments. Her responsibilities have encompassed managing calendars, coordinating meetings, and ensuring effective communication across teams. Gardner's proficiency in office management software and her knack for problem-solving make him a reliable resource for streamlining administrative processes.


In addition to his technical skills, Gardner is known for her positive attitude and collaborative approach. She seamlessly integrates into diverse teams, fostering a cooperative work environment. Her commitment to delivering high-quality administrative services has been a driving force behind our organization's success.


Gardner's journey as an Administrative Assistant reflects not only her proficiency in handling day-to-day tasks but also her adaptability and continuous growth. As she embarks on another year of service, we look forward to benefiting from her wealth of experience and unwavering dedication to organizational excellence at LITE Memphis.

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