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Cheryl Cunningham

Executive Director

Cheryl Cunningham has headed the Chester Education Foundation (CEF) since 1994. Her responsibilities encompass all areas of administration and management including operations, human resources, finance, fund raising, public affairs, relations with board and community members, supervision and evaluation of all staff and programs. Cheryl has a Master's degree in Management from Widener University, and has completed course work in Widener's doctoral program in education. In 2005, she completed a fellowship with the Nonprofit Executive Leadership Institute at Bryn Mawr College.

Cynthia Hart-Griffith

Chief Financial Officer

Through her company, CHG Financial and Accounting Services, Ms. Hart-Griffith provides internal accounting management and financial guidance to CEF along with six other non-profit and for-profit organizations.

As CEF’s Financial Director since 2008, she is responsible for everyday management of financial and accounting processing and procedures, audit preparation, and ongoing budgeting and future projections. Ms. Hart-Griffith also volunteers as a peer reviewer for the Pennsylvania Association of Non-profit Organizations (PANO), reviewing applications to ensure that all organizations meet the necessary criteria to be recognized by PANO and receive the Certificate for Standards of Excellence. She has also taught seminars for Philadelphia Foundation constituents on budgeting, audits and interpreting the 990. She previously held financial advisory positions on the Strath Haven Middle School and Nether Providence Elementary school boards and she is the past-Treasurer of the Board of Directors for the Helen Furness Free Library.

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Elaine Greene-Upton

Director, Workforce Development

Elaine Greene-Upton has been a program director for the Chester Education Foundation (CEF) since 1991. She received a Bachelor's degree in Early Childhood Education/Human Behavior and Development from Drexel University. She also has a Master's degree in Educational Leadership from Neumann College and a Master's degree in Organizational Leadership from Wilmington University. Since 1991, she has mentored numerous youth workers and volunteers and taught them how to work effectively with at-risk students, parents, school officials and community leaders. She has also facilitated numerous job readiness and job placement workshops nationally and locally and workshops for parents on effective communication and parenting of teenagers.


Gerald L. Rocha

Director, Prevention and After-school Programs

Gerald L. Rocha Sr. is a native of Riverhead, New York. He relocated to Dover, Delaware in 1998 by way of the United States Air Force. After 20 years of honorable service, Gerald dedicated his life to serving communities by encouraging and enabling all young people to develop their full potential, maximize their strengths, while aligning their core values. Currently, Gerald serves as Director of Prevention Programs. He earned a Bachelor’s of Science degree in Information Resource Management and a Master's in Organizational Leadership from Wilmington University. Additionally, Gerald serves as Treasurer on the Board of Directors for the Delaware Parents Association, Secretary on the Board of Directors for One Village Alliance, an advisory board member for the Inner City Cultural League and a Past-President of the Zeta Rho Lambda Chapter of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc. Gerald is married to his lovely wife Valerie and together they have four grown children.

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Stephanie Scappa-Hall

Director, After-school Programs

Stephanie Scappa-Hall is the After-School Program Director for the Chester Education Foundation. She has 20 years of experience with youth programs in the City of Chester. She coordinated the 2001 Chester Youth Summit and works with the Chester Youth Development Council. She has been involved with the 21st Century SKILLS program since its inception. She has acted as the Regional Representative for the Pennsylvania State CTC Advisory Board and as the Community Mobilizer for Chichester CTC. Ms. Scappa-Hall is a graduate of Douglass College, Rutgers University. She is currently training to be a Prevention Specialist.


Shakeya Thomas

Program Manager

Shakeya Thomas is CEF’s Program Manager for the After School Enrichment and Credit Recovery Programs. Shakeya began working for CEF in 2014 as a work study student and was hired in 2015 . Born and raised in Chester PA and the mother of two, Shakeya has had extensive personal as well as professional experience as a role model and guide for elementary through high school children.As a mother figure to her siblings and the mother of two children, Shakeya always knew that she wanted to work with children. At 14-years old, Shakeya enrolled in Chester Education Foundation’s Summer School-to-Career Program (STEP) where she worked at various day camps.She graduated from Chester High School, Class of 1999. Shakeya has a Medical Assistant’s certificate from Star Technical Institute and an Associate's Degree in Human Services from Harcum College. Ms. Thomas is enrolled in Lincoln University pursuing a Bachelor’ degree in Human Services.

In her spare time, she likes to cook and read books.


Deenna Strickland

Office Manager