Press Releases | January 13, 2023

The Mind Trust hires three new staff, promotes one

The Mind Trust, an Indianapolis-based education nonprofit, today announced the hiring of a Manager of Digital Communications alongside two additional staff who will support Indiana Learns. Allison Edwards-Marker has been hired as Manager of Digital Communications; Lorna McClurkin has been hired as Operations Manager, Indiana Learns; and Sarah Pedersen has been hired as Program Manager, Indiana Learns. Additionally, Kateri Whitley has been promoted to Senior Director of Communications.

“The Mind Trust is excited to add more capacity to our communications team and bolster the Indiana Learns team. I am thrilled to have Allison, Lorna, and Sarah bring their incredible talents to The Mind Trust. Each of them will help accelerate key initiatives as we start the new year,” said Brandon Brown, CEO of The Mind Trust. 

“I am also excited that Kateri Whitley will be promoted to Senior Director of Communications. Kateri is an indispensable leader at The Mind Trust, and I’m eager for her to continue expanding her impact in this elevated role,” said Brown.

Each of these professionals will support The Mind Trust’s work to grow high-quality schools, deliver more equitable conditions across the Indianapolis education landscape, and triple the number of students in Indianapolis who are academically proficient by 2027. Since 2006, The Mind Trust has supported the launch of 45 public charter and innovation network schools in Indianapolis that currently serve more than 12,000 students

New Hires

Allison Edwards-Marker, Manager of Digital Communications

As Manager of Digital Communications, Edwards-Marker will lead The Mind Trust’s graphic design and social media initiatives. In this role, Edwards-Marker will advance the organization’s  mission by creating high-quality reports, promotional materials, data visualizations, and other graphics. She will also manage The Mind Trust’s social media channels.

Prior to joining The Mind Trust, Edwards-Marker worked at the Indianapolis Monthly for two decades, with the most recent role being Special Projects Art Director. She is the recipient of numerous international and national awards for magazine design. She holds a bachelor of arts in journalism and a second bachelor of arts in fine arts, both from Ball State University.

Indiana Learns New Hires

Indiana Learns is a statewide math and reading enrichment grant program operated by The Mind Trust on behalf of the Indiana Department of Education.

Lorna McClurkin, Operations Manager, Indiana Learns

As Operations Manager for Indiana Learns, McClurkin will be responsible for administrative, financial, and project management duties related to the implementation of Indiana Learns. McClurkin will lead work to manage financial processes, track budgets, and provide administrative assistance to the Indiana Learns team. 

Previous to joining Indiana Learns, McClurkin worked for Early Learning Indiana as a Family Engagement Specialist. She brings a long history of service in the nonprofit sector, having also held roles at the Lumina Foundation for Education and United Way of Central Indiana. McClurkin holds a bachelor of arts in telecommunications from Indiana University Bloomington. 

Sarah Pedersen, Program Manager, Indiana Learns

As Program Manager for Indiana Learns, Pedersen will be responsible for administrative and program management duties related to the implementation of the program. Pedersen will lead management of a detailed, comprehensive project plan related to Indiana Learns, maintain program records and data, and manage vendor and grant information.

Before working with Indiana Learns, Pedersen was a Lead Transaction Coordinator at Mark Dietel Realty. She also brings a wealth of experience in education, having worked for The Oaks Academy and Christel House Academies. Pedersen earned a bachelor of arts in social work from Taylor University. 


Kateri Whitley, Senior Director of Communications

The Mind Trust has promoted Kateri Whitley to Senior Director of Communications. In this role, she will work with internal and external stakeholders to promote the priorities of The Mind Trust on a local and national level. Since joining the organization in 2020, Whitley has served on the organization’s communications team, amplifying the work of The Mind Trust, schools, and education initiatives.

About The Mind Trust

The Mind Trust is an Indianapolis-based education nonprofit that works to build a system of schools that gives every student, no exceptions, access to a high-quality education. The Mind Trust does this by building a supportive environment for schools through policy and community engagement, empowering talented, diverse educators to launch new schools, and providing existing schools with the support they need to hire world-class talent and achieve excellence. Since 2006, The Mind Trust has supported the launch of 49 schools, 15 education nonprofit organizations, and has helped place more than 1,800 teachers and school leaders in Indianapolis classrooms.