Brenda Coleman serves as the Executive Director of Atlanta CARES, an affiliate of the National CARES Mentoring Movement. She also serves as the director of the HBCU Rising, an innovative National CARES program designed to close the achievement gap between under-resourced African American students in middle schools and their peers in highly resourced communities. While leading these programs, she has been instrumental in establishing partnerships with over 40 corporate, community, and faith based organizations to serve as advocates for underserved youth in Metro Atlanta. A former teacher and literacy coach, Brenda’s educational career spanned the course of 35 years. She is an advocate of empowering youth with strong literacy skills. Brenda believes literacy is the single greatest predictor of success in a child’s lifetime.