Meet the Board of Directors


Kinta Gates

Board President

Kinta C. Gates is an innovative Supply Chain Senior Leader, recognized by global executives as a thought leader with the capacity to deliver results by transforming both people and processes. Kinta’s innate ability to “quickly understand the best resolution to complex business issues” has allowed her to drive continuous process improvement and best in class practices for more than two decades.  During that time, she has demonstrated successes across various industries, including CPG, Food, Beauty, Automotive and Electronics manufacturing. Most recently, Kinta joined Thrive Causemetics, a Luxury High-Performance Cosmetics start-up that through responsive giving, makes a donation for every product purchased to help women thrive. As their Supply Chain Operations Planning Manager, she is tasked with creating and optimizing the forecast and inventory planning models, as well as establishing cost effective manufacturing strategies to ensure end-to-end supply chain success. Prior to this role, Kinta served as Supply Operations Planning Manager for North America at Mars Food. This role oversees in-house, co-manufacturing and co-packing production, as well as, inventory and capacity planning for the total portfolio of Uncle Ben’s™ and Seeds of Change™ global brands – accounting for more than $400 million in sales annually. As a key leader in S&OP+ for Mars Food, Kinta was responsible for restructuring the Demand Control Process to address supply gaps during the 0-12 week planning horizon. She also served as the Community Engagement Lead, developing and executing Corporate Social Responsibility initiatives for the North American corporate office.

Kinta’s success has been fueled not only by her considerable business acumen, but by her genuine passion for people development. She will fondly tell you that while she enjoys the functional aspects of engineering and supply chain management, the most gratifying facet of her career centers around people leadership. Known for her infectious smile, nurturing spirit and inclusive management style, Kinta’s passion for people development has allowed her to effectively turn underperforming associates into high performance collaborative (HPC) teams. Kinta is also widely respected by peers and executive management alike, as a trustworthy, solutions-driven expert in Supply Chain Planning and Inventory Management, who has the instinctive ability to empower those around her to reach their full potential.


Kinta holds a Master’s degree from The George Washington University in Strategic Communications with an emphasis on Corporate Social Responsibility; a Bachelor of Science in Paralegal Studies; and a Bachelor of Science in Industrial Engineering from North Carolina State University. She lives in Los Angeles with her family where she serves in the community as an advocate for domestic violence as well as neutralizing the educational and wealth gaps between communities of color and mainstream America.

DeShawn has more than 20 years of experience in the meeting and event industry. She has executed events for education, non-profit, corporate, religious and government agencies. In2010, DeShawn established Wynning Touch Event Design—a company that specializes in strategic planning and content design.

DeShawn has volunteered for many industry organizations. She has served on the board of the Southern California chapter of Meeting Professionals International (MPISCC), managed the volunteers for the Southern California Chapter of The Society for Incentive Travel Excellence’s (SITE SoCal) holiday event, and facilitated workshops for the Religious Conference Management Association (RCMA) and the Senior Meeting Planner Network (SPIN).

DeShawn graduated from Pepperdine University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration. She has earned the designation as a Certified Meeting Professional with a subspecialty in Healthcare. DeShawn is also a member of the faculty at California State University Dominguez Hills, teaching in the Meeting and Event Planning Certificate Program.

DeShawn Wynn, CMP-HC

Chief Meeting Architect

Wynning Touch Event Design

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DeShawn Wynn

Board Secretary

Farnaz Kaufman

Board Treasurer

 Farnaz Mobasheri Kaufman is an educational leader and visionary. With over 20 years of experience in public education, she started her career as a teacher at Carpenter Avenue Elementary, now an LAUSD affiliated charter school. During her time as a teacher, she took every opportunity to lead and inspire.  Farnaz was one of the team members on Carpenter’s conversion to charter status; she also served as Curriculum Committee Chair, LEARN and Governance board member, Lead teacher, UTLA Representative, Gifted Coordinator and PTA teacher representative.  


Later, she founded and ran iLEAD Encino, a highly successful and innovative TK-8 hybrid charter school specializing in STEAM-based, learner-centered PBL curriculum.  She then served as the Head of School at Santa Clarita Valley International School, a TK-12 charter school also with a PBL curriculum, with a focus on individualized instruction and social-emotional learning. Currently, Farnaz is the Director of Global Educational Initiatives for iLEAD Schools. 


She is an expert on differentiated curriculum and specializes in teaching Highly Gifted and Twice Exceptional students. Farnaz shares her expertise in a speaker series called Parent University that is sought out by both parents and educators.


Farnaz received her degree in Earth and Planetary Sciences from The Johns Hopkins University where she attended on a full Army Scholarship. She received her teaching credential through the LAUSD District Intern Program and then later her

Masters in Educational Leadership from CSUN. Her university and military experiences provided her with a strong foundation for leadership and



Farnaz is supported by her husband, Adam, and her two wonderful teenage children, Morgen and Xoe.  As the parent of a non-binary child, Farnaz has become an advocate for LGBTQ+ children and their rights within public education. 


Farnaz believes that we need to honor all children as human beings with valid opinions while utilizing their passion and strengths to guide their education.

Adrienne Dawn Gurley has lived in Los Angeles since 2015.  She moved to the area with her family after spending several years in DC as a federal prosecutor.  Born and raised in Harlem, New York, Adrienne has always had a dedication to public service and was excited to join the board of Learning by Design Charter School in January of 2020. 


Adrienne is a wife, mother of three young children, and a practicing attorney for the federal government.  She received her Juris Doctor from Howard University School of Law, a Master of Arts in criminal justice from John Jay College of Criminal Justice, and a Bachelor of Arts from Columbia University.

Adrienne Gurley

Board Member

Kweli Umoja

Board Member

I received my B.A. in Mathematics and Pan-African Studies from Cal State Northridge in 1974.  I began teaching math at Gompers Junior High School for the Los Angeles Unified School District in 1974. 

I completed the Masters Program in Education with special emphasis on Curriculum Research and Development in 1980 and also completed 40 units in accounting in preparation for opening my own school in the future. 

The following positions were held by me while at Gompers:

  • Math Laboratory Coordinator 1977 – 1980

  • Title 1 and Compensatory Education Coordinator 1980 – 1984.  As the Coordinator I developed the individualized math instruction program for grades 7 – 9 designed to provide the supplemental support for teaching skills from numeration to statistics and probability.

1984 Co-Author of “Light A Mathematics Path” diagnostic/prescriptive math workbook for preparing students for advance math (algebra to  calculus, and beyond)

From 1984 – 1988 I worked with Dr. George McKenna at Washington Preparatory High School as Peer Hall Coordinator assisting students with habitual attendance and tardy challenges, also taught advanced math (i.e., Trigonometry, and Calculus), and Life Skills.

1988 – 1992 I started my own business for financial planning, and investments (i.e., mutual funds, securities, and stocks).

1992 – 1993 given the opportunity by Los Angeles Councilman Mark Ridley-Thomas to work as a Community Liaison for Rebuild Los Angeles to assist with coordinating the reconstruction needed after the urban disturbance of 1992. 

1993- 1995 Math Teacher at Edison Middle School, Los Angeles

1995 – 1998 Advance Math Teacher at John C. Fremont High School, L.A.

1998 – 2002 Math/Science Magnet Coordinator, Fremont High School and we had 100% graduation rate and 90% of our students matriculated to college/university.  As the Coordinator we established innovative test preparation, and block schedule programs (classes were 2 hours in length) to simulate the length of college courses.  After two years of this initiative students’ test scores were higher than LAUSD and California Department of Education average.  However, in 2002 Fremont High School Administration would not allow the Magnet School to continue block scheduling.

In 2002 I resigned from my position as Fremont Math/Science Magnet School Coordinator and became one of the Co-Founders of Community Harvest Charter School, Los Angeles (2002 – 2011).  

2002 – 10 I began as High School Director , became Director of Curriculum and Operations for Community Harvest Charter School.

2011 Retired and revised “LAMP” workbook

2012 Established the Umoja Development Foundation to promote economic and educational development (I,e low-income housing, charter/public school that focus on science, technology, engineering, math (stem) and stem remedial/enrichment intersession camps, math intervention individualized instruction using the “LAMP” workbook.

Member of WARD African Methodist Episcopal Church 1987 – Present. 

Calendar of Learning By Design Board Meetings

To obtain the agenda or the minutes for a particular Board Meeting please click on the date for the board meeting on the above calendar.


Normal Board Meetings are indicated by a yellow dot, while Special Board Meetings are indicated by a blue dot.