Donna J. Purchase, MCSR Board Chair
Donna Purchase retired from Fannie Mae where she was Director of Homelessness Initiatives and Volunteer Programs. In this position, she worked to raise awareness of and funds for Washington metropolitan area organizations that strive to prevent and end homelessness, with an emphasis on programs that help homeless people return to independent living.
Today, Ms. Purchase manages film festival volunteer programs in Washington, DC including AFIDOCS, The Investigative Film Festival and The Environmental Film Festival.
Ms. Purchase is highly committed and dedicated to advancing the important work of Men Can Stop Rape. She is active in the community serving on the boards of OFT/ON, Lydia's House and The Southwest Neighborhood Assembly.
Alex McSwain, MCSR Board Treasurer
Alexander McSwain is an assistant professor at Howard University, Washington DC. He received his BFA in Communication Design as well as a MFA in Environmental Design from Howard University. During that time he worked in the not for profit arena working with Shaw-Eco Village (tackling the issue of stormwater run-off in DC), DOEE formally the DDOE (educating youth about the importance of green collar work, environmental awareness and education), and is currently serving as the Chair of the Division of Fine Arts, College of Arts & Sciences.
For the past decade Alex McSwain has worked as a freelance designer. He has had the opportunity to work with several companies and clients ranging from Cushman and Wakefield to start up magazine companies. His portfolio contains works from various design disciplines; UXI design, web design, publication / marketing materials, brand development, packaging, 2D Animation, and apparel design. Currently he is taking on volunteer design projects to help not for profit organizations nationally in hopes to reconnect with his not for profit roots and allow his skills to improve the lives of others. His design aesthetic by default stems from his time as an architect apprentice with clean line and geometric symmetry with a keen sense of synergy.
“A jack of all trades is a master of none, but oftentimes better than a master of one.”
As an assistant professor he teaches across three different program concentrations in the department of art due to his diverse skill sets and jack of trades mind set. He is currently teaching in electronic studio, graphic design, and photography concentrations. His course offerings include Digital Design, Multimedia, Digital Darkroom, Studio Problems in Design, 2D Animation, and the General Motors Sponsored PACE Program. During his tenure as a lecture earlier in his career he also taught Portfolio Production, Introduction to Digital Design, Design for Advertising, and Typography courses.
Susan G. Burton is Program Director for Seminar Design, Education and Leadership Formation and the United Methodist General Board of Church and Society (GBCS).
Susan grew up in the United Methodist church in North Carolina. Throughout her work as a facilitator and instructor, Susan has sought to integrate her faith and commitment to justice. She has continued to engage seminar participants to deepen their faith, vocational discernment and our understanding of the biblical mandate to “do justice, love mercy and walk humbly with our God” since she joined GBCS in June 2001.
Prior to joining GBCS, Susan worked with the Center for Values and Service at Loyola College in Maryland and Jubilee Ministries, a network of social service agencies in Washington, D.C.
Susan has an Master’s degree in Counseling and Personnel Services and a Bachelor’s in Biology.
Jim is a 1986 graduate of the University of Maryland where he was a three-year letter winner with the men’s basketball team. As the team manager, Jim was responsible for practice planning and setup, travel arrangements for the coaching staff, and coordinating on-campus recruiting visits.
The last ten years have found Jim in sales and management positions within the legal services industry. His work experience with the top law firms in the country includes Baach, Robinson & Lewis; Boise, Schiller & Flexner; Jones Day; Morgan, Lewis & Bockius, and Skadden Arps. While working with these law firms, he was responsible for handling sensitive documents, following detailed instructions, and hitting strict deadlines for multi-million dollar litigations.
Even before discovering just a few years ago that his name was an anagram for the word “Solution,” Olutosin “Olu” Burrell knew that he was destined to make a difference. Born to Eugene and Lena Burrell, he is the third of eight children and a fifth-generation Washingtonian. From a young age, his parents instilled in him a sense of social responsibility and community uplift; something that is encapsulated in his mantra of ‘Go Back, Give Back and Get Back.’This mantra is what has driven Olu as he amassed more than 13 years of experience working in the Education, Government, Private, and Nonprofit sectors.
By day, Olu leads the Rapid Response team at Washington, DC’s leading workforce agency. By night, Olu wears several professional hats including: Chief Executive Officer of Spoken IV Solutions, LLC, a boutique Organization Development, Change Management, and Leadership Coaching firm. He is also an Adjunct Professor of English at Trinity Washington University and a member of the first national cohort of the National After School Matters Fellowship, a program of the National Institute on Out-of School Time (NIOST), Wellesley Centers, and the National Writing Project (NWP).
Olu holds a B.A. in English from Howard University, a M.S. in Organization Development from American University and is enrolled in the Comprehensive Evidence-Based Coaching Program at Fielding Graduate University, where he is pursuing the Professional Certified Coach (PCC) designation of the International Coaching Federation (ICF).
In addition to his professional pursuits, Olu also enjoys reading, writing, cooking, performance poetry, and motivational speaking. He resides in the Anacostia neighborhood of Ward 8 with his wife Farran and his daughter Samara.
Mr. Cruz is currently serving as Program Manager for Chess Challenge in DC, a local non-profit that serves underserved communities through literacy in afterschool programming using chess to engage elementary and middle school students. His previous work included serving as the Youth Programs Coordinator at the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History (NMNH). At NMNH, he coordinated the implementation of programs for youth during out-of-school time, focusing on program logistics, outreach, partnership development, and participant recruitment. Mr. Cruz also served as the museum lead for an National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded project called CHISPA! (Children Investigating Science with Parents and After School), where he worked with local Latino-serving community based organizations to expose elementary age students to science through after school programs and museum visits.
Prior to his work as the Youth Programs Coordinator, Mr. Cruz worked as a Museum technician at the National Museum of Natural Historyʼs Insect Zoo for 3 years, caring for the 50+ species of live arthropods in the permanent exhibit and laboratory and assisting with the management of volunteers. Mr. Cruz participated in the Youth Workforce Leadership Academy that is a 10-month professional development opportunity for youth serving professionals to enhance skills and best practices.
Named one of the most promising “50 Strategies to Prevent Violent Domestic Crime” by the National Crime Prevention Council, the Men of Strength (MOST) Club, provides middle school and high school age males with a structured space to build individualized definitions of masculinity that promote healthy relationships. Since joining the organization in 2001, Neil has grown this program from one site in Washington, DC, to over 100 locations in ten states across the country. In 2007, he brought the MOST Club to every public high school in the District of Columbia, the largest city-wide effort of its kind in the country. Neil has a long history of working to enrich the lives of youth, especially young men. Having worked as a basketball coach, camp counselor, and director of after-school programs at the YMCA, he decided to dedicate his professional career to working with youth as it always felt “inspiring, energizing, and effortless.”