Our Mission

Learning Everyday Accomplishing Dreams (LEAD) is dedicated to providing the tools and resources that low-income/at-risk preteen girls must have to become productive citizens and active leaders in their communities. Using an evidence-based curriculum, LEAD encourages and mentors girls to aspire and achieve greatness academically, emotionally and creatively.

Our Board of Directors


Joy Nelson Thomas, Founder/Executive Director

Joy Nelson Thomas is a Salem College alumna. Joy is a certified Life Coach, Safe Talk ,ASIST certified through American Foundation for suicide prevention, SoulShop certified & CPR certified. She is the President of ABWA (American Business Women Association) & a member of Winston Salem Urban League for Young Professionals. She serves as a volunteer for Junior Achievement. Joy is a member of Greater Cleveland Avenue Church. Joy’s passion is to inspire young girls to achieve greatness, through life’s obstacles.


Dr. Kimya N. Dennis

Kimya N. Dennis, Ph.D. is a criminologist and sociologist with interdisciplinary research and community outreach dealing with suicide and self-harm, mental health, and reproductive rights and the childfree.  Her research and community outreach address a range of communities with particular emphasis on underserviced communities.  Kimya participates in presentations and panels on community violence, mental health, suicide and self-harm, expanding definitions of gender and gender equality, and racial and ethnic dynamics. She is on the Board of Directors for LEAD Girls of NC; Board of Directors for North Carolina chapter of American Foundation for Suicide Prevention; and Board of Directors for The Mental Health Association in Forsyth County.  As Assistant Professor and Coordinator of Criminal Studies in the Department of Sociology and Criminal Studies at Salem College, Kimya is the faculty adviser and co-planner for the Salem College Out of the Darkness Campus Walk sponsored by American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.  Originally from Richmond, VA she collaborates with community activists and researchers in New York, Virginia, and North Carolina.


Dr.Naomi M. Hall-Byers

Naomi M. Hall-Byers  is a social psychologist, with an advanced degree in public health, whose teaching and research has always focused on social and cultural factors associated with risky behaviors in African American communities. Specifically, her work has focused on sexual health, and HIV prevention and intervention among African American men and women. She received her MA and PhD in Applied Social Psychology from Claremont Graduate University, and her MPH in Maternal and Child Health from San Diego State University. Currently, Dr. Hall-Byers is an Associate Professor in the Department of Psychological Studies at Winston-Salem State University, and a visiting professor at the University of California, San Francisco Center for AIDS Prevention Studies. Dr. Hall-Byers is an elected council member of the Society for the Psychological Study of Social Issues (APA Division 9) and on the steering committee for the APA Cyber Mentors program. Additionally, she mentors students through university programs such as Minority Access to Research Careers (MARC U*Star), Minority Biomedical Research Support (MBRS) RISE, Chancellor’s Scholars, and the Bridges to Doctoral Program.


Gillian Morrow

Jane Gillian Morrow is a professor at Salem College, in Winston-Salem, North Carolina, where she also works as a Project Manager at Upper South Studios and teaches classes at Sawtooth School for Visual Arts. Morrow grew up in Lexington, North Carolina, where she currently lives. When not teaching, or creating her own art, Gillian spends time with daughter Remi, and friends and family. Morrow received her BFA in Textiles: Surface Design and Weaving from East Carolina University, in Greenville, North Carolina, and a MFA in Drawing, Painting and Printmaking from Georgia State University in Atlanta, Georgia.


Dr. Megan Regan

Dr. Megan Regan Assistant Professor of Economics at Salem College is from Hilton Head, SC. She chose to teach at Salem because of the many amazing and inspiring students, the quality and diversity of faculty, and the mission of the College. She believes that a women’s college allows for an empowering and transformational educational experience. It opens up numerous leadership opportunities and it has created an exceptional legacy of producing female leaders across many disciplines.

Before going to Salem she had ten years of experience working with small businesses and social entrepreneurship. She ran a small local business consultancy and served as the director for a business alliance. Internationally, she has worked directly with small and large businesses and she has also worked to secure grant funding, coordinate micro-financing, and teach business skills to entrepreneurs in rural settings such as Gujarat, India, and Puerto Cabezas, Nicaragua.

When she is not teaching, Dr. Regan enjoys spending time with her family and two dogs, Eddie and Patsy.  She also enjoys doing things outdoors including hiking, yoga, cycling, swimming, gardening, meditation, and cooking.


Tiffany Seawright

Tiffany Seawright is the Assistant Director for Leadership Development in the office of University Student Activities and Engagement at Winston-Salem State University (WSSU). Tiffany has worked at the University for over 13 years, and has served on various boards and committees.  Her involvement includes but is not limited to the Staff Senate Executive Board, Health and Wellness Committee, Campus Culture, Professional Development Committee, and Workplace Improvement.  She has been a Residence Hall Director, the Assistant Director for University Recreation as well as a University Official for Judicial Affairs.  In fall 2017, Tiffany will begin teaching a First Year Experience course with a Social Justice tenet at WSSU.  Seawright grew up in Easley, South Carolina.  She obtained her B.S. in Biology at Salem College; and her M.S. in Adult Education/ Higher Education at North Carolina A&T State University.  Tiffany’s desire is to nourish the development of young girls into young ladies, by providing the resources necessary for them to realize their full potential and preserve their sense of self-worth.