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Carmita Semaan is the Founder and President of The Surge Institute. Surge is transforming education by training, supporting, connecting, and elevating emerging education leaders of color in Chicago, Oakland and Kansas City with plans to be in 3 additional cities by 2021. Surge Fellows are challenged to walk fully and authentically in their experiences and purpose - to dramatically and sustainably impact systems that serve young people and communities through fresh ideas and innovative perspectives.
Though an adopted Chicagoan after 16 years, Carmita was raised in Birmingham, AL. Birmingham's history has greatly shaped who she is and what she feels called to do - to elevate the genius of and shine a light on the brilliance and ingenuity that is too often overlooked and untapped in solving systemic issues. Prior to transitioning into the nonprofit sector, Carmita served in global marketing, strategic planning, and engineering/operations management roles in several Fortune 500 companies, including Procter & Gamble and Danaher Corporation. She holds a master's in business administration from Northwestern University's Kellogg School of Management and received her undergraduate degree in chemical engineering from the University of Michigan. Carmita is a Fellow of the third class of the Pahara-Aspen Education Fellowship and a member of the Aspen Global Leadership Network.