Coming together is a beginning. Keeping together is progress. Working together is success.
Karen Pennington is a native Tulsan and graduate of Oklahoma State University. Karen is the Executive Director of Tulsa Community WorkAdvance, and she is dedicated to bridging the skills gap by using innovative approaches to improve workforce development practices. As one of the original TCW team members, Karen has played a key role in establishing relationships with industry leaders, educators and employers across Tulsa and shaping the WorkAdvance program. She has a passion for helping Tulsans secure high-paying jobs with benefits through meaningful education as well as helping businesses gain access to a pipeline of quality employees. With her passionate drive and enthusiasm, it’s no wonder her favorite movie quote is, “Punch it, Chewie,” from the legendary Star Wars movies.
Originally from Southern California, Chad has called Tulsa home since 2014. Chad holds a Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from Cal Poly Pomona and a Master’s degree in Business Administration from the University of La Verne. Chad brings a wealth of experience in account management, customer success and business consulting to TCW. He believes that the values we offer businesses are access to a highly qualified candidate pool, reduced recruiting time and expense, and ultimately a reduction in a business’ turnover rate. Chad assists TCW’s partner companies by understanding their business needs and adapting our customers to their changing workforce requirements. Chad finds the career connection between a business and a quality candidate to be the most rewarding aspect of his work. If Chad’s USC Trojans aren’t playing football you can find him on the tennis courts at La Fortune hitting winners.
Rachel Griffin was born and raised in Texas but has called Tulsa home for over a decade. Rachel has been a part of the TCW team since 2012. Currently, Rachel oversees the intake team, manages databases, creates operational procedures and policies, and reports on program goals and statistics. She has a passion for data and using numbers to tell TCW’s story. Rachel believes that education and training have the power to transform lives, and she has full confidence in TCW’s ability to create better futures for Tulsans, their families, and our community. Her dedicated, hardworking personality keeps her busy, which is echoed in her favorite Will Rogers quote: “Even if you’re on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there.”
Amber is a native Tulsan and has spent the past 12 years working in higher education, with the last several years focused on career placement and business development. She is passionate, energetic and thrives on establishing and maintaining meaningful business relationships. Amber loves playing a role in helping her fellow Tulsans connect with opportunities to flourish. When she’s not at work, she can be found burning off some of her high energy at the gym, checking out a concert at Cain’s Ballroom, or cooking for friends and family.
A native Tulsan who spent her formative years in Northern California, Roschell came back home where her roots are. Roschell has a passion for people and she brings a wide variety of talent and knowledge to the JobsFirst program. She’s spent the last 15+ years as a Human Resources Manager in retail and telecommunications. She loves the non-profit world where she worked previously as a Job Developer/Talent Acquisition associate, helping individuals identify and develop their strengths, and the business community increase their skilled workforce. Her belief is that when we help people find, keep and advance in jobs they can discover that a job is a trip, but a career is a journey. When she is not helping others find their road to success, she can be found relaxing in her art studio painting.
Kendra grew up in Rochester, Minnesota, but has established roots in Tulsa for nearly two decades. She is passionate about serving her community in ways that benefit the growth and development of people, and is excited to bring that perspective to serve young adults through the NextUp program. Kendra holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology and has worked to help people achieve their highest potential throughout her career. Her optimism for the potential of individual achievement can be captured in one of her favorite quotes by Walt Whitman, “Keep your face always toward the sunshine – and shadows will fall behind you.” In her free time Kendra enjoys sewing, woodworking, and time with her family.
Vinita Musapeta helps 18-24 year-olds in the NextUp program find their next great career opportunity. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Oklahoma, and is currently working on her Master’s in Public Administration. Vinita wants her NextUppers to be excited about their future, by giving them space to explore the possibilities. She believes that opportunities can remove obstacles and spur growth. Vinita is committed to providing positive experiences for the community’s future workforce. When she is not at work, Vinita can be found looking for her new favorite breakfast/brunch spot in Tulsa. She is always accepting recommendations.
As a native Tulsan, Amanda enjoys everything the city has to offer. In her role as TCW’s Intake Administrative Specialist, she provides support to applicants and customers by administering assessments, scheduling interviews and directing customers to appropriate services. Along with her ambitious personality, she brings extensive customer service and administrative support experience to the TCW team. Amanda is passionate about TCW because she believes in helping people to better their lives with training and career advancement. Her favorite piece of advice is to stay true to yourself, and she encompasses that concept exquisitely. Amanda’s bold, giving personality makes her a quintessential part of the TCW team.
Pachoua is passionate about helping people. She is honored to be a part of TCW, where she believes lives are changed every day by giving people a chance. Pachoua was raised in North Carolina and has built on her own experiences to ensure that each customer that walks through the door is treated with utmost care and respect. She brings a background in customer service to the team and uses her skills to help people make positive changes. Pachoua enjoys traveling and trying new foods and truly believes in the Bruce Lee quote, “If you think, so shall you become.”
A native of Tulsa, Cordell Dement recently returned to his roots after 10 years in Atlanta, GA, working in both corporate and entrepreneurial capacities. Proud to be home, Cordell brings his leadership experience in both the non-profit and for-profit sectors to his role as Director of Programs at Tulsa Community WorkAdvance. Cordell is excited to have the opportunity to directly impact the career readiness, training, and advancement of Tulsans through development initiatives and strong networks. Cordell takes sincere pride in the part he gets to play in helping underserved residents build stable, productive and sustainable lives and making the opportunity accessible to all Tulsa citizens. You can find Cordell on the weekend making a difference in one of his many volunteer roles or spending time with his family.
Katie is a recent Tulsa transplant, having spent the past 14 years on the East Coast after growing up in the Midwest. Katie earned a bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Kansas, and a law degree and master’s in public policy from Georgetown University. She spent the past 9 years in legal education and career services, helping law students find their best path to serve others and building programs to provide access to justice. Katie brings this experience to her role as Community Engagement and Programs Manager, in which she builds strategic relationships, examines and improves processes, and supports the TCW team to do their best work serving the Tulsa community. While not at work, Katie can be found exploring her new hometown – look for her at the Gathering Place or a local yoga studio!
Angela Munoz manages the Career Services team to ensure that TCW participants successfully complete technical skills training and obtain meaningful employment. A California native, Angela, better known by most as “Angie”, is committed to providing Tulsans with excellent career services and leading her team to achieve their goals. Her compassionate altruism helps her thrive in her position. When Angie’s not at work, you can find her spending time with her family by adventuring around Tulsa, making frequent stops at their favorite hangout, Guthrie Green.
Bailey is a native Oklahoman who has lived in Tulsa most of her life. She holds bachelor’s degrees in Sociology and Spanish from the University of Tulsa and is passionate about working to make Tulsa a more equitable city. In her role as a Career Advisor, Bailey strives to provide professional support to customers based on their individual needs in order to assist them in the pursuit of their academic and career goals. Bailey is adamant about the importance of continuing education no matter what your age. She is a supporter of active listening, a believer that you can never be connected to too many resources and she defines community as the ability to lean on others. Bailey is fond of adventure and has traveled through South America. Her interest in Hispanic culture is clearly expressed through the portrait of Frida Kahlo she has sitting on her desk. On the weekends, she enjoys going salsa dancing.
Originally from New York, A.J. has lived in Oklahoma most of his life and considers Tulsa home. A.J. brings an abundant amount of experience in sales, customer service, administration, and warehouse operations. As a career advisor, A.J.’s goal is to provide meaningful guidance to our customers in all aspects of their career journey. He believes that the most important aspect of his job is to connect with the customers by showing them that they are worthy of great opportunities and an awesome career. A.J. assists TCW’s customers throughout their entire process, from obtaining a job to advancing in a career. A.J. feels that the most rewarding part of his job is giving the customers the tools to succeed and watching them grow as a valued employee. When he is not at work you can find A.J. enjoying the unique scenery of downtown Tulsa at The Boxyard.
Avea is originally from Michigan but has lived in Tulsa since she was very young. Avea graduated from the University of Central Oklahoma with a Bachelor of Arts in Mass Communications with Broadcast emphasis and a minor in Business Marketing. Her straight-forward, encouraging and animated personality make her a natural Career Advisor on the TCW team. She also brings experience in recruiting, advisement, retail sales and social work to her role. Avea’s a true believer that your perception of life determines your success. Her goal is to help customers find their true potential. When Avea is not at work she enjoys spending time with her family, watching movies, reading and finding new festivals and activities to attend in Tulsa.
Megan considers herself a true Okie, though not from Muskogee, but always in the Tulsa area. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Social Work from Northeastern State University. Megan has spent the majority of her career supporting families in identifying and achieving their personal and professional goals. She is passionate about nonprofit work and has a continual desire to “help others help themselves”. She believes advanced training and gainful employment are pivotal in helping others succeed. When Megan is not at work she enjoys traveling, spending time with her family, and cheering on the Kansas City Chiefs.
Emory grew up in South Texas, but has lived in Tulsa for over 10 years and now calls it home. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Anthropology and Sociology from the University of Tulsa and uses her educational background to connect with people from all walks of life. Emory has spent much of her career advocating for the rights of others and helping individuals and families live safe and healthy lives. She is passionate about improving the Tulsa community and brings her love of learning and sharing knowledge to the TCW Training Team. Emory believes in helping TCW customers identify their unique strengths as they build resumes, practice interviewing skills, and prepare for a new career. When she is not working you can find Emory jogging around LaFortune Park or poring over a new cookbook choosing a recipe to try.
Sara Ostin is a New Jersey native who moved to Oklahoma and has been with TCW since 2014. Sara brings many talents to the TCW team including her extensive customer service, staffing, and retail management experience. Sara has a natural creative eye. She oversees the day to day operations of the office, verifies that data is accurate and organized and coordinates many projects and events. Sara believes that TCW truly helps people build better lives and knows the intensity and customization of the career services that TCW provides make it a unique place. If you want a brief glimpse into Sara’s playful personality and passion for the famous sci-fi movie series, look no further than the Star Wars BB-8 puzzle eraser on her desk.
Bruce is a native of Oklahoma, and a graduate and former student-athlete of Oklahoma State University with a degree in Entrepreneurship. He also earned his Master’s in Business Administration from Rose State University. Bruce joined TCW from a successful entrepreneurial background including experience in financial services and real estate. As the Due North Coordinator, he believes that TCW is actively investing in Tulsa’s most valuable resource: people. Bruce is a natural connector, and thrives bringing together people and organizations to move agendas forward. Bruce’s philosophy is that it’s not about how many steps you’ve taken, but about how far you’ve traveled.