Adonica Pelichet Duggan
A Baton Rouge native, Adonica Pelichet Duggan brings nearly 20 years of public education experience to her role as CEO of the newly formed Baton Rouge Alliance for Students. Her experience most recently includes managing external affairs for New Schools for Baton Rouge and leading a successful rebranding of the East Baton Rouge Parish School System while serving as Chief of Communications there for two years. During that time, she served as the district spokesperson and handled all media relations.
A McKinley High graduate, Duggan is an advocate for quality educational options in our community and passionate about Baton Rouge and the city’s children. Prior to accepting a position in East Baton Rouge Parish Schools, Duggan spent more than a decade in leadership of the Zachary Community School District working to establish the first new school district in the state in more than 60 years. Her work there earned awards from the National School Public Relations Association as well as national recognition for community engagement in a school district website.
Duggan is a graduate of the Manship School of Mass Communication at LSU. She is active in supporting a number of local nonprofits serving as a current board member for the YMCA of the Capital Area, Rocketkidz Foundation and the Alumni Board of the Manship School. She is an active rotarian and a member of the Baton Rouge Business Report’s 2016 Forty Under 40 and Leadership Baton Rouge Class of 2019.
Principal at IDEA Bridge Academy
Dhiyaa-ud-Deen Abdullah is a native of Raceland, Louisiana. Mr. Abdullah holds a bachelor’s degree in Sociology and a master’s degree in Public Administration from Southern University and Agricultural & Mechanical College. Dhiyaa-ud-Deen uncovered his purpose and passion for education while a student at Southern University, where he served as a mentor with Upward Bound, educational specialist for Operational Pathways, and mentor with Big Buddy. Upon completion of his bachelor’s degree, Mr. Abdullah completed his teacher certification through teach NOLA; TNTP-The New Teacher Project, where he was awarded with the Golden Apple for Excellence in Teaching.
In 2017, Mr. Abdullah accepted the opportunity to advance his skills in Instructional Leadership and Coaching through Relay’s National Principals Academy Fellowship, where he graduated with distinction. In addition, Mr. Abdullah was a fellow in The Leadership Team Collaborative (LTC) with News Schools for Baton Rouge. In 2018 Baton Rouge Bridge Academy merged with IDEA Public Schools which gave birth to IDEA Bridge Academy. Mr. Abdullah then served as Principal in Residence from 2019-2020 prior to serving as acting Principal of IDEA Bridge Academy in 2020.
Vice President of Sales for Sparkhound
Dave Baxter is the Vice President of Sales for Sparkhound and has led business development in the government sector for nearly 17 years. Passionate about education, he’s been instrumental in various initiatives, including volunteering with Junior Achievement, serving on the Advisory Board for the Career and Technical Education Center and serving on Thrive Academy’s Foundation board. His participation in Leadership Baton Rouge and Leadership Louisiana has guided his focus on improving education in the state.
Committed to action, Dave’s vision is to be “part of the solution, not a Monday morning quarterback complaining about all the wrong things. Let’s make it right!”