Jeff Leake: Chairperson & Finance Committee Representative

Fifty-year CT educator and Past President of the Connecticut Education Association, the largest teachers’ union in CT.

Elizabeth Crichton Brown

Elizabeth Crichton Brown has over thirty years of experience in public service both as an elected official and as the Legislative Director for the State Commission on Children. She currently is the sole proprietor of E.C. Brown Government Relations Consulting business.  After a successful career in teaching for ten years, she was elected to the Connecticut House of Representatives, 74th District in Waterbury, in 1987 and served for six years. She played a leadership role in the state’s recycling law and championed civil rights and education reform.

After her legislative tenure, she became the Legislative Director for the State Commission on Children, promoting public policies for children and families including the pre-school School Readiness grant; anti-bullying, childcare, health care, fatherhood initiative, and the Neighborhood Revitalization Law, NRZ’s. Waterbury is the first city to adopt the NRZ ordinance and has several active NRZ’s in city neighborhoods. The  NRZ model of neighborhood revitalization focuses on empowering neighborhood residents to work more collaboratively with municipal government.

She is a member of the Waterbury Board of Education since 2011, serving as President from 2015-2019. She is committed to addressing the achievement gap among children of color and works tirelessly to ensure equity and access to opportunity for all students.

Mrs. Brown is an active community volunteer having served  as Co-Chair of the School Readiness Council; Chair of the Mayor’s Early Childhood Cabinet; Chair of the United Way Education Impact Council; and also state organizations, including the President  of the Connecticut Association of Boards of Education; and Board Member of the State Education Resource Center Foundation.

She is also recipient of several recognition awards including the EPA award for recycling legislation in CT; Outstanding Alumni Award, St. Mary’s Grammar School; Volunteer of the Year, Greater Waterbury United Way, and State Democrat Women’s Leadership Award.

Mrs. Brown is a lifelong resident of Waterbury and is married to Lynn Richard Brown ( deceased) and has three grown children, Kristin Mitnick, Lynn R. Brown III, and John S. Brown and five grandchildren, ages 18 to 24 years old.

Paul F. Flinter
Education Consultant

Paul F. Flinter, Ph.D. is the former Director of Adult Education for the Wallingford Connecticut School District and currently works part time as the Adult Education Grants Coordinator. Prior to his Wallingford positions, Paul worked in the Connecticut State Department of Education (CSDE) and his section had responsibility for areas supporting students’ social, emotional, physical and mental health, school-family-community partnerships and adult education. In his earlier tenure at the CSDE, he was the Bureau Chief of Early Childhood and Social Services and served as an Education Consultant in Special Education. He has been an Assistant Professor at St. Joseph College, West Hartford, Connecticut and he was a special education teacher for 7 years in Connecticut school districts. His advance degrees are in education psychology and child development. He has coauthored several articles and continues work on efforts that assist teachers and schools to be more effective in their instructional practices and involvement with parents.

Dr. Agnes Quiñones

Dr. Agnes Quiñones was born and raised in Mayaguez, Puerto Rico. As an undergraduate student in Amherst, Massachusetts, she was often the only Latina in many of her math and science classes. Dr. Quiñones holds advanced degrees from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in future studies and Multicultural organization development.

For the last 23 years, she has served as Program Manager for state funded after-school programs, Neighborhood Youth Centers Program, and Youth Service Bureaus in the Connecticut State Department of Education. Dr. Quiñones was selected as the 2008 Latina Citizen of the Year by the Latino and Puerto Rican Affairs Commission; was named the 2009 Latino de Oro Education Award Recipient by Hartford’s Identidad Latina Newspaper, was selected the 2011 CT After School Champion by the After School Alliance, an nationally recognized organization. In 2013, Dr. Quinones was awarded the Literacy Advocacy Award by the Reading and Language Arts Department at Central Connecticut State University.

Most recently, Dr. Quinones was selected as one of fifty most influential in state and local government after school leader by the National After School Alliance. Dr. Quiñones has contributed more to the growth of afterschool programs in Connecticut than any other single individual. She is committed to promoting academic excellence, and her leadership in the policy arena has significantly improved learning opportunities for young people, both during and after school.

She is a great believer of lifelong learning. Dr. Quinones credits her maternal grandmother for her success and achievements. She is well known for her commitment to equity in education and is very passionate about opening doors for all underrepresented students. Her colleagues regard her as brilliant and visionary, a true and inspiring leader, and they value her expertise. She is one of those who takes a good idea and makes it great, yet she knows how to collaborate and make all the partners feel appreciated.