Meet the Team

Meet the Team

Amina Sillah, PhD


Amina Sillah, PhD is the President of JOYE. Dr. Sillah is an educator, entrepreneur, international development analyst, an experienced nonprofit manager and urban policy analyst. In her many roles, she combines her education and experience to help nonprofits, local governments and private institutions from a variety of vantage points. Her expertise has helped countless organizations to improve service quality and strengthen institutional capacities through training, education, and strategic planning.

An avid promoter of youth development, Dr. Sillah is the current CEO of Global Youth Innovation Network. She has also served as a mentor for entrepreneurs at the Tony Elumelu Foundation, a grader for the Mandela Washington Fellowship – Young African Leadership Initiative (YALI), and as a subject matter expert for the World Bank Youth Summit. She is also the co-founder of Krysalis Global Solutions (KGS), a capacity building organization.

In addition to her role as the President of Jurarim Organization for Youth Excellence -JOYE , Dr. Sillah currently serves on the board of several other nonprofits as well. She holds a Masters of Public Administration (MPA) in Urban Government and a PhD in Public Administration and Management.

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Marcy Cox

Vice President

Marcy Cox is the Vice President of JOYE and has volunteered with the organization since November 2015. She has a 21-year career in the telecommunications industry, and is currently in the role of Billing Systems Manager with Altice USA. Marcy has a passion for encouraging others. She aspires to invest in the lives of children – to help provide opportunities for a high-quality education where they will also receive the support necessary to grow in confidence, rise above their circumstances, and believe in themselves to create a positive future.


Ragan Brown PhD

Director of Education

Ragan Brown, PhD is the Director of Education at JOYE. A professional in the field of Education and Child Development, Dr. Brown, thrives on tapping into the interest of a child, and building on their strengths to help them unlock their potential. She is driven by her passion and purpose to positively impact the lives of children and other educators. Dr. Brown is an educator, author, entrepreneur, and speaker.

With over 15 years of service as an educator, her expertise lies in reading intervention, executive functioning, dyslexia, educator professional development, new teacher support, and self care.

She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Speech Patholoand Audiology, Master of Business Administration with a Management Concentration and obtained a PhD in Early Childhood Development and Education. Dr. Brown’s research centered around Positive Youth Development.

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Amanda Gadison

Amanda is a litigation attorney who is licensed in Texas and Louisiana. Education and learning have always been her roadmap and path of upward mobility. Amanda was drawn to JOYE because the organization values educating the youth through books, people of diverse backgrounds, and new experiences, which will help them reach their full potential.

She was a college athlete for the University of Texas at Tyler and she earned a Juris Doctorate from the University of North Texas at Dallas College of Law. Amanda attends Gracehill Church in Dallas, and she enjoys reading, working out, playing tennis, and pottery. She believes her greatest gifts are her family and friends.

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Holly Thedford

Sponsorship Director

Holly is a seasoned sales executive in telecom with over 5 years of experience. Holly was inspired to become part of the JOYE team after hearing about the resilience, courage, and gratitude of the JOYE recipients from founder Alphy Jurarim. She personally understands the challenges of overcoming adversity. She has tackled many obstacles in order to become successful, and she desires to help others do the same. She brings her “life of the party” enthusiasm to every JOYE meeting and event, and maintains her goal of helping everyone leave with a smile.

Meet the Team

Sharon Fore-Guillory

Sharon Fore-Guillory is a motivational speaker, teacher and entrepreneur with a heart for people and especially women. She currently mentors and coaches women to impact their families, communities and the world with their gifts, talents and skills. She is the owner of Behind the Veil Events, a full service wedding and event planning business that has expanded operations and staff to the Dallas area.

She is a Corporate Sales Training Manager with Charter Communications and realizes that her occupation gives her the opportunity to impact people of all statuses. Sharon is passionate about helping others and shares her compassion for the community by partnering with organizations that are making a difference in the lives of all people.

She is an avid reader and loves to study Bible History. She serves in ministry as the leader of the Women’s Ministry and co-leads the Marriage Ministry with her husband Earl, at St. James Baptist Church in Pilot Point, TX. She is the mother of 6 amazing daughters, 1 awesome son and loves being Gigi to Kinsleigh, her first granddaughter. Her motto is: “You don’t h have to be GREAT to START – but you have to START to be GREAT.”

Meet the Team

Arthur Gabbidon

Arthur is a professional in the financial industry where he has been working for Wells Fargo Bank for twenty years. He holds a Bachelor Degree in Marketing and a Masters of Arts (MA) with focus on Professional Development from Amberton University.

"I have a passion for serving and uplifting the needy and JOYE provides me with the platform to be able to reach those who need us the most locally here in Collin County Texas and in my homeland. "