As the Founder and President of the non-profit organization, iN Education Inc., DeAndre’ L. Nixon has over two decades worth of experience founding several other ventures as an entrepreneur. In addition to iN Education Inc., he started a special events production company located in Seattle, Washington, as well as launching the consulting firm, Proficient Pro. DeAndre’ continues to be responsible for the day-to-day operations of each company. He graduated with a BA in Management from the University of Washington and achieved an Entrepreneur MBA at Baldwin-Wallace College. During his time in Seattle, DeAndre’ created and designed art-related products for the bi-annual event, Seattle Fashion Week. As a curator for seven consecutive years, he worked with photographers, videographers, fashion designers, make-up artists, and hair stylists. He was also responsible for designing the sets and selecting both cast and crew members. DeAndre’s perseverance and esteemed leadership in collaborative community efforts modeled teamwork and overall success. After returning to Akron, Ohio, DeAndre shifted his focus to philanthropy activities that centered around education. His goal was to offer programs and services that would benefit the community he grew-up in through various ways. Thus, the inception of iN Education started with Scholooza and teaching secondary level youth the art of special events production. Since then, youth participants have continued to be directly involved in instituting various events throughout the years for their community. All while obtaining the hard-and-soft skills needed for success in all industries. Expanding on these efforts, DeAndre’ increased iN Education’s portfolio of programs to include an educational e-publication, Zealousness; designed additional industry modules for the Scholooza career exploration program; and started the competitive art program, Battle of the Teal 4EDU. With his strong community involvement, DeAndre’ is successful in maintaining and continuously growing relationships with other community organizations, families, grant foundations, and corporate organizations throughout NEO. He prosperously established the partnership with the Polaris Career Center which now offers two of iN Education’s career modules, Business Administration and Event Planning. DeAndre’ was born and raised in Akron, Ohio where he graduated from Garfield High School. He then went on to join the US Navy immediately after graduation, courageously fought in the Persian Gulf War, and was honorably discharged.
As the Executive Administrator for iN Education, Inc., Sona Nixon’s extraordinary management skills include project management, team management, organizing research, and directing further business administration related tasks. Since 2013, she has been invaluable in recruiting and managing a team of over 200 remote professionals of diverse fields including: graphic design, editorial, social media, and marketing. Sona personally manages and oversees the publication process of iN Education’s e-magazine, Zealousness, since 2014. She also has considerable experience operating project management applications such as Podio, Microsoft Teams, Salesforce, and G Suite by Google. In addition to being an administrator, Sona is also a Creative Designer. As a designer, she contributes her artistic talents on a daily basis. This includes working on art projects related to webpage updates, marketing materials, online presence, and the digital art used for social media platforms, YouTube videos, and Zealousness magazine designs. Sona’s eye for visual design is also heavily relied upon for the finalized Zealousness Master Layout and planning events such as the Battle of the Teal 4EDU. Sona is proficient in a number of Adobe applications such as: Illustrator, Premiere Pro, InDesign, Photoshop, After Effects and Acrobat. She is also exceedingly efficient with free web-based applications including, but not limited to, WordPress, Canva, and Adobe Spark. Along with DeAndre, Sona has contributed to researching and formatting the Event Planning and Business Administration curriculum for iN Education’s career program, Scholooza. After its inception in 2006, Scholooza continues to grow as programming has been significantly featured and taught at the Polaris Career Center in Middleburg Heights since 2018. Sona embraces any and all challenges. She enjoys learning about various subjects to increase and maintain her skills. She is fluent in 5 different languages and is passionate about amateur photography.
David started a nonprofit group in college that raised money for local charities. The group was awarded an American Red Cross Hero Award and was the first student group from a community college to join the Association of Fundraising Professionals. He enjoys planning events to get the community involved in the arts and has organized several art festivals in the past that have brought professional and novice artists together on stage. His most notable accomplishment in this regard was bringing the local jazz band Trepanning Trio on stage alongside a college dance group. This event had an audience of over 100 people consisting primarily of young families and college students. The audience was taught a few basic dances and everyone had the opportunity to perform on stage alongside seasoned dancers accompanied with live music. David has interned with the Lakeland Foundation, the Deepwood Foundation, RTA, and the Cleveland Foundation. He went on to graduate top of his class at Cleveland State University with a B.A. in Organizational Leadership. David has experience leading teams of staff and volunteers in events where less experienced volunteers learn about the many facets of planning an event along with developing a greater appreciation for the arts while more experienced volunteers gain valuable mentoring and leadership experience. He started and currently runs his own business that supports contractors with print takeoffs and material bids. His customers include estimators from local construction companies and sales representatives from around the country. He has been Vice President of the Board of iN Education since October 2017. During this time he created a new career technical education module to add to the family of Scholooza offerings,Vinyl Sidings & Windows Installer program, developed new marketing strategies, put forth plans to expand the Battle of the Teal, formed additional partnerships, contributed to the research and writing of grant requests, and had a hand in the creation or editing of all promotional material. David believes that the Battle of the Teal is the ultimate stage where passion for the arts and education come together.
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