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 The Leadership Team

Monique Carruthers, Executive Director

Monique Carruthers is the Founder and Executive Director of ZEST Preparatory Academy. She has impacted student achievement in Georgia’s rural and urban K-12 schools for the last 20 years in traditional, virtual, and charter settings. Most recently, she was the Executive Director for the Innovation Fund Foundation, Inc. at the Governor's Office of Student Achievement (GOSA) where she also served as an Adult Learning Facilitator and Literacy Specialist. In this role,  she supported Georgia school systems to improve literacy instruction in grades K-3 by collaborating with district leaders, school administrators, and teachers.   Ms. Carruthers also has previous experience as an educational consultant, PK-5 teacher, founding schools as an elementary administrator, and was a founding Curriculum Coordinator for  Georgia’s first K-8 virtual school in 2007. 

The Douglas County Chamber of Commerce named Monique a Top Ten Young Professional of 2020 and member of the 2021 Leadership Douglas class of community leaders. She serves on a number of boards and committees focused on educational equity, literacy, and community engagement. She is active in the community and serves on a number of boards and committees focused on educational equity, literacy, and community engagement including the Douglasville Public Arts Commission, the Board of Directors for the Douglasville Boys and Girls Club, and is the Philanthropy/ Community Service Chair for the West Georgia Chapter of Jack and Jill of America, Inc.  Monique earned an undergraduate degree from the University of California San Diego, an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership from Lehigh University and is completing an Ed.D in Educational Leadership. In her free time, she can be found cheering on her three school-aged children as they actively become our next generation of leaders.

Renee Davis, Director of Operations

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Renee Davis has devoted the past 12 years to supporting instructional school leaders in managing school-based operations for the DC Public School System for over 1,600 students. She is committed to building and fostering a collaborative community of practice among business operations managers that ensure our youngest minds have academically and operationally excellent schools that create unlimited opportunities for every student. She contributes her success to the ability to foster relationships with school stakeholders. Her vision and talents to nurture relationships continue to make a difference in the lives of her students, staff, parents, and community partners. 


Renee's work is focused on developing operational practices, policies, and procedures to support academic fairness and inclusion, guaranteeing that every child has the resources, support, and space to be successful.  She is excited to serve as the Founding Director of Operations and help create a school that empowers scholars with the skills to take advantage of opportunities that foster academic, cultural, and personal growth. Renee holds a BS from the University of Maryland Eastern Shore and a Master's in Business Administration from the University of Maryland Global Campus. She is a long-standing member of the Kappa Omicron Nu Human Science National Honor Society.

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