Executive Leadership

Crystal Rountree

Crystal Rountree / Chief Executive Officer

Crystal Rountree joined Jumpstart as its new Chief Executive Officer in January 2024. She most recently served as the Chief Revenue and Development Officer at Teach For America (TFA) where she served on staff since 2005. As Chief Revenue and Development Officer Crystal was responsible for leading the team that grew, strengthened, and diversified TFA's philanthropic partnerships and revenue pathways to optimize and maximize contributions to TFA’s impact.   Crystal served in numerous roles during her eighteen-year tenure at TFA including as a Regional Field Executive, managing and supporting a cohort of executive directors working in communities across Colorado, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Tennessee, North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, and Florida. Before her time as an RFE, she was the Executive Director of the Charlotte-Piedmont Triad region where she successfully led the merger of the Charlotte and North Carolina Piedmont Triad regions in 2018. In that role, she led an operation of nearly 900 corps members and alumni across both communities.   Prior to her time in Charlotte, Crystal served as Senior Vice President, Advisory Support on TFA’s Regional Operations team where she was responsible for helping to build the capacity of TFA’s 50+ executive directors and regional boards through intensive coaching, personalized professional development, and interim executive-level leadership. Crystal also served as the Senior Vice President of Strategic Initiatives & Partnerships for TFA, where she oversaw the organization’s national engagement and partnerships strategy through nine identity- and instructional based initiatives. Crystal was also the founding executive director of Teach For America—Jacksonville, where she launched and scaled efforts over nearly 8 years—growing impact from 50 corps members in 2008 to nearly 350 corps members and alumni in 2015 and raising over $20 million (including a $5M state appropriation that accelerated expansion efforts in Florida). She also worked at the Houston & Atlanta institutes as an Operations Director, on the Atlanta regional staff as the Director of Special Projects and later served as a Senior Recruitment Director for Florida and Georgia.   Upon receiving her B.A. as a summa cum laude graduate from Clark Atlanta University, Crystal taught first grade as a 2003 Metro Atlanta corps member where she was the regional finalist for the Sue Lehmann Teacher’s Excellence Award. Her story with her students has been featured in two books: Teaching As Leadership by Steven Farr, and Switch by Chip and Dan Heath. Crystal is a proud Texan who now resides in Charlotte, NC with her husband Chad and her 6-year old son Kingston. She has served on several non-profit boards over the years, and is a past recipient of the Jacksonville Business Journal 40 Under 40 and Women of Influence Awards. 
Jamella Lee

Jamella Lee / Chief People Officer

Jamella deeply believes in Jumpstart’s vision that “every child in America enters kindergarten prepared to succeed.” As Chief People Officer, she provides human capital leadership to align Jumpstart’s strategic priorities with the necessary people capabilities to deliver on the organization’s mission, business objectives, values, and people-centered culture so that Jumpstart can build a more equitable education system for young children. With Jumpstart Jamella returned to her roots in national service. She earned a bachelor’s degree from the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University, where she also minored in business. After graduating from Cornell, she deferred pursuing her master's in education at Harvard to serve as a corps member and service leader at City Year of Columbus. From there, while earning her master’s at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, she worked as an elementary school teacher at King Elementary School in Cambridge, MA; worked as a facilitator in the Harvard Summer Literacy Institute; and as a literacy teacher at the Dorchester Neighborhood Charter School. Upon graduating, at the behest of former President Clinton and President Nelson Mandela, she moved to South Africa to manage the Clinton Democracy Fellowship at City Year, helping to lead that organization’s first international expansion initiative. After several years in South Africa, Jamella returned to the United States to work as a vice president of communications and professional development for the Ohio Charter School Association and vice president of development and special initiatives at Concept Schools in Chicago. In 2010, Jamella earned a Juris Doctor at The Ohio State University Moritz College of Law, a program for which she was the Katherine C. Jones Scholarship recipient and was also awarded the Marsha Schermer Scholarship by the Columbus Bar Foundation. While in law school, Jamella worked as a two-year summer associate at the law firm of Dinsmore & Shohl, LLP, and taught in the Ohio Law & Leadership Institute, a program developed to provide an opportunity for high school students from underserved communities to learn skills that may help them become lawyers and leaders in their communities. At graduation, Jamella was awarded the Harry S. and Georgina Lett Memorial Award for outstanding service to the Moritz College of Law. A recipient of numerous other awards, Jamella has also been awarded the Compaq Leadership Award, an award honoring alumni of City Year who have distinguished themselves through continued civic leadership and commitment to service. After law school, Jamella joined the Taft School faculty serving as chair of the Global Studies and Service Department and dean of Global and Diversity Education. In collaboration with Waterbury partners and colleagues, she created the Center for Global Leadership and Service, an "action tank" developed though the Edward E. Ford Foundation Educational Leadership Grant initiative and subsequent matching donations. Since 2018 she has served as Jumpstart’s VP of People and Culture. In August of 2021, Jamella was appointed by Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker as a member of the Board of Early Education and Care.
Jennifer Templeman

Jennifer Templeman / President & Chief Operating Officer

Jennifer Templeman, President & Chief Operating Officer, joined Jumpstart in 2010 and brought 20 years of financial management experience to the organization to oversee finance, compliance, risk management, systems, technology, and talent management. In this role, she focuses on building strong policies and procedures with an emphasis on efficiency, support, and quality. Prior to Jumpstart, Jennifer worked at Girls Incorporated of Lynn, managing their finance department as well as an $11 million capital campaign and construction project to provide a new building for their growing programs. She grew up in North Carolina and received her degree in accounting from Capital University in Columbus, Ohio, before deciding to work in the non-profit field. Her entree into financial management came at a domestic violence shelter on the Ohio/West Virginia border, followed by work at a child abuse prevention agency in southern Georgia. Jennifer spends time working with young accountants to provide them a glimpse of the joy to be found working in the non-profit field, knowing their skills are being used to better the lives of others. She regularly reminds those who work with her that they joined the organization because they all believe in the same mission. Every day that her team members manage their duties well, they go home not only with the satisfaction of a job well done, but they also have the honor of knowing they made life better for a child. Jennifer makes her home in Swampscott, Massachusetts, with her husband and three sons.

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