Jennifer French Giarratano
Public Relations Manager
Andrew Young School of Policy Studies
ATLANTA—Andrew Young School alumni Candice Dixon (M.P.A. ‘07), Captain Aprille Moore (B.S. in Criminal Justice ‘05) and Mary-Kate Starkel (B.S.W. ’07, M.P.A. ’10) were recently honored by Georgia’s leading business and economic development publications.
Dixon and Moore were named to the Atlanta Business Chronicle’s 2021 40 Under 40 list, recognized as “young movers and shakers who are scaling the ranks, making a mark in their industries and leading in their communities” in metro Atlanta. Starkel, whose M.P.A. program focused on nonprofit management, was named to Georgia Trend’s 40 Under 40 list “honoring the state’s best and brightest.”
Dixon is the Coalition Development Director for NPower, a national nonprofit that creates pathways to economic prosperity by launching digital careers for military veterans and young adults from underserved communities. She has worked more than 15 years in nonprofits, her work centering on community building, health equity, human trafficking, gender equity and programming empowering women and girls.
“I’ve always had a passion for empowering women and girls,” she said. “When I first moved to Atlanta, I Ied the GoGirlGo! national initiative from the Women’s Sports Foundation and have led Women’s Leadership Initiatives at the United Way of Greater Atlanta.”
At NPower she launched Command Shift, a coalition advancing racial and gender equity in technology.
“With just five percent of computing-related jobs held by Black and Latina women, Command Shift seeks to shift the technology industry,” she said. “We believe that there should be a shift in thinking and training. Tech and tech-enabled companies should re-wire their hiring practices and prioritize recruiting and hiring tech-skilled women of color pursuing tech careers through non-traditional pathways.
“My work is, and will continue to be, about access. An investment in women is an investment in stronger communities. By providing access to tech-skilled women of color, we can launch more digital careers and create pathways to self-sufficiency and wealth creation that will impact women—and their families—for generations to come.”
Capt. Moore leads the training, background and recruitment efforts for the Fulton County Sheriff’s Office as assistant unit commander. She has served more than 15 years in local law enforcement, and her volunteer service runs even longer beginning with Open Hand Atlanta in 2002. She is an ambassador for youthSpark and for Black Girls RUN! and serves on the boards of Junior League of DeKalb County, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority and Jack and Jill of America.
On October 20, Capt. Moore joined the Andrew Young School’s Career Services office as a Professional in Residence, offering AYS students a chance to learn more about a career in law enforcement.
“As a woman in law enforcement, I recognize my role is more pivotal than ever,” she said. “I am able to bring a unique perspective to the profession through not only advocating for progressive thought amongst my peers, but also fostering community connections that build trust. Ultimately, I would like my law enforcement career to draw more women into the profession. There are inherent dangers associated with entering this profession, but when women are able see themselves in me, it allows the mind to push past the fear to embrace their calling in a profession that so desperately needs them.”
Despite the demands of her profession, Capt. Moore places a high value in her volunteer commitments. “Engaging with community organizations during my personal time allows people to see me as more than the career I chose, but as an engaged citizen with a vested interest in the success of the community and its people.”
Starkel is Vice President of Development for redefinED atlanta, a nonprofit intermediary engaging community, advocating for equity and funding critical work to ensure every student in every community of Atlanta receives a great K-12 public education. She has spent nearly a lifetime volunteering for nonprofits, her earliest experience as a teen engaging other teens in service and then serving as a shift manager in college at an emergency shelter for the homeless. She’s aided a variety of youth-serving and educational nonprofits, helping both the institutions and the individuals they serve grow and prosper.
“The world needs hope, and so often nonprofit organizations fill that need for our collective community,” she said. “I believe strongly in the professionalization and democratization of the nonprofit sector. To me, that means organizations led in partnership by the communities experiencing the need and people trained in ‘the how.’ Heart work is hard work, but it shouldn’t occur in silos or feel distant from what’s happening on the ground.
“That’s one reason I am so proud to be an AYSPS alum, where social work, public policy and nonprofit administration all intersect to create a better future for Atlanta.”