Dr. Mani Hull is the Chief Executive Officer of the Interfaith Center of Light (ICL).
She was born and raised in Malaysia in a multi-cultural, multi-lingual and multi-faith environment. She holds a doctorate in higher education leadership and policy from Vanderbilt University. Her professional career in international development and higher education leadership spans three decades and 50 countries.
Since spring 2008, she served as the founding executive director of the Tennessee Campus Compact (TNCC), mobilizing up to 30 engaged campuses statewide to strengthen student learning outcomes and revitalize communities contributing to workforce and economic development. The TNCC is affiliated with a national office and 34 other State Compacts consisting of 1,200 member institutions who work to uphold the civic purposes of higher education as well as to advocate for the high impact educational practices endorsed by the American Association of Colleges and Universities. In 2012, the TNCC was recognized as a key state partner in addressing issues of access, diversity, retention, graduation, and workforce development by the Tennessee General Assembly as well as the White House Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships-Department of Education Together for Tomorrow Initiative. She has served as an Academic Auditor and a Maxine Smith Fellow on behalf of the Tennessee Board of Regents and is a registered service-learning evaluation specialist for the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.
As CEO of ICL, Dr. Hull is actively engaged in advancing an interfaith education platform to harmonize co-existence for global peace through creating effective learning opportunities for unity in diversity. She envisions all faiths to exist and flourish, the glory of truth to be sung in all languages and tunes, there to be understanding and respect for the differences among faiths, and each faith recognized as contributing to community. Hull advocates for the President’s Interfaith and Community Service Campus Challenge and various global interfaith alliances.
Since spring 2017, Dr. Hull also serves as the Scholar in Residence for Unity of Nashville, Vice- President of the Sri Sathya Sai Center of Nashville as well as a Board Member of the Parameshwari Ananda Nilayam Ashram in Mauritius.
A native of Colorado, A. Santini is the Director of Business Operations & Strategic Alliance for the Interfaith Center of Light. She brings to our organization a plethora of knowledge in business development, marketing, and strategic planning in real estate relating to refugee and immigrant housing security. In addition, Santini consistently provides collaborative efforts in all aspects of leadership, curriculum development, and change management processes. She holds a bachelor’s degree in marketing, a master’s degree in education concentrated on adult education and training, and she is a real estate agent licensed in the State of Colorado.
Daynise Joseph is from Nashville and her educational background is in Management and Organizational Development. She specializes in community organizing; strategic planning; organizational development; program planning; small group dynamics; and nonprofit management. She is a strong advocate for community colleges and believes that they are often the best entry point for non-traditional students and students with particular challenges to attain higher education. Daynise attended Volunteer State Community College before transferring to Bethel University based in McKenzie, Tennessee.
Currently she is the Executive Director for a grassroots neighborhood organization whose population is largely minority and economically challenged. Current organizing efforts focus on healthy food access, education, crime and safety, gentrification, and other issues as generated by the community. Daynise has worked in coalition with other organizations for many years as a community advocate with a focus on economic justice, food policy, education policy, and leadership development. She has developed and offered various trainings on community organizing, strategic planning, nonprofit basics, and other aspects of organizational development. In addition to her community focus she works as an independent political consultant and strategist for local campaigns.
Her current service includes the board of directors for Urban Housing Solutions, the Nashville Mobile Market, and Community Shares. She is a strong and vocal advocate for both economically challenged students and children in exceptional education. Daynise is a participant with MNPS’s Exceptional Education Advisory Council and is vice chair of the Director’s Parent Advisory Council. She also serves on the Community Engagement Committee for Nashville Next. Daynise also works in the entertainment industry as a freelance writer, print model, radio personality, and broadcast professional.
Ms. Karunaratne was born and raised in Sri Lanka and relocated to Nashville, TN in 2012.
Since March 2013 she serves as Practice Manager at the Center for Health, Culture and Society in South Nashville. In Sri Lanka, she served as Office Manager with the Wildlight Company as well as a Production Manager of video film productions at STUDIO 27. She directed two documentary films for a French TV Magazine program which were telecasted on Sri Lankan television. She served as a Volunteer Social Worker and National Executive Committee Member with Service Civil International promoting international understanding in Sri Lanka from 2003 to 2010 where she organized workshops and training programs. Ms. Karunaratne earned a Post Graduate Diploma in Writership and Communication from the University of Sri Jayewardenepura. She obtained a B.A. in Mass Communication and Sociology from the University of Kelaniya in 1999. She is a member of the Nashville Photography Club as well as a life member of the India Association of Nashville.
Rev.Jermel A. Gilliam, a native of Baltimore, is a beloved father, husband, son and a Religious Science Practitioner. He has been a Human Services professional in the Baltimore Area for over 17 years. He attended Morgan State University where he obtained a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work. He then went on to Delaware State University where he received his Master’s Degree in Social Work with specific emphasis on Mental Health. While in Delaware, he founded the Wisdom Chapter of the Gentlemen of Quality. This organization is historically known for male Rites of Passage programs, Social Consciousness and Community Service. He is ordained as an interspiritual/interfaith minister through One Spirit Learning Alliance. Jermel’s other projects include: working with Domestic Violence Batterers at the House of Ruth, working with the mentally ill as a therapist at various community outpatient mental health Facilities throughout the Baltimore Area, and presentations on working more effectively with single mothers of male youth at the annual Conference for the National Association of Black Social Workers. Jermel is a licensed Social Worker, currently working with Juvenile Sex Offenders and their families.
Rev. Dr. H. Malcolm Newton is a native son of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. He is the founding President of The Urban Tikkun Centre, Denver Institute of Urban Studies: Adult College and Seminary, American Global Academy, and the Centre for Urban Research and Environmental Technology. He is also the Founding Chairman of the Board for American Pathways University. Recently, he has been appointed as Vice President of the American Association of Blacks in Energy (AABE, Denver Chapter). He is a graduate of Cheyney University (HBCU), Dallas Seminary, and Harvard University. Likewise, he has completed postgraduate studies at Oxford University; United Kingdom, and the University of Cape Town; South Africa. Dr. Newton is also the former founding Director of Globalization Program and former Assistant Professor of World Christianity at Denver Seminary. He is the author of three books, to include Can the Black Family Be Saved, and his forthcoming books The Urban Kingdom of God and Green Faith.
Roxana Imam is a clarinetist, multi-instrumentalist, vocalist, composer/arranger, and instructor. She has performed, toured and recorded in countless live concerts, chamber music festivals, and international festivals with different national and international artists, Grammy and Emmy winners, ensembles and groups, throughout the United States and Canada. She has also performed on National Public Radio (NPR). She is a classically trained cross-over artist and did her undergraduate training at the University of Cincinnati’s College-Conservatory-of-Music in clarinet performance and music history, with over 15 years of orchestral experience.
She has performed, recorded and collaborated with many well-known musicians over the years, most notably with Kalyan Pathak, Bahri Karacay, Byron House. She is a former member of University of Chicago’s Middle East Music Ensemble and is also currently a member of Turkana, Global Heart of Sound, as well as founding member of Alten Weg. She has devoted her life to the study of world music from around the globe and plays many genres/styles of music.
Roxana feels that music is very powerful medium that can heal and unite humanity beyond borders, language, ethnicity, or religion. She states, “Music immediately reminds us that we are all one, regardless of the labels we place upon ourselves. We are all human beings first and foremost…”