Crisha is a retired founding member of The Pepin Academies, Inc., a group of charter schools in Tampa, Florida which serves students with specific learning and learning related disabilities. Before becoming involved in the charter school movement and particularly, the Pepin Academies, she served in many executive positions since 1973. Her time spent in the corporate world has enabled her to use her skills from a business perspective. While with The Pepin Family Foundation, she was responsible for initiating, enhancing and sustaining relationships with individuals and groups in business, civic organizations, education and the community large, as well as numerous other initiatives. She also was a 10 year member of Florida Tax Watch, and was part of the Advisory Committee for Florida TaxWatch’s Center for Educational Performance and Accountability (CEPA) In addition, she is a past member of the Hillsborough County School District Superintendent’s ESE (Exceptional Student Education) Advisory Committee, the Hillsborough County School District Workforce Initiative Committee for Transitional Students, and the Bay Area Charter Leadership Council, an organization of all charter schools in Hillsborough County. She has successfully coordinated fund raising for, Pepin Academies and Pepin Heart Hospital for 22 years before retiring.
Community Liaison and a Founder, Pepin Academies/Pepin Family Foundation- 1998- 2021
Crisha was responsible for advancing community-based objectives for The Pepin Academies and Pepin Heart Hospital. Working closely with a cross-functional team, and lead the foundation community outreach efforts. She developed high-level relationships with community and corporate business leaders to achieve meaningful partnerships and bring awareness to the community. She still engages key stakeholders within the community to build and sustain meaningful networks, collaborations and programs to support the needs of people with disabilities.
Dr. Carolyn Scott is a native of Tampa Florida and has spent her entire 35-year educational career in exceptional student education (ESE). Dr. Scott graduated with a bachelor’s degree in special education from the University of South Florida and began working with students identified as emotionally handicapped at Eisenhower Middle School in Hillsborough County. After ten years in the public-school system, Dr. Scott became the ESE Specialist for youth services in the Hillsborough County Juvenile Justice program where she eventually became the Coordinator. Dr. Scott received her master’s degree in Educational Leadership while working in the school system.
While beginning work on her doctorate studies, Dr. Scott took a leave from the school system, but never really took any time off. She did consultative work within the emerging Hillsborough County charter school program, worked as an adjunct professor of special education for both St. Leo University and the University of South Florida, and became a professional development trainer for the Florida Diagnostic Learning Resource Service (FDLRS). It was at this time that she was offered a position as an ESE Specialist with Pepin Academies, a charter school who serves children identified as having learning difficulties. Dr. Scott was an integral member of the Pepin Academy serving as Director of the Middle School, General Director of ESE, Curriculum and Research and Principal. Before retiring after 15 years of service to Pepin, she opened the second Pepin Academies in Hillsborough County and assisted in opening the third Pepin Academies in Pasco County. She wrote and was awarded a grant of $500,000 from the Department of Education to train other charter schools in services that helped Pepin becomesuccessful.
Since retirement, Dr. Scott continues to meet with students and help them in the areas of reading, tutoring and self-awareness. She is involved in several on-going projects in the community that centers around helping students and adults with disabilities achieve success. Dr. Scott is excited to join us as Administrator and she brings an invaluable background and expertise in writing and drafting the curriculum for Aspire.
Dr. Tridas is the Medical Director of the Tridas Center for Child Development and President of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics Consultants, Inc. He is a Developmental Pediatrician who specializes in the diagnosis and management of handicapping conditions including ADHD, learning differences, dyslexia, autism spectrum disorders, intellectual disabilities and other neurodevelopmental and behavioral problems.
He is Clinical Associate Professor in Pediatrics at the University of South Florida, Morsani College of Medicine, a member of the National Joint Committee on Learning disabilities (NJCLD) and Immediate Past President of the International Dyslexia Association. Dr. Tridas is also the State Medical Director for Pediatric Health Choice-Prescribed Pediatric Extended Care Facilities (PPEC). Dr. Tridas is a founder and partner of Tridas, LLC, a software company that developed the Tridas eWriter, an application for web based structured interviews of caregivers and teachers that generates a customized evaluation report and provides hundreds of specific recommendations.
Dr. Tridas has resided in the Tampa Bay area since 1982. He completed his fellowship in Ambulatory Pediatrics with emphasis on Developmental Disabilities at the Children’s Hospital Medical Center in Boston. During that time, he held an appointment as a Teaching Fellow at Harvard University. Dr. Tridas completed his residency in Pediatrics at the Children’s Hospital of Buffalo. He graduated from the University of Puerto Rico, School of Medicine in 1977.
Dr. Tridas lectures nationally and internationally on topics such as dyslexia, learning disorders, ADHD, autism spectrum disorders, anxiety, executive functions and other behavioral and developmental pediatrics related subjects.
Our ASPIRE Ambassadors & Advisors
- Julie Reyes
- Tommy & Amanda Shannon
- Shelly Shay
- Grady Pridgen
- Phyllis Guthman
- Joe McGee
- John Ficca
- John & Kay Sullivan
- Vicki Westra
- Laurie Stemm
- Susan Bennett
- Camille Mackesey
- Doria Gomez
Our list is growing…