Alumni Council Exec Committee Members Highlight Their Raven Pride

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Alumni Council Exec Committee Members Highlight Their Raven Pride
Emma Dement ’16

Catch up with president Anne Forsyth English ’98, vice presidents Janie Smith Brooks ’98 and Dewayne (DJ) Washington II ’16, and past president Watts Winston ’10.

On the heels of a strategic redesign in 2022, Ravenscroft’s Alumni Council has been hard at work building alumni engagement with a focus on communication, events and experiences, philanthropy and volunteerism, and diversity, equity and inclusion. We caught up with the four members of the board’s Executive Committee — president Anne Forsyth English ’98, vice president for engagement Janie Smith Brooks ’98, vice president for nominations Dewayne (DJ) Washington II ’16 and past president Watts Winston ’10 — to learn more about them today and why they’ve made this commitment to the school. Here’s what they had to say.

What have you been up to since graduating from Ravenscroft?


Anne Forsyth English ’98: After graduating from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill with degrees in economics and psychology, I earned an MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth. Today, I am an analytical strategist and prior management consultant with more than 20 years of experience in diverse expertise across varying industries including consumer packaged goods, technology, media, finance and nonprofits.

I moved back to N.C. in 2019 after spending a decade in Hong Kong, where I ran Bamboo Strategic Advisors. The company worked side by side with women founders to provide tailored, strategic advisory services to scale and implement solutions. In March 2020, I began serving as Chief Strategy Officer of Allobee, which connects small businesses and start-ups to a vetted, underutilized workforce of women who have left the 9-to-5. I am currently working as the COO on a new project, Worldclass Clothing, an apparel brand founded by colon cancer survivors that works to bring attention to colonoscopies and gut wellness, while also increasing access for those who are unable to afford them.

I enjoy spending my free time traveling with my husband, Jonathan, and sons, Grayer ’30 and Rowan ’32. Locally, I serve on the board of the Council for Entrepreneurial Development.

Janie Smith Brooks ’98: A tech company I used to work for used emojis for introductions and storytelling, so that’s what I’ll do here: 👩‍🎓👣 ⛵🗽📊👩‍❤️‍👨🏠👶🧑‍💻🤝🎯.

Here’s what that means: After graduating from Ravenscroft, I went to UNC-Chapel Hill and was involved in a lot of campus activities, mainly Chi Omega Sorority and the UNC Outdoor Education Center. After college, I worked at Sail Caribbean in the British Virgin Islands and then joined them full-time in Long Island, New York. After four years there, I got a job in the recruiting department at McKinsey & Company in Manhattan. I met my husband in New York, and then we moved back to Raleigh and had Carter ’35 a few years later.

Upon coming back to Raleigh, I got involved with the Junior League, StepUp Ministries and alumni affairs at Ravenscroft. I kept working remotely for McKinsey and then pivoted to a tech company, Faire, based in San Francisco, until late 2023. I’ve now launched my own search and recruiting consultancy, JSB Search & Strategy, LLC.

Dewayne Washington II ’16: Upon graduating from Ravenscroft in 2016, I attended the University of Miami and earned a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration in 2020. After graduating from the University of Miami, I remained in Miami and began work at JP Morgan in the Private Bank.

Watts Winston ’10: Starting in the fall of 2010, I attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where I majored in economics and entrepreneurship.

After my time at UNC, I joined Hilton Hotels, where I embarked on a hospitality-oriented career path that took me across the Southeast over the course of several years. Residing in Chattanooga, Tennessee, and later in Birmingham, Alabama, I embraced the opportunity to work in various positions within the hotel industry, which not only broadened my understanding and perspectives of the business but gave me the ability to hone my leadership and management skills. My time with Hilton culminated in my eventual promotion to General Manager, a role in which I oversaw hotel operations.

In 2018, my journey took a turn when I decided to leave Hilton and return to Raleigh, where I joined my father [Bob Winston ’80] and, later, my brother [Spencer ’17] at Winston Hospitality. This transition marked a new chapter in my career, allowing me to contribute to the family business’s growth and success while leveraging the accumulation of my industry experience and insights. I’m currently overseeing our company’s management operations and assisting with our development projects.

I became involved with the Ravenscroft Alumni Council in 2019 and served as its president for several years. I currently serve in an advisory capacity as a member of the Executive Committee. On a personal note, I married my wife, Meghan Jenkins ’13, in April 2022.

Anne Forsyth English ’98

Janie Smith Brooks ’98

Dewayne Washington II ’16

Watts Winston ’10