Associate Director of Programming and Partnerships
Zaia Thombre brings over 13 years of experience in the education and nonprofit sector. With a background as a math teacher, Zaia's instructional journey spans across both traditional public schools in the Mississippi Delta and as a charter school educator at STEM Preparatory Academy in Nashville. Her experience also includes serving as the founding Southeast Director for Enriched Schools, an organization dedicated to solving the substitute teacher shortage by reimagining substitute teaching. During her time at Enriched, she launched the Nashville region and expanded the organization to three cities. Most recently, Zaia was the Director of Strategic Development and Talent for STEM Preparatory Academy. Zaia's proudest accomplishments include serving as an AmeriCorps *VISTA, spearheading fundraising and building a playground for her school community, and raising her two beautiful children, Zuri (3 years) and Zen (1 year) with her husband, Shawn. Zaia received her Masters of Public Policy from Vanderbilt University and is currently working on her Juris Doctorate at the Nashville School of Law. She is thrilled to be joining the TECA team.