Founder and CEO
Michelle Molitor is the founder and CEO of Fellowship for Race & Equity in Education (FREE) in 2014, now The Equity Lab (TEL). Through honest and open dialogue across difference, and liberatory organizational change efforts, The Equity Lab strives to build change agents who can lead collective anti-racist action in their organizations.
Our equity work began as a response to the urgent need for culturally responsive systemic change for our most vulnerable students. Ms. Molitor has partnered with and led work alongside several national and regional education agencies and works directly with organizations across the education ecosystem, including the Department of Education, philanthropic groups, district offices, schools, and education-facing nonprofits. Ms. Molitor is a Pahara-Aspen Fellow and a member of the Billions Institute.
Prior to founding Fellowship for Race and Equity in Education and The Equity Lab, Ms. Molitor was a founding administrator of E.L. Haynes Public Charter School, where she served as the Director of Year Round Programs, Assistant Principal, and Principal of the Elementary School from 2004-2014. Before joining E.L. Haynes, Ms. Molitor taught in Fairfax County Public Schools, served as the Education Coordinator aboard The Freedom Schooner Amistad, and helped lead humanitarian educational travel with People to People Student Ambassador and International groups. In 2012, she was a recipient of The Washington Post’s Agnes Meyer Distinguished Educational Leadership Award.
Ms. Molitor earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Education from Central Michigan University and completed her Master of Science in Administration at Trinity University through New Leaders for New Schools, an urban principal training fellowship.
Erin Trent Johnson
Erin Trent Johnson is the CEO and principal coach and facilitator for Trent Johnson Advisors and our Senior Advisor here at The Equity Lab. TJA works with multiple clients in education, civic, non-profit, technology-based organizations across the nation. TJA’s approach to coaching and leadership development helps education and civic leaders to notice, name and disrupt systemic barriers to equity and inclusion within themselves and their organizations. As a coach and facilitator, Erin provides a dynamic learning experience for leaders that fosters personal and professional growth, transforms organizational culture and leads to community impact. At The Equity Lab, Erin will lead the design of racial literacy and leadership coaching and support training design and facilitation.
Erin has nearly fifteen years of experience and leadership in education, community organizing, and community development which has shaped her vision, knowledge and desire to support leaders to solve challenging problems of equity and community building. Prior to founding TJA, Erin led a systems-level racial equity initiative across multiple K-12 public schools including teacher and leader training, talent recruitment and retention, and family and community engagement in Philadelphia; founded a community health and empowerment initiative; and led corporate social responsibility for a mission-driven urban retail business focused on job skill and youth development. Erin’s experience and skills around equity leadership are applied to her work as an equity leadership coach.
Erin is trained in the Coaching for Transformation model by Leadership that Works, Coaching for Equity by the National Equity Project, People’s Institute for Survival and Beyond: Unlearning Racism training, The Racial Empowerment Collaborative Racial Literacy training, and as SEED leader with The National Seeking Educational Equity and Diversity (SEED) Project.
Erin has a Masters in Public Administration degree from the Fels School of Government at the University of Pennsylvania and a Bachelors degree from Hampton University.
Director of Marketing and Operations
Bethany Molitor is the Director of Marketing & Operations for The Equity Lab. Bethany began her career in education at E.L. Haynes Public Charter School on the operations team in 2005, soon after the school’s founding. Bethany was central to creating and advancing policies, processes, and systems for an increasingly large staff and community that grew from a temporary site above a CVS on 14th Street, with 139 students and fewer than 20 staff members, to a school with 3 campuses, more than 230 staff, and almost 1,200 students.
Bethany is most proud of her work to ease the stress of the enrollment process for parents, especially her collaboration with the MySchoolDC Common Lottery Team, which has been a huge success for schools and families alike. Following 10 years of service at E.L. Haynes PCS, Bethany joined the Fellowship for Race & Equity in Education in strong support of the mission and theory of action.