Brotherhood Initiative

Project Team

For general questions about the BI, please reach out to us at For specific inquiries, read more about our project team below.

Joe Lott, PhD, is the Principal Investigator of the Brotherhood Initiative and an associate professor in the College of Education at the University of Washington. He studies racial identity development and civic engagement among Black students in college, the impact of college experiences on civic and political dispositions, and how to change the college-going culture through parent-school-community partnerships. His emerging research interests revolve around how to leverage university-community partnerships to foster wellness and educational achievement for males of color along the P-20 continuum.  He teaches classes on applied statistics, civic engagement in higher education, school-community partnerships, sociology of education, and student development.

Theresa Ling Yeh, PhD, is the Director of Research and Programs, overseeing the research-to-practice components of the Brotherhood Initiative. Her work involves curriculum design as well as assessment and evaluation, ensuring that these continually inform each other. Her research focuses on the impact of race, gender and socioeconomic status on postsecondary access and engagement, and her areas of expertise include mixed-methods research and program evaluation. She has over 15 years of professional experience working in higher education and non-profit sectors, focusing on postsecondary access and retention, college transfer, service-learning, multicultural affairs, and federal TRIO programs.

Paul Metellus is the Assistant Director for Student Success. His primary role includes direct support and advising to the Brotherhood Initiative student scholars. His professional experience spans student conduct, multicultural and diversity affairs and residential life. Paul has a Bachelor of Arts in Religion with a minor in English from the University of Florida and a Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction with a concentration of College Student Affairs from the University of South Florida.

Kandi Bauman, PhD, is a Research Scientist with the BI. She holds a dual Bachelor of Science & Arts and Masters of Public Administration degree from The Evergreen State College. Raised in Southwest Washington, Kandi is a former Gates Millennium Scholar and first-generation college student. With over ten years of experience as a student affairs practitioner, her research interests centers on strengthening post-secondary access and success by developing effective institutional leaders and equity-focused policies.

D’andre Garcia-Stubbs is the BI Student Success Coordinator. He is an alumnus of the University of Washington where he received a B.A. in Education, Communities, & Organizations with a double minor in Diversity and Human Rights. D’andre also holds a Master’s degree in Secondary Education from Arizona State University. Having spent the past three years as a middle school mathematics teacher, his work now primarily focuses on cultivating a supportive academic environment through a robust peer mentoring program, strategic advising, and student support. Driven by lived experiences, he has a passion for educational equity and strives to dismantle systemic barriers to create transformative opportunities. D’andre is committed to helping students grow and learn as they strive to be boundless.

Siamak Vossoughi is a BI Teaching Associate. He is an Iranian-American writer and teacher who graduated from the UW after studying English/Education Emphasis. He has worked in K-8 schools for twenty-five years and he has published two short story collections, Better Than War and A Sense of the Whole. His writing has also been published in journals such as Kenyon Review, Missouri Review, Columbia Journal, and Bennington Review. Along with working with the BI, he has also served as artist-in-residence at the UW College of Education.

Tory Brundage is a Graduate Program Assistant with the BI, and a PhD student in Higher Education Leadership at the University of Washington.  His professional experience spans college admissions, academic advising, public health, study abroad and diversity programming with particular emphasis on the experience of students in the college and selective major choice processes.  His research seeks to examine science education, identity development and academics success for males of color in pre-health pathways within higher education with particular emphasis on the barriers faces by Black males pursuing medicine at predominantly White institutions.


Student Staff

Hi, my name is Joshua Auvaa. I’m a Senior Informatics major on a custom track focusing on Human-Computer Interaction, as well as a Cohort 4 BI scholar. After graduation I hope to work in the Information Architecture or UX industry to create seamless digital experiences for all. These days my hobbies and interests include bouldering, dance, theology, and travel.

Hello, my name is Jackie Beng! I’m currently doing a double degree in Business Admin. (Information Systems) and Informatics (Software Development) in hopes of working in Tech and Management. Besides school and work, I like to spend my time on my hobbies. I like to play (drums, piano, bass & guitar) and listen to music. I also like doing sports such as snowboarding, bouldering, tennis, and so on. And, of course, my art stuff, such as photography and videography.

Hi everyone! My name is Moti Geleto and I am a second-year student here at the University of Washington in Seattle intending on majoring in Business Administration with a concentration in Finance and Information Systems. I grew up in Vancouver, Washington and in my free time, I enjoy going to the gym and spending time with friends and family.

Hello all, my name is Emanuel Tesfaye. I’m a Senior double majoring in Sociology and Education Communities and Organizations to obtain a Master’s of Education in Curriculum Development and Community Interaction after finishing this Spring. Outside of school, I love finding new music and movies, cooking, and running. I enjoyed traveling around Europe during The Brotherhood Initiative: Early Fall Start Study Abroad in Rome, Italy and loved it. Let me know where I should go next!