Meet Our Senior Leadership Team

The purpose of the Senior Leadership Team is to develop org-wide strategy, culture, and outcomes.

Nickalous Manning

Executive Director

With his Aspire start in 2012 as the Memphis Community Outreach and Partnerships Manager, Dr. Manning has continued to make his mark on Aspire Memphis as Principal of Hanley Elementary for two years, as Director of Curriculum and Instruction for the region, and most recently as Memphis Associate Superintendent and valued member of the Senior Education Team. In 2018, Dr. Manning became Aspire’s second ever Memphis Area Superintendent.

Dr. Manning has been instrumental in several turnaround schools in Memphis, Tennessee through his work as an assistant principal, principal, and associate superintendent. During his time in these roles, all of his schools experienced double-digit academic gains. Throughout his career, Dr. Manning has received training through New Leaders for New Schools, Harvard Principals Center, Urban Education Center, and Research for Better Teaching. In his fifteen years of being an educator in both district-run public schools and public charter schools, Nickalous served in several capacities including: teacher, coach, assistant principal, principal resident, principal, director of strategic partnerships, director of curriculum, and associate superintendent.

Dr. Manning has been named Airways Teacher of the Year, was featured in the Tennessee Education Association’s training video, “Leadership Series,” and has led a host of leadership teams and professional development series. Moreover, Dr. Manning has been a distinguished lecturer at Christian Brothers University, Trevecca Nazarene University, Memphis City School’s Teaching and Learning Academy, Urban Education Center, and adjunct professor for Performance Learning Systems in conjunction with Christian Brothers University.

Dr. Manning earned his Bachelor’s degree from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in Secondary Education with concentrations and certifications in Economics and U.S. and World History. He also completed a Master’s in Educational Leadership from Trevecca Nazarene University. While completing his Doctorate at Trevecca, his dissertation on single gender education earned him the coveted Trevecca Nazarene University’s Dissertation Award.

Dr. Manning resides in Memphis, Tennessee with his wife, Lequite, and two sons, Miller and Maxwell. In his spare time, he enjoys reading and supporting the development of children.

Monique Cincore

VP of Schools

Mrs. Cincore has been an educator for 27 years. She holds a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Elementary Education and a Master’s Degree in Educational Leadership from Walden University

Mrs. Cincore taught grades one through six in New Orleans and Memphis. She subsequently became the instructional facilitator at Brownville Road Optional, Georgian Hills Elementary and Treadwell Elementary. During her tenure, Mrs. Cincore was named Teacher of the Year, served as the summer school coordinator, state assessment questions writer, ELA Common Core state coach, Relay fellow, and served as a GASL and Ryan Fellowship Principal Mentor. As a result, she played a critical role in many aspects of educational professional development. Mrs. Cincore says that founding Aspire East Academy was the most rewarding aspect of her career thus far. She believes that all students can learn at high levels and has seen evidence of such at Aspire East Academy.

Mrs. Cincore knows that transparency and teamwork are the ultimate ways for schools to be successful in reaching goals and helping children obtain their full potential.

Mrs. Cincore is a wife of 25 years and is the mother of two wonderful children ages 23 and 18.

Mrs. Cincore’s motto is “Stay positive, maintain communication, and do the right thing.” She is looking forward to continuing her career as the Vice President of Schools at Aspire Memphis.

Matt Seigel

VP of Finance

Matt Seigel is the VP of Finance. Matt joined Aspire in 2005 as a founding lead teacher at Antonio Maria Lugo Academy in Los Angeles and has served in a variety of leadership roles at the school and regional level, most recently as associate director of accountability and teacher effectiveness. Originally from Madison, Wisconsin and entering his 6th year as a Memphian, he holds a masters in education administration from California State University, Northridge.

Queria Nunnley

Asst. Director of Special Projects

Queria Nunnley is originally from Little Rock, AR, is a proud wife and a mother of two sons, and has been in education for over ten years. Queria earned her Bachelor’s Degree from Washington University in St. Louis and her Master in the Art of Teaching from the University of Memphis. She previously taught middle school Math and has held various leadership positions including New Teacher Mentor, Director of Academic Achievement, Dean of Students, Assistant Principal and most recently, Principal of Coleman School. Queria worked in both public and private schools before joining Aspire Coleman in 2014. Queria has a passion for educational equity and works relentlessly to meet the needs of scholars, families, and the community. When asked why she does this work, Queria proudly states “I want to provide opportunities for all students to recognize their social-emotional learning and to achieve academic excellence in a safe and positive learning environment.”

Jessica Lindsay

Director of Development

Jessica is a proud Memphian who has devoted her life to ensuring that all students have access to a high quality education that includes valuable and rich learning experiences. She is a proud University of TN Chattanooga and Union University alum, with 12+ years of experience in education. Prior to accepting the role as the Director of Development, Jessica served as a lower elementary school teacher and Intervention Specialist. Jessica is excited to build strong, lasting relationships with the community in order to provide the best education for the students in Memphis.

Sha Fanion

Managing Director of Special Populations and Student Services

Dr. L. Sha Fanion began her career in public education in 2004 as a Special Education Teacher in Atlanta, Georgia, where she taught middle school and elementary students with disabilities and students with limited English proficiency. After serving as a Classroom Teacher, she transitioned to serve as a Special Education Administrator at the regional office level with DeKalb County Schools.
In 2012, Dr. Fanion spent time working with the Arkansas Public Policy Panel in Little Rock, Arkansas, through a partnership with the Southern Education Foundation. While in Arkansas, Dr. Fanion also served as a Public School Program Advisor with the Arkansas Department of Education. In this role, she managed the implementation of Title I programs in school districts across the state, selected and supported the state’s National Blue Ribbon Schools, and worked with school districts in fiscal distress and under court-mandated desegregation orders to meet their required goals.
Dr. Fanion is currently the Director of Alder Graduate School of Education’s Teacher Residency in Memphis, Tennessee. Prior to transitioning to Alder, Dr. Fanion served for four years as principal of Aspire Hanley II and Aspire Hanley Elementary in her childhood community in Memphis.
Dr. Fanion holds a Bachelor’s degree in Special Education from Tennessee State University, a Master’s degree in Special Education from Peabody College at Vanderbilt University, an Education Specialist degree in Teacher Leadership from Mercer University, and a Doctorate degree in Educational Leadership from Clark Atlanta University.