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Leadership Team

Get to know the people behind
Promise Village Academy.

In 2010, following a fact finding visit to Tanzania, Dr. Donna Gunn was so moved by the plight of the children that she returned to the US determined to help. Dr. Gunn is a lifelong educator, so it was only natural that she felt one of the greatest needs of the children in rural Tanzania was an opportunity to learn. She founded the Africa’s Promise Village (APV) with three other educators and has never looked back! Her mission statement, Education, Clean Water, and Improved Health Care can clearly be seen in the work taking place at the Promise Village Academy in rural Tanzania where she collaborates with a team to educate the children of the Maasai.

Dr. Gunn is well suited to her role as Co-Founder and President of APV. She holds an earned doctorate from Peabody-Vanderbilt University, a master’s degree in Special Education from the University of Florida, a second master’s degree from the College of Graduate Studies in West Virginia and a B.S degree in Education from the University of Arkansas, Fayetteville, Ark. In 2000, Dr. Gunn established her the firm, Learning, Evaluation and Resources Network in 2000. As part of her role in the firm, she served as lead evaluator on federal projects. She retired from LEARN in 2020 and now serves as consultant to education projects in third world...Read more

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Gerald Merfish served as the lead executive at his family’s business from 1978 to 2019, now called Merfish United, now 101 years old.  The business methodically grew from a single location in Houston to having 13 locations throughout the USA,  becoming the USA’s largest master distributor of steel, plastic and copper tubular products to the construction industry.


Gerald holds a Bachelors of Business Administration and a Masters of Business Administration from The University of Texas at Austin.


Besides leading the family business, Gerald has extensive non-profit experience in the Jewish Community, the Greater Houston Community and the pipe distribution industry.  Gerald has received numerous awards for his non-profit work including the...Read more


Ravi Reddy founded Citistructure, a construction and real estate development firm in New York City in March of 2001 and has since completed over $250,000,000 of construction throughout New York and New Jersey.

Reddy holds a B.S. in civil engineering from The University of Texas at Austin, an M.S. in Civil Engineering from NYU Polytechnic School of Engineering, and a Construction Management Certification from New York University.

In addition to running Citistructure, Ravi is heavily involved in many non-profit organizations and philanthropic endeavors: He is a Managing Director of Privilege to Serve (P2Serve), which builds schools in 4th world nations; a board member of McCloud Cares, which serves underprivileged children in the NY/NJ area; an Ambassador for The Miracle...Read more


Richard Jackson, also known as Fuzzy, calls Houston his home. His love of travel has taken him on medical missions to Peru, Guatemala, Mali and very poor areas of the United States such as Arkansas.

Richard was born in New Orleans and moved to Houston with his family in 1949 where his father was setting up a practice in internal medicine and pulmonary disease. Richard admired his dad and followed in his footsteps attending college at Washington University in St Louis, achieving a masters in biochemistry at Baylor College of Medicine and an MD degree at UT Southwestern Medical School in Dallas. He served as a major in the US Air Force and entered practice with his father in 1976. He has been honored for volunteer work by the American College of Physicians and listed in “Best Doctors in America” and other publications. He achieved the rank of fellow in the American College of Physicians in 1997. He was named as a top doctor by US News and World Report in 2011. He taught ethics and medicine to medical students at Baylor College of Medicine.


Because of his desire to improve the lives of others, Richard has performed many civic and international volunteer activities. He was a member of the board of trustees of his congregation. He organized city wide health fairs for the homeless. He currently served...Read more

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