Branson Alumni Keep the World Going ‘Round

Branson alumni get up to some pretty incredible things. This fall, we’ve featured just a few of our amazing alums on the Branson alumni instagram account. We’ve included a few below, and there’s more to come if you follow @BransonSchoolAlumni. Want to nominate a friend to be featured? Submit your suggestions to

Who: Leah Kelly, ’13 

What you do: eCommerce at HALL Family Wines & Volunteer Firefighter in Napa County

Where: HALL Family Wines, NCFD Station 15 (Rutherford)

Why: “In 2017, I had recently begun working in Napa's wine industry. After that year's destructive fires, I knew that I wanted to make an impact in a tangible way if my community ever faced a fire season of that magnitude again. Today, I feel extremely grateful to have the skills and training that enable me to help protect our valley. The balance that I've found between working in the business side of the wine industry at my day job, while also making efforts to preserve the industry's well-being on the firelines is one that has brought great purpose and fulfillment to my life.”


Who: Mini’imah (Rashid) Shaheed, ‘97

What you do: Educator/Chief Schools Officer (currently)/ Chief Executive Officer (becoming)

Where: KIPP Metro Atlanta Schools

Why: “My work with KIPP is rooted in the belief that all children deserve access to schools to which they are inspired to run. I remember waking up early morning to board a bus that took me across the bridge to Branson each school day. Branson was a school I ran to - the faculty, my friends, and the learning environment - each so special. Here at KIPP Atlanta, we are owning our radical responsibility to design, together with our families and students, schools that are beautifully inspiring and identity affirming... schools that not only prepare our KIPPsters to meet the world as it is but to change it for the better.”


Who: Jordan Garrett ‘14

What you do: Rapper/Audio Engineer

Where: Forever New Nation Productions

Why you do it: "My team and I came together to tell a story about Audio Engineers; the unsung heroes of the music world. Most consumers mainly hear about the Singers and Performers, maybe sometimes you hear of a producer. But never the girls and guys working hard behind the scenes, making everybody sound good. As creators, we wanted to develop a story from the young black professional perspective. Having writers and people of color in front of and behind the camera, will make a step to close the gap in the entertainment industry."

Jordan has recently teamed up with partner Drake Roby to create I M OK, a webseries about an Audio Engineer navigating his way through the LA Music Industry with hopes of becoming a famous rapper.


Who: Ali Boutros, '16

What you do: Bull Kelp Recovery Program Intern

Where: Greater Farallones Association

Why you do it: "Although I am still evolving as a marine scientist in the professional sense, the ocean has been my happy place for as long as I can remember. As I immerse myself in this field, I am constantly reminded how interconnected we are as humans. I love this field because I get to collaborate with people from many professions—fellow scientists, divers, fishermen, and even people in the corporate world looking to make a positive impact on the environment. It is in this collaboration that we see the most progress and where I feel most inspired."