Board of Jurisdiction

The Northside Catholic Academy Board of Specified Jurisdiction (BSJ) advises the school administration on a number of topics including school policies, budget and tuition rates. Board members also serve on committees that deal with subjects such as Finance, Long Range Planning, Facilities, Marketing and Development. The BSJ meets five times a year. See the NCA events calendar for meeting dates.

Board Members May Be: 
  • Parishioners
  • Alumni and parents of alumni
  • Leaders within the neighborhood, civic, business, and professional communities
  • School parents and guardians
  • A maximum of 20% of the Board members may be non-Catholic.


BSJ members commit to prepare for and attend board meetings, and to participate actively in at least one of the standing committees of the BSJ. The Northside Catholic Academy school community shall have an active and supportive role by having the NCA Parent Organization (NCAPO) President or designated representative of the organization attend and report at BSJ meetings. The president and the school principal sit on the BSJ Ex Officio.

The BSJ adopts a consensus model of decision-making; work is prepared in committee before presentation to the board membership. The Executive Committee includes the board chair, assistant chair, board secretary, the president, and the principal. The school administrator and the board chair set the board agenda and monitor the board calendar. An agenda, including the minutes from each current committee’s work, is provided to board members. 


2021-2022 NCA Board of Specified Jurisdiction (BSJ)



Jackie Blake, CHAIR: Jackie is a parishioner at St. Gertrude and has four children at NCA (PK, 2nd, 4th, and 8th). Prior to having children, she previously worked in campus ministry at DePaul University, and with a nonprofit running support groups and education programs for caregivers.

Colleen Fulkerson, VICE-CHAIR: Colleen is a parishioner at St. Gertrude and has two children at NCA (4th and 8th) and two alum. She works for Felician Services, Inc., the sole corporate member of the Felician Sisters of North America, overseeing governance and sponsorship for thirty ministries sponsored in the Sisters' name. She has been an active member of St. Gertrude's Parish Pastoral Council and serves on the NCA Advancement and Development Committee.




Liam Ford: Liam has one child at NCA (7th) and a 2021 NCA graduate. A longtime St. Ignatius parishioner and Rogers Park resident who grew up in the Austin neighborhood, he now is a member of St. Jerome Parish. He was a representative for St. Ignatius Parish during the Renew My Church process in 2020, and now is a part of a Renew My Church committee working to create a mission center to provide spiritual and social service resources to the parishes and larger communities of Rogers Park and Edgewater. A writer and editor, Liam worked for the Chicago Tribune for more than 23 years and took a buyout from the paper in July 2021.

Kiki Kouchoukos: Vassiliki ‘Kiki’ Kouchoukos has one child at NCA (6th). She is a member of St. Andrews Greek Orthodox Church in Edgewater. She has an administrative degree from the University of Chicago and over 15 years experience in public health. Most recently she was the past Chair of the Senn HS Local School Council.

Sarah Millar: Sarah is a parishioner at St. Gertrude and has one child at NCA (7th) and one alum. She served as the Vice Chair of the BSJ for the last 2 years, and is on the Membership and Governance committee. She is an attorney and specializes in Employee Benefits and Executive Compensation.

Megan Thibert-Ind: Megan is a parishioner at St. Gertrude and has four children at NCA (K, 4th, 6th, and 8th). She is an attorney at McDermott Will & Emery. She is chair of NCA’s Arts Committee and the BSJ’s Membership and Governance committee.




Chris Atkinson: Chris is an independent (non-parent) board member. She is a resident and active community member of the West Ridge neighborhood where she has lived for nearly two decades.  She is the Director of Real Estate, Construction, and Facilities at PharmaCann LLC where she oversees dozens of facilities and construction projects in excess of $175 million nationwide.  She previously served as President of the Associate Board for Girls on the Run Chicago and was a Community Educator and Support Group Facilitator at the Orange County Rape Crisis Center in Chapel Hill, NC. 

Colleen Clennon: Colleen is an independent (non-parent) board member. Colleen is an alumna of the first graduating class of NCA and parishioner of St. Gertrude. An Intensive Care Unit nurse by background, she currently works as a Program Manager within the healthcare industry. 

Mercedes Mac Laughlin: Mercedes is a former NCA parent, and now an independent board member. She is returning to serve a second term on the BSJ. She previously served in different positions from 2007-2017. She has a teaching degree from her native country of Argentina, and now works as an administrative assistant at Loyola University Chicago.

Brian Pavona, CPA, FHFMA: Brian is an independent (non-parent) board member. Brian currently sits on NCA’s Finance committee, and has served previously as Chair of NCA’s Membership and Governance Committee. He has a BBA and MACC from the University of Michigan.  He is a Partner at BKD CPAs & Advisors and our representative from the Big Shoulders Fund Chairman's' Advisory Council.