Passion Pursuit Inc. INC. Inc.
Mission & Vision
Danita D. Sims was born and raised in the inner city of Chicago, IL. She has a BA in English from Southern IL University at Carbondale with a minor in Black American Studies and several courses in Creative Writing, Journalism, and Secondary Education. Danita also has a Master's in Urban Planning and Policy (MUPP) from the University of IL at Chicago with a concentration in Community Development.
Upon graduating from UIC, she moved to DeKalb, IL to be with family. For nine years, Danita operated as an Employment & Training Representative, Case Manager, and Coordinator of Business Services under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA) grant, previously the Workforce Investment Act (WIA) grant. She's partnered with several local organizations, including Latino Action Group, Networking for Families, DeKalb Epilepsy Foundation, Adventure Works DeKalb, Conexion Comunidad, DCAHRM, and the DeKalb-Ogle Workforce Development Consortium via Kishwaukee College.
Danita's dynamic career includes proven strengths in tutoring, business development, employment readiness, marketing, workshop coordination, leadership development, strategic partnerships, interpersonal communication, office administration, and community outreach. She currently operates as the Business Operations & Administrative Lead for Cathedral of Praise in DeKalb, as well as an independent Resume Writer.
With a passion for serving entrepreneurs, small business owners, and career-oriented visionaries, Danita started Passion Pursuit, Inc. in February 2019. Her team at Passion Pursuit seeks to strategically create workforce opportunities for aspiring entrepreneurs, transitioning professionals, and entry-level job seekers. We partner with employers and Human Service organizations to bridge the gap for those considered 'unemployable' whether they are looking to start a career, change careers, or build a career within our ever-changing workforce climate.
Our Board Members
Director of Partnerships
Tiffani D. Sanders was born and raised in DeKalb, IL and has a heart for youth, education, and the arts. Currently operating as an Assistant for the Target Program DeKalb High School, Tiffani offers her talents in Office Administration, Team Leadership, Organization, Fund-raising, and Childcare expertise to Passion Pursuit Inc. She works for the NIU Convocation Center, securing major sports, entertainment, and community events.
Tiffani spends her free time leading youth at New Hope Missionary Baptist Church, as well as coaching the Infinity Dance Team, supporting a Social Justice group, and mentoring the 'Girls Circle' small group at DeKalb High School. She is currently pursuing her Associates degree towards education at Kishwaukee College.
Monica M. Rider has lived in DeKalb, IL for +30 years with experiences as a twice-elected Alderman, in support of the DeKalb County Community Block Grant, member of NIU Arco, and a Minister for New Hope Missionary Baptist Church. With an Associate's degree in Automotive Technology, Monica started Monica's Auto Repair, her own thriving business in DeKalb.
With the experience of building and maintaining a business for seven years, Monica has a unique, all-encompassing skillset that encompasses entrepreneurship as a parent of 10, loving spouse, and proactive community liaison. She has extensive skills in customer service, childcare, payroll, government policy, business development, and start-up operations. Monica currently resides in Kettering, OH, most recently operating as a Fleet Mechanic/Contractor for AT&T.
She brings her expertise and love for DeKalb County business and community development to Passion Pursuit, Inc. Monica is currently pursuing a degree in Business and Entrepreneurship at St. Claire Community College in OH.
Director of Finance
Verdell J. Anderson is a father of six residing in Hamilton, OH and a Retail Manager at AT&T. He previously led Kispie Kreme operations for a full decade, tasked with production, product development, staff supervision, quality control, corporate efficiency, and workforce management initiatives.
With academic studies in Economics and extensive experience enhancing youth sports teams' performance and fundraising, Verdell has a versatility that encompasses a wide array of talents. He is involved with several community-led programs that allow youth to participate regularly in sports activities, year-round training, and compete on the national level in Cheerleading, Football, Soccer, and Baseball. With a talent for working alongside youth and professionals, Verdell is able to identify, cultivate, and mentor individuals, developing them into outstanding leaders who exhibit creative problem-solving skills necessary for long-term success.
Ebony A. Crudup was born and raised in Chicago, IL. She has a heart for troubled youth struggling with personal barriers in life and seeking self-sufficiency. Ebony studied Criminal Justice at Illinois State University and has worked in Sales, Security, Customer Service, and Legal Office Administration. She is currently a Supervisor at Butler County Juvenile Detention Center (JDC) in Ohio and has worked for the facility since October 2015. Proudly securing the premises and offering support for the clients, Ebony has passion for mentoring youth struggling with maturity and coming into their own purpose in life - often having to overcome personal barriers, anger, resentment, poverty, and a lack of resources.
Her roots are in Chicago, IL but her heart has followed her to Hamilton, OH. Ebony brings her insight and objectivity to youth support in support of Passion Pursuit, Inc.
Director of Marketing & Communications
Keisha S. Smith is an expert in developing solutions in Hospital Electronic Medical Record Systems, with a keen ability to UX processes, optimal patient care, enhanced protocols, ongoing healthcare provider support, and complete compliance with industry regulations. Adept at controlling Laboratory Information System (LIS) advancements, revitalizing EMR procedures, High Fidelity Prototyping, Usability Testing, Journey Mapping, A/B Testing, and intricate Data Analysis.
Keisha has a Bachelor of Science in Clinical Laboratory Sciences from the University of IL at Chicago and a Master of Healthcare Administration from National Louis University. With years of experience as a Senior Medical Technologist, Clinical Educator, and a Manager of Phlebotomy and Point of Care Testing, Keisha is an innovator of test ordering procedures in medicinal protocols for research, proper sample collection, User Experience Design, and automated identification processes. Her unique expertise and long-standing medical talents allow her to provide a forward-facing insight to Passion Pursuit, Inc.
As a wife and mother, Keisha is a well-rounded professional offering her expertise in UX Research, UX / UI Design, Technical Writing, Website Development, eCommerce, and Mobile Application creation. Keisha is currently operating as a Medical Laboratory Scientist for Loyola University Medical Center's Core Lab in Chicago, IL.