Board of Directors

Megan Holt, Ph.D.

Executive Director

Dr. Megan Holt is the Executive Director for One Book One New Orleans and the Words & Music Literary Festival. Raised in Muscle Shoals, Alabama, Megan received a B.A. in English and Spanish from the University of Alabama in 2003 and a Ph.D in English/Comparative Literature from Tulane University in 2013. The same year, she began her work with community literacy. She received the 2014 Literacy Champion of Greater New Orleans award. In 2015 she was named one of Gambit Weekly’s “40 Under 40” and New Orleans Magazine’s “People to Watch.” In 2021, she gave a TEDx Talk titled “Becoming Part of the Story” on her journey to becoming an advocate for adult literacy. Her efforts were recognized in 2023 with the Light Up for Literacy award, presented by Louisiana Endowment for the Humanities in Partnership with Louisiana Center for the Book.

In her spare time, Megan can usually be found listening to live music. Her husband, Jermaine Smith, and their sons, Jefferson and Abel, inspire her to work toward making New Orleans a better place.

Latoya Taylor

Board Chair

Latoya joined One Book One New Orleans (OBONO) in 2019, starting as an engaged community member. Her commitment and leadership skills soon led her to the role of Co-Chair on the events committee. In 2021, her journey with OBONO evolved further as she became a board member. Now, she is excited to serve as the OBONO Board Chair, where she plays a crucial role in advancing the organization’s literacy mission.

Originally from Mississippi, Latoya has called the Greater New Orleans area her home since 2011. Her professional journey began in the United States Army, where she specialized in Information Technology. Latoya’s academic achievements include a Bachelor of Science in Internetworking Technology from Strayer University and a Master’s in Educational Technology Leadership from the University of Louisiana Monroe. Currently, she is the CEO of Kafue Designs, showcasing her leadership and entrepreneurial spirit.

Beyond her professional endeavors, Latoya is an avid reader with a passion for storytelling.

Victor Jones

General Counsel

Victor Jones serves as Education Special Counsel at the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund, Inc. (LDF), and is based in New Orleans. At LDF, Victor litigates school desegregation and other educational equity cases in the South.

Prior to joining LDF, Victor served as General Counsel & Senior Policy Advisor for the Louisiana Board of Regents, where he developed statewide legislation and administrative policies to expand postsecondary education access for underserved populations. He also was a Senior Supervising Attorney for the Southern Poverty Law Center, where he, through litigation, public policy, and public education, lead the Children Right’s Practice Group in fighting the school to prison pipeline, fighting for educational equity, and protecting children’s access to mental health services in the Deep South. Before SPLC, Victor was a litigation and education associate at multi-disciplinary law firms in New Orleans. Prior to entering law school, Victor was a public school kindergarten teacher.

Victor received his J.D. from Loyola University New Orleans College of Law. He also holds a Master’s Degree in Education from Harvard University and a B.A. in Literature from Xavier University of Louisiana. He is also a graduate and avid supporter of the national Head Start program. Prior to law school, Victor was a public school kindergarten teacher.

Liz Elliott

Board Member

Elizabeth (Liz) Elliott is an attorney currently working as a judicial law clerk for a state court judge. Previously, she worked at the all-women law firm Rosenberg & Clark and spent two years clerking for Hon. Helen G. Berrigan at the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana.

She received her undergraduate degree in Russian History from Newcomb College, of Tulane University, and her J.D. from the College of Law at Loyola University New Orleans. While at Loyola, she was the recipient of the Jesuit Social Justice Scholarship for her work as the Symposium Editor for the Journal of Public Interest Law’s Prisoner’s Rights Symposium and was named as a Gillis Long Poverty Law Center Public Service Award recipient for her work as a student practitioner for the Stuart H. Smith Law Clinic and Center for Social Justice, Community Justice Section.

Since 2002, Liz has been a volunteer DJ with Tulane’s non-profit community radio station, WTUL, where she currently hosts a weekly children’s show. Starting in 2018 until the COVID-19 pandemic ended it, Liz had been volunteering at the city’s juvenile detention facility leading a weekly book club for the youth incarcerated there. Prior volunteer work also includes being President of the Loyola Young Law Alumni committee, Co-Chair of the New Orleans Safety & Justice Challenge Community Advisory Group, and a mentor with the Welcoming Project, a local organization that helped youth transition out of incarceration.

Malik Bartholomew

Board Member

Malik Bartholomew is a New Orleans native who serves as a community griot, cultural curator, local historian, photographer, researcher, and tour guide. He is a proud graduate of Dillard University where he received his Bachelor of Arts degree in History. Post-graduation he has since spent countless hours in many of the city’s archives exploring and learning more about the unique traditions and history of the city of New Orleans.Currently, Malik is involved in numerous projects documenting the city of New Orleans through the medium of photography. and supporting indigenous New Orleans culture.  He is a board member of the Congo Square Preservation Society, a cohost on the Misbelief Radio podcast, and serves on the curatorial board of the Pass it On Poetry Team, He is also the owner of Know NOLA Tours a tour guide & historical consulting company.Malik additionally serves as the lead docent and resident historian at Studio BE, the solo exhibition of visual artist Brandan “Bmike” Odums and the Evening Access Services Manager at the Will W. Alexander Library located at Dillard University.  Malik has an undying passion for all things “New Orleans” and remains committed to reading, exploring, researching, learning and most importantly sharing the special history, rich culture and distinctive qualities of the city of New Orleans.

Ashton Jackson

Board Treasurer

Ashton Jackson is a life-long New Orleanian and a graduate of John F. Kennedy (High School) and University of New Orleans (undergraduate). At UNO, Ashton earned his B.S. in Accounting and Business Administration.

During his professional career, he has worked at Louisiana Cancer Research Center, Couch, Conville, Blitt Law Firm, Postlthewaite and Netterville CPA firm and Ochsner Health Systems. Additionally, he runs his own accounting firm, Ashton Mitchell Jackson Accounting Services, since 2012 offering tax and other accounting services.

Ashton also sits on the Board of Directors as Treasurer for Uptown Music Theatre and The Urban League of Louisiana Young Professionals.

Ashton recently served as Campaign Treasurer for the Committee to Elect Ethan Ashley run for Orleans Parish School Board District 2 and LaToya Cantrell’s Campaign for Mayor of New Orleans, in which he is assisting with the transition. He is currently serving as the Campaign Treasurer for the Committee to Elect Royce Duplessis run for State Representatives, District 93.

Ashton is deeply involved with his community and some of his service initiatives includes, but not limited to, supporting young people during Louisiana’s National Lemonade Day, Kicks for the City Shoe Drive and co-hosting an annual Holiday Toy drive/fundraiser.

John Norris

Board Member

John H. Norris is an attorney and educator serving New Orleans and the greater Gulf Coast region.  Originally hailing from Fairhope, Alabama, he earned his undergraduate degree in history and international affairs from The University of Georgia (B.A. ’06, magna cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa), where his thesis focused on the disaster relief and recovery efforts following the hurricane at Galveston Island, Texas in 1900.  He earned his law degree from Tulane University Law School (J.D. ’11), and is an active member of the Louisiana State Bar Association.

Since 2013, he has volunteered as an instructor for the Catholic Charities Archdiocese of New Orleans English as a Second Language (ESL) program, where he teaches English to adult immigrants from around the world.  He is also a regular reader with WRBH 88.3 FM Reading Radio, where he reads newspapers, novels, and satire writing for the blind and visually impaired. He is a member of the New Orleans Citizens Diplomacy Council and also serves on the board of the ELLA Project, a local 501(c)(3) non-profit organization dedicated to providing pro bono legal assistance and business education to artists, musicians, and other members of the city’s cultural community.

Liz Granite

Board Member

Liz Granite is the Vice President of Royer Studios, a film and animation production studio dedicated to youth empowerment. Liz develops educational programs that use media arts to engage young people in experiential learning, giving them tools to make a difference within their communities and find their voice through creative expression.

Since 2015, she has been producing a workforce development program in partnership with the National Guard Youth Foundation and sponsored by the Office of Naval Research to expand educational and employment opportunities for historically underrepresented populations in STEM careers.

Building the proverbial campfire around which stories are told, ideas are shared, and bonds are strengthened is what inspires the programs, films, and events that Liz produces. As OBONO’s Events Committee Chair, she loves bringing people together to explore and celebrate New Orleans culture.

Liz co-hosts Friday Night Funk on 102.3 WHIV FM with her partner, Josh. She volunteers with SOUL NOLA to reforest Bulbancha and with Common Ground Relief to restore the coastal wetlands.

Alisha Johnson Perry

Board Member

Alisha Johnson Perry, CFRE, traces her social justice fundraising roots to early childhood practices modeled by her parents. From putting dimes in a milk carton during her church’s 40-day fast, to tithing on everything from birthday to college funds, Alisha learned that God’s work always came first.

Raised in a working class family remotely proximate to wealth, Alisha studied Journalism and Spanish with hopes of becoming a writer and teacher. Post-graduate work as a Louisiana Legislative Aide, the disruption of a federal flood, and a subsequent law degree, propelled Alisha into fundraising in 2007.

Alisha’s spiritual, cultural and community traditions grounded her recovery in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, guiding her to community leadership through passionate and targeted grant writing for immigrants rights advocacy in Mississippi, and for equitable education, food and nutrition access for New Orleans’ students of color. Her keen donor engagement and outreach work has resulted in millions of philanthropic dollars directed toward racial justice advancements across the U.S. Gulf South.

Alisha is primarily on a path of self-decolonization, with deference to the Biloxi, Choctaw, Chitimacha, United Houma Nation, and other indigenous people who stewarded the U.S. Gulf Coastal Plain for ancient generations. Some of her ancestors from Eastern and Western Hemispheres walked with privilege through the streets of 18th century Greater New Orleans, while others were dragged through those same streets, disenfranchised and mislabeled as subhuman under slavery, Black Codes and other impacts of colonialism. Alisha’s intentional and ancestral self-care regimen includes walking, gardening, writing, and learning in community.

In 2024 she joined the staff of Southeast African American Farmers Organizing Network (or SAAFON), a loving, generative space rooted in Black agroecological culture that includes farming, and other cultural forms of artistic expression, economic enterprise and spiritual practices. She is excited to connect her fundraising expertise with SAAFON’s collective knowledge building, in support of many generations who are sustaining and returning to Black agrarianism.