Our Leadership

AARCH Society Leadership Team

smiling woman protean gibril stands on porch in downtown frederick with black blouse and arms crossed

Protean Gibril – President

A member of the Board of Directors and chair of its Growth and Development Committee, Protean Gibril was named AARCH Society President in 2022. Protean, a retired senior analyst and brand manager for the federal government, has over 35 years of experience and leadership in strategic planning, organizational goals achievement, business transformation, and process improvement efforts. She currently lives in Mt. Airy, MD.

Cheryl Renée Gooch, Ph.D., Executive Director

Dr. Gooch brings a wide range of skills and experience to her role leading AARCH Society's operations, programming, and partnerships. She is a passionate chronicler of the African American experience.
Within academia she oversaw art and material culture collections and the development of academic and training programs that provide pathways within the museum sector for underrepresented professionals. As a historian, she has worked with museum and cultural heritage organizations to chronicle and interpret aspects of the African American experience that have been obscured. She has authored numerous scholarly articles and two books: “Hinsonville’s Heroes, Black Civil War Soldiers of Chester County, Pennsylvania” and “On Africa’s Lands: The Forgotten Stories of Two Lincoln-Educated Missionaries in Liberia.” Email Cheryl at crgooch@aarchsociety.org.

Seaven Gordon – Vice President​

Former owner of Gordon’s Transportation for 20 years after retiring from Alpha Portland, Seaven, a U.S. Army veteran, has been a civil rights advocate and local community activist for many years. The President of the Frederick Chapter of the NAACP for four years and Vice President for 16 years, Seaven was also a founding member and board member for 50 years of Friends For Neighborhood Progress/Community Action Agency. Seaven has served AARCH Society for 20 years, including as a member of the Growth and Development, Ad Hoc Facility and Gala Committees.

Barbara Thompson – Secretary​

A retired principal’s executive assistant with Frederick County Public Schools, Barbara served as President of the Frederick Association of School Support Employees. She joined AARCH Society in 2012 and, along with her current role as Secretary of the Board, she serves on many of the AARCH Society Board and Task committees. Barbara is the coordinator of the AARCH READS program and Living Treasures and was production assistant of the documentary "Tale of the Lion." Barbara is also the AARCH Society Representative for Frederick Historic Sites Consortium and for the 275th Frederick Anniversary.

Zolinka McCauley - Treasurer​

A lead program analyst for a large government agency, Zolinka has more than 20 years of experience in financial services and the government sector. She has worked as a project manager supporting various initiatives, including the rollout of product and services, training, technology, and facility and infrastructure projects and has been responsible for the management of large-scale project budgets. Passionate about serving in the community, she has been with AARCH Society since 2020, serving in the role of Treasurer and Chair of the Finance Committee. Zolinka holds an MBA from Baruch College and a bachelor’s degree in finance from Binghamton University.

AARCH Society Board of Directors

AARCH Society is grateful to our board members who volunteer their time and talents to promote our Mission and Vision.

We would like to call attention to our Legacy Council and thank them for their service over the years: Theresa Brown, Virginia Carroll, Beverly Ford, Ernell Graham, Shirley Grier, Nobel Harris, Velma Lawson, Alyce Luck, Sandra Makel, Gerald Palm.

Sonja (Dee) Brown-Jenkins​

A retired insurance professional, Sonja is a member of Frederick County Alumnae Chapter, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., and the Frederick Faith Striders. A native of Frederick, she joined AARCH Society in 2018 to learn about local Black history and now leads the Society’s Historic Walking Tours around All Saints Street. She holds a master’s degree in theological studies from Liberty University and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Maryland Baltimore County.

David Butler, Jr.

A Solution Architect for Leidos, Inc., where he has worked for over 24 years. During his career, David has worked as a Software, Security, and System Engineer as well as a System Architect before his current role as a Solution Architect. David loves helping people understand technology and creating systems using off-the-shelf components to do completely new things. A student athlete, David played Defensive Tackle for Oxon Hill High School and for Bowie State University, graduating with a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Maryland, College Park.

Catherine Canning

A marketing, communications, and public relations strategy and implementation specialist for Asbury Communities, Inc. in Frederick. Cathy is a skilled storyteller with careers in journalism and education. She currently leads the AARCH Communications Committee and enjoys working to enhance organizations’ brand visibility. Locally, Cathy has volunteered with Blessings in a Backpack, Heritage Frederick, Meals on Wheels, and the PTSA. She joined the AARCH Society board in 2022. She holds a masters degree in Education from Towson University and a bachelor’s degree in History from St. Mary ’s College of Maryland.

Rose Chaney

A founding member of AARCH Society, Rose is a graduate of Morgan State University and a retired Art teacher (34 years) for Frederick County Public Schools. Her current community involvement includes: board member of I Believe in Me, Inc.; member of Frederick County Equity and Inclusion Team, a 57-year member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. and Charter member of Chi Theta Omega Frederick Chapter; long-time member of Frederick Club of Negro Business & Professional Women's Club; and a member of Frederick Art Club. Rose is a lifelong member and an administrator at Asbury United Methodist Church, where she serves on many ministries. She was the editorial assistant for the County Globe Newspaper and a former board member of the Religious Coalition For Emergency Needs. She now serves as co-coordinator for their Christmas Adoption Program.

Tiana Haile

The Community Engagement Coordinator of the Public Affairs Department of Frederick County Public Schools, Tiana is passionate about working to address the disparities affecting communities of color. She completed Leadership Frederick County in 2015 and is affiliated with the Chesapeake Chapter of National School Public Relations Association and serves on the Executive Board of Frederick County Alumnae Chapter, Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., participating in many of the chapter’s community initiatives. She joined the AARCH Society board in 2022. Tiana is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin with professional training in Project Management.

Sharon Isaacs

Sharon Isaacs is a retired federal employee who served as a Senior Administrative Officer and Deputy Director with agencies that include the Department of Commerce and the National Oceanic & Atmospheric Agency (NOAA). Her volunteer work over several years has included volunteering as an adult chaperone for the First Missionary Baptist Church Summer Youth Camp (2 yrs.), and an IRS-certified volunteer income tax preparer for the AARP; Frederick County United Way VITA (Volunteer Income Tax Assistance) programs (4-5 yrs.). She recalls her father actively participating in sit-ins to integrate former Frederick businesses such as the Tivoli Theater (now Weinberg Center) and Snow White Grill.

Gary Rollins

CEO of the Gary L. Rollins Funeral Home, soon to be the Rollins Life Celebration Center, Gary was awarded Best Business and Best Businessman by Blackfrederick.com for several years. He taught embalming at Catonsville Community College (now CCBC at Catonsville) for 17 years and served as the President of the Funeral Directors and Morticians Association of Maryland for two years. He served with the Community Foundation of Frederick County, the Nymeo Federal Credit Union Board of Directors, the Road Knights Car Club, Mountain City Lodge IBPOE #382 and the National Funeral Directors Association Board of Directors. He joined the AARCH Society board in 2022.

Alyssa Watson

A junior IP paralegal at McBee, Moore & Vanik IP, LLC, Alyssa volunteers with the Catoctin Furnace Historical Society and was a volunteer with the AARCH Society before joining the board in 2022. Alyssa holds a bachelor’s degree in History and a concentration in African American History from Hood College, where she was the Secretary of the Black Student Union and a member of Phi Alpha Theta, the Honor Society within the discipline of history.

Niya Yeboah

An analytical chemist, Niya is a senior Scientist, Reference Standards, with the United States Pharmacopeial Convention, where she has worked since 2004. A Mt. Airy resident, Niya is active in community service, and has served as President of the Western Maryland Chapter of Jack and Jill of America, Inc., in addition to holding positions on numerous Board Committees.

Senator Ronald Young, Jr.

Former State Senator Ronald Young, Jr., began his career as a social studies teacher in Frederick County, and in 1969 was elected to the Frederick City Board of Alderman. In 1973, he was elected Mayor of Frederick, and won three consecutive re-elections in 1977, 1981 and 1985. In 2010, Young was elected to the Maryland State Senate, and served in that role for 12 years before retiring in 2022. He is an avid historian and Frederick County advocate, serving as a positive force in Frederick’s economic and cultural growth for decades.

Mary Harris, Honorary Board Member

A founding member of AARCH Society, Mary is a retired teacher for the Maryland School for the Deaf. She has a passion for researching, displaying, and presenting the African American history of Frederick County, including her family’s six-generation history of agriculture in the Adamstown area of Frederick County. She authored a book detailing the African American history of educating the deaf community in Maryland. Unable to continue as an active board member, Mary was appointed an honorary board member in 2022 in recognition and honor of her decades-long commitment to AARCH Society. She is a graduate of Bowie State University.