supporting education and performing arts projects

Our Team

Dilsey Davis:

Dilsey Davis is the founder and president of Café con Leche Media (CCL Media). CCL Media is an independent production company based in Atlanta, GA, dedicated to creating high-quality, life-enhancing programming.  Dilsey was previously the Director of Media Advocacy for the Community Reinvestment Association of North Carolina (CRA-NC) for eight years.  As Director, she created television programs and short films that combined both entertainment and information to effectively reach underserved audiences.  Most notably, she was the creator, producer and director of the award-winning “Nuestro Barrio” (Our Neighborhood), a Spanish-language telenovela series that addresses financial topics.  She has also produced, directed and written media projects in South Africa, including the short film Wedding Day, starring popular South African actor Kenneth Nkosi.  In addition to film and television, she has also produced many commercials, PSAs, and e-learning video projects for corporate clients and non-profit organizations. Dilsey is also an actress and co-founder of One Human Family Workshops Inc., a non-profit organization that uses the arts to promote global unity.  The group has toured extensively both in the United States and abroad for over 12 years.  She received a B.S. degree from Duke University and her Master’s degree in Public Health from UNC-Chapel Hill.

 

Farsheed Ferdowsi:

Following a year of postgraduate studies at Vanderbilt University, Farsheed Ferdowsi founded Access Data, a business software development firm, in 1979. This was followed by a string of other companies in the information technology and business services industry.

In 1991, he founded PayMaxx, a payroll service outsourcing company, which took off on the national scene, reaching the rank of top-10 largest in the USA. PayMaxx was included in the prestigious Inc. 500 list for four consecutive years and was a five-time winner of the Nashville Area Chamber’s Future 50 Hall of Fame award. In 2005, PayMaxx was sold to CompuPay, where Farsheed served as Chief Development Officer for two years.  After a brief hiatus from his 30-year career in the payroll services business, he decided to reengage the industry he loves by launching Inova Payroll™ in January of 2011.

Farsheed was recognized by the Nashville Business Journal as the Entrepreneur of the Year in 2002 and is an alumnus of Leadership Nashville. Throughout the years, he has served on the boards of several non-profit organizations in Middle-Tennessee. These include the Red Cross, the Nashville Zoo, the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, the Middle Tennessee YMCA, and the Rotary Club of Nashville. He is currently a board member of XFormity Technologies (OTCBB:XFMY), ConduIT, and nTelagant.

He holds a master’s degree in structural engineering from U.C. Berkeley and a bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from Vanderbilt University.

 

Mahtaj James:

Mahtaj James received her Masters in Business Administration (MBA) from the University of North Carolina at Charlotte in 1987.  She has over 30 years of experience in internal audit, tax, finance and management.  She worked for GlaxoSmithKline for 23 years where she started as Tax Accountant and later rose to the Manager of Payroll operations, Financial Disclosure Manager, and the Director of Global Clinical Regulatory Information and System Support.

Mahtaj has a passion to work with children and has done so in underserved communities for a number of years where she helped the children to work on developing their character and becoming better citizens.  She is inspired by her daughter Anika to serve humanity and strives to follow Anika’s path of service to make a difference in the lives of young people.

 

Robert James:

Robert is a licensed psychologist.  He obtained his PhD from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill in 1994.  Working with adults, Robert does individual, couples/marriage, and group therapies.  He also provides diversity and other types of training for businesses, universities and other agencies.  His clinical interests include race and gender issues, anxiety, depression, self-esteem, grief and couples/marriage counseling, communication skills, stress management, assertiveness, hypnosis, and diversity training.  Robert has a private practice in Durham, North Carolina.  He is a native of Nashville, Tennessee, and has been a resident of Durham for more than 25 years.

Robert developed a tremendous interest in performing arts while proudly watching his daughter Anika excel in singing, dancing and theatre performance.

 

Mark Perry:

Mark is a playwright, dramaturg, and teacher.  He currently teaches play analysis and playwriting in UNC’s Department of Dramatic Art.  His play, A New Dress for Mona, about the wrongful execution of a young Iranian woman, and his one-man show, On the Rooftop with Bill Sears, are now published in a book of his plays called The Lover at the Wall: 3 Plays on Bahá’í Subjects (Drama Circle, 2011).  He also collaborated with UNC colleague Jiayun Zhuang in writing and directing a short horror film called The Only Child (2011), featuring youth from the local Karen community.  He has served as production dramaturg for Playmakers Repertory Company on productions of The Little Prince, Shipwrecked, The Parchman Hour, and Noises Off.  Mark is a graduate of the University of Iowa’s Playwrights Workshop and was a recipient of the 2005-06 North Carolina Arts Council’s Literature Fellowship for playwriting.

 

Carl Webb:

Carl Webb, President of Forty/AM Consulting and a native of Durham, has been involved in several of the largest, most successful real estate development projects in Durham in the past decade.  A 27-year veteran of the advertising and marketing communications industry, he has developed relationships and delivered powerful communications programs for a portfolio of real estate clients.  He has been involved in several public-private partnerships, tapping into his strong relationships with elected officials, government staff and opinion leaders to ensure entitlements, rezoning, permitting and parking solutions. Carl previously founded Webb Patterson Communications, and led the firm’s efforts to develop a portfolio of real estate development clients, including the American Tobacco Complex and the Streets at Southpoint.  Prior to Webb Patterson, Carl was the owner of Advertising Communications, a marketing communications firm that produced advertising and creative materials for clients such as McDonald’s and UNC Hospitals.

 

Ladan Atai

Ladan is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the University of Miami Law School.  She is a Legal and Risk Management professional in Durham, NC.