About The Black Parents Association

The Black Parents Association (BPA) of the San Mateo Union High School District offer students and families within San Mateo Union High School District, Serra High School, Crystal Springs Upland School and our partner districts the opportunity to build community, social justice programming, valuable student resources, and college scholarship awards for graduating seniors. The BPA’s mission is to help remove roadblocks and provide the most impactful tools to our students, creating our world’s future leaders. The Black Parents Association (BPA) of the San Mateo Union High School District works in collaboration and advocacy to create opportunities to inspire excellence and innovative ways to lead change, helping strengthen the education landscape for our students.

The BPA is unique in its ability to address and support actionable change around educational, racial and social inequities faced by our students. As connective tissue between the student body, their families, community leaders, and the San Mateo Union High School District faculty and staff, we tie together these uniquely different bodies and their varying perspectives ensuring that the goal of equitable and sustainable change comes to fruition. Equity in action is achieved through programs such as:

  • Unity in the Community Virtual Town Hall Series
  • Community Focus Groups
  • Student-led “State of the Union” Roundtable Talks
  • BPA Baccalaureate Scholarship Awards
  • Justice Speaks Ambassador Program (Launching 2022)
  • Equity Advisory Committee of SMUHSD participation
  • Educational partnerships with local and national organizations

Board of Directors

L. Medina McKinney

Board President

L. Medina McKinney is the Owner and Founder of EyeSpy Marketing. She is a highly effective and innate leader with over 20 years of event experience, 9 years leading a nonprofit, 8 years of program management experience, and several years of training in coaching and mentorship. Through excellent communication, a calm demeanor, skillful management of details, and resourceful problem solving skills; Medina thinks (and works) outside of the box to make dreams/goals a reality. She strives to bring out the best in others (and herself) so that everyone wins.

Medina’s work has taken her from engagements with Electronic Arts, General Electrics, California Bank & Trust, CCC Fair, SMUHSD, UC Berkeley, to Facebook.

Kimya Cotton

Vice President

Kimya Cotton has 15 years of experience working as an HR professional for one of the largest database management companies in the world. She has been an active member of the San Mateo community for over 30 years and has been diligently working with the Black Parents Association for the last 9 years.

As a former graduate of San Mateo High School and a former recipient of the Black Parents Association scholarship, Kimya recognizes the significance of the philanthropic work that the BPA has done and continues to do to support students of color. During her 9 years of working with the BPA, Kimya has been the community liaison, chaired our scholarship committee, helped to organize fundraising events, college workshops, and various programs to promote quality education for students.

Kimya is a creative and innovative thinker, detailed oriented, and has a genuine passion for humanity that makes the work she does on both a professional and personal level so profound. Through her caring demeanor, she is adaptable and a pleasure to work with. Kimya loves writing poetry and her favorite poet is Maya Angelou. Her favorite quote by Maya Angelou is “Be a rainbow in someone else’s cloud”. Kimya strives to motivate, encourage, to believe in others and to be that rainbow that each of us needs. Kimya strongly believes that it is a fundamental right that every child, regardless of color, be afforded the opportunity for a quality education.

Debra Smith

Board Member

Dana Harris

Board Member

Dana W. Harris has over 15 years of experience in education working with middle school, high school and adult learners. Throughout his career Dana has served as an admissions counselor, academic advisor, and upper level mathematics content specialist to coincide with his experience as a middle school, high school and Adult High School teacher. He is a highly motivated, passionate, educator that thrives on not only helping his students achieve success in mathematics, but also helping them achieve personal success in their lives. His philosophy on learning is, “Anyone can learn when they have positive relationships, a growth mindset, and self-confidence!”

Roderick Jefferson


Roderick Jefferson is the CEO of Roderick Jefferson & Associates. He has 20+ years of sales leadership and is an acknowledged thought leader and keynote speaker in the sales enablement space. Roderick is a highly regarded executive whose expertise and insight is sought after because he understands how to create bridges between internal organizations to empower sales to exceed expectations.

Prior to Roderick Jefferson & Associates, he held a variety of executive leadership, sales, sales enablement, operations and customer experience roles for Marketo, Oracle Marketing Cloud, Salesforce.com, 3PAR, Business Objects, NetApp, PayPal, Siebel Systems, & AT&T.

We are dedicated to promoting quality education for our students. Support us today!

Over the past 36 years, The Black Parents Association (BPA) of the San Mateo Union High School District has helped students to seek and afford opportunities for higher education. Our Association provides scholarships, scholastic resources, and book awards to students attending Aragon, Burlingame, Capuchino, Hillsdale, Mills, Peninsula, San Mateo Middle College, San Mateo High School, Crystal Springs Upland School and Serra High School.

The BPA has a special focus on low to moderate income High School Seniors. The scholarships that the BPA provides to students helps to defray the costs of college tuition, text books, and other fees related to their college course work. Without these funds, many graduating students would not be able to afford higher education.

Your donation not only honors and encourages selected students, but it can literally make the difference in allowing them to complete their college coursework. Your donation goes towards meeting the students’ college expenses and works to secure their higher education and career objectives.

This program selects only qualified graduating students in SMUHSD, Crystal Spring Upland School and Serra High School who have met a grade point average of 2.5 or higher; shown community involvement; possess leadership qualities, positive attitude and commitment.

We are in need of your support to make this year’s BPA fundraising goal a success. Every dollar counts towards our goal. Every dollar makes a difference in our college-bound students’ lives. Together we can give our young people the opportunity and inspiration they need to reach a better future.

Please make checks payable to:

Black Parents Association, S.M.U.H.S.D. All checks should be mailed to P.O. Box 101, San Mateo, CA 94401 (All donations are tax deductible. The Black Parents Association is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization) – If you have any questions, please call (650) 292-1784.

Or directly pay via PayPal:

Dear visitor, we need your support.

“It takes a village to raise a child.” And it also takes a village to support our teenagers. We need helping hands on every end, and by either becoming a member or donating, you can really make a difference.