H. Marcel Wright, MBA
Marcel Wright is the executive director of The Lourie Center for Children's Social & Emotional Wellness (the Lourie Center). In this role, Marcel provides strategic direction for the Lourie Center's core programs: The Parent-Child Clinical Services Program; Lourie Center School; Therapeutic Nursery Program; Early Head Start; and The Before and After School Program.
Marcel has years of professional experience with behavioral health and management roles. Prior to joining the Lourie Center, he was a senior manager at Potomac Ridge Behavioral Health's Rockville campus for seven years. Marcel has also worked for US Airways Group, Inc. and HCR ManorCare in the capacity of human resources management.
Marcel earned a master's degree in business administration from the Robert H. Smith School of Business at the University of Maryland and a bachelor's degree in administration from Columbia Union College.
Angela Card, MS, ECE-LPA
Director, Early Head Start Program
Angela Card joined the Lourie Center for Children's Social & Emotional Wellness in 2016 as the Director of the Early Head Start (EHS) program. Her responsibilities include preparing the annual budget and work plan, preparing grant applications, overseeing staff development and developing partnership agreements with other agencies.
Angela joins the Lourie Center with 21 years of experience in Head Start, Early Head Start and early childhood education programs, where she has gained expertise in assessing program needs and assisting in the development of operational systems, policies and procedures to enhance program quality.
Angela earned a master's degree in Leadership, Policy and Administration in Early Care and Education from Wheelock College, and a bachelor's degree in Family Relations and Child Development from Oklahoma State University.
James Hererra, MD
Dr. James Herrera is the medical director of The Lourie Center for Children's Social & Emotional Wellness, and organization affiliated with Adventist HealthCare. Dr. Herrera joined the Lourie Center as medical director in 2007 and has been responsible for managing and directing all programs, services and clinical staff. Among his duties, Dr. Herrera provides psychiatric evaluations for children and families, works to advance Lourie Center staff learning opportunities and works on strategic and financial planning for the organization.
Dr. Herrera brings to the Lourie Center advanced medical training and more than 10 years of health care experience. He also serves as a child and adolescent psychiatry consultant to the Foundation School in Prince George's County. In this role, he provides diagnostic clarification, medication management consulting and psychotherapy for the student population. In addition to his responsibilities at the Lourie Center and Foundation School, Dr. Herrera has his own private practice.
Dr. Herrera earned a bachelor of arts in religion and psychology from the University of Virginia and a medical degree from Howard University's College of Medicine. He completed his psychiatry training at Harvard (adult residency) and his child and adolescent fellowship at Children's National Medical Center.
Melanie Jewell serves as the Administrative Director of The Lourie Center for Children's Social & Emotional. Melanie has been a part of the Lourie Center since 2008, her most recent role was as the Contract Manager for the Lourie Center’s contract with the Montgomery County Infants and Toddlers Program. She has worked in the healthcare industry over the last 30 years in as Music Therapist, Early Interventionist and in a variety of health care management roles.
Melanie’s responsibilities include, helping drive the Lourie Center’s measures around employee engagement, client satisfaction, as well as quality and safety. In conjunction with ensuring the organization is more data driven, Melanie also serves as operational leadership support for the Lourie Center.
Melanie earned her bachelor's degree from Shenandoah College and Conservatory of Music (now Shenandoah University).
Theresa Petrungaro, MS, MBA
Director of Education, Lourie Center School
Theresa Petrungaro is the Director of Education for the Lourie Center School. In her role, Theresa writes and administers policies and procedures, develops, plans, and implements Lourie Center School programs, as well as develops and maintains positive and cooperative relationships with School district liaisons, parents, and organizations in the community.
Theresa has more than 18 years of experience working in special education nonpublic schools. Prior to joining the Lourie Center, Theresa worked in public schools as a principal, assistant principal, general education teacher and special education teacher.
Theresa earned her bachelor's degree from Marymount Manhattan College in psychology, elementary and special education. She also earned her master's degree from Adelphi University in special education: learning disabilities.
James Venza, PhD
Senior Director of Clinical Operations and Research
Dr. James Venza serves as the associate executive director of The Lourie Center for Children's Social & Emotional Wellness. Dr. Venza combines both his leadership and clinical expertise in the role of assisting the executive director with strategic planning, policy development and implementation of the Lourie Center's operations, programs and initiatives.
Dr. Venza joined the Lourie Center in 2003 to complete his postdoctoral training in the Therapeutic Nursery and Parent-Child Clinical Services programs. In 2004, Dr. Venza became director of the Therapeutic Nursery Program (TNP), a mental health and early childhood education program that provides integrated educational and therapeutic support for preschool children exhibiting emotional and behavioral disturbances. Dr. Venza has extensive experience and training with children, adolescents and families from diverse ethnic and socioeconomic populations, often dealing with trauma, abuse, crisis management and a wide range of mental health issues. Dr. Venza has presented at local and national conferences on topics such as attachment theory, child placement consultation, social-emotional development of children and families and therapeutic interventions for social, emotional, and behavioral disturbances in children.
Dr. Venza earned a bachelor's degree in anthropology and history from the University of Notre Dame, and a doctorate degree in clinical psychology from Long Island University's Brooklyn campus.