Advisor, Co-Founder Acton Academy
Jeff Sandefer lives a dual life as an entrepreneur and a Socratic Guide. As an entrepreneur, he founded his first company at age 16 and went on to found or co-found seven successful businesses. As a Socratic teacher at the University of Texas, Jeff’s students five times voted him the school’s Outstanding Teacher and Businessweek named him one of the top Entrepreneurship professors in America. Jeff went on to co-found the Acton School of Business, an MBA program perennially ranked by the Princeton Review among the best in the nation. In 2012 The Economist honored him as one of the top fifteen Business School professors in the world.
Jeff is a graduate of the Harvard Business School, where he served for over twenty years on the school’s governing committees. He was a longtime director of the Philanthropy Roundtable and National Review magazine and one of the youngest members ever elected to the Texas Business Hall of Fame.
Ujala Akram brings in extensive experience in heading academic and administrative units in several higher education settings in the USA. She has, most recently, held the role of Assistant Dean of Enrollment Management at Santa Clara University’s School of Education and Counseling Psychology where she provided visionary strategic leadership and operational management to the entire enrollment management process of the School. The Graduate School of Santa. She also taught at and headed an academic department with the United States Department of Defense (DoD). During her years with IU McKinney School of Law, she also worked on a USAID grant-funded project through which the law school’s LL.M. Program was offered at Cairo University and Alexandria University in Egypt. She also worked at a prestigious law firm in Indianapolis, Faegre Baker Daniels LL.P., on an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) project.
During her years in Lahore, she conducted extensive research and published reports on human rights issues while working with AGHS Legal Aid Cell under the supervision of Ms. Asma Jahangir. She also worked on Civil and Criminal matters at Aitzaz Ahsan Associates in Lahore. Her hundreds of law lectures are publicly available on YouTube as an open source for students. Her research and service both are derived by her strong commitment to social justice and her belief in making the quality education accessible to all social classes.
Advisor, Co-Founder Acton Academy
Laura lived on both US coasts and in between as a child, then settled into Vanderbilt University for her undergraduate studies in the College of Arts and Science. After being awarded the highly competitive Walter Wattles Fellowship at Lloyd’s of London, Laura worked in the aviation insurance industry in New York City.
Deciding to follow her calling into the world of education, Laura returned to Nashville and earned her Master of Education at Peabody College. This led her to her work at the Oklahoma Arts Institute, creating fine arts education programs for teachers and talented high school students. Laura married Jeff Sandefer and is the happy mother of Sam and Charlie and step-mother to Taite. It is the inspiration of these children that led Laura and Jeff to co-found Acton Academy.
Her greatest hero is her mother who was a Master Teacher. Her wisest mentor is her father who sent her off to college with two words of advice: “Be curious”.
Ramiza is a teacher, parenting educator, behavioral specialist and also the co-owner of Harvard Business Solutions, USA. Ramiza has taught science and math at the elementary level, as well as been a school and private counsellor.
Ramiza worked with the New Hampshire, USA School District, in this role she designed and provided individual learning programs to children who need special attention. She is also a member and co founder of business consulting firm in USA, in this role she consulted small to medium businesses to provide technology based solutions.
Ramiza has moved recently to Pakistan, she is excited to now funnel her passion for education, learning, and children into Lahore's Acton Academy.
Ali Faraz is a Socratic guide at Acton Academy Lahore. He graduated from Harvard in Business Management and MSc in GIS from Salem State University, USA. Besides teaching at Acton, he is an entrepreneur, successfully starting several businesses in the USA. His company won the Fastest Growing Company Award in 2008 by the Governor of State of NH and was selected by the office of the US Senator to represent the business in the US Senate House Washington DC in 2012.
He served as a Co-Chair of the City Chamber of Commerce Committee for small businesses, also served as a Community Advisory Board member at the Police Department. In 2015 Ali ran a mayoral campaign, being appointed as the campaign manager. He consults for both private and nonprofit companies. He is often being called to talk about work-place inclusion, appearing at forums and lectures extensively in the area of management, talent management, and workforce development. Ali has also been admitted to the Engineering Council as a professional engineer.
In 2017, he moved to Pakistan to provide a 21st century education to the young learners in order to prepare them for the future by starting an Acton Academy in Lahore, which provides world class Primary to Higher Secondary Education in a self learning, self paced, learner driven community format, providing an opportunity to the young learners to find their calling to change the world.