Matthew King, Principal

Matthew is a 2007 graduate of New Leaders for New Schools, an organization that provides new principals with the skills and knowledge to innovate and effect change in struggling urban areas. Prior to founding EPIC Academy, he was a teacher and administrator, working at schools in some of the most economically depressed neighborhoods in the south side of Chicago. Matthew co-founded ONEGOAL (formerly Urban Students Empowered), a foundation with the mission of making higher education a reality for students from environments where college is an almost unknown experience. Matthew has a Master of Education Administration and Supervision from National Louis University, a Master of Education in Curriculum and Instruction from Texas A&M University, and a Bachelor of Arts in History from Miami University.

Josh Miller, Assistant Principal

Committed to empowering urban youth through education, Josh Miller has spent almost a decade as an educator in high schools on the south side of Chicago. Prior to his time at EPIC, he taught history at Corliss High School, where he engaged students with a project-based learning model. A Founding Teacher of EPIC Academy, Josh developed the curriculum for our College, Careers & Skills program (CCS), a unique four-year course that engages students in learning about, planning for, and acting on their lives beyond high school. Currently, Josh is focusing on improving literacy as the curriculum developer for our reading intervention programs, and sits as a teacher representative on the School Leadership Team. Josh holds a B.A. in Secondary Social Studies Teaching from Anderson University (IN) and a M.A. in Curriculum and Instruction from University of Illinois-Chicago.

Tawanna Patton, Instructional Guide

Toni Patton has served as an educator in Chicago for almost 20 years. As a Spanish teacher, Toni joined the EPIC staff in 2010 where she found a school that shared her belief that every student has the potential to achieve academic success and make a profound impact on society. In 2012, she joined the leadership team as our Instructional Guide, using her teaching experience to help EPIC teachers improve their practice. She received her teaching degree from Illinois State University, and has been featured on the cover of Teacher magazine and in the book See You When We Get There, Teaching For Change in Urban Schools, by Greg Mitchie.

Dan Grady, Director of Specialized Services

Dan Grady graduated from Indiana University with a degree in Secondary Special Education. Immediately after graduation, Dan joined the Peace Corps, where he volunteered on the island nation of St. Lucia in the field of special education. Dan has almost a decade of experience coordinating the services needed by students with special needs.

Steven Baskin, Chief Financial and Operations Officer

Steve joined EPIC Academy after a 25 year career as Co-President of Mark Shale, a family owned and operated multi-channel retailer of men’s and women’s apparel. He spent three years as an associate in the real estate practice at Sidley Austin, LLP and has served on numerous boards, including the Board of Governors of Weiss Memorial Hospital, where he served on the Finance and Professional Responsibility subcommittees. Steve also has been an advisor and treasurer for state and federal campaigns, and provided volunteer service to New Schools for Chicago, Horizons for Youth and Executive Service Corps of Chicago. Steve graduated from the University of Michigan with an AB in History, and received a JD from the University of Chicago Law School.