Leadership Team


franklin headley- principal and executive director

Franklin J Headley is founder and Principal of VOICE Charter School. He has over 20 years of experience in education and school leadership. Always an advocate of learning, he was valedictorian of his rural high school and the first in his southern New Jersey family to attend college, earning his A.B. in History from Harvard, magna cum laude, and was awarded a summa cum laude on his thesis on John Ruskin. He continued his graduate studies as a Jacob Javits Fellow at Columbia University and the University of London, completing M.A. and M.Phil degrees in European History and Victorian Art and Architecture. 

After falling in love with teaching while instructing students in Columbia University's core curriculum and working with GED students, Mr. Headley began his career in public education, earning masters degrees in Education and Educational Administration and Supervision at City College and Baruch College, respectively. His tenure as fourth grade teacher  in the Bronx earned him two Fulbright Memorial Fund Master Teacher Awards. He then served, through a New Leaders for New Schools Fellowship, as assistant principal in Jamaica, Queens. He has served as a mentor, instructor, and adviser for various teacher and leadership development programs including NYC Teaching Fellows, New Leaders for New Schools, and the NYC Charter Center's Emerging Leaders Fellowship. In 2016, he was named by the Kennedy Family and Schools That Can the Robert F. Kennedy Urban Educator of the Year. 

Mr. Headley co-founded VOICE Charter School in Long Island City, Queens, in 2008 with the belief that all students are capable of achieving at high levels in all subject areas.  Mr. Headley is active in many community, museum, and interest groups and has been an alumni interviewer for Harvard University for 20 years. An avid photographer and traveler, he has visited all 50 states and over 50 countries.  He serves on the boards of the Coalition of Community Charter Schools, the Jacob Riis Settlement House, and the Victorian Society of New York and works on advisory committees for the Center for Educational Innovation and the Varsity Boys and Girls Club of Queens.

ReBecca Barnes- Lower Elementary School Director

Rebecca Barnes has 14 years of experience specializing in Early Childhood instruction, including 6 years as an Assistant Principal in the South Bronx and 3 years as an Instructional Specialist in Region 2 in addition to 5 years as a classroom teacher.  Rebecca gained valuable insight into the administrative side of Early Childhood instruction during her tenure as an Early Childhood Assistant Principal with the New York City Department of Education.  She holds master's degrees: in Special Education from Fordham University and in Elementary Education and Administration and Supervision from Pace University.  She began her teaching career in 2000 as a Corps Member in the Teach for America program in New York City.

 In addition to her professional experience, Rebecca serves as the Vice President and Education Chair on the board of the Court Square Civic Association, as well as a Team Leader for New York Cares.