Fall Cohort 2017
- Amed AlfarajiArab American Family Support CenterAmed AlfarajiArab American Family Support Center
Amed Alfaraji is the Director for Community Outreach and Prevention Support at the Arab American Family Support Center (AAFSC). In this role he is responsible for identifying specific needs among marginalized populations, gathering information from communities at risk, disseminating vital knowledge to the community and directing those in need of resources. His current role includes working with community leaders and assisting the AAFSC’s President and CEO to forge collaborations with key social sector individuals supporting vulnerable populations; and representing AAFSC at key community gatherings as well as on social media. Amed is also tasked with helping and assisting newly-arrived immigrants and refugees to pay for their airfare to the IOM, through AAFSC’s New Immigrants and Refugees Fund program. He began his career as an interpreter in the fall of 2006 in Damascus, where he assisted refugees with translation and completion of legal documents. He also worked as a volunteer with the Anglican Church in Damascus. Amed is fluent in Arabic and holds a Bachelor of Arts in English and Literature from Alturath University Colleague.
- Alexandra KruegerNew-York Historical SocietyAlexandra KruegerNew-York Historical Society
Alexandra Krueger is the Manager of Museum Affairs at the New-York Historical Society Museum and Library. She has been working at the New-York Historical Society for over six years. During this time, she has worked in the Visitor Services, Group Sales, Legal/Administration, and Curatorial departments. In her current role, she handles the finances and administration for the museum division which includes the curatorial, collections, exhibitions, graphics, and conservation departments. She works closely with the Museum Director and key executive museum staff to manage all administration matters supporting the museum collections and on-site and traveling programs for both art and history. Most notably in this past year, she had been the project manager for the Messages for the President-Elect initiative, the Tattooed New York exhibition, and a small Historical Society publication Treasures of the New-York Historical Society, an Abbeville Press Tiny Folio. Alexandra graduated from Marymount Manhattan College with honors in 2009 with a Bachelor of Arts degree in Art History and a minor in Business Management. After Marymount, she began pursuing a career in museums. She has had roles within the museum field in the areas of curatorial, collections, and digital media at prestigious institutions including the Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Museum of Modern Art. She is also an active member of the American Alliance of Museums and other arts and museum professional networks.
- Ansley DavenportRubin Museum of ArtAnsley DavenportRubin Museum of Art
Ansley is employed as Senior Manager, Membership & Development Operations at the Rubin Museum of Art, an arts and cultural hub in Chelsea. She oversees the Membership program and the Annual Fund. She also manages the development database and serves the External Affairs department with reporting, data analysis, and business processes. She is passionate about using data to drive strategy. Prior to her work at the Rubin, she managed the membership departments at the Museum of the City of New York and SummerStage at City Parks Foundation. Ansley holds a BA from Sarah Lawrence College and an MPA from Baruch School of Public Affairs with a focus on non-profit management. She is originally from the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia, with a population density of 92 people per square mile. She is a proud resident of the Bronx, with a population density of 32,000 people per square mile, and enjoys its rich cultural offerings, including world-class zoo, botanical garden, and history.
- Anthony NegronNew York Hall of ScienceAnthony NegronNew York Hall of Science
Anthony Negron is the Manager of Digital Programming at The New York Hall of Science. Mr. Negron project manages several initiatives that utilize digital tools and software (i.e. videoconferencing technologies, game design, 3-D modeling platforms and mobile application/probeware development) to educate K-12th grade youth around the world on topics covering a vast array of STEM concepts and practices. He is also a key member within the Mozilla Hive NYC Learning Network which is a city-wide laboratory where educators, technologists, and mentors design innovative, connected educational experiences for youth. In 2016, he was named #Network50, an initiative at Mozilla to recognize individuals making a positive impact on Internet health. Mr. Negron is also a part of a selected group of professionals in the field of STEM and public education for The Lowline. His work with youth has been presented at such conferences such as Association of Science-Technology Centers (ASTC), MozFest, Celebration of Teaching and Learning, Maker Faire NYC and at the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE). Anthony has an MBA from Baruch College (CUNY)
- Benjamin GonzalezInterfaith Medical CenterBenjamin GonzalezInterfaith Medical Center
Benjamín González leads the department of Grants Management at Interfaith Medical Center (IMC), which is located at the border of two Brooklyn neighborhoods struggling with historic social inequality and health disparities: Bedford-Stuyvesant and Crown Heights. In addition to monitoring the hospital’s portfolio of grants, he is the project manager for IMC’s Participatory Action Research (PAR) project. IMC’s PAR project took place in the summer of 2017 with the recruitment and training of almost 50 community residents who conducted more than a 1,000 surveys and four focus groups to develop a comprehensive plan that will address multiple social determinants of health affecting Central Brooklyn residents. Recommendations from this community-driven research will inform the hospital’s Community Service Plan, which Benjamín co-wrote after leading the hospital’s Community Health Needs Assessment. He also partnered with the NYC Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and Citi Bike to develop the city’s first Prescribe-a-Bike program pilot launched at IMC’s Bishop Orris G. Walker, Jr. Health Care Center: physicians prescribe physical exercise as medicine and patients are provided with lifestyle change materials including a one-year Citi Bike membership. Benjamín has more than 10 years’ experience writing, editing, and managing for non-profit and for-profit companies. He received his bachelor’s degree in English from Yale in preparation for a post-baccalaureate premedical program or master of public health and master of urban planning joint degree program.
- Denise TorresFifth Avenue CommitteeDenise TorresFifth Avenue Committee
Denise Torres is the Director of HR & Operations at Fifth Avenue Committee, Inc., a nationally recognized South Brooklyn based, non-profit community development corporation that develops and manages affordable housing and community facilities, creates economic opportunities and ensures access to economic stability, organizes residents and workers, offers student centered adult education, and combats displacement caused by gentrification. Denise has over 12 years of experience working in nonprofit management in Brooklyn including experience in areas of recruitment, compensation, payroll and benefits administration as well as operations management and financial duties. She served as Office Manager/Bookkeeper at Neighbors Helping Neighbors, Inc. and Scenarios USA, and as Executive Assistant/Office Manager at Fifth Avenue Committee, Inc. prior to her current role. She graduated from Baruch College with a degree in Human Resources Management.
- Elizabeth LarkinLiveOn NYElizabeth LarkinLiveOn NY
Elizabeth Larkin is the Director of Programs at LiveOn NY. In this capacity she is responsible for the design, implementation, and management of LiveOn NY’s programmatic initiatives which help strengthen the agency’s 100+ member organizations- all working to improve the lives and communities of older adults in NYC and beyond. Working to support the ever-evolving aging network, Elizabeth also acts as a liaison with key groups including other nonprofits, government agencies, and stakeholders to ensure the voice of LiveOn NY’s members are heard and older adult’s needs are met. Elizabeth started her career working in a community based settlement house primarily working with individuals living with cognitive impairments and their caregivers as a program social worker and eventually in a NORC setting working with seniors that had severe issues with hoarding. It is within those years working with individuals that she fostered a deep connection with older adults, the aging network, and the non-profit world. She believes that working with and understanding individuals is the foundation for successful program development and administrative growth of nonprofits. Elizabeth obtained her master’s degree in social work from Lehman college. She is a LMSW and a field instructor for Master’s level social work students completing their internships at LiveOn NY.
- Elizabeth ThomasUrban Green CouncilElizabeth ThomasUrban Green Council
Liz manages administrative and business processes at Urban Green, overseeing information technology, human resources, and office administration. She also manages the delivery of Urban Green’s workforce training courses, GPRO and Conquering the Energy Code, focusing on continual improvement of internal processes and customer satisfaction. She has over ten years of non-profit experience and a passion for creating positive change in communities, having worked with organizations including Turnaround for Children, The Brooklyn Young Mothers’ Collective, and Free Arts NYC. Liz holds a B.A. from Hampshire College and a M.A. from New York University.
- Gabrielle SpeaksCommunity Service Society of New YorkGabrielle SpeaksCommunity Service Society of New York
Gabrielle Speaks is the Director of Board Relations and Special Liaison to the President at Community Service Society of New York (CSS), an organization that has been in New York for over 170 years that addresses the root causes of economic disparity through research, advocacy, litigation, and innovative program models that strengthen and benefit all New Yorkers. She has been at CSS for 10 years and in her current role she is responsible for all aspects of board management and supervises the executive office support staff. She is part of the senior leadership team and works closely with all aspects of the organization. She also coordinates special projects on behalf of the CEO. Prior to working at CSS she held positions at other social and economic justice organizations in New York and Washington D.C. including TransAfrica Forum and the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund (LDF). Gabrielle has a B.A. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and an M.A. from Howard University in Washington D.C. She attended the University of Dar Es Salaam in Tanzania and was a participant in the Japan Exchange and Teaching Programme (JET) for two years teaching English to high school students in Kochi Prefecture, Japan. She is passionate about social justice issues, women’s rights, and human rights, and participates in volunteer programs locally and abroad.
- Gennarose PopeINCLUDEnycGennarose PopeINCLUDEnyc
Gennarose Pope has been honored to be able to bring her writing and communications experience and her commitment to the equity, access, and inclusion of young people with disabilities to her work at INCLUDEnyc for over three years. She is proud to have led the launch of her organization’s Spanish language website, INCLUYEnyc.org, and is passionate about reaching and serving NYC’s Spanish-speaking disability community, as well as all of NYC’s diverse communities. After graduating phi beta kappa with a B.A. in English from Columbia University in 2001, Gennarose served as a teacher and department chair of humanities at a boarding school in Massachusetts for at-risk teens, many of whom had disabilities. Before joining INCLUDEnyc, she was a professional singer, journalist, and served in public relations and bilingual constituent concerns for local government in West New York, NJ.
- Geoffrey GoliaGetting Out and Staying Out (GOSO)Geoffrey GoliaGetting Out and Staying Out (GOSO)
Geoffrey M. Golia, LCSW is a New York City-based Clinical Social Worker, Social Work Researcher, and Non-Profit Professional. Currently, he is the Senior Career Manager and Director of GOSOWorks at Getting Out and Staying Out (GOSO)—a comprehensive reentry program that assists justice-involved 16- to 24-year-old young men achieve their personal and professional goals while avoiding reinvolvement in the criminal justice system. In these roles, Geoffrey provides direct clinical services to participants, including individual and group psychotherapy, career counseling, and court advocacy. Additionally, he developed and manages a successful wage subsidy program, GOSOWorks, that places participants in Internship-to-Employment (I2E) opportunities around New York City. A member of the leadership team, Geoffrey develops policies and procedures for GOSO and GOSOWorks, and manages and supervises other clinical and non-clinical staff, as well as social work interns placed at GOSO. Geoffrey is also the Social Media Manager of the Clinical Social Work Journal and a Junior Research Scientist at New York University’s Silver School of Social Work—where he received his Master of Social Work degree in 2012. A published author, he researches and writes on clinical social work practice, reentry best practices, criminal justice reform, and wage subsidy programs. In his spare time, Geoffrey likes to root for the Boston Red Sox and New England Patriots, and spend time with his wife, Caitlin, two cats, Henry and Teddy, and dog, Frankie.
- Jason LippmanThe Coalition for Behavioral HealthJason LippmanThe Coalition for Behavioral Health
Jason Lippman is the Executive Vice President at The Coalition for Behavioral Health, which is the voice of nearly 140 community-based mental health and substance use providers in the New York metropolitan area. He oversees operations and special projects, including financial and grants management, development opportunities, planning and implementation of training and technical assistance, membership services, strategic planning and alliances with community leaders and government officials. Jason formerly served as the Director of Public Policy and Government Relations at Amida Care, New York’s largest Special Needs health Plan (SNP) for people living with HIV/AIDS, severe mental illness, substance use disorders or experiencing homelessness. Jason was previously the Director of Policy & Advocacy at The Coalition and a Supervising Budget Analyst at the New York City Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget (OMB). Jason holds a Master of Arts in Public Affairs and Policy from the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy at SUNY Albany, and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from Binghamton University.
- Jermaine Sean SmithHeartshare St. Vincent’s ServicesJermaine Sean SmithHeartshare St. Vincent’s Services
Associate Director of a Youth Development for a foster care agency. Jermaine spearheads programmatic efforts that have a direct and measurable positive impact on our youth. He has a proven track record of creating programs that create a framework for job readiness, individual growth, program development and advancement. For instance, his annual planning included developing a mentoring program and an annual retreat. He is creative in his approach with the youth and highly effective because he is an authentic role model.
Additionally, an integral part of his role is developing a culture of accountability for his staff and the youth they serve. He understands that responsibility and empowerment serve as a foundation for success in the services provided to the youth. After completing his Masters in Public Administration, Jermaine aspires to enroll in law school, and intends to use his knowledge of the law to run for public office. He intends to play a first-hand role in creating policy that benefits “the least of us” – specifically uplifts the political power of the black community. Jermaine Sean Smith is also a proud Brother of Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc.
- Jonathan TsaoAsian American FederationJonathan TsaoAsian American Federation
Jonathan is currently the Development Manager at the Asian American Federation (AAF), where he handles program funding and oversees development strategies for the organization. Prior to AAF, Jonathan worked on several public health initiatives benefiting Asian communities in NYC, first through the American Cancer Society, and later on with the Chinese American Medical Society. Jonathan graduated with a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Michigan in 2004, and later received a Masters in Public Health at Columbia University in 2007.
- Julia VickersGibney DanceJulia VickersGibney Dance
Julia Vickers is the Director of Marketing at Gibney Dance, a performing arts and social justice organization based in lower Manhattan. She works closely with programmatic and administrative staff across the organization to manage all digital and print marketing channels. Her responsibilities include promoting cutting-edge performances, a professional level dance training program, professional development programs for artists, and Gibney’s robust Community Action program, which connects dancers with survivors of domestic violence. Outside of her work with Gibney, Julia works with individual dance artists and companies to more effectively promote their work through digital channels, and remains an active dancer, performer, and maker. She holds BAs in Comparative Literature and Dance from the University of Oregon.
- No ImageKathleen ColemanRosie’s Theater KidsKathleen ColemanRosie’s Theater Kids
Kathleen is the Associate General Manager at Rosie’s Theater Kids, an organization dedicated to enriching the lives of New York City public school children through arts education programming and serving students who otherwise would not have the opportunity to experience theater by providing comprehensive classes in music, dance, and drama, thoughtful mentoring, and structured academic guidance. Working at Rosie’s Theater Kids for over 3 years, she has worn many hats, overseeing the finance, operations, and human resources of the organization. Kathleen received her BA from the University of Virginia and her JD from Loyola Law School (Los Angeles). A native New Yorker, she enjoys musical theater and distance running.
- Kati FrazierAlliance of Resident Theatres/New YorkKati FrazierAlliance of Resident Theatres/New York
Kati Frazier is the Communications and Membership Manager at the Alliance of Resident Theatres/New York, the leading service and advocacy organization for NYC’s nonprofit theatres, which provides professional development, grants, loans, subsidized space and more to 380 theatre companies. Originally from North Carolina, Kati received a BA in Theatre and English from UNC-Greensboro and has worked for nonprofit theatres across the east coast (and now in NYC) for 10 years. Even before her position with A.R.T./New York she focused on designing and implementing programming to serve artists; at All For One Theater she designed and inaugurated a suite of play development programs for theatre artists. In her current role she has overseen and executed dramatic growth in communications organization-wide, and continued her work launching new programs to serve the theatremakers of New York City. She is also a formidable Scrabble player.
- Luke JenkinsSafe HorizonLuke JenkinsSafe Horizon
Luke Jenkins is the Director of Purchasing and Facility Operations at Safe Horizon, a New York City non-profit that is the nation’s leading victim assistance organization. Safe Horizon’s mission is to provide support, prevent violence, and promote justice for victims of crime abuse, their families and communities. At Safe Horizon Luke oversees and manages the procurement of goods and services that support the wide range of services offered at Safe Horizon. He was instrumental in creating the agency’s purchasing policy and has worked extensively on process improvements and ordering efficiencies. Luke is an active member of the agency’s Anti-Racism Steering Committee that works to promote awareness and action as it relates to a respectful and inclusive work environment where conversations about race is supported, recruitment, retention and professional development. Originally from Nixa, Missouri, Luke graduated Missouri State University with BS degrees in Entrepreneurship and Marketing in 2008 and finished with a MBA in 2009. Upon completing his studies, Luke relocated to the New York City area.
- Marcus JohnsonOpening ActMarcus JohnsonOpening Act
Marcus Denard Johnson is a New York City based performer, writer, director and educator by way of Atlanta, GA. Marcus has worked an an actor and arts educator in NYC since 2008, having spent 2 of those years as a Special Education teacher in the South Bronx. Marcus’ path towards arts education started at Morehouse College, where he studied Drama and Psychology. To deepen his acting training, Marcus attended the Florida State University/Asolo Conservatory to earn his MFA in Acting. After spending time in NYC classrooms teaching theater, Marcus decided to pursue his MS in Special Education from Hunter College. As both a teaching artist and a certified Special Education teacher, Marcus has witnessed and knows first-hand the transformative power of theatrical performance in the lives of young people. Words cannot express how excited he is to be doing this work!
- Marwa JaniniArab American Association of New YorkMarwa JaniniArab American Association of New York
Marwa is a multilingual Palestinian-Latina Muslim American who currently serves as the Immigration Program Manager at the Arab American Association of New York (“AAANY”). She manages a staff of seven (7) professionals, including attorneys and immigration paralegals, to provide much-needed counsel to individuals with pressing immigration concerns. Marwa also does her part in her capacity as a DOJ Legal Representative by representing AAANY’s clients as they navigate the immigration bureaucracy. She holds a Master’s degree in Middle Eastern Studies from The CUNY Graduate Center, where she was honored as the 2015 Outstanding Student in the Masters Program in Middle Eastern Studies. Marwa is a member of RIMAAL, a global network of researchers committed to expanding the discourse surrounding Latin America and the Arab Worlds. Her work has been published in Jadaliyya Magazine. Marwa is also an adjunct professor of English at CUNY, College of Staten Island. She has been involved in charitable initiatives in the northern region of Ghana, providing supplies and fundraising for Al Nuriye Primary School. Marwa brings a passion that is unmatched to her activism, whether it’s establishing a women’s center in Ghana or providing much needed legal services to disenfranchised immigrant communities in New York City.
- Michelle D’MelloAdaptive Design Association, Inc.Michelle D’MelloAdaptive Design Association, Inc.
Michelle D’Mello is the grant writer at the Adaptive Design Association, Inc. (AD-NY), a nonprofit whose mission is to ensure that people with disabilities receive the custom adaptations they need to live healthy lives and fulfill their developmental, academic, and vocational potential; and to promote education, inclusion, widespread replication, and social justice. She believes that the work of AD-NY demonstrates how it is possible and imperative to include a cross-section of people and agencies from diverse disciplines to create healthy, just, and respectful communities. Michelle has a Masters in Developmental Psychology from the University of California, Davis and a Masters in Human Development from Nirmala Niketan College, Mumbai.
- Naheed Samadi BahramWomen for Afghan WomenNaheed Samadi BahramWomen for Afghan Women
Naheed was born to a working-class family in Kabul, Afghanistan. Her family migrated to Peshawar, Pakistan after the loss of her mother in a bomb explosion in Kabul. Ms. Samadi Bahram graduated from high school and ESL classes in Pakistan. She became an ESL teacher at the age of 18 and taught ESL to Afghan women in refugee camps in Peshawar, Pakistan. She also taught English classes to children at the Country Grammar School in Peshawar. Ms. Samadi Bahram moved to the United States in 2006 as an international student. She graduated from Queens College in June 2011 with a B.A. in Finance and Economics. She began working with WAW in 2007 as a volunteer and moved up to become the NY Program Manager. She now serves as the Program Director overseeing all of WAW’s programming in New York. She is also on the Board on Flushing Interfaith Council and a member of the Queens Borough President’s Immigration Task Force. Ms. Samadi Bahram has served on the Organizing Committee of the annual Queens Borough President’s Office Iftar Event from 2010 to 2014 and recently completed the Immigrant Women’s Leadership Fellowship with the NYC Mayor’s Office For Immigrant Affairs. She is the recipient of the 2017 Advocates of NYC award from the NYC Mayor’s Office to Combat Domestic Violence. She is also an adjunct lecturer at Queens College, CUNY.
- Patricia JacovinaGirls Inc. of New York CityPatricia JacovinaGirls Inc. of New York City
Patty Jacovina currently serves as the Vice President of Operations for Girls Inc. of New York City. The mission of Girls Inc. is to inspire girls to be strong, smart, and bold through direct service and advocacy. Research-based programming is delivered by trained professionals who focus on the development of the whole girl, supporting, mentoring, and guiding girls in an affirming, pro-girl environment. Girls learn to value their whole selves, discover and develop their inherent strengths, and receive the support they need to navigate the challenges they face. As VP of Operations, Patty oversees Administrative and Financial operations and is a core member of the senior leadership team.
- Sandra MormileCatholic Charities Community ServicesSandra MormileCatholic Charities Community Services
Sandra Mormile is the Director of Staten Island and Brooklyn Services for the Beacon of Hope House, a division of Catholic Charities Community Services. She provides housing for mentally ill adults in a continuum of care, which includes clients who require the support of supervised housing, to those who are able to live on their own with minimal support. She has been working with Beacon of Hope House for 30 years and has held various positions during her tenure. During the last ten years she has held her current position at the agency. She currently oversees two community residences and three apartment programs in Staten Island and Brooklyn, and supervises a large number of staff who are in various job positions. Sandra also interfaces with various mental health professionals, volunteers and family members to advocate for the needs of her clients, and to ensure that the clients live their lives with dignity and respect. Sandra is a member of the Staten Island Mental Health Council, where she jointly meets with other individuals on improving mental health care to individuals in her community who face the challenges of having a mental illness. She is also a member of Zion Lutheran’s Church Council, where she is involved in the planning and implementation of changes that will guide the mission of the church. Sandra is a native Staten Islander, and earned a B.A. in Psychology from the College of Staten Island.
- Shahmet GordonSAGEShahmet GordonSAGE
Shahmet Gordon is the Director of Finance at SAGE. She supervises the finance department’s day-to-day operations, ensuring compliance with internal rules, GAAP, and other contract-imposed restrictions.She is responsible for preparing the organization’s master, contract and proposal budgets, constructing monthly and annual financial statements, and developing and implementing efficient fiscal policies. In addition, Ms. Gordon manages the annual independent audit and fiscal reviews by funders. With more than 25 years of experience in the accounting field, Shahmet is committed to the non-profit sector. Prior to joining the SAGE team, Shahmet held key managerial positions within the fiscal offices of Center Against Domestic Violence and HIV Law Project. She is dedicated to helping people find their voices to empower themselves and their families. Shahmet is also a published author who uses her gift of poetry to encourage, uplift and show others that they are not alone in their struggles. She has co-facilitated parenting seminars for women and writing workshops for young people.
- Stacey TunksLincoln Center for the Performing ArtsStacey TunksLincoln Center for the Performing Arts
Stacey Tunks is the Director, Human Resources at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts. She leads Human Resources strategy, including talent acquisition, benefits, compensation, inclusion initiatives, employee engagement, and employee events. Primary areas of focus are complex employee relations matters and compliance. Stacey joined Lincoln Center in 2004. Prior to Lincoln Center, Stacey worked at Showtime Networks as a Human Resources Specialist for six years. She made the switch to non-profit performing arts because she wanted to connect her love of music with her career in Human Resources, as she minored in Bassoon Performance in college (even though she hasn’t played in years!). She believes that the arts are an important way of connecting with people. Stacey received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication Studies from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and her Master of Arts degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from New York University.
- Tanya Butler HolderLong Island Children’s MuseumTanya Butler HolderLong Island Children’s Museum
Tanya Butler Holder is the Associate Director of Administration at the Long Island Children’s Museum. She began her career in museums in 2005, when she joined LICM. Prior to becoming Associate Director of Administration, Tanya worked primarily in the President’s office and managed special projects. Her current role has her working closely with LICM’s President and serving as a liaison for the Board of Trustees. She also oversees the operations of the Museum Store and the Birthday Party program. Among her many roles, Tanya was named the lead for LICM’s process in the Cultural Competence Learning Institute (CCLI) and, along with LICM’s CCLI team, she has helped to bring cultural competence top of mind in her institution. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and African American Studies from Wesleyan University.