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The FAO Schwarz Fellows Newsletter

2016 Cohort Update

Dawn Lavalle

Playworks Massachusetts (Boston)

I’m still enjoying outdoor adventure life in New Hampshire with my husband and dog: hiking, cross-country skiing, and running for the most part. As Regional Partnership Director at Playworks, my team has grown to include 6 people partnering with schools all across the region from Rhode Island to Maine and as far west as Springfield. It’s exciting to be bringing joy, physical activity, and positive social interaction into schools during what continues to be a really tough time for staff and students. 

Gabriella Gomez

Breakthrough NY (NYC)

I was promoted this year to Senior Operations Manager leading the program operations team at SEO, a high school college access program in New York City. When not at work, I can be found playing with my cat Kobe or rock climbing with Joe. 

Joe Rosales

Breakthrough NY (NYC)

Unbelievably, I am finishing my fourth school year as a Director of College Counseling at the Student Leadership Network in NYC. Time has flown by since the Fellowship; I still work with high school students (although I now focus on assisting them with their post-secondary planning) and continue to enjoy my career in education. Outside of work, I climb, cook, and enjoy life with Supreme Fellow Gaby Gomez ’16 and our cat Kobe.


Margaret Kearney

Mural Arts (Philadelphia)

I am a teacher at Strawberry Mansion High School in Philadelphia. I teach modified English Language Arts for Special Education students. This year I got married, finished my MA in Special Education, and enjoyed lots of time outside with my dog. 

Sarah Kacevich

Strong Women, Strong Girls (Boston)

I just marked 5 years in my role as Program Director with Farrington Nature Linc in the Boston area. I’m entering my 8th year of volunteering with the Stone House’s fundraiser hike initiative, Wilderness Heals, to support their programs for survivors of domestic violence. I’m also getting more involved in local food justice efforts, enjoying time with my family and nephews, and practicing as many adventure sports as possible.

Explore Cohort Updates

Select a cohort year from the list below to discover what former Fellows are doing now.

"I met incredible people (includeing my wonderful partner) through the fellowship, and these connections have guided me through impossible work and life situations. When I started at Breakthrough New York, I had no idea what I wanted to do with my life, and now I spend nearly every waking moment of my life thinking about education, education reform, and student advovcacy. I would not be the person I am today without the Fellowship, and I will forever be grateful!"
Joe Rosales
Director of College Counseling at the Student Leadership Network (NYC)