FAO Schwarz Fellowship Program

2024 Alumni Newsletter

A group of Fellows posing together in Philadelphia.
Fellows participate n the tomato harvest at the Food Project in Boston
Kira with Dinosaurs

A Message from Priscilla

Dear Supreme Fellows, Current Fellows, and Trustees,

This is one of my favorite times of year, as the applications for the new Fellowship roles roll in, and we learn of all the exciting developments happening in your careers and personal lives. 

I’m thrilled to share the latest updates from alumni and current Fellows in this 2024 edition of our annual newsletter. It’s so inspiring to keep up with the change you’re creating in your communities, and how your commitment to social impact continues to deepen.

This past summer, after another selective recruitment process, we welcomed our new Fellows to organizations like returning host, Year Up, and new host, The Whitney Museum of American Art, among others. The first-year Fellows have hit the ground running in their roles, and already making significant contributions to their host organizations and to the Fellowship. 

The next cohort will feature seven new Fellows who will start during the summer of 2024. The host sites include 826 Boston (Boston), Audubon Mid-Atlantic (host of current second-year, Sophie, in Philadelphia), The Clay Studio (host of current second-year, Kayla, in Philadelphia), Museum of the City of New York (host of current second-year, Natalia, in New York City), Reading Partners (hosting two Fellows in New York City), and The Food Trust (Philadelphia). During the recruitment cycle we reached over 500 colleges and universities, and continued to share information about the Fellowship through emails, social media, information sessions, and more. As always, we are thrilled by the quality, diversity, and passion of this year’s applicant pool.

Click through the years below to read updates from each cohort, back to our first in 2008! It’s a testament to the strength of our alumni network to hear such great updates from each of you every year. We are always here to support you. Thank you!

Priscilla standing outside
Priscilla Cohen
Executive Director, FAO Schwarz Family Foundation
"I am the Executive Director, Youth Sentencing & Reentry Project in Philadelphia. On a personal note, I am excited to report that I recently purchased my first home!!!"
Bianca van Heydoorn '09
Fellow at Vera Institute of Justice
"I am a Supervising Program Manager at iMentor Chicago and oversee the 11th and 12th grade program at one of our partner schools. I also a program manager at an additional partner school. I'm also coaching Varsity Soccer at the school I work at- Crane Medical Prep! It's been an added part of my work that I really enjoy."
Lauren Hurly
Lauren Hurley '20
Fellow at Breakthrough Greater Boston
"In the summer of '23, I moved from Belgrade, Serbia where I was working at the International School of Belgrade, to Lusaka, Zambia. I now work as a secondary language and literature teacher at the American International School of Lusaka."
Michael McNeill-Martinez '14
Fellow at Zumix

Updates by Cohort


Avery Trinidad

Year Up New York|New Jersey

My first six months at Year Up have been a period of rapid maturity and growth: as a social impact collaborator, as a strategic researcher, as a designer, and as a person. In my first month at Year Up New York|New Jersey, I was able to overhaul our market-level research process and establish new methods of visualizing and reporting data relevant to our B2C service. In October, I developed a nationally-adopted template and design language for on-boarding members of Year Up’s Admissions Teams. Since November, I’ve been gradually implementing new, qualitative methods of producing in-house market-level research at Year Up. And over all that time, I’ve executed a variety of long-term and rapid research projects for stakeholders at Year Up, bringing our site closer to a state of data democratization.

Really, that’s all to say I’ve explored the many ways we empower and serve our participants here at Year Up, and the ways we can continue to build and iterate on that process. January 2024 marks the first time a cohort I helped onboard– Class 35– has transitioned into the Internship phase of the program. My special project work has blurred quite often into my direct service. One week I’ll be chatting with our young adults over lunch, the next I’ll be calculating their Net Promoter Score. In a future-facing organization at scale like Year Up, service is a constantly iterative process. Service is researched, designed, and executed with intention. 

At the end of this month, I’ll be leading my second LC Lookback, a market-wide in-service program day tackling the trends, training, and data that have come to shape our participants’ experience of Year Up. Not only will I be translating months worth of my combined quantitative, qualitative, and desk research into actionable insights– I’ll be cultivating a practice of data democratization, collaborating with Year Up staff in making informed, evidence-based decisions. Soon after that, I’ll begin working with our national Research & Evaluation and Business Insights team to identify areas for collaboration, shared learning, and a collective investment of knowledge into our organizational mission. I’m lucky! I don’t just get one “year up” with the fellowship: I’m getting two.

Jocelyn Poste

Museum of Science

The past six months as an FAO Schwarz Fellow at the Museum of Science has been an extraordinary experience. I have assisted and led numerous youth and community events, within and outside of the Museum, and connected with students through our Summer Youth Internship and Fenway High School Partnership. I got the chance to join the Museum’s DEAIB Committee and MOS en Español team to be able to provide a more accessible and equitable Museum experience for all. Also, despite being a local, this opportunity has given me the chance to further understand and connect with the communities that I grew up surrounded by. I am excited to see how I continue to grow and thrive during the rest of my time as an FAO Schwarz Fellow.

Sabrina Abreu

Jumpstart NYC

During my tenure at Jumpstart, I have made contributions to both the Policy and Government Relations (PGR) team and the New York Community Impact (NYCI) team, aligning my efforts with specific goals and deliverables to drive positive impact and advance the organization’s mission. On the PGR team, I have focused on refining my understanding of policy areas relevant to our strategic initiatives in NYC, NYS, and federal legislative jurisdictions. I have actively engaged in tracking legislation, assessing gaps in current policies, and comprehending the impacts of proposed policy changes. This has involved attending meetings, crafting messaging, and staying informed about relevant policy developments. I have also played a role in implementing robust support systems within the PGR Department — this has included leading workflow organization initiatives, process standardization meetings, contributing to team playbooks, and participating in budget planning. Transitioning to the NYCI team, I have endeavored to enhance the inclusivity and quality of our programmatic initiatives. This has entailed diversifying our reach to early care providers, closely monitoring partner needs to offer targeted support, and establishing systematic feedback mechanisms for continuous program evaluation. By measuring program breadth, tracking engagement metrics, and soliciting feedback from stakeholders, I have facilitated data-driven decision-making processes aimed at fostering equity and inclusion within our program offerings. In supporting programmatic initiatives, I have provided thought leadership on strategy and content development for New York City program implementation and on-the-ground support during program facilitation. These endeavors have been guided by a commitment to refining the quality of education and literacy tools provided to the communities we serve, thereby advancing the overarching Jumpstart theory of change. I’m grateful for this experience and have learned so much since starting my role at Jumpstart. 

Sarika Doppalapudi

Whitney Museum

Professionally, I have been working on a partnership between the Whitney and the Andrew Heiskell Braille and Talking Book Library to create an art-making curriculum for blind and low-vision middle school students. Personally, I have been working on two large-scale fiber tapestries for an upcoming exhibition on Governor’s Island, and will have textile works as part of a group show at a museum in Delaware.

Jahmali Matthews

Breakthrough Greater Boston

In 2024 I have started to structure my time outside of work to be more intentionally creative. I am writing a haiku a day this year with plans to publish all 365 as a book next year.

Jesse McLaughlin

NYC Audubon

Since I started the Fellowship in July of 2022, I’ve developed and conducted programming for visitors to NYC Audubon’s seasonal environmental center on Governors Island and taken an active role in city- and state-level wildlife conservation advocacy. As I finish out my second year of the Fellowship, I look forward to continuing to create change for urban birds and their habitats while implementing key principles of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Accessibility to engage and uplift future advocates for the birds.

Juan Mojica

Breakthrough Greater Boston

Alongside my college success and alumni relation workload my duties at Breakthrough have expanded to include involvement on our development/operations team. I have been gaining valuable experience in financial and recruitment matters. I am still thinking about what my plans are for after the fellowship. Still unsure if I would continue my work in Boston or move back to Texas to be closer to family and friends. 

Kayla Johnson

The Clay Studio

In the past two years I have been able to fully develop the after-school program at The Clay Studio. We now work with four schools in the area to offer ceramic instruction four days a week. I’ve also taken on teaching arts residencies in Philadelphia schools, and administration work in collaboration between The Clay Studio & The Free Library of Philadelphia. I’ve found joy in planning community events where we can bring our mobile engagement program to festivals to reach a larger audience. 

Natalia Wang

Museum of the City of New York

It has been such a privilege to work with students, teachers and MCNY staff from across the five boroughs over the past year. From field trips and teacher workshops to trainings on museum education strategies – I have had the opportunity to engage critically, deeply and creatively with our audiences and look forward to continuing this work in the coming year.

Sophie Becker-Klein

Audubon Mid Atlantic

In the second year of my fellowship, I have added another school to my program. Now I teach in four different schools, reaching about 1,000 students per school year. As I reach the end of my fellowship, I am looking to stay in Philadelphia and continue my environmental work.

Vanessa Barragán

The Food Project

I am so grateful for the opportunities I have gained through the past year and a half with The Food Project and the Fellowship. During this time, I have managed The Food Project’s Build-a-Garden program, planning and supervising the installation of 157 raised garden beds (so far!) for residents of the City of Boston. In working with The Food Project’s youth programs, I have taken on increasing responsibility — culminating in acting as the Interim Youth Development Manager for the winter trimester of the program. These experiences have allowed me to build up my leadership skills, confidence, and knowledge of food systems work more than I even imagined possible in my first two years out of college. I will always cherish all the connections and friendships I have made during these years, and look forward to the rest of my time before the end of my fellowship. 

Jasmin Norford


Jasmin was selected for a full scholarship as the Martin Luther King Jr. Fellow at Boston University pursuing a Masters in Educational Policy. At the same time, Jasmin is working at Educators for Excellence where she is organizing Massachusetts educators for equitable teacher-lead education policies. 

Kira Azulay

Museum of Science 

I have gotten a permanent job at the Museum of Science after my Fellowship ended in June. In the past 8 months as an Education Associate in Youth Programs, I have been delighted to work with Jocelyn Poste, the new FAO Schwarz Fellow. We’ve delivered a professional development program for 30 Summer interns, created a curriculum of science belonging and exploration for a cohort of 19 high school juniors, and facilitated three broader events for over 250 students to learn about Chemistry, AI, and STEM Careers. I attended the conference of Association of Science and Technology Centers in North Carolina as a representative of MOS and have joined a local network of youth-serving organizations in Boston. On an individual level I have recently debuted a new show called Super Cold Science–using liquid nitrogen to teach about temperature and states of matter!

Nia Atkins

Year Up New York|New Jersey

I am currently working as a human services research associate at Mathematica Policy Research. I engage in technical assistance, literature review, data collection, data analysis, and writing tasks for projects related to topics such as labor, sexual and reproductive health, child welfare, and education.

Ryan Telingator


I am now eight months into my post-Fellowship role as the Legislative Director for Massachusetts State Representative Marjorie Decker. It is incredibly rewarding to work for the State Rep. who represents the district I grew up in (and that my parents still live in!), and I appreciate the opportunity to continue developing my policy and political skills that I initially fostered working on the PGR team at Jumpstart during my Fellowship. It’s been great to continue to see the Fellows and friends in the Boston area, and look forward to more Fellowship meet-ups in the future.

Adriana Moran Garcia

Mural Arts Philadelphia

Adriana is currently the Programming Coordinator at El Museo del Barrio

Charlotte Blackman

Museum of the City of New York

After completing my fellowship in 2022, I was hired by the Museum of the City of New York and served as the Educational Design and Media Specialist through Fall of 2023. I am now exploring next steps professionally.

Clara Monk

Reading Partners NYC

I transitioned to Reading Partners’ National Community Engagement team in May. In my new role as National Community Engagement Manager, I support a portfolio of regions across the country alongside lots of other systems and data projects.

H’Abigail Mlo

Trust for Public Land

This past year, I have coordinated three new schoolyard projects in Scranton and Pittsburgh, the first Trust for Public Land schoolyard projects in these respective cities. I have also been managing our pilot Schoolyard Stewardship Program across five schools in Philadelphia, the goal of which is to build a system of sustainable care for each site. 

Serena Salgado

Breakthrough Greater Boston

I am still at The Bridgespan Group as an Associate Consultant in New York City! 

A group of Fellows posing together in Philadelphia.

Angela Ortiz

Generation Citizen

Angela works at the Peabody Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology at Harvard as an Administrative Coordinator.  This role initiates and supports the many day-to-day logistics of improving and maintaining relationships and community with and among the 55+ museum staff. While this includes the regular duties of an administrative assistant, the role has evolved to support the larger team of senior staff at the museum, administer various (often large and complicated) projects, as well as serve as an internal interdepartmental communications hub. Beyond the Director, this role works most closely with department and project leaders within the museum in addition to regularly conferring with staff across departments to coordinate the regular administrative needs of the museum in addition to overseeing the Tribal and Community Visit Coordinator in the Director’s Office.

Emily Hynes

Year Up New York | New Jersey

I have worked for Ovarian Cancer Research Alliance as Program Associate for almost two years now. I am enjoying the opportunity to work with patients, survivors, and their loved ones in different capacities. I also recently adopted a kitten and got engaged!

Marielena Fernandez


As a Scholar Counselor at Oliver Scholars, I support high-achieving students from underserved communities in their academic and personal growth. I leverage my communication and mentoring skills, as well as my degree in Urban Studies/Affairs from Queens College, to help them navigate the challenges and opportunities of pursuing higher education and career goals. Before joining Oliver Scholars, I worked as a Youth Development Specialist at DREAM (formerly Harlem RBI), where I designed and delivered programs that fostered social-emotional learning, civic engagement, and leadership among young people. I am passionate about urban education, youth empowerment, and social justice, and I strive to make a positive difference in the lives of the scholars and the communities I serve.

Meredith Jones


I’m living in Somerville and in my second year working at Neighborhood Villages as an Administrative Assistant while working on my School Psychology Masters/Eds. at UMASS Boston. 

Taylor Reese

Year Up Philadelphia

I’ve recently hit the one-year mark at my current organization, Jobs for the Future, a systems-focused nonprofit in the workforce development space. I am a project manager on the marketing team, primarily supporting our Employer Mobilization Practice (EMP) and a few other teams. For most of 2023, I also served as EMP’s marketing Business Partner, helping support their marketing strategy while we hired for the role. It was challenging to perform the two roles, but I learned a lot and gained the experience I was looking for, and we ended up hiring the perfect candidate for the role after a long search. 

Outside of work, I had spinal fusion surgery in May 2023 to correct severe scoliosis, something I’d lived with most of my life. I had been in a lot of pain, especially over the last few years, and so I’m so glad I made the massive decision to finally have surgery. I haven’t regretted it once! I’m back in the gym, playing tennis, and doing all the things I love.

2024 will be another big year for me, as I move to Charleston, SC, and start Clemson’s part-time MBA in digital brand communications in July. 

Annie Want

The Food Trust

After earning Master’s Program in social work at Smith College, Annie is working at Protea Wellness in the state of Washington as a therapist. “As someone who centers their work on marginalized people of many kinds, I am interested in working to end oppression and move toward liberation inside and outside the therapy room. I believe that each of our healing journeys has ripples in our relationships, communities, and lineages, and that this healing work is part of our larger movements.” 

Erika Apupalo

Reading Partners NYC

I started a new role as the Foundation Programs Coordinator at ICSC. 

Joyce Kim


I am still at Mathematica as a research analyst in the education and employment division, and also started a higher education Master’s program at the University of Washington this past fall, taking classes part-time. I’m more or less acclimated to the West Coast weather now! 

Lauren Hurley

Breakthrough Greater Boston

I am a Supervising Program Manager at iMentor Chicago and oversee the 11th and 12th grade program at one of our partner schools. I also manage a program manager at an additional partner school. I’m also coaching Varsity Soccer at the school I work at, Crane Medical Prep! It’s been an added part of my work that I really enjoy. 

Nick Mitch


I continue to work as a Resilience Planner at Arcadis where I work with towns and cities across the country to prepare for and adapt to climate change through both policy and design interventions. In January, I received my Certified Planner credential (AICP) from the American Planning Association’s Institute of Certified Planners. AICP Certification is the nationwide, independent verification of urban planners’ qualifications. 

Jaiwantie Manni 

Museum of the City of New York 

Jai, after completing graduate school at the American Museum of Natural History, is a high school science teacher at New  York City’s Department of Education.

Kayla Jones


I work as the GoATL Economic Inclusion Fund (GEI Fund) Manager at the Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta. The GEI Fund aims to provide capital to Black, women and other underinvested small business owners who routinely struggle to access the capital needed to grow and scale their businesses. This new fund aligns with the Foundation’s strategic plan to make this region more equitable and prosperous for all, specifically by creating wealth and employment opportunities for Atlanta residents.

Molly Blake

Playworks New England

These past two years have been a whirlwind for me personally and professionally. After battling many surgeries, I am finally feeling healthy and back to normal. I spent 4.5 years in the sales world and managing teammates on how to best sell to school districts across the country. I found myself wanting to take on a new challenge and feeling unfulfilled, so I decided to try and make the jump into a marketing position. I am lucky enough now to be at a very small education tech company and I am in charge of leading the campaign creation for our small but mighty marketing team. It has been a great challenge to switch careers and I feel valued and appreciated being at such a small company. I am excited for what is next to come. 

Pamela Martinez

Playworks Philadelphia 

I am the Program Manager at Playworks PA leading and planning the implementation of Playworks comprehensive school based play and youth development programming. I train and oversee the Site Coordinators who deliver our Consultative services to multiple school sites in Philadelphia and Chester County. 

Samantha Perlman 

Generation Citizen

I graduated early from law school this past December and am in the final semester of my dual degree at Tufts University in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning. Last semester, I served in a public defense clinic and represented clients in Dorchester District Court.

Allie Negron


I’m still working at MissionWired, a digital marketing agency primarily serving nonprofit and Democratic political clients. In my role as Associate Director of Digital Production, I help to lead our Digital Production team, which builds and deploys the emails and text messages we send on behalf of our more than 70 clients. This year will be especially busy as we head into the 2024 Presidential Election cycle!

Claudia von Nostitz

Reading Partners NYC

I’m working as a special education teacher in a self-contained classroom in a school right next to my house. I‘m finishing my grad school program this spring and will be getting a master’s in special and childhood education. 

Karen Wilber


I’ve continued working at uAspire, my original host organization! I’ve been enjoying my role as Senior Director of Learning & Evaluation. This year I’m looking forward to presenting at the National Partnership for Education Access (NPEA) conference on how to deepen student/participant involvement in organizational planning and improvement. In my personal life I’ve been enjoying reading, journaling, and trying new restaurants around Cambridge. 

Ciara Williams

Mural Arts Philadelphia

Ciara started a History PhD program at Harvard University in the fall of 2023 with a focus on environmental history, resource extraction, colonial race capitalism and abolition. 

Ellie Sanchez

Generation Citizen

My Office was elected for a second term on the Boston City Council. I am proud to continue working with Councilor Gabriela Coletta to represent Charlestown, the North End, East Boston, and the Downtown waterfront as her Chief of Staff for another term. 

Jen Benson


Midway through 2023, I joined the Hudson River Sloop Clearwater a member-supported non-profit organization with a mission is to protect the Hudson River by inspiring lifelong stewardship of the river and its tributaries through innovative education programs and advocacy. As the Director of Environmental Action, my role centers on leading our advocacy efforts. I continue to live in Kingston, and outside of work, can be found hiking in the Catskill Mountains, organizing locally, reading, and baking. 

Julia Fillman

Row New York

I continue to live in Philly and work at Penn as a frontline fundraiser supporting undergraduate student life and learning – with this year marking 5 years on my team! Outside of work, my husband Greg and I are very excited to be expecting our first child later this spring and are busy preparing for all the new changes our life will bring!

Khari Graves

The Food Trust

In January I began a new position as the Restorative Justice Coordinator for Collective Climb, a non-profit organization committed to supporting justice-system involved youth in pre-charge diversion programming, as well as supporting their holistic, long-term needs and desires in an effort to help them see themselves, and grow, outside of things they have done.

Dawn Lavallee

Playworks Massachusetts

Dawn was promoted to Associate Director, Playworks New England in July 2023. After completing her FAO Schwarz Fellowship at Playworks and earning a Masters in Business Administration from Questrom School of Business at Boston University, Dawn has taken on increasing leadership roles over the past six years at Playworks New England. 

Gabriella Gomez

Breakthrough New York

I am about to embark on my 5th year at SEO High School Scholars program in New York as the Operations Program Manager. This year my work has grown to include partnership communication with our external sites at Baruch College and LIU (Downtown Brooklyn) campus. I am enjoying the continued work as I lead into nonprofit administration and management project plans. Separate from work, I was recently engaged to my fellow Fellow Joseph Rosales. 

Joseph Rosales

Breakthrough New York

I am still working as a Director of College Counseling with the Student Leadership Network in NYC. The college application season continues to be challenging, but I look forward to hearing their results in a few weeks. Outside of work, Gaby Gomez ’16 and I got engaged this summer! We continue to cook, travel, and play with our cat Kobe together (only this time with a ring!)

Margaret Kearney

Mural Arts Philadelphia

I am still teaching high school Special Education and English for the School District of Philadelphia. I work with juniors and seniors with learning disabilities to improve literacy skills as they graduate and transition to adulthood. 

Sarah Kacevich 

Strong Women, Strong Girls

I continue to live in Watertown, MA and recently marked six years as Program Director at Farrington Nature Linc. This year I dove more deeply into creative pursuits by starting a small side business where I offer botanical-infused body care and home goods. I continue to love volunteering with the Stone House in Boston and being an aunt to my two nephews. 

Amy McDermott


I’ve been working as Executive Director for The Valedictorian Project for two and a half years now, and what a ride it’s been! Since our founding, we’ve grown to now serve 140 mentees from cities across Massachusetts. It’s been really interesting running a start-up, as all my previous experience has been in more established nonprofit organizations. I feel really honored to be able to do this work and to build out the program for our mentees and mentors. On a personal level, my husband and I are enjoying life with our two-year-old pup, Penny, and five nieces and nephews!

Char Rendon

Row New York

Char is an entrepreneur who launched and manages their own e-commerce business. 

Deshaun Parris

The Food Trust

Deshaun is the Senior Site Manager, Clinical Operations at ICON plc in Philadelphia. “In this role, I perform offsite central monitoring and site management activities for observational and non-interventional studies, ensuring compliance with protocols, regulations, and quality standards. I also coordinate and communicate effectively across interdisciplinary project teams, vendors, and clients, and contribute to data review, query resolution, and risk assessment and management. My passion for public health stems from my desire to prevent complex health issues and address the health disparities that affect underserved communities. I have a Master of Public Health degree from the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine, and a Bachelor of Science degree in Public Health from Temple University. “

Juliana Noone

Please Touch Museum

Juliana is an artist and a freelance production designer in Philadelphia.

Shaina Spann


Shaina is the Marketing Communications Project Manager of DCBar in Washington, DC. The mission of the organization is to “enhance access to justice. Improve the legal system. Empower lawyers to achieve.”

Caroline Smith

Breakthrough of Greater Philadelphia

Caroline is an English/ESL Teacher in the Upper school SEI Academy at Charlestown High School in the Boston area.

Jonathan Baez

Breakthrough New York

Currently the Work-Based Learning Manager at The Urban Assembly. Also the Board Chair of The National Fellowship for Black and Latino Male Educators. 

Katherine Evering-Rowe

The Food Project

I’m currently working as a psychotherapist in private practice in Philadelphia, primarily serving queer and trans young adults of color. I work with a number of college students and recent grads and draw on my experience as both a youth worker and a young professional serving as an FAO Fellow all the time! 

Kayla (Peck) Hopgood

Strong Women, Strong Girls

I was ordained a Minister of Word and Sacrament in the Evangelical Lutheran Church of America (ELCA) and I currently serve as senior pastor at Ascension Lutheran Church in Newtown, PA.

Michael McNeill-Martinez


In the summer of ’23, I moved from Belgrade, Serbia where I was working at the International School of Belgrade, to Lusaka, Zambia. I now work as a secondary language and literature teacher at the American International School of Lusaka. 

Greg Wright

The Food Trust

I still work as a community school coordinator in the Mayor’s Office of Education in Philadelphia. As of 2022 I started a photography business, Wright Eye Visuals LLC. Through photography I aim to tell stories of the African Diaspora. 

Louis Berman

Jumpstart New York

Louis is a Pre-K Team Leader and Partner Teacher at Beauvoir, The National Cathedral Elementary School in Washington, D.C.

Sara Wilson 

Year Up

Since moving from the Northeast, I have been enjoying my time in Atlanta, GA. My current role at Deloitte in confidentiality and privacy has allowed me to grow as a privacy professional. I am working on acquiring credentials to become a Certified Information Privacy Professional. 

Bridgit Paula Ganson

Wheelock College

Bridgit offers part-time programming through my private practice, Early Bird Counseling. Programs include support groups for parents and caregivers, as well as outdoor nature programs specially designed for children ages 0-3 years. Bridgit has two young children: Oliver (4y) and Talullah (2y) and lives in Ontario, Canada. 

Kerry Sorenson 

Breakthrough of Greater Philadelphia

Kerry just completed her 11th year at Mastery Charter School Shoemaker Campus where she has taken on a leadership role as the Assistant Principal of Post-Secondary. In this role, Kerry manages developing and delivering communications, services, programs, and tools to equip students and families to successfully navigate the path from high school to college or career.

Lakeisha Gerald 

The Food Project

I am a guidance counselor at Attleboro Community Academy. ACA is an alternative diploma bearing high school recognized by the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE). Through a competency based curriculum, we meet the individual needs and interests of each of our students through flexible learning pathways, responsive teaching practices, and student support services. We focus on providing a small, welcoming environment and building healthy relationships while maintaining high academic standards and expectations. Our goal is to allow students to reach their unique potential as they prepare for their future. Lakeisha’s daughter, Khadija, is now 17 months. 

Lauren Brincat

Museum of the City of New York

Since 2016, Lauren has been the curator of Preservation Long Island, a regional not-for-profit that works with Long Islanders to protect, preserve, and celebrate our cultural heritage through advocacy, education, and the stewardship of historic sites and collections. 

Maley Mullin Parilla 


Maley is the Lower School Counselor at The Carroll School in Waltham, Massachusetts. Carroll is a special education school serving students with dyslexia. Maley works with the youngest students in grades first through 4th. Maley and her husband have a daughter, Mairead Frances, who was born in September of 2022. 

Ariana Dugan

Year Up

Ariana is the VP of Product at Interplay Learning in Washington, DC. Ariana has served as a mentor for Built by Girls for the past four years. 

Mariah Peebles

Year Up

I am finishing up my 2nd year at Simmons School of Social Work and will graduate with my MSW in May 2024.

Shameka Edmond Smith


I am currently a Middle School ELA Teacher at KIPP Elementary School in the Bronx.

Alexis McConnell

Boston Children’s Museum

Alexis is the Nutrition Educator Supervisor with the Broward County Health Department in Florida.

Brianne Studer

Boston Children’s Museum

I am still Director of Programs at Friends of the National Arboretum.  It’s been a year of new projects, from infrastructure projects to evaluation, and staff changes on my team, so always something to learn!  MC and I are still enjoying our time in DC with our two pups, Noodles and Hazel.

Danielle Calnan Morassi


Danielle works with Talent Acquisition and Operations for Babilou, which owns Little Sprouts and Building Block, to build stronger teams both in the field and at our home offices, and ensure our educators have livable wages, access to quality benefits, and support in workplace development. 

Julia MacMahon

Wheelock College

Julia is an independent consultant and facilitator around issues of social justice, addressing racism in school communities and white allyship. In this role, Julia works on curriculum development, workshop facilitation, focus group facilitation and program assessment. In addition, Julia is an Adjunct Professor & Field Advisor at Boston College’s School of Social Work where Julia earned a Masters Degree in Social Work in 2016. 

Liana (Mitman) Brodsky


This March will be 7 years working at the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Foundation. Last year I was promoted to Associate Director of the Mandel Institute for Nonprofit Leadership. We now have 3 programs at the Institute, including a new program for leaders in arts and culture. My daughter is now 4.5 and we just lost our 15 year old dog, Oliver.

Stephanie Dueño

Museum of the City of New York

Stephanie is a consultant for The Center for Fair Futures which is comprised of youth-led advocacy, youth-centered model implementation and youth-informed innovation. Stephanie transitioned to this role in March 2023 after working for close to six years in NYC Administration for Children’s Services where her most recent role had been serving as the Executive Director of Educational Services and Youth Rights in the Division of Youth and Family Justice. 

Barbyose Noisette Sanders

Big Brothers Big Sisters

I have been the Executive Program Director at Kensington Soccer Club since September 2022. I recently joined the Board of Directors of the Young Caribbean Professional Network in Philadelphia, and I am attending Bryn Mawr College’s Nonprofit Executive Leadership Program.

Bianca van Heydoorn

Vera Institute of Justice

I am the Executive Director, Youth Sentencing & Reentry Project in Philadelphia. On a personal note, I am excited to report that I recently purchased my first home!!! 

Massomeh (Muhammed) Spahr

Year Up

Massomeh is the Managing Director, BIPOC ED Coalition Washington State. Massomeh transitioned to this role in April 2022 after almost 10 years at Growing Up Green Charter School where she was Director of Operations.

Tory Klein Dunkle

Please Touch Museum

Tory is working as Director of Children’s Ministries at Church of the Redeemer in Bryn Mawr, PA.  Tory’s daughter Anna turned 4 in December.

Christyne (DeMango) Anderson

Associated Early Care and Education

I am still working for Harvard University as Associate Director of Training and Compliance in the Office for Sponsored Programs. Outside of work, CJ and I are busy with our three children who will be thirteen, eleven and nine this spring. 

CJ Anderson


CJ is an Elementary School Teacher at the Billerica Public Schools. CJ and Christyne have three children who will be twelve, ten and eight this spring.

Emily Kuross Vikre

Boston Children’s Museum

I continue to serve as CEO and Co-Founder of Vikre Distillery. I’ve now written four cookbooks through Harvard Common Press available nationally: The New Camp Cookbook Fireside Warmers came out in 2023 and The New Camp Cookbook on the Trail will be released this year. I continue to serve on multiple boards including Lyric Opera of the North, Friends of the Boundary Waters, and the 1200 Fund Board. Both LOON and Friends of the Boundary Waters have amazing education programs for elementary and middle schoolers. I’m on the education committee for both of them and we’re working on scaling these programs. My family is well, we’re enjoying the natural beauty of northern Minnesota, and I’ve taken up oil painting and ballet in my spare time. 

Joanna Steinberg

Museum of the City of New York 

I have taken on the role of Director of Learning and Engagement at the New Haven Museum as of September 2023. I am excited to develop community partnerships, programs, and curriculum that is interdisciplinary, student-centered, and focused on local history, bridging the past and the present. Joanna, her husband and son Paxton are living in New Haven, Connecticut.

Jordy Owen

Children’s Literacy Initiative

Jordy is the Director of Multimedia and E-Learning Technologies at the Children’s Literacy Initiative where she worked as an FAO Schwarz Fellow.