Communities of Color Virtual Networking Event | Monday, November 9

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The offices of Career Services and Leadership Management, Development and Alumni Relations, and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion are pleased to invite you to our 3rd Annual Communities of Color Virtual Networking Event on Monday, November 9, 2020.

All those who identify as students of color/ BIPOC are encouraged to participate!

Meet and mingle with a group of distinguished alumni of color, learn about their career paths and trajectories, and get tips and advice on navigating your own path as a professional of color in this dedicated virtual support space.

The list of featured alumni can be found below.

Event Details

Monday, November 9, 2020
6:30 – 8:30 pm ET
Platform: Zoom

The event will open with a 45-minute panel discussion and Q&A featuring select alumni guests. Thereafter, you will have the opportunity to engage in two rounds of small group networking with one or two alumni per group. 

*Pre-registration is required. Sign up here using your LionMail account ASAP. We ask that you only register if you are able to attend.

FEATURED ALUMNI (Read their full bio HERE)

Nadine Rose Carole ‘13 (SEA) – Program Manager at Facebook

Chris Eagar-Finney ‘13 (AGPP) – Psychiatric Social Worker II at Los Angeles County Department of Mental Health

Brandon Hadi ‘20 (SEA)  Program Manager at Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders in Philanthropy (AAPIP)

Kazuko (Kazu) Kato ‘13 (POL) – Engineering Analyst at Booz Allen Hamilton

Erick Nunez ‘15 (AGPP) Director of Specials Projects & Therapist at Soco Rey Therapy

Gwenelle  Styles O’Neal ’81 (POL) – Professor at West Chester University

Lorenzo Shaw-Graham ’20 (AGPP) – Program Associate, at Council on Social Work Education

Whitney Stewart ’14 (POL) – Senior Consultant-National Security at Guidehouse

Martinique (Marti) Teperman ‘06 (ACP) – Deputy Director of Social Services and Family Engagement at East Harlem Tutorial Program

Suzanne Towns ’01 (AGPP) – Deputy Executive Director at DC Workforce Investment Council

Communities of Color Roundtable Networking Event | Monday, September 16, 2019

The offices of Career Services and Leadership Management, Development and Alumni Relations, and Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion at Columbia School of Social Work are excited to host our 2nd Annual Communities of Color Roundtable Networking Event on Monday, September 16, 2019!

Please join us for a fun evening of mingling with some of our distinguished alumni of color from various concentrations and careers. This will be a great opportunity to expand both your knowledge base and network of contacts within a safe and supportive community, whether you are seeking to learn about potential career paths or hear their unique perspectives, insights, and advice as professionals of color in the field.

The list of featured alumni can be found below.

Event Details

Monday, September 16, 2019
6:00 – 9:00 pm*
Columbia School of Social Work
1255 Amsterdam Avenue, Room 311/312

Suggested attire: business casual

*Check in at 6:00 pm; main event at 6:30 pm. Students who arrive after 6:30 pm will not be allowed entry.

Space is limited. Pre-registration is required. Refreshments will be served.

Please RSVP on our Eventbrite page by Wednesday, September 11.

What to Expect

RESIDENTIAL STUDENTS: The event will be similar to that of “speed-networking.” After a 30-minute panel featuring select alumni guests, students will have the opportunity to meet with individual alumni at designated tables and engage in two rounds of 30-minute group conversations. Following the two rounds, there will be 30 minutes of informal, open networking to provide students and alumni additional time to connect with one another.

ONLINE STUDENTS: You will have the opportunity to view a 30-minute introductory panel featuring select alumni guests and then network virtually with alumni via Zoom.

All those who identify as students of color are welcome to participate!


James Singletary ’10 (Panel Moderator) – Associate Director of Field Education at Columbia School of Social Work

James is a 2010 graduate of Columbia School of Social Work who comes to us with 16 years of experience in human services, higher education, and parish ministry. Prior to joining our school, he served as Program Director at Harlem United where he managed and oversaw nine government contracts totaling 1.9 million dollars, as well as the day-to-day operation of the H.O.M.E. Program that provided supportive services to LGBTQ youth and young adults living with HIV. In 2010, he accepted a call to The Riverside Church and served as the Director for Children, Youth, and Families in the Education Ministry up to and through 2015. During his tenure at the Riverside Church, he expanded the program portfolio by adding six new program initiatives during his first year as director. Additionally, in 2015, he led a group of nine high school students to the White House to meet President Obama after competing in the Annual White House Student Film Festival. His students were awarded First Prize for their documentary film on Mentoring in Harlem.

Since 2008, he has taught as an Adjunct Lecturer in the African Studies and Communications Departments at CUNY. While a graduate student at the Columbia School of Social Work, he had the privilege of providing support as a research assistant to Dr. Mincy at the Center for Research on Father’s Children Family and Well-Being. He provided research assistance on two qualitative studies (Income Support Policies for Low-Income Men and Noncustodial Fathers and A Qualitative Look into the Lives of Unemployed Young Black Bermudian Men and the Gender Gap in Educational Attainment).

In addition to his extensive practice in the field, he also holds a Master of Divinity from Union Theological Seminary and a Master of Fine Arts from The New School.


Kainen Bell ’17 –  Development Coordinator at love.fútbol

Brazil has always had a special place in Kainen’s heart. As a kid, his dream was to visit but it seemed impossible. Surprisingly, during college he received a scholarship to visit Brazil and since then his dream has been to live there. In 2018 he received a Fulbright Fellowship to research about Social Projects in Brazil and this is where he met love.fútobl. What started as a research project later turned into a life changing partnership. Currently, he specializes in Fundraising and the Salesforce database system, and lives in Brazil.

Kainen has degrees in Business: Information System, and Social Work from the University of Washington and Masters in Social Work Degree from Columbia University.

*NO LONGER ABLE TO ATTEND* Krystal Bostick ’16 – Director of Youth Development and Counseling at Harlem Educational Activities Fund (HEAF)

Patrick Burden ’12 – Program Coordinator, Care Management at Mount Sinai Health Systems

Patrick Burden currently works for the Mount Sinai Health System as a Program Coordinator in the Care Management Program, providing clinical supervision for the social workers and care coordinators providing direct services to patients. 

In this role he also develops workflows and initiatives to better engage patients in meaningful care. Prior to this, and before attending CSSW, Patrick worked at The Choice Program with AmeriCorps, serving youth with justice-system involvement in Baltimore. Soon after graduating he began working at Mount Sinai Hospital as a Preventable Admissions Care Team (PACT) Social Worker, a role he held for over 3 years before moving into his current role.

Aside from his work in Care Management at Mount Sinai, Patrick also facilitates wellness groups for fellows and residents in graduate medical education and serves as a Wellness Advisor for medical students in the Icahn School of Medicine. Patrick has also presented at numerous academic conferences in the United States and internationally on topics including social workers in healthcare, health inequity, and community engagement in healthcare.

Tiffany Jules ’08 – Director at Services for the Underserved

Tiffany Jules is currently working at Services for Underserved (SUS) as the Director of the SRO Intervention Project in the Bronx. At SUS, Ms. Jules is responsible for managing two Ryan White HIV/AIDS care coordination programs which are funded by both the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene and Public Health Solutions. Every year, the SRO Intervention Project provides care coordination services for close to 500 HIV positive individuals with a history of homelessness, substance use and mental health issues. Ms. Jules supervises a team of 13 full-time staff members as well as BSW and MSW interns. Before coming to SUS, Ms. Jules worked at Partnership for the Homeless as the HIV Prevention Program Manager and managed the activities for two CDC evidence-based interventions for young women of color who were HIV positive or high risk for becoming infected with HIV. She also partnered with leadership to distill lessons learned from front-line staff in order to develop a better understanding about the connection between housing instability and HIV prevention. In addition to her job as a Director, Ms. Jules serves as a trainer for Safe Talk, an intervention for suicide alertness, and assisted with the implementation of a Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) grant on HIV and hepatitis C testing for individuals experiencing mental health issues. She is also an adjunct professor at Touro School of Social Work and serves as a member of the Public Health Solutions’ community advisory board. Ms. Jules graduated from CSSW in 2008.

Sharon Kim ’17 – Program Manager at Uptown Hub, New York-Presbyterian

Sharon Kim is a Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW) and Project Management Professional (PMP) committed to social change on a systemic level, especially related to youth and families. She is also focused on inclusivity and diversity initiatives that promote different perspectives so people can feel seen, included, and celebrated.

Currently, she works as a Program Manager at New York-Presbyterian (NYP), where she directs one of five “Youth Opportunity Hubs,” a first-of-its-kind effort to knit together community-based providers funded through the Manhattan District Attorney Office’s Criminal Justice Investment Initiative. She leads a team of clinicians and programming staff to connect youth and young adults in Washington Heights and Inwood to a full range of wraparound services with the goal of promoting retention in education and career opportunities, improved well-being, avoidance of system involvement, and continued prosocial activities.  She also worked at NYP prior to pursuing her MSW as a Program Coordinator for the Lang Youth Medical Program, where she led health enrichment and college readiness programs for middle and high school students from Washington Heights/Inwood.

While at CSSW, she interned at Vera Institute of Justice and Children’s Aid Society and also spent her summer in between at the Adventure Project as a Development and Fundraising fellow. She graduated in 2017 with a focus on social enterprise administration.

Jewel Mack ’92 – Deputy Director of the Qualitative Review and Evaluation Unit at NYC Administration for Children’s Services

In her current role at the NYC Administration for Children’s Services, Jewel oversees the agency’s case record review practice, highlighting program strengths and areas for improvement with an emphasis on quality case practice. She has extensive experience working for  ACS, spanning 34 years, during which she served as an Analyst, Administrative Staff Analyst, and now a Deputy Director.

Nick Horace Ogutu ’17 – President of Safari Yangu Immigrant Stories & Coordinator of Amnesty International Bronx Chapter

Nick Ogutu is a Community Organizer, Social Worker and Human Rights Activist, who is passionate about advocating for people of African Descent around the world. He has presented speeches at the UN New York and at Amnesty International Conferences. He was also featured with Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez in the recently released Netflix film titled, Knock Down The House.

Nick’s passion as voice of the marginalized, oppressed and those discriminated around the world has been captured through his selfless activities and volunteer campaigns with numerous Human Rights organizations.

He is the Coordinator of Amnesty International Bronx New York Chapter. He is also the Founder and current President of Safari Yangu Immigrant Stories, an organization he started while he was a student at CSSW. He holds an MSW  from Columbia School of Social Work in International Social Welfare and service to Immigrants and Refugees.

Nick has successfully initiated and engineered human rights advocacy campaigns including New York Immigrants storytelling forums, DACA 5K Run in Bronx, Ethiopia Human Rights conference, Burundi Peace Rally, Oromo Justice Conference and Rally, Anti Police Brutality Rally in Kenya, Candlelight and Prayer Vigil for The Lives Lost in The Shootings in Minnesota, Baton Rouge and Dallas. On 10/1/2019, his organization, Safari Yangu and the Teachers college will host a panel discussion for 10 Governors from Africa who will be in New York for the annual UNGA meetings. His organization, Safari Yangu Immigrant Stories major highlights include the recently released BBC Documentary, My Stolen Childhood. The story of a young African girl sold as a slave by her parents and later rescued into foster care by a US family. Safari Yangu was the first to feature the story on video before BBC took it up and made an award-winning documentary.

Despite the physical and emotional challenges he faced after a horrific car accident and being homeless, he came to New York to begin his graduate studies at CSSW. He outdid the odds and graduated with honors and dived into serving the New York community with passion and dedication. He has been recognized by local political, business and religious leaders in the Bronx and Harlem. He was part of the New York Immigration Coalition (NYIC) team that successfully campaigned for the “Greenlight legislation” recently signed into a State Law by Governor Cuomo granting all New Yorkers the privilege to apply for Drivers License regardless of their immigration status. He is currently the director of community affairs for Harlem Artisans Market, an indoor market and community center he founded through his organization, Safari Yangu.

Cathleen “Cat” Plazas ’10 – Senior Director of Program and Curriculum Evaluation, NJPAC’s Arts Education Department

Cathleen “Cat” Plazas is the first Senior Director of Curriculum and Program Evaluation for NJPAC’s Arts Education Department. In her current role, Cathleen provides leadership and vision through evaluation in the ongoing planning, implementation, and development of the different genres offered at the Center for Arts Education: theatre, dance, jazz, poetry, film, and hip hop. Cat has been combining her love for the theater and for social work practice by working in arts education administration for about 7 years. Her previous experience in arts education includes working at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) as well as the Dr. Phillips Center for the Performing Arts in Orlando, Florida. As a first-generation Colombian-American and a Millenial, Cathleen believes that the future of arts education lies in collaborative new approaches that exemplify diversity and access to all when it comes to arts education. She also believes that the arts make all of us better people and in creating spaces where students can grow by discovering their own artistry.

Cat received her MSW from Columbia School of Social Work in 2010 with a concentration in policy practice and focus on international social welfare.

Shanehi Shah ’15  – Social Impact Consultant (Self-Employed)

Shanehi Shah is a consultant with experience in corporate social responsibility and non-profit management. On the corporate side, she worked for Starwood Hotels, Capital One Bank, and the Edna McConnell Clark Foundation. On the non-profit side, she previously worked with Upward Bound and the Coalition for the Homeless. She has expertise in CSR strategy, corporate volunteerism, philanthropy, DEI, and program management. She is excited to for her decision to spend Oct-Dec 2019 on two businesses. The first is Blockbreaker – a 3-session coaching model designed to help entrepreneurs and other professionals break through their blocks and reignite their momentum. The second is Drawbridge – a strategy to foster social activism and learning. Drawbridge will enter its market analysis and R&D phase. More to come on it in January 2020!

Yaya Yuan ’17 – Program Director at StreetSquash

Yaya Yuan began her career as a classroom teacher at the Fudan International School in Shanghai, China, where she also oversaw the after-school program. Upon returning to the U.S., she worked as Program Director at LitWorld, a non-profit dedicated to empowering women and girls from around the world. Prior to joining StreetSquash, Yaya worked as Deputy Director of the Harlem Community Justice Center, where she oversaw community alternatives to incarceration. She holds a B.A. from Grinnell College and a Master’s of Science in Social Work from Columbia University.


Nadine Rose Carole ’13 – Operations Program Manager at Facebook

Nadine Rose Carole is currently an Operations Program Manager for the Infrastructure Data Center team at Facebook, where she focuses on people initiatives, including building employee resources and training on career and project management. She previously worked as an instructor on program management for General Assembly, program manager at AT&T Foundry, and project manager at Google. She also founded her own company, Galley,  an online marketplace for food vendors to find and book commercial kitchens.

A common thread throughout her professional career has been managing people and projects. Nadine believes in creating community and is passionate about working with people and building inspiring product. Her mantra is – “it’s all in the details”​. She earned in MSW from Columbia University in 2013 with a focus on social entrepreneurship and management.

Kameron Mims-Jones ’19 – Policy Advocate at California Food Policy Advocates

Kameron Mims-Jones is Policy Advocate for California Food Policy Advocates, an Oakland-based non-profit organization focused on increasing low-income Californians’ access to healthy food. There, she is a member of the CalFresh team, whose work is focused on implementing policies to improve access and participation. She is a passionate advocate for policies that promote social and economic justice for historically marginalized individuals and communities. She received her MSW from Columbia School of Social Work in 2019.

Nicole Wong ’19  Director of the Sexual Assault and Violence Prevention Office at Vassar College

Nicole Wong (she/her) is currently the Sexual Assault & Violence Prevention Office Director at Vassar College. As the SAVP Director, Nicole provides survivor-centered support and advocacy to individuals impacted by sexual and interpersonal violence, coordinates on-campus violence prevention trainings and workshops, and works closely with the SAVP student interns on events and programming throughout the year. Previously, Nicole was the Violence Prevention Educator at Vassar where she developed and implemented sexual violence prevention events and programming for students and employees in the Vassar College community. She also worked in the anti-violence field at the Center for Victim Safety and Support (CVSS) in Poughkeepsie, NY where she held the positions of High Risk Case Manager and Coordinator of Advocacy. At CVSS, Nicole provided counseling, advocacy, and safety planning services to victims of domestic violence and sexual assault, supervised direct service staff, as well as coordinated daily program activities.

Nicole earned her MSW at Columbia School of Social Work in Advanced Clinical Practice with a focus on Health, Mental Health, and Disabilities and her B.A. in Sociology and English from Vassar College.

Communities of Color Roundtable Networking Event | Monday, September 24, 2018

The Office of Career Services and Leadership Management, Office of Alumni Relations, and Office of Diversity, Inclusion, and Student Life at Columbia School of Social Work is excited to host its inaugural Communities of Color Roundtable Networking Event on Monday, September 24, 2018 at Barnard College!

Please join us for a fun evening of mingling with some of our distinguished alumni of color from various concentrations and careers. This will be a great opportunity to expand both your knowledge base and network of contacts within a safe and supportive community, whether you are seeking to learn about potential career paths or hear their unique perspectives, insights, and advice as professionals of color in the field.

The list of featured alumni can be found below.

Event Details

Monday, September 24, 2018
6:30 – 9:00 pm*
Barnard College, 3009 Broadway, New York, NY 10027
James Room (4th Floor)

Suggested attire: business casual

*Check in at 6:30 pm; main event at 7:00 pm
Students who arrive after 7:00 pm will not be allowed entry.

Register (required)

Please RSVP by Monday, September 17. Space is limited.

What to Expect

The event will be similar to that of “speed-networking.” Students will have the opportunity to meet with alumni at designated tables and engage in three rounds of 15-20 minute group conversations. Following the three rounds, there will be 30 minutes of informal, open networking to provide students and alumni additional time to connect with one another.

All those who identify as students of color are welcome to participate!


Martine Baron ’98  (AGPP) – Director of Care Management at SOMOS Community Care
Table 1

Martine has more than 20 years of experience in utilization case management, healthcare administration, managed long-term care, and behavioral health. She oversees all care management projects including several innovative care management infrastructure improvement projects.

Martine’s expertise also includes program design and managed care, provider community outreach and engagement, social work principles in macro settings and change management. She is dedicated to transforming health care delivery and improving the health of underserved populations.

Dominic Cathey ’17 (SEA/INT) – Senior Director of Alumni Services at Excellence Community Schools
Table 2

Dominic has been appointed to many leadership positions throughout his career, while serving his greater community. Post CSSW, Dominic Cathey worked as a Community School Director, managing the ongoing development and coordination of services at the Community Learning School. However, most recently, he transitioned into alumni relations where he serves as the Senior Director of Alumni Relations for Excellence Community Schools (Charter Management Office).

Kassandra Frederique ’10 (AGPP/CSI) – New York State Director at Drug Policy Alliance
Table 3

Kassandra previously ran the day-to-day operations of the statewide campaign to end New York’s racially biased marijuana arrests, which cut the number of NYC marijuana arrests in half. Kassandra also represented DPA as a member of Communities United for Police Reform, which focused on addressing Stop & Frisk and broader police reform/accountability measures bridging the gap between the War on Drugs and policing.

In addition to working for policy solutions to reduce the harms associated with drug use, Kassandra works with communities throughout the state to address and resolve the collateral consequences of the War on Drugs – state violence. As a co-author of Blueprint for a Public Health and Safety Approach to Drug Policy and as technical advisor to Ithaca Mayor Svante Myrick’s The Ithaca Plan, Kassandra cultivates and mobilizes powerful coalitions in communities devastated by drug misuse and drug criminalization to develop municipal strategies to foster healthier and safer communities.

Kassandra’s professional focus includes building a reparative justice framework that positions Black and Latinx leaders to create solutions that not only end and repair the harms of the drug war but also create accountability structures between policymakers and people who use drugs. She is currently working on an emerging body of work that discusses Black recreation and drug use.

A native New Yorker, Kassandra holds a M.S. in Social Work from Columbia University and earned a B.S. in Industrial Labor Relations at Cornell University.

David Gopie ’00 (SEA) – Program Manager, Quality Assessment and Performance Improvement at Mount Sinai Hospital
Table 4

David is a healthcare administrator with 14 years of experience adding value across various facets of the business, including strategic planning, regulatory compliance, project management, practice management, information technology, performance improvement, quality assurance, patient satisfaction, data management, team building, managed care, labor relations, and budgeting.

In his current role as a Program Manager at Mount Sinai Hospital, he supports the quality structure of the hospital by working strategically and in collaboration with leadership to facilitate, implement and evaluate clinical and operational process improvement initiatives.

Micah O. Hasegawa ’15  (SEA/WOW) – Supervising Budget Analyst at Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget
Table 5

Micah graduated from Columbia University: School of Social Work program in May 2015. Her field of concentration was Social Enterprise Administration with a focus on the World of Work. Micah is a Management Fellow and 2015 Lowenstein Loan Forgiveness Fellowship recipient. Since her time at CSSW, Micah has worked in various administrative and program evaluation roles for non-profits and for the City of New York. Micah currently serves as a Supervising Budget Analyst for the Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget. In her free time, she enjoys traveling, eating yummy food, and catching up on as much Netflicks as she can.

Trélan Nicole Holder ’06  (AGPP/CSI) – Founder / Psychotherapist in Private Practice at Renew Perspectives, LCSW, P.C.
Table 6

In 2014, Trélan founded Renew Perspectives. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), who is a skilled psychotherapist with extensive years of experience in mental health and human services. Renew Perspectives, is recognized by the New York State Education Department’s Board for Social Work as an approved provider of continuing education for Licensed Social Workers #SW-0026. Trélan has served as a Clinician and Director at the City College of New York (CCNY): Wellness and Counseling Center. Prior to her leadership at CCNY, she worked at the Children’s Hospital at Montefiore Medical Center, Adolescent AIDS Program. Additionally, Trélan continues to educate graduate students as an Adjunct Lecturer at Columbia University School of Social Work and the Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College.

*No longer able to attend* Jewel Mack ’92 – Deputy Director of the Qualitative Review and Evaluation Unit at NYC Administration for Children’s Services
Table 7

In her current role at the NYC Administration for Children’s Services, Jewel oversees the agency’s case record review practice, highlighting program strengths and areas for improvement with an emphasis on quality case practice. She has extensive experience working for  ACS, spanning 34 years, during which she served as an Analyst, Administrative Staff Analyst, and now a Deputy Director.

Kenia Maldonado ’01 (SEA) – Senior Consultant, Coordinated Entry at NYC Human Resources Administration
Table 8

Kenia is a Senior Consultant at New York City Human Resources Administration in the Coordinated Entry unit. She brings over 15 years of experience in Social Work to HRA, where she is working to help NYC identify and prioritize the most vulnerable homeless and help move these individuals from homelessness to permanent housing. Prior to starting her career at HRA, she was the Director of the Andrews Safe Haven, the largest safe haven in NYC for street homeless men located in Lower Manhattan, where some of the most vulnerable street clients called “home”.

Since graduating from Columbia University, Kenia Maldonado has held several positions in the field including running a youth drop-in center, supervising court mandated visitation/transfers for families of domestic violence, providing fatherhood support groups to formerly incarcerated men on parole. She has experience as a court mediator working on custody/visitation cases in the Richmond County Matrimonial Matters Division.

She is a Licensed Master Social Worker and a Certified Anger Management Facilitator (CAMF) trained under the Anderson & Anderson model.

Kenia lives in New York with her 4 year old son, Brandon and partner Randolf Scott, who is also a Social Worker and the Assistant Commissioner, NYC Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD). Kenia is also a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.

Dianne Morales ’93 (SEA/WOW) – Executive Director / Chief Executive Officer at Phipps Neighborhoods
Table 9

Dianne is the Executive Director and Chief Executive Officer of Phipps Neighborhoods. She is responsible for the overall organizational management and has led the organization through a change process that has resulted in growth from a $17 million to a $24 million, multi-service agency helping almost 10,000 children, youth and families overcome poverty.

An expert in education, workforce and youth development issues, Dianne has a wealth of experience in strategy, policy and organizational development as well as executive management. Prior to joining Phipps Neighborhoods, Dianne served as Executive Director of The Door, one of NYC’s premier youth development organizations, where she increased enrollment from 7,000 to over 11,000 at-risk young people accessing services. She has spent over 20 years in program start-up, including the initial implementation of the NYC Department of Education’s Office of Youth Development and School-Community Services under Chancellor Joel Klein, the launching of The Teaching Commission, and the development of Jumpstart, a national early childhood non-profit organization.

Dianne is a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Directors for JobsFirstNYC and the Human Services Council. In the summer of 2014, she was appointed to serve on the New York City Community Schools Advisory Board, created by Mayor Bill de Blasio’s administration to advise on the implementation of his Community Schools Initiative. In 2015 she was appointed to the Human Services Council Commission to Examine Nonprofit Organization Closures. The Commission published “New York Nonprofits in the Aftermath of FEGS: A Call to Action,“ a report on the investigation, findings and recommendations related to the pervasive issues impacting the operating capacity of the sector.

In 2013 the Network for Social Management recognized Dianne for demonstrating exemplary performance for the public good. In 2014 she was recognized by the NYC Hispanic Chamber of Commerce as an exceptional Hispanic woman who has contributed to expanding business within the Hispanic Community and protecting the public interest. More recently, Dianne has been recognized by Hispanic Lifestyle as a 2015 “Latina of Influence” and by the Latino Social Work Task Force for her significant dedication and commitment to improving access and quality of service to the Latino community.

Dianne is a Latina who grew up in Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn, and has focused her life on supporting communities in creating sustainable change for social and economic justice. Dianne has earned graduate degrees from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and Columbia University, as well as a Bachelor’s in psychology from the State University of New York in Stony Brook.

Eri Noguchi, MSW/MPA ’93, Phd ’03 (AGPP) – Chief Operating Officer at  Association to Benefit Children
Table 10

Eri currently serves as Association to Benefit Children’s Chief Operating Officer, having first joined the organization in 1994. Over the years, she has spearheaded a number of programmatic initiatives to meet the needs of children and families in New York City, which include early childhood education and mental health services, the first children’s mobile crisis team in NYC, therapeutic after school and other youth development programs, permanent supportive housing, and implementation of ABC’s trauma-informed Child-Parent Psychotherapy model. She also serves as an adjunct assistant professor teaching research methods, program evaluation, and statistics at Columbia University School of Social Work, and a research symposium on poverty and inequality at The Roosevelt House at Hunter College. Her research has focused on issues related to poverty and social welfare policies. She is a native New Yorker.

Kerron Norman ’02 (ACP) – Chief Program Officer at Lutheran Social Services of New York
Table 11

Kerron is the Chief Program Officer and a critical member of the executive leadership team at Lutheran Social Services of New York. Since joining LSSNY in the spring of 2018, Norman helps articulate and implement the strategic vision and leadership of the agency. Norman oversees a portfolio of programs and related services that include early childhood, primary and secondary education; foster care, permanent housing, community based programs, immigration legal services and services.

Prior to joining LSSNY, Ms. Norman was Vice President and Chief Program Officer for ANDRUS. Her former roles include Director of Child Welfare for the Westchester County Department of Social Services and Deputy Director of Field Operations for the NYC Administration for Children’s Services.  She holds a Master of Social Work degree from Columbia University and a Bachelor of Arts degree in Sociology from Binghamton University. She is the proud recipient of the Franklin H. Williams Judicial Commission’s Diversity Award, which honors individuals who work diligently to promote diversity and equality in systems.

Lisa Orbegoso ’05 (SEA/HMHD) – Assistant Director of Behavioral Health at YAI/NIPD Network
Table 12

Lisa is currently the Assistant Director of Behavioral Health at the Center for Specialty Therapy / Premier HealthCare, members of the YAI/NIPD Network. YAI has been an innovative service provider since 1957 and has a team of over 4,000 employees who support over 20,000 people in the I/DD community. She oversees the Mental Health Department in community-based clinics located across NYC, Long Island and Westchester.

In addition to her leadership role she is also a treating bilingual clinician and event coordinator for their annual Latino Conference, where presenters in the medical, mental health and community advocacy fields provide a full day conference entirely in Spanish to families and professionals working in the I/DD community. She is also a trainer with the National Council on Behavioral Health, providing Mental Health First Aid trainings in NYC, made complimentary through the THRIVE Grant, under the auspices of the NYC DOHMH. Lisa has dedicated her career in the areas of Advocacy, Health/Mental Health and Developmental Disabilities for the past 18 years. She also continues her passion for community service and volunteerism in her work with Lions Club International, Medical Reserve Corp, and Achilles International, where she is running guide.

Lisa holds a Bachelors in Psychology from CUNY Hunter College and a Masters in Social Work from Columbia University. She is also a member of the CSSW Alumni Board.

Jillian Rose ’05 (AGPP) – Director of Community Engagement, Diversity and Research at Hospital for Special Surgery
Table 13

As a Director at the Hospital for Special Surgery, Jillian provides oversight and assistance to the Hospital’s participation in the Department of Health Community Service Plan, and Community Benefit programs. In alignment with HSS’ goal to best meet the needs of diverse communities; she leads the implementation of innovative community programs to enhance health, access to care and self-efficacy of traditionally underserved communities. Jillian continues to provide ongoing leadership and support in the collection of Race, Ethnicity and Language data, as well as LGBTQ+ hospital wide initiatives ensuring compliance with the law and hospital regulations. She provides training for doctors, nurses and all new employees, participates in research and quality initiatives to identify and address health disparities through the development of appropriate tools and evaluation processes to ensure the highest quality care for all patients.

Since August 2005, Jillian has occupied a leadership position in managing Rheumatology programs at the hospital, with a focus on two national peer support and education programs for people with systemic lupus and their families. Jillian and her team provide psychoeducation to patients and support for the medical team in several hospitals across New York City. She also coordinates outreach programs for communities disproportionately affected by Lupus.

Jillian contributes her expertise on both a national and international level through her on-going participation with Department of Health and Human Service’s Office of Women’s Health, National Lupus Initiative as well a the National Institute for Arthritis, Musculoskeletal and Skin Disease (NIAMS) Multicultural Initiative to reduce disparities among minority patients with rheumatic conditions.

Jillian has presented her research and papers at multiple professional forums, including the American College of Rheumatology Annual Meetings, the European Congress of Rheumatology (Eular), the American Association of Public Health Conference, Greater New York Hospital Association and the Office of Minority Health’s Leadership Summit.

Nathan Smith ’02 (AGPP/FYC) – Director of Social Work and Counseling Services at Harlem Village Academies High
Table 14

Born, raised and residing in the Bronx, Nathan Smith, Sr. was formally educated in New York City’s public school system. Nathan learned early on that he wanted to serve others. Becoming sidetracked he was taken to Manhattan House of Detention and Riker’s Island as part of a Scared Straight program that indeed scared him straight.

Refocusing himself, Nathan enrolled at Iona College to study Psychology and Health Counseling. He became involved in community service by organizing projects, fundraisers, delivering food to homebound AIDS patients and volunteering at the Boys & Girls Club of New Rochelle. Facing an internal dilemma, Nathan was admonished to read a book that would transform his life, “The Mis-Education of the Negro” by Carter G. Woodson. With great conviction he enrolled in a brand new course called “Youth At-Risk & Social Work” further compelling him to help Black children. As part of the course’s requirement he completed an internship at a youth program and remained the following year as a mentor.

Directly after graduation, Nathan travelled to Kenya, East Africa spending time with children in the Kibera slum in Nairobi and helped a local school rebuild its library. His growing love for Black youth pushed him to obtain a Master’s in Advanced Generalist Practice & Programming at Columbia University’s School of Social Work. Immediately following graduate studies, Nathan became a mentor at Big Brothers Big Sisters of New York City’s Juvenile Justice Mentoring Program. He began serving in East New York directing a youth program at Groundwork, Inc. and went on to manage the intake department at The Door, a comprehensive youth agency in SoHo. Desiring to serve in New York City’s public school system, Nathan joined the Knowledge is Power Program (KIPP) and became the founding School Social Worker at the KIPP STAR College Prep Charter School in Harlem. He then became the founding Director of Counseling Services at KIPP Through College, an alumni-based support program helping Black & Latino students persist through college.

Currently Nathan serves as a Director of Social Work & Counseling Services at Harlem Village Academies High. In the fall of 2013, Nathan began doctoral studies at Fordham University’s Graduate School of Social Service. There he focused on factors leading to educational success for Black men as well as racial attitudes of teachers and its impact on Black male achievement. Presently Nathan has taken a sabbatical from his studies in order to devote his full attention to raising his three sons. Nathan attributes his short success to his faith in God. Described in only two words, humble and humorous, Nathan is a devoted husband to one wife of fifteen years and a committed servant to Black youth.

Martinique Teperman ’06 (Clinical) – Director of Social Services at East Harlem Tutorial Program
Table 15

Martinique graduated from CSSW in 2006 and went on to develop her social work skills as a Post Graduate Clinical Social Work Fellow at the Yale Child Study Center. While at the Child Study Center she had the opportunity to work with children from ages 5-18 with a variety of Mental Health issues and also became a Licensed Clinical Social Worker. In 2009, Martinique came back to New York and began working with the Children’s Aid Society Carrera Adolescent Pregnancy Prevention Program. During her time as the Senior Social Worker with the Carrera Program at a charter school in the South Bronx, Martinique supervised several Master’s level social workers while also supporting a cohort of approximately 100 students. In 2014, Martinique began working for the East Harlem Tutorial Program where she currently serves as the Director of Social Services. In her current role, Martinique oversees the Social Services Department for the Out of School time program serving over 400 students in grades K-12.

Walter Vega ’04 (ACP/FYC) – Dean of Admissions / Faculty at Ackerman Institute for the Family
Table 16

Walter has devoted his career to working with families since graduating from CSSW in 2004. He started off by working in family prevention services for several years while doing a post-graduate family therapy training program at the Ackerman Institute for the Family. He graduated from Ackerman in 2009 and soon after joined the faculty. He now serves as the Dean of Admissions overseeing recruitment and retention at the institute. Walter has been an instructor for over 10 years, having taught at CSSW and later John Jay College of Criminal Justice. He also does training and consultation for various organizations in NYC, including Good Shepherd Services, ACS, JCCA, and Mount Sinai. Walter maitains a private practice in Brooklyn and Manhattan.

Natalie Wright-Umoh ’03 (AGPP/CSI) – Trainer at Foothold Technology
Table 17

Natalie has spent 15 years working closely with non profits, government agencies and schools to create innovative and engaging training programs that are responsive to community needs. As a Social Worker in NYC, she has overseen the delivery of direct services and training to children, parents, caregivers, professionals and concerned community members.