iMentor Staff

iMentor's programs are powered and supported by our dedicated staff, Board of Directors, Young Executive Board, and Board of Advisors. Learn more about our team, including bios below. Interested in joining the team? Check out open positions at iMentor. 


Charles Adegite

IT Support Technician

Charles is part of the Operations team as our IT Intern here at iMentor. He is an undergraduate at New York City College of Technology studying Computer Information Systems. He has a great passion for Information Technology and as part of our Help Desk team he works hard to make sure our technology is running efficiently on the everyday basis. Charles' goal is to hold a career as an IT Help Desk/Server Engineer. Also, he plans to give back in any way by becoming a mentor to the younger generation.

Samantha Alcala

Senior Program Coordinator

Samantha joins iMentor with previous experience in community engagement, urban education, and youth development. She attended Trinity College as a Posse scholar where she studied educational studies and psychology. After working with school communities in Hartford, Connecticut, and Copenhagen, Denmark, she returned home to New York City to help young people gain access to quality education. As a Teaching Fellow with Citizen Schools, she taught courses that exposed students to various careers and increased family engagement. 

Dava Antoniotti

Associate Director of Talent

Dava joins iMentor with seven years of experience in international nonprofit recruitment, training, management and customer service.  She earned her B.A in Communications and Women’s Studies from Western Michigan University before traveling to Lima, Peru to volunteer with youth with disabilities through Cross-Cultural Solutions.  As the Director of Program Enrollment for Cross-Cultural Solutions she led a team of 14, empowering 3,000 individuals to volunteer internationally each year, and visited NGOs in Brazil, India, Thailand, South Africa and Morocco to better understand the positive impact of international volunteers.  Dava is passionate about promoting tolerance and understanding between people of different cultures and perspectives, as well as social and educational justice.  She recently completed her M.S. in Nonprofit Management at Milano The New School for Management and Urban Policy.

David Arroyo

Go Pass Coordinator

David joins iMentor with a passion for education and technology.  For four years he helped to instruct and train New York City high school students in the methodology of forensic debate.  This training empowered students with a skill set that enabled them to compete on a national level and served them as they entered college and pursued their own professional goals.  David holds a B.S in psychology from the City College of New York and is eager to join the amazing team at iMentor and support their goal of empowering New York City youth to succeed in the increasingly critical pursuit of higher education.

Lindsay Baer

Volunteer Screening Coordinator

Lindsay joins the iMentor team with experience in education, mentoring, and non-profit management.  After moving to New York in 2011, Lindsay began working for the Brooklyn Chamber of Commerce where she helped small businesses throughout the borough navigate the health care system. Prior to the Chamber, she worked for LeadAmerica, an academic summer conference which focused on college readiness and preparing students for life beyond high school graduation.  Lindsay is a graduate of Northeastern University in Boston, where she received her BS in History and Political Science. While in college, she spent several years working for The Commonwealth Museum to educate middle and high school students about Massachusetts state history. She is incredibly excited to represent iMentor’s mission and values and work with such an inspiring team.

Tarika Barrett

Chief Program Officer

Tarika joins iMentor as the organization’s Chief Program Officer with a diverse background in public education. Previously, Tarika served as the Senior Director of Multiple Pathways to Graduation in the New York City Department of Education’s Office of Postsecondary Readiness. In this capacity, she directed teams responsible for Transfer Schools, Young Adult Borough Centers (YABCs), Learning to Work Programs, and New Model Development. Prior to joining the DOE, Tarika served as Deputy Network Leader of the Brooklyn-Staten Island Network of New Visions for Public Schools where she co-led a team of facilitators who delivered critical instructional and operational supports to a portfolio of 25 NYC schools. Tarika’s previous experience includes designing and implementing research and program evaluations for New York University’s Center for Research on Teaching and Learning, teaching high school students for five years, and working as a political organizer for the New York Public Interest Research Group. Tarika holds a B.A. in Political Science from Brooklyn College, an M.A. in Deaf Education from Columbia Teachers College and a Ph.D. in Teaching and Learning from New York University. Tarika considers the opportunity to work with iMentor personally meaningful, especially because her mother founded Jamaica’s first fully-structured mentoring organization over 20 years ago.

Nupur Behera

Program Coordinator

Nupur joins iMentor as a program coordinator. She is responsible for facilitating monthly events, providing support to mentor-mentee pairs, and delivering curriculum to 10th grade students at the Academy for Software Engineering. Before joining iMentor, Nupur served as a lead English teacher at a rural pedagogical college in Vietnam through the Fulbright Program. Prior to that, she mentored students and supported ESL and special education classrooms as a City Year New York corps member at Sheepshead Bay High School. Nupur graduated from UC Berkeley in 2012, where she provided GED tutoring sessions for prison inmates and led literacy groups for second graders in the Bay Area. Nupur is passionate about educational justice and classical Indian dance!

Michael Bradley

Research and Evaluation Analyst

Michael joins iMentor with a background in research, program evaluation, and education reform.  Previously, Michael worked as a data fellow at Achievement First, a network of high performing charter schools in New York, Connecticut, and Rhode Island.   Michael also spent time as a research associate at the Center for Advanced Study in Education (CASE) at the City University of New York’s Graduate Center.  At CASE, Michael worked on assessing the impact of several STEM education initiatives in New York City and Long Island.  While in college, he tutored remedial reading and writing at Queensborough Community College and helped assess the impact of the college’s service-leaning initiatives.  Michael holds a B.A. in Psychology from Binghamton University and a M.A. in Applied Psychology from New York University.  He is also a native New York and a diehard Yankees fan.

Kate Carbocci

Manager of Office Services

Kate comes to iMentor as a recent graduate of New York University with a major in Psychology and a minor in Studio Art. She has administrative experience at Deutsche Bank, InterExchange, and Center for New York City Neighborhoods. Having worked for America Reads, an organization that recruits college students to tutor in public schools, she has seen first-hand how being involved in a child’s academic success can have a huge impact in their lives. Aside from her passion for social change, she is in love with nature and engages in outdoor activities whenever possible. She enjoys drawing and photography and hopes to someday combine her interests in both psychology and art to obtain a Clinical Psychology degree with a focus in Art Therapy. She is excited to join such an enthusiastic and inspiring team of people and looks forward to her future with iMentor.

Jana Chandler

Director of School Partnerships

Jana joins iMentor as the organization’s first Director of School Partnerships with over seven years experience supporting K-12 education in New York City public schools. Jana begin her career as a classroom elementary school teacher through the New York City Teaching Fellows program and most recently served as a Program Officer with New Visions for Public Schools, supporting college readiness for students at 70 New York City high schools. As the first in her family to complete college, Jana brings a deep personal and professional commitment to helping first generation college students to and through post-secondary education. She holds a B.A. in policy studies and an M.P.A. in Public and Non-Profit Management from the Maxwell School of Syracuse University, as well as an M.S. in Childhood Education from Queens College and a certificate in College Access Counseling from the OPTIONS College Access Professional Development Institute.

May Cheung

Associate Director of Volunteer Engagement

May comes to iMentor with a passion for civic engagement and background in volunteer and program management, youth development, and education. Prior to joining iMentor, May was the program director at Quincy Asian Resources, Inc., a non-profit located in Quincy, Massachusetts, dedicated to improving the lives of Asian Americans and recent immigrants. May led youth mentorship programs focused on academic and career development, managed a rapidly growing volunteer program, and organized bilingual workshops and cultural celebrations for the community. Most recently, she received a Princeton-in-Asia teaching fellowship to Taiwan and Hong Kong, where she spent two years working closely with senior faculty and staff designing curricula and executing lesson plans for more than 550 high school and college students. May received a B.A. in psychology from Boston University and has studied Mandarin with CET Programs and indigenous issues with the International Honors Program.

Josh Clayton

Associate Director of Learning Initiatives

Josh comes to iMentor with a diverse background of consulting, teaching, and performing. Previously, Josh worked at Passerby, a technology start-up, where he helped filmmakers develop and launch fundraising campaigns while simultaneously building their audiences. Prior to this, Josh worked as an arts educator, teaching at Rutgers University, New York Film Academy, George Street Playhouse, as well as many summer camps for youth. During this time, he also worked as a professional actor, using the stage as a platform to share socially conscious stories and encourage public discussion. Josh holds a Bachelor of Science in Business Management from the University of Missouri and a Master of Fine Arts from Rutgers University. He looks forward to using his eclectic skillset to build strong mentoring programs across the country.

Elizabeth Connolly

Program Coordinator

Elizabeth joins iMentor as a program coordinator for the 12th grade classes at Hyde Leadership Charter School and Juan Morel Campos Secondary School. She is responsible for delivering the iMentor curriculum to students, planning and facilitating monthly events, and providing comprehensive support to mentor-mentee pairs. A Southern California native and UCLA (Go Bruins!) alumna, Elizabeth originally moved to New York City to serve as an AmeriCorps member at Cristo Rey Brooklyn High School, where she worked as a college guidance counselor and alumni support coordinator. In this position, Elizabeth managed a caseload of students who she supported through all components of the college application processes. As the school’s first alumni support coordinator, she was responsible for maintaining regular communication with alumni and key advocates on college campuses. Before her work in college guidance, Elizabeth was a program coordinator for Cristo Rey’s corporate work study program, where she created curriculum for and taught professional development seminars. 

Matthew Cowan

Program Director

Matt came to iMentor with a long and diverse career in education. His most recent job was through the Children’s Aid Society at the Frederick Douglass Houses on the Upper West Side. Prior to that, he was affiliated with East Side Community High School, Working Playground, the Jacob Burns Film Center, Project Reach Youth, and other community-based organizations that provide both classroom and supplementary education. Matt is a graduate of Wesleyan University and has a master’s from Harvard’s Graduate School of Education. In addition to his work in the field of education, Matt is a writer of both fiction and nonfiction. He lives in his native Manhattan with his wife and two sons.

Amanda D'Avria

Director of Volunteers

Amanda joins iMentor with many years of experience in staff development, change management, and strategic growth in both the for-profit and non-profit sectors. A native New Yorker, Amanda earned her BA summa cum laude from Dickinson College and went on to an 8-year career at Kaplan Test Prep, hiring, managing, and training hundreds of part-time and full time staff. She joins iMentor after spending a year with Success Academy Charter Schools, one of the highest-performing charter networks in the nation, in their Teacher Development department. As iMentor’s Director of Volunteers, she and her team are responsible for the volunteer recruitment, screening, retention, and applicant growth strategy for iMentor NYC. Amanda recently completed her MBA at the NYU Stern School of Business, earning the coveted Stern Scholar award in 2012. Amanda lives in Manhattan and, when not working to build iMentor’s amazing pool of dedicated volunteers, loves to travel, read, and explore NYC.

Yassi Davoodi

Senior Program Coordinator

Yassi joined iMentor with youth development and volunteer management experience. After high school, Yassi served as an AmeriCorps member with City Year New York at an elementary school in East New York, Brooklyn. Yassi then attended The College of Wooster and received her B.A. in Sociology and Africana Studies. During college, she had the opportunity to study racial reconciliation and economic development in Durban, South Africa. Yassi spent time working with an international fellowship program and as a court advocate at a domestic violence organization in Washington, DC. She returned to City Year New York to work with the recruitment department and to lead and support a team of City Year AmeriCorps members at a middle school in Long Island City, Queens.

Stephanie Del Toro

Program Coordinator

Stephanie joins iMentor as a Program Coordinator. She is responsible for delivering college-readiness curriculum to students and facilitating high-quality, high-impact relationships between 100 mentor-mentee pairs. Prior to joining iMentor, she began her career in education as a New York City Teaching Fellow and has since taught Spanish as a second language in both charter and district public middle and high schools across Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the Bronx. She has developed curriculum, implemented learning interventions, and supported her students to identify and reach short- and long-term academic goals. Stephanie holds a B.A. in Spanish and creative writing from the University of North Texas and a master's of education from Pace University.

Ricky DeMaio

Volunteer Coordinator for Corporate Partnerships

Ricky joins the iMentor Volunteer Team as a Volunteer Coordinator for Corporate Partnerships. He is excited to build lasting relationships with mentors who will lead high school students to success.  He previously managed relationships as a community manager at Likeable Media, where he worked on national and international social media campaigns, content, and customer service.  While he has never been part of a formal mentor program before, he has experience leading-by-example in various roles such as camp counselor, big brother, and student mentor as a teenager and in college.  Ricky hails from upstate New York, but explored the Rocky Mountains while attending Colorado College as an anthropology major.  In his spare time, he enjoys building LEGOs, drinking microbrews, learning languages, and pining after puppies.

Kelli Doss

Chief Talent Officer

Kelli comes to iMentor with a track record of serving youth, communities, and urban education systems in Minneapolis, Washington, D.C., and New York City.  She received her undergraduate degree from Howard University and her J.D. from Tulane Law School. Following law school, Kelli worked as a law clerk for two years in Minneapolis. During that time, she focused her sights on tackling critical community issues before launching her non-profit career with the Children's Defense Fund. Kelli went on to develop and manage youth programs for the National Black Child Institute and the Harlem Community Justice Center. Drawing on more than a decade of experience with organizations including New Leaders for New Schools and the NYC Department of Education, Kelli honed her skills in recruitment and selection, human resources, and partnership development.   From 2008-2013, Kelli was a staff member at Education Pioneers. She spent her first 3 years as Managing Director of the New York/New Jersey office.  In 2011, Kelli transitioned into the role of Vice President, Human Assets for the organization. During her tenure, she led several initiatives and developed key organizational strategy focused on performance management, internal talent recruitment, diversity and inclusion, and organizational culture building.

Jeevon Durkee

Program Coordinator

Jeevon joins iMentor as a Program Coordinator working with 9th grade students at the Bronx Academy for Software Engineering. He is responsible for teaching classes, coordinating events, and supporting and fostering the relationships between students and their mentors. Prior to joining iMentor, Jeevon served as an AmeriCorps member with City Year New York. As a corps member, Jeevon worked in an 8th grade classroom in a South Bronx middle school before stepping into a leadership role on his team. Before working with City Year, Jeevon earned a bachelor's in human geography from the University of Washington in Seattle. In college, he worked for the Undergraduate Library Writing Center, where his interest in working with young people began to take form. He also co-founded and served on the editorial board of Plenum, an undergraduate journal of geography. While his experiences in college inspired him to work with students, it was his time in a Hunts Point middle school that ignited within him the passion to continue working with underserved students in New York City. 

Lena Eberhart

Managing Director of iMentor NYC

Lena is the Managing Director of iMentor NYC.  In her previous role, she served the students at a network of three NYC public high schools by working with Principals and advisors to create integrated support programs and develop the counseling teams to implement them.  For over a decade, Lena has worked in partnership with NYC schools for various organizations and in various capacities.  This work has focused primarily on College / Career Readiness and Success, and increasingly on leveraging external resources to support the work of schools in this area.  Mentors and the iMentor curriculum are very exciting resources to add to this effort, and Lena (who is not only a prior employee, but also a mentor herself!) is elated to be back at iMentor supporting the amazing team of Program Coordinators and Program Managers as they expand and deepen iMentor NYC’s impact.

Brian Fenster

Program Assistant

Brian joins iMentor as a program assistant and is responsible for executing program operations and providing logistical assistance. In his role, he will be supporting several high schools in Brooklyn and Manhattan. Prior to joining iMentor, Brian worked for the Global Poverty Project in a communications role and served as a primary point of contact for the organization. Hailing from the suburbs of New York City, Brian graduated from Northeastern University with a degree in international affairs and environmental studies. While in college, Brian participated in summer study abroad programs to Central Europe and Australia. In addition, he interned with an organization in Argentina that focused on enhancing economic development on a local level. Brian is a diehard Yankee fan, enjoys skiing, playing guitar, photography, and traveling.

Alex Fernandez

User Support Advocate

Alex comes to iMentor with a passion for youth work from Oakland, California where he most recently co-taught in both first and third grade classrooms. Prior to teaching, he spent a year of service with BAYAC AmeriCorps working as a K-5 after school youth leader where he taught sports and creative writing. Alex has spent time as a Site Coordinator for a summer STEM program in Oakland, as well as multiple summers working in the UCSD OASIS Summer Bridge program, which aims to increase college retention by providing year-long support for incoming college students. He received his B.A. in Ethnic Studies with a minor in English Literature from the University of California, San Diego. An alumnus of VONA Voices, Alex holds interests in the intersection of Katniss Everdeen, Saul Williams, Bruce Lee, and the Rubik’s Cube.

Samantha Fikilini

Program Assistant

Samantha joins iMentor as a Program Assistant, supporting program logistics and implementation for several high schools located in the Bronx, Manhattan, and Brooklyn. Prior to joining iMentor, she worked as a teaching assistant, supporting middle-school students in designing and constructing artwork for a community project in Seattle. Samantha graduated from Seattle University with a bacherlor's in public affairs. During her time in college, she held various internships and leadership positions with organizations that supported global poverty awareness. She is also a Costco Scholar. In her spare time, she enjoys playing pick-up soccer in the park and discovering restaurants!

Kevin Finnegan

Senior Program Coordinator

Having dedicated his post-collegiate work experience to the education nonprofit sector, Kevin is excited to join the iMentor team to help improve the opportunities of New York City youth. He first heard about iMentor while serving as an AmeriCorps member for current iMentor partner College Possible. While there, he led a team of AmeriCorps members as a high school coach, directing students through the college process from junior year to the transition to college. He also worked as an Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) tutor to prepare students for college readiness and success. Kevin graduated from Macalester College in St. Paul, Minnesota, with a B.A. in political Ssience and education. A native Chicagoan, he is excited to explore a new city that is the epicenter of sports and hip-hop, two of his non-educational passions.

Michael Francisco-McGuire

Managing Director of Operations

Michael Francisco-McGuire joined iMentor as the director of 0perations in 2012, having worked at the intersection of the nonprofit and for-profit sectors for more than 12 years. Michael joins iMentor from The Climate Group, an international climate-change-focused organziation that he helped grow from a start-up team of 6 to 125  people in offices across five continents. He has a deep passion for the social sectors and for growing high-impact, highly functioning organizations. Michael is originally from the northern wilds of England and moved to New York in 2007. He graduated from NYU Wagner with a master's degree in public administration.

Chana Garcia

Director of Communications

Chana joins iMentor as Director of Communications. She is responsible for developing and implementing iMentor’s marketing and media strategy, elevating the organization’s mission and programs, and devising engagement campaigns to effectively communicate witih stakeholders. Chana writes and edit copy for iMentor’s suite of print and digital collateral, its website and blog, events, e-mail communications, and social media channels. Previously, she served as associate director of communications at Boys & Girls Harbor, an education and performing arts nonprofit in East Harlem. Her prior experience includes working as a reporter and editor at Martha Stewart Living,, the Contra Costa Times, and The Philadelphia Inquirer. Chana holds a B.A. in journalism from Howard University and an M.A. in literature/humanities from New York University. She is a 2014 Education Pioneers visiting fellow and self-proclaimed world traveler.

Bridgette Ginyard

Program Events Manager

Bridgette Ginyard comes to iMentor with experience in the consumer public relations and public affairs industry. Previously, she has worked for Hager Sharp, Edelman and the American Bible Society where she helped to lead strategic media relations campaigns for consumer brands and mission-oriented programming. Hailing from the San-Francisco Bay Area, she has a background in promoting volunteerism, community activism, and developing streamline messaging for various organizations. Bridgette graduated from Howard University in 2007 with a B.A. in Journalism. There she was active in the Howard University Red Cross and a classroom leader in Heads Up, a neighborhood initiative in the Washington D.C. where she gained experience in hands-on grassroots organization and after-school programming. Bridgette is thrilled to join the iMentor team and contribute to the overall impact of youth mentoring and the empowerment of NYC high school students.

Leah Glass

Data Manager

Leah joins iMentor as the data manger, working with the Research and Evaluation Team. She is responsible for cleaning and managing all of iMentor's data, as well as developing and maintaining data collection, retrieval and analytic systems. She comes to iMentor with a master's degree from New York University in Applied Quantitative Research and a B.A. in global studies from Providence College. Before completing her master's, Leah served as an AmeriCorps VISTA in Providence, Rhode Island, managing a volunteer program at a local middle school and conducting participatory action research with middle school girls. She also has several years of teaching experience both in Providence and in Turkey, and has a passion for both international and domestic education reform. When not being a data warrior at iMentor, Leah loves to play soccer and read YA literature.

Amanda Glover

Program Coordinator

Amanda Glover is serving as a 9th grade team leader. She will be delivering curriculum weekly and managing communication between her freshman class and their mentors at the Academy for Software Engineering. Additionally, she will be organizing monthly events for her mentor-mentee pairs. Prior to joining iMentor, Amanda taught middle-school math for three years with Teach for America in Nashville. While working in both a traditional public school and a charter school, she developed math curriculum around the Common Core. Amanda earned her bachelor's in psychology and criminal justice from the University of Louisville and a master's in education from Lipscomb University.

Tara Goderez

Associate Director of Partner Programs

Tara joined iMentor with a range of experience in education, partnership development, and nonprofit program management. Prior to iMentor she developed school partnerships and led the implementation of middle school digital literacy programs at Per Scholas and volunteered at a women’s economic development organization in Peru. Previously, Tara taught elementary school special education while earning her Master’s in Education as a New York City Teaching Fellow. She earned her B.A. from the University of Rochester where she worked at a therapeutic after school program for at-risk children. Tara enjoys bringing this experience to the iMentor team in order to support partner organizations as they bring iMentor’s model to their own communities.

Sarah Goldberg

Director of Systems and Services

Sarah comes to iMentor with experience in both international and domestic volunteer management and youth development.  Sarah attended the University of Florida, where she received both her bachelors and law degree.  During this time, she worked with the Alachua County School Board as both a legal intern for juvenile outreach and as a sports program coordinator.  Following law school, Sarah worked as a trial attorney for two years, representing court appointed clients in criminal proceedings.  In 2009, Sarah joined the US Peace Corps and served for two years in the Republic of Macedonia, where she developed interactive after school curriculum for street children, served as program director for a national women’s leadership association, and founded the Macedonian Model United Nations program.  

Stacey Gorman

Director of Special Events

Stacey joins iMentor as the organization’s first Director of Special Events.  Stacey brings over five years of experience managing impactful fundraising events. Previously, Stacey was Manager of Special Events at The Bowery Mission, an organization that has served homeless and hungry New Yorkers for more than 130 years.  There, Stacey was responsible for a $1.2 million annual revenue stream.  Most notably, she spearheaded the formation of The Young Philanthropists, a committee to attract young professionals interested in the cause of homelessness in which members participate in special fundraising events and service projects. Stacey received a B.A. in Politics from Fairfield University and an M.A. in International Affairs with a concentration in Cities and Urbanization from The New School in New York City.  Stacey enjoys traveling and spent a summer during graduate school living in Mumbai, India documenting best practices and lessons learned of rural grassroots water and sanitation initiatives for a local non-profit.

Daniel Greenblatt

Chief Operating Officer

Daniel joins iMentor as the organization’s Chief Operating Officer with a wide-range of experiences in New York City public schools. Prior to joining iMentor, Daniel worked as the Chief Operating Officer for the New York City Department of Education’s District 79, a citywide network of alternative programs which serves 20,000 overage, under-credited students whose schooling has been interrupted for a range of life circumstances – from pregnancy to incarceration to immigration. In District 79, Daniel managed a team that provided the core financial and operational supports to the District’s portfolio of programs.  Before transitioning to District 79, Daniel worked as a Project Manager in the Market Maker Office at the city’s central Department of Education, where he worked on a small team that transformed the structure of the Department of Education from a system of regional supports to a market-based, school-centric network model. He began his career as a New York City Teaching Fellow at North Star Academy. Daniel holds a B.A in Economics from Connecticut College, a M.S. in Education from Brooklyn College, and he was a Chancellor’s Fellow with the New York City Department of Education leadership program. He is on the Education Committee of the Board for PAVE Academy Charter School, a K-8 school in Red Hook, Brooklyn. Daniel lives in Brooklyn with his wife and daughter.

Danielle Harbison

iMentor Chicago Executive Director

Danielle joined the iMentor team in 2015 as the founding Executive Director of iMentor Chicago. In this capacity, she is responsible for launching and shaping iMentor’s first direct-service region, which includes the development, management, and growth of the Chicago program, as well as overseeing the iMentor Chicago team, fundraising, board development, and building partnerships with key constituents. Prior to joining iMentor, Danielle held a number of roles in both the public and private sectors, although the theme of giving back has always been consistent. She started her career with the Boston Consulting Group in Chicago, where she worked with Fortune 100 companies. Her first client was Shore Bank on Chicago’s South Side. She then moved on to Whirlpool Corporation, where she worked in the sales strategy and global innovation departments. While there, she played an integral role in the creation of the Whirlpool Green Network. After that, Danielle moved on to Chicago Public Schools, where she focused her efforts on reducing violence through her work with Culture of Calm, which is a part of Chicago's larger violence prevention initiative. Most recently, Danielle was the Chicago executive director for Peer Health Exchange, where she was responsible for the implementation and execution of the PHE Chicago program and overseeing the PHE Chicago team, fundraising, growing the board, and providing fiscal and organizational oversight. She holds a BBA from the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business.

Maribi Henriquez

Volunteer Screening Coordinator

Maribi is a graduate of Rutgers University and has a master's in liberal studies from CUNY Graduate Center, where she completed her thesis project, “La Feminista Nuyorquina,” which focuses on the radical presence of Latina women in New York City during the 1960-70s. In 2012, Maribi founded Project Chula, an online blog inspired by the daily happenings of modern women. Before iMentor, Maribi worked as a writing tutor, a teaching assistant, and a family preservation counselor for Youth Consultation Services in New Jersey. Having been a mentor herself, she is excited to join the iMentor team and leverage her passion for empowerment and service to find the best mentors for the program.

Meredith Hoffman

Managing Program Coordinator

Meredith joined iMentor with a background in education and community outreach. Prior to coming to iMentor, she worked as an elementary music teacher in Kansas City while earning her master's degree in secondary education from the University of Missouri-St. Louis. As an undergraduate student, she worked as a communications intern for the Ohio Division of Forestry to coordinate educational outreach program volunteers. She also traveled to Botswana, where she worked for the Kagisano Society Women’s Shelter Project, teaching computer skills and HIV/AIDS awareness and prevention to survivors of domestic violence. Meredith earned her B.A. with honors from Ohio University in political science and anthropology and a certification in African studies.

Corey Hoffman

Program Coordinator

Corey joins iMentor as a Program Coordinator for the 9th grade class at Bronx High School for Law and Community Service. Corey is responsible for delivering the iMentor curriculum to students, planning and facilitating monthly events, and providing comprehensive support to mentor-mentee pairs. Prior to his time at iMentor, Corey worked with Citizen Schools in New York City, where he gained extensive teaching, group project management, and data analysis experience. Before working with Citizen Schools, Corey was a teaching fellow with Peace First, where he gained invaluable experience coordinating semester-long community service learning projects impacting more than 250 students. Having spent the past two years working closely with students, community organizations, and volunteers, Corey has seen firsthand the positive impact that a single adult can have on a young person. He is highly motivated to forge connections between students and adults through the iMentor program and iexcited to watch mentor-mentee relationships grow over time.

Farzin Hossain

Program Coordinator

Farzin comes to iMentor with a background in Higher Education and Student Affairs. Prior to her position at iMentor she worked in various higher education departments such as Residential Life, Academic and Transfer Advising, and New Student Orientation and Commencement. Farzin had the opportunity to work at CUNY, SUNY and private institutions, which allowed her to serve as a resource to a wide range of students from various backgrounds. More recently she worked as the Industry Coordinator at the New York City Department of Education for the Career and Technical Education Summer Scholars Program, which worked closely with 6 NYC high schools and provided a group of 115 students an opportunity for a summer internship. Farzin graduated with her Bachelor of Arts in Psychology and Sociology from SUNY Stony Brook University in 2011 and her Master of Arts in Higher Education and Students Affairs from New York University in 2013. Aside from her professional career, Farzin is addicted to dramatic television shows, enjoys dancing and yoga, and is a huge foodie.

Abrar Hussain

Special Projects Associate

Abrar comes to iMentor having spent three years practicing commercial law in his native UK. During this time, he acted for a range of government, for-profit, and nonprofit clients on a variety of projects, and he also practiced in the UAE for six months. His experience in the nonprofit sector includes volunteering in Ghana, interning at a start-up run on behalf of Malala Yousafzai, assisting local branches of Oxfam and Amnesty International, and offering pro bono legal advice to the underprivileged. iMentor’s mission resonated with Abrar due to his formative experiences as the child of first-generation immigrant parents, and he is eager to help move the needle on social mobility and enhance equality of opportunity. Abrar earned a law degree and diploma in the UK, and then, having arrived in the US in 2012, an MBA from Hult International Business School. Abrar is always keen to discuss the rules of cricket or the hip hop movement’s role in giving a voice to the marginalized.

Alexander James

Associate Director of Partner Programs

Alexander came to iMentor directly from the NYC Department of Education, where he taught English for two years at Renaissance H.S. in the Bronx. With an interest in the arts, he has assisted in a variety of student performances and after-school activities. He received his B.A. in English and film from Connecticut College. As a New York City Teaching Fellow, he earned a master's degree in education with a focus in middle/high school English education from Lehman College. Over the past two years, he has examined the relevance and methods of successfully encouraging critical thinking in the English classroom. Prior to teaching, he worked as a videographer and editor for a local TV news station in New Jersey.

Katia Johnstone

Program Coordinator

Katia joins iMentor as the 9th grade Program Coordinator at Fredrick Douglas Academy II. Katia has always found great joy working with young people. Prior to iMentor, she helped run a Youthmarket with Grow NYC, where she oversaw a group of teenagers as they worked in community gardens and sold locally grown produce to community members. Before that Katia served as a teaching fellow with Peace First, where she implemented a social-emotion learning curriculum at an elementary school and led students in self-designed community service learning projects. These, along with other past experiences, have contributed to Katia's deep belief in the transformative power of relationships. She looks forward to helping cultivate relationships with her mentors and mentees.

Austin Jung

Program Coordinator

Austin joins iMentor with experience in non-profit program management, secondary education and faith-based organizations. His passion for social justice has shown him the need of equality in education. Previously, he served as the Assistant Director of an AmeriCorps National Direct and State program through TechMission, a non-profit located in Dorchester, Massachusetts. Austin managed AmeriCorps volunteers providing after-school programming for K-12th grade youth from low-income communities in Boston, Chicago, Denver and Los Angeles. He also has a background in ecology and wildlife conservation. Austin graduated from Boston University in 2009 with a B.A. in Biology and a B.S. in Science Education.

Diana R. Keith

Associate Director of Talent

Diana joins iMentor from the field of higher education, eager to continue her work in connecting dynamic individuals to exciting opportunities. After earning her MA in Higher Education from New York University, where she also completed her BS in Communications, Diana worked in undergraduate admissions. Eventually, she traded in the transcripts and personal statements for resumes and cover letters, coaching first-year students, PhDs and alumni on self-assessment, career exploration and the job search. Most recently, Diana worked at Columbia University as an Assistant Director of Experiential Education, managing both domestic and international internship programs, and supporting an entrepreneur/leadership development program. Today, she helps out her alma mater with admissions events when she can, but otherwise can be found trying to bring great talent onto this bandwagon.

Albert Kim

Managing Director of Program Design

Albert joins iMentor with more than 10 years of experience in the nonprofit, higher education, career pathways, and out-of-school-time sectors. As the managing director of program design, Albert is responsible for designing and codifying the iMentor program model and training all relevant stakeholders to be effective in that model. Prior to joining iMentor, Albert served as the director of education for YouthBuild USA, a national nonprofit committed to the education, career, and leadership development of disconnected young people ages 16-24. Albert was responsible for managing the postsecondary education initiative, overseeing regional and national conferences/trainings, organizing and delivering technical assistance and coaching to local programs, and developing innovative STEM-based initiatives. Albert also co-directed the launch of MyBestBets, a learner-centered integrated solution focused on career exploration and postsecondary planning. He has taught philosophy, critical thinking, and writing at several community colleges, and developed and implemented K-12 education programming for several Boys and Girls Clubs, with a special emphasis on college readiness and access. He holds a B.A./M.A. in philosophy from Boston College and an M.Ed. from Boston University. A beneficiary of transformative mentors throughout his life, Albert is thrilled to support iMentor’s work to change paradigms through meaningful relationships.

Maddie Koines

Senior Program Coordinator

Maddie comes to iMentor with experience in and a passion for education and volunteer management. Maddie graduated from Boston University in 2011 with a degree in anthropology and public health. She ran several volunteer programs throughout college, including a program that placed Boston University students in HIV/AIDS related organizations. In 2011, Maddie had the opportunity to move to New Orleans and teach high school special education in Chalmette, LA. Maddie’s experience managing volunteers and her love for her students at Chalmette have helped her develop a passion for education that has brought her to iMentor.

Jenna Kotyk

Development Manager

Jenna is a born writer and communicator. From alliterative antics to professional communications, her experience and talents are multi-faceted and diverse. Looking for a practical application for her love of language and desire to help more students from low-income communities reach and complete college, Jenna joined iMentor’s development team as a grant writer in 2014. Prior to iMentor, Jenna worked in communications and human resources at Perella Weinberg Partners, a leading global financial firm. She contributed to internal and external messaging, marketing projects, social programming, full lifecycle recruitment, and staff training and development initiatives. Earlier in her career, she was a recruiter at Raines International Inc., a nationally recognized executive search firm based in New York, where she sourced, interviewed and placed C-level and Executive talent at Fortune 500 companies, premier private equity firms and global non-profit organizations. Jenna earned a B.A. in English Creative Writing and a minor in Biology, cum laude, from Bucknell University. She is a member of the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society’s Team in Training (NYC chapter), and she serves as a founding member of the Young Executives Board for Row New York, a NYC-based non-profit.

Sade Lake

Program Coordinator

Sade joins iMentor with experience working within nonprofit organizations both large and small.  She graduated from Trinity College in Hartford, CT with a B.A. in International Studies, concentrating in Economics and Development.  It was during her time at Trinity College that she began to further explore her love for dance, which led her to seek out job opportunities in the New York City performing arts scene.  Soon after graduation, Sade worked at the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) where she supported the Development team with special event planning and execution, and soliciting in-kind donations from vendors.  After her time at BAM, she worked at the Brooklyn Youth Chorus Academy for nearly two years, where she held the title of Administrative Coordinator. Her own experience as a student led her to believe that every student can go to college, and this has fueled her eagerness to contribute to iMentor’s mission.

Primo Lasana

Managing Program Coordinator

Primo joins iMentor after two years of national service with the AmeriCorps organization, City Year Chicago. Through this, Primo tutored 8th grade students in reading and writing in a public school on the South Side and organized large-scale community service projects to enrich the schools and neighborhoods of Chicago. Primo also led and supported a team of diverse young volunteers on the West Side of Chicago as they tutored and mentored public school students. After seeing the tremendously positive impact of mentoring on the lives of youth, he is excited to work with iMentor and the students of the city in which he was born and raised. Primo received a B.A in English Llterature from Hunter College.

Jim Lauckhardt

Director of Research and Evaluation

Jim is the director of research and evaluation. His primary responsibilities include Identifying and measuring core components of the iMentor model and evaluating the effectiveness of the program at reaching targeted outcomes for low-income students and their mentors. Jim designs, conducts, and analyzes results from annual program evaluations, communicates iMentor's impact to internal and external stakeholders, facilitates organizational use of data to foster learning and improve programs, and supports the research and evaluation work of iMentor Partner Programs. Previously, Jim served as a senior research associate at the CUNY Graduate Center’s Center for Advanced Study in Education (CASE). Jim received his B.A. in psychology with a minor in civic and community engagement from Pennsylvania State University. He earned an M.A. and a Ph.D. in applied developmental psychology from Fordham University. 

Elizabeth Lee

Associate Director of Individual Giving

Elizabeth joins iMentor with over eight years of fundraising experience. Most recently she served as the Manager of Development & Stewardship at Autism Speaks, Inc. helping to create and implement their first ever stewardship plan for their existing major gift portfolio nationwide. Her development career began somewhat serendipitously while on the pre-med track at the University of Connecticut. During this time she got a job at the University of Connecticut Phonathon program serving first as a student caller and then team supervisor. She helped secure over $1M in funds for a variety of university programs and decided that fundraising was her niche! She particularly enjoys building relationships with donors and helping them identify meaningful ways to engage in an organization’s mission. She is excited to join such a passionate and committed group of individuals here at iMentor.  Elizabeth holds a B.S. in Biological Sciences with a minor in Business Administration from the University of Connecticut and an M.S. in Non-Profit Management from Northeastern University.

Michelle Lee

Program Coordinator

Michelle joins iMentor as a Program Coordinator with experience in urban education and community outreach. She is responsible for facilitating high-impact relationships between pairs and delivering iMentor curriculum to students in the classroom. Prior to joining the team, Michelle taught secondary math in Indianapolis while obtaining her master 's in teaching. She has also held various positions in marketing for service organizations, developing a data-driven mindset and passion for student empowerment. Michelle hold a bachelor's in business administration from the Tepper School of Business at Carnegie Mellon University.

Sally Long

Senior Program Coordinator

Sally joins the iMentor team with a background in youth and adult education, community development, and nonprofit program management. Previously, she served as the program director for an AmeriCorps State and National program through Pace University, focused on providing education and literacy services in New York City's Chinatown and Lower East Side communities. Sally worked with middle and high schools and community organizations to provide tutoring and classroom assistance services for students. She also has experience managing an ESL and technology literacy program for immigrant adults. Her passion for education and serving communities led her to spend a year abroad, teaching English to elementary school students in the rural areas of South Korea. Outside the office, Sally enjoys spending time with her dog, cooking, and traveling. Sally graduated from New York University with a B.A. in history

Esthela Lopez

Development Coordinator

Hailing from sunny Southern California, Esthela is a recent graduate from New York University. Most recently, Esthela worked as the Development intern at iMentor since 2012, where she wrote and reviewed grant proposals, was integral in helping research potential corporate and individual supporters, and increased efficiencies in reporting across 25+ corporate donors. In addition to her work at iMentor, she was a Health Educator for Peer Health Exchange, an organization dedicated to giving teenagers the knowledge and skills they need to make healthy decisions. Esthela loves travelling, eating good food, and enjoying the sunshine. Esthela is thrilled to join the Development team full-time and play a role in carrying out the mission and vision of iMentor.

Victoria Lowe

Senior Manager of Curriculum and Training

Victoria started at iMentor as a program coordinator, coming from an editorial background, during which she wrote and edited material for publications including Town & Country and Cosmopolitan. She graduated from Colgate University in 2006 with a B.A. in English and political science, and has been involved with mentoring and youth development since high school. Victoria has also worked with Prep for Prep in various capacities – including advising students and directing programming for the Institute for Entrepreneurship in collaboration with NFTE (the National Institute for Teaching Entrepreneurship) – in addition to being a Prep alum. She is currently involved in managing the iMentor curriculum and developing new, innovative, and ongoing training for staff. Equal access to education and youth development are running themes in Victoria’s career trajectory, both of which excite and inspire her.

Justin Mann

Managing Program Coordinator

Justin joined iMentor as a Program Coordinator in 2012. Prior to joining iMentor, Justin was deeply involved in his local community in Boston, where he attended college. It was there that he developed a passion for working with students, and he believes that every child should have equal access to education.  Over the past two years, Justin has provided individual pair support as a Program Coordinator at two different high schools in Brooklyn. He looks forward to continuing this work while providing coaching and support to another program coordinator. In his free time he enjoys running. Justin is a graduate of Boston College where he received his B.A. summa cum laude in History & Political Science.

Sandra Medeiros

NYC Program Director

Sandra joins iMentor as a Program Director and is responsible for program quality and effectiveness at our partner schools. She manages a team of 10 Program Coordinators. Sandra has more than 10 years of experience in urban education, including teaching, program development, and coaching instructional staff and managers. Most recently, she worked as a classroom teacher in Newark, New Jersey, returning to this role to ensure she had a firm grasp on the successes and challenges teachers experience firsthand. Prior to that, she was a managing director at Teach for America’s Greater Newark Region, where she developed programs to coach and develop new teachers. As a first-generation college student, she is passionate about ensuring that all students have the opportunity to succeed in post-secondary education. Sandra holds a bachelor's from Rutgers University and a master's in public administration from Columbia University.

Susan Medina

Associate Director of Mentor Community Recruitment

Susan joins iMentor as the Associate Director of Mentor Community Recruitment with a diverse background in volunteer, event, and project management; corporate social responsibility; and public relations. She is responsible for volunteer recruitment, outreach, training, and engagement for iMentor’s New York City mentoring program. Susan does this by focusing and strengthening the current mentor community while building new partnerships across the city. Previously, she served as the community outreach contact for PIMCO’s New York office, as well as project manager for Community TeamWorks at Goldman Sachs. Susan holds a bachelor of science in public relations from the University of Florida and a master's in nonprofit management from the University of Central Florida. She loves photography, cooking, volunteering, and traveling.

Hamna Mela

Partnership Manager

Hamna joins the Partner Programs team as a graduate of New York University, where she earned a B.A. in environmental studies and urban studies, and graduated as a class marshal. For the past two years, Hamna has worked as a Program Coordinator on the NYC Program Team, supporting pairs from Bronx Prep Charter School and specializing in school partnerships. Prior to her work at iMentor, Hamna worked on various environmental and social issues in the non-profit and government sectors, including public health, food policy, and clean energy. She managed the Sustainable Education Initiative for Scholars for Students to provide need-based scholarships to students for college preparation services. She has also worked as an environmental advocate, leading campaigns to organize civic participation around environmental and social justice issues. When she is not working, Hamna enjoys cooking, rock-climbing, kick-boxing and exploring the city. Hamna is excited to bring her rewarding experiences working with volunteer groups, particularly high school volunteers, as a program specialist.

Mary Ellen Miller

Chief of Staff / Associate General Counsel

Mary Ellen comes to iMentor after practicing as an attorney in New York City for over six years. Prior to becoming a lawyer, she began her career in the nonprofit world as a Medical Missions Coordinator for Operation Smile International, where she recruited and managed teams on medical missions to Colombia, Thailand, Nicaragua, the West Bank, Vietnam, the Philippines and Brazil.  Her other prior experience includes working as a legal intern at the State Department and conducting a democracy assessment in Zimbabwe as a Ford Foundation grantee.  Mary Ellen received a J.D. from Georgetown University Law Center and a B.A. from Colby College.

Nancy Morisseau

Program Coordinator

Nancy comes from a background of community health education and promotion.  With a previous focus on HIV/AIDS prevention, Nancy has recently shifted her focus to improving community health outcomes.  After receiving her B.S. in Biobehavioral Health with a Spanish minor at Penn State, she served as a Community Health Volunteer with the Peace Corps in Turkmenistan for two years.  While there she taught preventative health to village doctors and nurses, and nutrition education to women of the community.  Working with community partners, she developed a women’s fitness room and created a girls’ softball league.  After coming back to the States, Nancy worked at a community based clinic in the Care Coordination Program (CCP) providing health promotion, case management, and working on medication adherence with HIV+ patients in the Bronx, with the ultimate goal being to empower patients to self-advocate for their health.  Nancy is excited to tie in youth development and education with improving community health outcomes.

Carissa Mueller

Senior Manager, Program Design
Carissa began her career at iMentor as a Program Coordinator and now works as Senior Manager of Program Design. She is responsible for optimizing the quality of the iMentor program through cross-team projects and the ongoing codification of iMentor’s model. Prior to this role, Carissa specialized in support for 9th- and 10th-grade students and developing expertise in innovating approaches to program implementation. Her previous work experience includes working with government, nonprofit, and international child protection programs. Carissa graduated with a BA in public policy from Duke University, where she also oversaw and supported student-led social change groups. She has a passion for effecting change on people and in communities in a variety of settings and enjoys the diverse opportunities to do this work with iMentor.

Will Murphy

Research and Evaluation Analyst

Will received his undergraduate from SUNY Plattsburgh in upstate New York. His exposure to mentoring began during his time in college, as mentor for a local agency. Immediately, Will was intrigued by the power of mentoring, and wasted no time engaging more deeply in the non-profit community. Will joins the iMentor team with over five years of experience in the field of mentoring. Over the years, Will has been engaged with various programs including Youth Advocate Programs, Inc., Drug Treatment Services, and most recently, Big Brothers Big Sisters in Buffalo, New York. Over the years, Will has seen that mentoring is a highly effective intervention for youth in need of direction and is excited to bring apply his experience to the iMentor model.

Sonal Nadiadhara

Salesforce Coordinator

Sonal comes to iMentor with an interest in using information systems to manage nonprofits. Prior to joining iMentor, she was a Program Manager at FindCancerServices, a startup company that connects cancer patients to support services. During her time there, she was exposed to Salesforce and was fascinated at its application in the nonprofit sector. Sonal also serves on the national board for the Hindu Students Council and is currently leading its transition onto Salesforce. She graduated with a B.S. in Health Science and English minor from SUNY Stony Brook University. She is a believer in using technology to improve an organization’s operations and is excited to be working with iMentor to further its mission. 

Paul Nehring

Special Assistant to the CEO

Paul comes to iMentor with experience in youth development, education, and nonprofit program management. Most recently, he served as program director at Princeton AlumniCorps, engaging Princeton seniors in post-graduate nonprofit fellowships. Paul is thrilled to return to iMentor, where he previously served as a managing program coordinator and college success counselor. He also brings years of experience in outdoor and experiential education from a variety of roles in camp administration and leadership training. Paul earned a bachelor's in politics from Princeton. He volunteers as a mentor for iMentor and for the Sustained Dialogue Campus Network, which focuses on issues of identity on college campuses. A native of Bismarck, North Dakota, Paul is excited to bring his passion for mentoring and educational equity back to the iMentor team.

Mike O'Brien

Chief Executive Officer

Mike is the Chief Executive Officer of iMentor. Since joining iMentor in 2003, Mike has worked across many functions of the organization, supporting mentor-mentee pairs, developing the first mentoring curriculum, and establishing strategic partnerships. In 2006, he launched the iMentor Interactive program, which expanded iMentor’s work beyond New York City for the first time by bringing iMentor’s effective mentoring model to communities across the country. Mike became CEO of iMentor in 2007. Under his leadership, the organization has grown its annual enrollment from serving 400 New York City high school students to serving 3,000 local students and another 2,700 students nationwide. Mike is a member of the board of directors of Blue Engine. Blue Engine is a new national service model that recruits and supports teams of Blue Engine Teaching Assistants (BETAs), recent college graduates who partner with classroom teachers to increase academic rigor in public high schools in New York City, ultimately ensuring more students graduate college-ready. He is also the recipient of an Ashoka Fellowship, which recognizes leading social entrepreneurs who have innovative solutions to social problems and the potential to change patterns across society. Mike began his career as a high school teacher in East New York, Brooklyn, where he also coached the boys’ basketball team and launched an after-school writing program. Mike is a graduate of Bucknell University.

Talya Oberfield

Managing Director of Partner Programs

Talya has a range of experience in youth development, volunteer engagement and building sustainable partnerships. She began at iMentor as a Partnership Manager before moving into her current role. Prior to iMentor, Talya led program design and implementation at Boston-based Building Impact where she cultivated strategic partnerships across the non-profit and for-profit sectors to mobilize volunteers through the buildings where they work and live. In addition, Talya was a Teaching Fellow with Citizen Schools, where she taught and mentored middle school students and coached professionals as part of their school-based apprenticeship program while developing and delivering early college awareness workshops with Gear Up. Talya earned her B.A. from Brown University and M. Ed from Lesley University.

Chinyelu Onuora

Program Assistant

Chinyelu joins iMentor as a program assistant and is responsible for supporting program implementation in our partner schools throughout Brooklyn and the Bronx. Prior to joining iMentor, Chinyelu worked at, where she fulfullied serveral operational needs and equipped teachers with the tools necessary to be successful on the website. In addition, she interned at charity: water, where she supported the organization's corporate relationships. Chinyelu received a B.S. in psychology from Xavier University in Louisiana. When she’s not supporting program operations, you can find her reading in the park or perusing the city for an exciting brunch spot.

Nicholas Ortiz

Associate Director of HR & IT

Prior to joining iMentor, Nicholas gained experience in operations while working as an analyst at firms such as UBS and Goldman Sachs. While earning his B.A. in Economics from Wesleyan University in Connecticut, he attended summer internships for Citigroup in 2003 and 2004 in New York City through INROADS, a national internship program for minority students with high academic standards. Being motivated by his twin sister who is a high school history teacher in Brooklyn, he decided to use his experience to contribute to youth development. Wanting now to give back to the communities of the city, he felt unfulfilled working for major banks and companies and believes that iMentor is a perfect fit. Being born and raised in New York City, he loves the fact that he can help improve the underserved and underprivileged areas of the city by working for this wonderful organization that specializes in the development of high school youth in these areas. Nicholas joins iMentor with great dedication towards assisting the organization in growing and progressing, as well as contributing to the mission of improving the lives of youth through mentoring.

Jared Osborne

Program Coordinator

Jared joins iMentor as a Program Coordinator serving the 10th grade at the Business of Sports School. He will be responsible for delivering curriculum during classroom sessions, planning and managing monthly events, and facilitating strong relationships between mentors and mentees. Prior to joining iMentor, Jared spent five years working as a teacher in Title I elementary schools. He initially joined the teaching profession through Teach for America in the Mississippi Delta. While teaching, he earned a masters in elementary education from Delta State University (home of the Fighting Okra) and gained invaluable experiences that he brought to his students in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, for the past two years. Jared is excited to bring his classroom experience to the role and support mentors of all backgrounds as they help their mentees attain postsecondary success.

Celine Patel

Director of Corporate Engagement and Individual Giving

Celine joins the iMentor Development Team after working for over 5 years at Lehman Brothers and Neuberger Berman.  Celine’s prior involvement with iMentor includes mentoring two students and being a very active member of the iMentor Young Executive Board. In addition to her work with iMentor, Celine has been a Financial Literacy Teacher with High Water Women through which she has taught courses on personal finance to high school students and was the Vice Chair of Education with Women’s World Banking, an organization that focuses on empowering low-income women through financial education and microfinance loans. Celine holds a BBA in Finance from the University of Florida and an Executive Certificate in Financial Planning.

Maria Pendolino

Volunteer Screening Coordinator

Maria joined iMentor in 2010 and serves as a volunteer screening coordinator. Prior to joining iMentor, Maria spent 10 years in banking working in project management and marketing for HSBC and served on the iMentor Young Executive Board. Maria holds a degree in creative writing and theater from Binghamton University. She is originally from Buffalo, New York, and currently resides in Astoria, Queens. Maria is also proud to serve as a mentor in iMentor’s NYC program and has mentored NYC high school students since 2004. In her spare time, she is an accomplished actor and voiceover artist and can be heard on several commercials, websites, and audiobooks. 

Teisha Peralta

Volunteer Screening Coordinator

Teisha joins iMentor after having worked as a Program Associate in the Students Affairs Department at California State University San Marcos, where she worked both directly with the Vice President of Student Affairs and the Budget Director to best serve the needs of the students. Prior to her work at California State University San Marcos, Teisha worked for The National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse at Columbia University, as the Program Coordinator for the organization’s addiction and substance abuse prevention program geared towards adolescence, ages 8-13. While there she coordinated & facilitated trainings, as well as worked collectively to create the program’s accreditation policies, criteria and procedures.  In addition to her work experience, Teisha has traveled to the Philippines, the Dominican Republic and Malawi on missions trip with the Brooklyn Tabernacle and currently volunteers with the youth program there. Teisha studied English at Medgar Evers College. Teisha is excited to have the opportunity to utilize her passion for youth development and play a role in carrying out the vision and mission of iMentor.

Benjamin Robinson

Product Manager

Ben joined iMentor as product manager in 2013 and brings a valuable combination of technology and education experience to the organization. Previously, Ben worked in product development at S&P Capital IQ, a financial technology company that offers analytical tools to investors around the world. He gained experience with secondary education at Shoei Junior High, a target school of the Japan Exchange and Teaching Program, and he held workshops on American culture in middle schools throughout former East Germany during a Fulbright Scholarship. Ben graduated from the General Honors Program of Rutgers College, earned his MBA from the NYU Stern School of Business, and recently began table tennis lessons. 

Shannon Romines

Multimedia and Digital Communications Manager

Shannon joined iMentor as the first Multimedia & Digital Communications Manager. After spending three years working in development at Citizens Committee for New York City, Shannon chose to pursue her MFA in Social Documentary Film with the goal of using video to highlight and elicit support for the work of nonprofit organizations. Since completing that degree, she has worked for Good Eye Video, which creates videos for nonprofits and social businesses, served as a Production Assistant for PBS FRONTLINE, and as the Production Coordinator for the documentary Outlawed in Pakistan. Before coming to iMentor, Shannon also enjoyed the unique opportunity to work on a Hollywood film in her hometown of Bartlesville, Oklahoma. She looks forward to creating compelling, inspiring multimedia and online content that tells iMentor’s stories.

Nicole Rothwell

College Success Counselor

Nicole comes to iMentor with experience in youth development, nonprofit administration, and international affairs. She is a 2010 graduate of Seattle University, where she double-majored in International Studies and Spanish. After graduating, she left her west coast roots to volunteer through the New York City Civic Corps. Through this program she was introduced to iMentor as a Volunteer Coordinator. In 2011 Nicole was pleased to continue supporting the iMentor mission as a Program Coordinator. For the past two years she has worked with mentor-mentee pairs in the class of 2013 at Civic Leadership Academy in Elmhurst, Queens. Now as a College Success Counselor Nicole will work with the College Years Team to continue supporting pairs in their postsecondary matches. Nicole is passionate about connecting individuals and communities for positive social change and is excited to be involved with iMentor’s innovative approach to youth development.

Mason Sills

Senior Program Coordinator

Mason brings her passion for youth education and justice to her role as senior program coordinator. Previously, Mason was an after-school elementary art education teacher in the Bronx, and she also ran two youth groups for the nonprofit organization Creative Connections. As part of her youth group work, she guided students from Beach Channel High School in using storytelling, interviewing, and other creative forms to spark community dialogue and build leadership skills. Prior to moving to New York, Maason served as a senior youth counselor for the Mayor’s Summer Youth Employment Program in Cambridge, Massachusetts, where she supervised teens at summer learning sites throughout the city. As an undergraduate at Smith College, she engaged in violence prevention and rape crisis work and pursued an individualized concentration in social justice and U.S. race relations at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. She is a Brooklyn-based artist and received her B.A from Smith College.

Jeff Simon

Program Coordinator

Jeff joins iMentor as a Program Coordinator. He is responsible for delivering the iMentor curriculum, planning monthly events, and providing continuous academic and personal pair support to mentors and mentees. He is working with students at the Marble Hill School for International Studies in the Bronx. Prior to joining iMentor, Jeff earned a bachelor's in chemistry from the University of Michigan and a master's in chemistry from Stanford University. Jeff taught hands-on science lessons for low-income students and recruited them to attend enrichment programs on the Stanford campus. Upon completing his coursework, he taught chemistry, forensic science, and environmental science for three years at Passaic High School in New Jersey. He is a fierce advocate for undocumented youth and formerly coordinated programs with the NJ DREAM Act Coalition to increase students’ awareness of financial aid opportunities for college. He also worked to improve college access for his students by running FAFSA workshops and organizing college trips.

Katie Smith Roberts

Chief External Officer

Katie serves as iMentor’s Chief External Officer, managing development and communications. She has spent her career in education, starting as a fourth-grade classroom teacher in the Mississippi Delta, an experience that compels her to increase equity and access in education for students most in need. She later joined the education nonprofit Teach for America, first as a recruitment director and then as the organization’s chief of staff. Katie has spent the past six years at the New York City Department of Education as a chief of staff and then as chief operating officer of a large division. Within that time, she also worked at the Fund for Public Schools as a portfolio director, managing grants and running a leadership development program for the department’s top central talent. Katie holds an MBA from the Yale School of Management and is an alumna of the Broad Residency in Urban Education. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and son, an active toddler.

Nina Spierer

Managing Program Coordinator

Nina recently graduated from Barnard College, where she majored in English and human rights with a concentration in creative writing. Previously, she worked with Art Start NYC, providing arts, music, and poetry workshops to young people living in homeless shelters. Nina's passion for spoken word poetry found a home in the One Mic alternative to incarceration program, where students write, produce, and record their own music. Previously, she volunteered with Urban Word, NYC, where she helped facilitate creative writing workshops for young people ages 13-19.

Martha St. Jean

Program Coordinator
Martha is a native New Yorker with a background in education, media, culture, and communications. She is the Program Coordinator for the 10th grade class at Bronx High School for Law and Community Service. Martha is responsible for facilitating high-quality, high-impact relationships between mentor-mentee pairs. She enjoys engaging with high school students in weekly classes using a college-readiness curriculum designed to cultivate intellectual curiosity and build leadership skills. Her past work in media and producing documentaries allow her to bring multiple perspectives into the classroom. While working as a writing instructor for Legal Outreach, Martha coached students on the art of college-level critical writing and helped prepare them for the SAT. Her experiences at the United Nations, and in various volunteer roles, complement her work at iMentor. Martha received a masters from Columbia University's Graduate School of Journalism. She earned a B.S. in culture and communication studies at New York University. She loves a good book, coffee, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Kait Sweetman

Junior Product Manager

Kait comes to iMentor with a background in youth development, teaching and research. Kait obtained her B.A. in anthropology and history from Binghamton University, and her M.A. in media, culture, and communication at New York University. During her first two years at iMentor, Kait worked as a program coordinator and then as a program specialist, providing individualized pair support at three different partner schools in Brooklyn. She then joined the National Partnership team at iMentor, supporting internal staff and national partners with customer service and ongoing training on the iMentor Platform. After one year in that role, Kait moved to the Platform Team and took on the role of junior product manager. Kait is excited to contribute to the redesign and continued development of the iMentor Platform.

Allison Thomas

Program Coordinator
Allison joins iMentor as the 9th grade Program Coordinator for Bronx Leadership Academy II, where she delivers the iMentor curriculum, coordinates monthly pair events, and provides ongoing mentor-mentee pair support. Prior to this position, Allison earned her B.A. in English education. She has taught middle school English language arts in both charter and non-conventional classroom settings, and worked as a tutor and a substitute teacher for grades pre-K through 12 at assorted charter and private schools in three New York City boroughs. Most recently, Allison earned her M.A. in TESOL. During that time, she taught English to international adult students and their children. She also fell in love with co-teaching an all-woman multilevel ESL class through Portland, Oregon’s Immigrant and Refugee Community Organization. Allison firmly believes that every human deserves access to a quality education and support structures that encourage and enable self-sufficiency and self-advocacy. She also advocates for participation in the rejuvenating hobbies of ultimate frisbee, karaoke, inner tube water polo, and traveling.

Arlene Thompson

Program Assistant

Arlene continues at iMentor as a Program Assistant after a successful internship with the Volunteer Team. She is responsible for supporting the implementation of iMentor's program in partner schools through external communication, supporting curriculum events, and tracking program data. Having recently graduated from Pace University with a BA in International Management, Arlene is excited to further her contribution to iMentor. Previously she interned at Keep a Child Alive and Pencils of Promise. Originally from Connecticut and now a resident of Brooklyn, she enjoys discovering NYC and pursuing her hobby of photography. Arlene hopes to one day work for an international nonprofit that reaches to those in need around the globe. She is excited to learn all she can at iMentor and further develop her experience in youth development and social justice.

Gayla Thompson

NYC Program Director

Gayla joins iMentor as a Program Director, where she leads a team of Program Coordinators in effectively executing the iMentor curriculum at partner high schools. Gayla comes with six years teaching experience at the secondary level, primarily with underserved students. She has served as head of school and as an administrator at a charter school, working with pre-K and 7th-12th-grade student populations. Prior to that she was the assistant principal at George I. Sanchez Charter School. As an educator with more than 10 years of experience, Gayla has taught many subjects in culturally and linguistically diverse classrooms. She has also coached sports and sponsored students clubs, and has significant experience in program management, curriculum development, and coaching staff.

Kaylyn Toale

Program Assistant

Kaylyn joins iMentor as a program assistant and will be supporting program implementation for several high schools in the Bronx and Manhattan. Prior to joining iMentor, she worked with homeless families in the Bronx as a case manager in a shelter. Originally from outside of Philadelphia, Kaylyn graduated from Fordham University in 2011 with a degree in American studies. During college, she interned with the Fresh Air Fund. After graduation, she spent a year with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in Tucson, AZ, as a client advocate in a women’s shelter.

Nicole Tommasini

Senior Manager of Program Operations

Nicole comes to iMentor from the higher education field, in which she has had several years of experience developing and managing service-based scholarship programs and supporting and training college students to become civic leaders in their communities through service and advocacy. After graduating from the University at Albany with a B.A. in Sociology, Nicole was part of the first cohort of Siena College VISTA Fellows and was charged with starting a Bonner Leader program at the college. Through this experience, Nicole’s passion for social justice and equality became focused on youth development and education, specifically access to higher education. Nicole went on to coordinate the Presidential Service Corps/ Bonner Leader Program at Widener University in Chester, Pennsylvania and she completed her MSW while there. Nicole is excited to join iMentor and see firsthand the way structured and supported mentoring relationships effect the development of NYC youth and contributes to their long-term educational and vocational success.

Hanh Tran

Senior Director of Partner Programs

Hanh joins iMentor with experience in communications, consulting and non-profit program management. Formerly, Hanh worked at the Morgan Stanley Foundation where she created communications aimed at increasing the visibility of philanthropic initiatives. She has also worked in community outreach at New York Cares to expand volunteer opportunities in the Bronx and Brooklyn. Hanh has an interest in social entrepreneurship and previously served as a Kiva Fellow in Vietnam where she used video to share stories about women entrepreneurs. She has worked with refugee communities through WomenCraft, a social enterprise in Tanzania that connects rural artisans with international fair-trade markets. Hanh believes that all youth have the potential to succeed if given adequate opportunity and support and is thrilled to contribute to iMentor’s efforts to serve more students through mentoring. Hanh received her M.P.A. from the Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service at New York University and her B.A. in journalism and marketing from the University of Colorado at Boulder.

Duyen Tran

Volunteer Manager, Corporate Partnerships

Duyen is excited to join iMentor and looks forward to contributing to iMentor’s ambitious and innovative initiatives. With a background in education, program development, volunteer management, and non-profit fundraising, Duyen hopes to garner corporate and community interest to support iMentor’s efforts. While earning her B.A. at UCLA in English Literature, Duyen worked as a Teaching Assistant at the UCLA Lab School and interned at the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Greater Los Angeles. Most recently, she was the Star Walker Coordinator at AIDS Walk New York & Los Angeles—the nation’s first and largest AIDS walk-a-thon—and was responsible for establishing and building relationships with AIDS Walk’s highest individual fundraisers who account for $4.9 million of 2011 AIDS Walk’s $9.2 million fundraising total. She hails from Irvine, California—best known for being the safest city in America—and is excited to build a life for herself in New York.

Nico Tynes

College Success Program Director

Nico joins iMentor as the College Success Program Director. He is responsible for supporting the continued development of the 11th and 12th grade curriculum as well as College Years programming. Prior to joining iMentor, Nico worked at the Harlem Educational Activities Fund in the areas of college preparation, access, retention, and persistence. During his 11-year tenure there, he counseled students from 6th grade through college graduation, designed curricula, implemented and evaluated programs, as well as supervised and trained staff across organizational levels. He is immensely proud of his record of success in helping to get students to and through college. Nico holds a B.A. in political science from Duke University and a J.D. from Washington University School of Law. His work in educational access is motivated by the belief that education is the gateway toward a better life.

Joaquin Villa

Volunteer Manager, Strategy & Data
Joaquin joins iMentor as its Volunteer Manager of Strategy & Data. He conducts research and analyzes data in order to increase volunteer recruitment and engagement. He also oversees iMentor's mentor screening protocol. Joaquin's background includes youth development and educational media. Prior to iMentor, he was a researcher for Sesame Street Workshop and the Michael Cohen Group, an independent evaluator with expertise in children’s media and education. While completing his graduate degree, Joaquin worked at New York University's Neuroscience and Education Laboratory, where he evaluated executive function and self-regulation measures for a longitudinal study of children ages 24 to 48 months. Before moving to New York from California, Joaquin was a behavioral therapist and tutor for children diagnosed with autism and other pervasive developmental disorders. He holds a master’s degree in applied psychology with a concentration in research methodology from New York University and a bachelor’s degree in psychology with a minor in film and television from UCLA. Joaquin is proud to share a birthday with Nicolas Cage.

Sharon Vincent


Sharon comes to iMentor as an Accountant.  She has a CPA, and has worked at an array of diverse organizations, including Deloitte & Touche, JP Morgan, The Gillen Brewer School and most recently, a small law firm.  Sharon earned a BS in Accounting from St. John’s University.  She will be responsible for all accounting and bookkeeping functions, and play a large role in ensuring accurate books and records, maintaining compliance with financial procedures, and grant management.   Sharon is excited to join iMentor and support a cause she feels passionate about.  She is a product of the NYC Public School system and currently has three children in various NYC public schools.  She believes investing in children will yield an endless return in the future.

Esther Widlanski

Chief of Staff

Esther joined iMentor in 2010, with a broad background in community development and service programming. She served as iMentor’s director of volunteers for a number of years and the transformative power of mentoring relationships never ceases to amaze her. As iMentor’s first managing director of new site development, Esther looks forward to bringing iMentor to new locations across the country. Prior to joining the team, Esther worked as a director of programs for African Impact. In this role, she oversaw the organization’s portfolio of community-development projects in Mozambique, which included a tuition-free preschool and an HIV-education program. Esther was a born and raised in New York. She is a graduate of Colby College and an enthusiastic (if not always successful) urban gardener.

Cherika Wilson

Special Projects Associate

Hailing from Saint Andrew, Jamaica, Cherika joined the iMentor team as a Program Coordinator in 2009, supporting pairs in New York City and working with partner organizations as a national partnership specialist. Cherika is eager to continue her growth with the organization in her new role as Special Projects Associate. She received her B.A in psychology and sociology from the University of Pennsylvania, during which time she was involved in several youth development organizations. It was through her participation in programs such as the West Philadelphia Improvement Corp (WePIC), the West Philadelphia Alliance for Children (WePAC) Step Mentoring Program, and Big Brothers Big Sisters that she got her first glimpse into the public education system in the United States. This affirmed for her the crucial role of education in effecting change in the lives of children. It also deepened her understanding of the intersection of race, socio-economic status, and education and the resulting implications. 

Raven Woods

Director, Recruitment and Retention

Raven joins iMentor with a diverse background in human resources at the Westin hotel in Atlanta and at First Congregational Church of Los Angeles, in the areas of recruitment, onboarding, and organizational development. Previously, she served as the program director at Kranti, an anti-trafficking NGO in Mumbai, where she empowered daughters of sex workers by utilizing a social justice curriculum, leading emotional development workshops, and implementing a range of educational and cultural opportunities. She has also served as an admissions and outreach enrollment counselor at Sonoma State University in Northern California and as a crisis counselor at Social Advocates for Youth (S.A.Y) where she worked with homeless teens and facilitated anger management groups for youth on juvenile probation. Raven received a B.A. in humanistic psychology and a minor in business administration from Sonoma State University.

Tessa Yesselman

Program Coordinator

Tessa is a recent graduate from the Silver School of Social Work at NYU, where she earned her MSW. Previously, she worked at the Red Hook Community Justice Center, where she provided case management services to court mandated teenagers and facilitated a career readiness class to GED students. Prior to moving to New York, she served as a youth counselor for the Mayor’s Summer Youth Employment Program in Cambridge, M.A., where she supervised teens at summer learning sites throughout the city.

Robert Yoo

Director of Foundation Relations

Robert comes to iMentor with nine years of non-profit development experience with a specific focus in foundation relations and strategic communications. Prior to joining the iMentor team, Robert worked at BELL (Building Educated Leaders for Life) as a development officer and played an integral role in developing key philanthropic partnerships and communications strategies that enabled the organization to scale its operations to serve more than 5,000 students in five new regions. Most recently, Robert has been serving as a development consultant for Zimele, a non-profit organization based in South Africa that empowers women living in abject poverty to develop the skills and support networks they need to start their own businesses, support their families, and strengthen their communities. Robert graduated from the University of Vermont with a B.A. in English and political science, and from Gordon Conwell Theological Seminary with a M.A. in theology. In his spare time, Robert is an avid musician, snowboarder, and golfer-- and, of course, being born and raised in Jersey, is a die-hard fan of the New York Giants.

Aubresha Young

Program Coordinator

Aubresha joins iMentor with a passion for working with teenagers in urban communities. Prior to iMentor, Aubresha served as a team leader at Citizen Schools, where she led and supported apprenticeships that introduced middle school students to different careers and opportunities. Additionally, Aubresha traveled with the Brooklyn Tabernacle to the Philippines, Haiti, and Rwanda, where she helped children of genocide become entrepreneurs. Aubresha was a mentee in iMentor’s New York City program 10 years ago and is looking forward to ensuring that the students she works with benefit as much as she did. She studied psychology at Seton Hall University.

Julie Zdonek

Program Coordinator
Julie joins iMentor as a Program Coordinator serving the 9th-grade cohort at Marble Hill School for International Studies. She feels at home working at an international school, having lived in Europe for many years and attended international schools as a young person. Prior to joining iMentor, Julie worked in adult education serving immigrants in Brooklyn, as a case manager for homeless adults in Berkeley, California, and most recently as head trainer in technical operations at Bloomberg in Manhattan. Julie brings with her a passion for working with language learners and is excited to work with mentors and mentees across linguistic and cultural differences.

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