Leadership Institute Class of 2008

Lilia ‘Mouse’ Ashjian works at the Office of Payroll Administration on the CityTime Project, a citywide automated timekeeping system.  She serves on the project as Director of many functions - Production Support, Training, Communications, Agency Relations, and Agency Support. Her responsibilities include oversight of the CityTime consultant team, where she provides guidance and feedback to ensure activities are in accord with City culture.  Mouse has worked for the City since 1995 in both line and oversight agencies and has been involved with implementing and supporting new City systems from both the line and oversight perspective.  She is a graduate of Vassar College with a Bachelors degree in English and Italian.

Nicole Bertrán is the Director of Enforcement at the Department of Small Business Services (SBS).  In this role, Nicole oversees initiatives set forth by the Mayor’s Commission on Construction Opportunity, which includes the development and implementation of a program designed to ensure that City construction contractors recruit and retain a diverse workforce; and two research studies of the City’s construction industry.  Nicole began her career in the nonprofit sector spending six years at Nontraditional Employment for Women (NEW), the nation’s premier tradeswomen’s organization.  Nicole holds a BA from Rutgers College and is an alumna of The United Way of New York City Junior Fellows Emerging Leaders Program.

Renee Campion is an Assistant Commissioner at the Office of Labor Relations (OLR).  Renee’s responsibilities include negotiating collective bargaining agreements on behalf of the Mayor with various labor unions and representing the City in impasse, arbitration and mediation proceedings in coordination with the agency’s legal division.  Before entering public service, she was the Director of Contract Administration at Doctors Council, a private sector labor union that advocated on behalf of City employees (medical doctors) in various Agencies throughout the City of New York and the NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation.  Renee holds a Bachelor’s degree in American Government from Clark University in Worcester, Massachusetts.

Jonna Carmona-Graf is the Senior Team Leader for Capital Projects at the Department of Parks & Recreation (Parks). As Senior Team leader, Jonna is responsible for overseeing the Division’s Borough Team implementation of the annual Capital Plan including design and construction completions and procurement of consultant services.  In addition to this, she is the Capital Liaison for the Agency’s PlaNYC initiatives, including design and completion of eight regional parks, conversion of schoolyards to playgrounds, conversion of asphalt fields to synthetic turf sport fields and increasing the number of lighted ball fields. Jonna started with Parks in 1985 as an Assistant Architect and has served a variety of roles during her tenure.  She holds a Bachelors degree in Architecture from Columbia University.

Joseph DiDesidero is the Director of Stationary Engineering for the Division of Facilities Management & Construction (DFMC) within the Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS).  Joseph began his civil service career at the age of sixteen as a messenger for the Office of Management and Budget.  He joined the Department of General Services four years later as a laborer and quickly moved up the ranks. Joseph is currently in charge of the Heating, Ventilating, & Air Conditioning operations in all DCAS/DFMC managed facilities, including the supervision of engineers, plant tenders, oilers, & thermostat repairers. Joseph is a LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Accredited Professional, possesses a New York City Stationary Engineers License, and is a member of the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating, and Air Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE).

Teresa Duffy began her career with the City over 20 years ago as an Urban Park Ranger at the Department of Parks and Recreation. While in City service, Teresa worked for the Landmarks Preservation Commission, serving as the Agency’s first Budget Director, and for the Department of Homeless Services, where as the Personal Services (PS) Budget Manager, she managed a budget of $84 million dollars and assisted with an agency-wide restructuring of the PS Budget.  Teresa currently serves as Deputy Director of Personal Services & Revenue Budget at the Administration for Children’s Services (ACS).  In this capacity, she works with agency staff, ACS Deputy Commissioners, and the Office of Management and Budget to ensure program staffing resources needs are met within the current budget allocations. Teresa earned her Bachelor’s of Arts degree in Economics from Hunter College in 1995. 

Crystal Dukes is the Administrative Director for the Bureau of Forensic Behavioral Health Services at the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.  As Administrative Director, she is responsible for the oversight of six forensic community based organizations; coordination of recruitment activities including completion and submission of hiring packages and job fairs; and is project manager for special projects, assisting with the creation of a new service delivery model for the community based organizations. Crystal holds a Bachelors degree in Public Administration from City College. 

Helen Gitelson serves as Executive Director of the Code Affairs Unit in the Model Code Program at the Department of Buildings.  During the overhaul of the City’s Building code, Helen managed the mediation process, developed and implemented the environmental review of the new codes, supervised the Advisory Committees and interfaced with the City Council.  Currently she manages the Department’s efforts to continue the process to draft an Existing Building Code, conduct post-enactment operations planning and implementation, develop a process to revise the Construction Codes on a three-year cycle and works to “green” the codes and make buildings more sustainable.  Helen has been working in City government for more than 20 years.  Before joining City government, she was a Peace Corps Volunteer in the Philippines working in the Alternative Energy and Conservation program.

Judith Graham Kane is the Office of Emergency Management’s (OEM) Director of Communications. She oversees the agency’s external communications through channels including the agency website, 311, print publications, electronic newsletters, and advertising and marketing. Judith helps manage the agency’s only public education campaign, “Ready New York”, which teaches New Yorkers about preparing for emergencies. In her role as director, she also gathers market research and coordinates emergency messaging. Judith has worked at OEM since March 2003 and holds a Bachelor’s degree in Journalism from Syracuse University.

Adilia Gonzalez-Harris joined the New York City Law Department in 1998 as a Student Legal Specialist in the Bronx Family Court.  She rose through the ranks to her current position as the Deputy Borough Chief of Pre-Trial in the Bronx Tort Division.  In this capacity, Adilia is responsible for overseeing the entire pre-trial staff in the Bronx Tort office.  Her duties include the development and implementation of borough and division-wide policies and procedures; training and supervision of staff attorneys, supervisors, and clerical and support staff and meeting with senior court personnel and agency liaisons to track significant litigation events.  Adilia also interfaces with Federal, State, and City agencies to obtain discovery and to schedule depositions of key witnesses.  She is an active member of the Women’s Committee at the Law Department. 

Andrzej Jachimczyk serves as the Deputy Director for the Office of Information Technology at the Department of Probation (DOP).  In this role, Andrzej is in charge of managing the delivery of IT services supporting the citywide operations of the Agency.  He is also the day-to-day Project Manager responsible for the design, development and deployment of the Reusable Case Management System (RCMS), the Agency’s new case management-information sharing application.  Andrzej began his career with DOP in 1990 and during his tenure was instrumental in restructuring the Agency’s Adult Operations (ASR), as well as developing a knowledge-based application which streamlines the Violation of Probation processes. Andrzej holds a Master of Arts in Sociology from Warsaw University.

Marie L. Jean-Louis is the Director of the Manhattan and Citywide Program Administration Unit, at the Department of Design and Construction (DDC). Her responsibilities include the management of various street reconstruction capital projects, from initiation to construction completion, for client agencies such as the departments of Transportation and Environmental Protection.  Marie is a Professional Engineer, registered in the State of New York, with over fourteen years of civil service engineering experience, in both Los Angeles and New York City.  She holds a Bachelor of Engineering from the City College of New York and a Master of Engineering in Civil Engineering, specializing in transportation studies. 

Erik Joerss serves as the Chief of Candidate Services for the New York City Campaign Finance Board (CFB). The Candidate Services Unit is responsible for designing and providing training seminars and ongoing support to help campaigns comply with the electronic filing requirements and disclosure rules of the Campaign Finance Board.  Prior to joining the CFB, Erik founded and ran a not-for-profit organization creating market solutions to help lift the working poor out of poverty; worked as a media consultant for various social issue organizations; and served as the Director of Lobbying for Common Cause/NY. He holds a Bachelors degree in Political Science from the University of Central Florida.

Thomas Killeen began his career in 1990 as a Sanitation Worker.  During his rise up the promotion ladder to his current rank of Deputy Chief, Thomas held key positions within the Bureau of Waste Disposal (BWD).  Today Tom plays a dual role in positions as the Director of the Fresh Kills Landfill.  While managing the closure activities of the landfill, and coordinating with the Department of Parks and Recreation on the future end use of Fresh Kills as a park, Tom also manages the Staten Island Transfer Station. This 79,000 square foot facility receives compacts, containerizes, and exports by rail, of all residential waste generated in Richmond County.  This high profile state of the art facility is the first component of the Mayor’s new Solid Waste Management Plan that calls for all Department managed waste to railed or barged out of New York City, thus, reducing truck traffic on City streets.

Lionel Lorquet began his career in City government in 1984 serving as a Correction Officer at the Department of Corrections (DOC).  During his tenure at DOC he rose through the ranks working as a Correction Captain, Assistant Deputy Warden, Deputy Warden and Commanding Officer. Lionel is currently the Assistant Chief and is responsible for the oversight of seven Correctional facilities. He also reviews statistical data used to control and monitor violence within the facilities, provides general supervision to commanding officers and ensures that his facilities are in strict compliance with DOC policies.

Michele J. Maglione is the Director of the Office of Recruitment & Diversity at the New York City Fire Department. As director, she is responsible for developing and implementing diversity recruitment campaigns for the Department’s uniform Fire and Emergency Medical Services workforce; managing the FDNY’s Diversity Training Program; directing the expansion of the FDNY Fire and Emergency Medical Services Exploring Program, a leadership development program for youth ages 14 to 20, which currently has 7 active posts with more than 100 registered Explorers; and developing a comprehensive student recruitment, retention and  advancement plan for the FDNY High School for Fire and Life Safety. Prior to joining the FDNY in 2006, Michele served as Director of the New York City Chapter of Citizen Action of New York, a statewide grassroots political advocacy organization. She is one of the founding organizers of the Working Families Party and she chaired the New York City portion of the America Votes effort during the 2004 presidential campaign.

Gia Morris is an Inspector General with the Department of Investigation assigned to oversee the City Department of Finance, Office of Payroll Administration, Tax Commission/Tax Tribunal and the Economic Development Corporation.  In this capacity, Gia supervises a staff of auditors, investigators and attorneys throughout investigations of City employees and entities either doing business with the City or committing crimes against the City. Gia’s prior City service includes working as an Assistant District Attorney with the Kings County District Attorney’s office.  She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Corporate Communication from Ithaca College and a Juris Doctor from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law.

Wilmer Ortiz is the Director of the Office of Grants Administration at the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.  As Director, Wilmer is responsible for coordinating over $100 million in federal, state and private grant funding to the Health Department to support critical public health programs and initiatives.  His duties recently expanded to include oversight of Bureau-wide administrative services, including contracting, space acquisition and personnel services.  Wilmer started his career in City government in 1989 with the Department of Finance and joined the Health Department in 1993. Wilmer has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Columbia University.

Michael Owh is an Assistant General Counsel for the Department of Youth and Community Development (DYCD).  In this position, he deals with a wide range of legal issues concerning DYCD.  Specifically, he is responsible for legal issues involving DYCD's Out-of-School Time Program, Beacon Community Center, and Summer Youth Employment Program. Michael’s duties include contract negotiation and compliance monitoring of DYCD’s contracts with community-based organizations.  In addition, he also acts as a resource to DYCD's staff, advising them on general legal matters and program policy issues.  Michael earned his BA from the University of California at Berkeley and JD from St. John's University School of Law.

Michael Schnall is the Director of Government Relations for the Department of Parks & Recreation.  In his role as Director, Mike is responsible for developing the agency’s legislative agenda on the City, State and Federal levels, tracking Parks relevant legislation, handling and resolving constituent requests from elected officials, assisting in setting agency budgetary priorities, coordinating the Commissioner’s meetings with Council Members, preparing agency testimony for Council oversight hearings, and advocating for the agency’s vision and agenda.  Mike started his career in City government in 2002 with the New York City Council working as a Legislative Financial Analyst for the Finance Division, and then running the City Hall legislative office of a Brooklyn Council Member.  Mike is an adjunct professor of Political Science at Pace University in Manhattan and holds a BA in Political Science from Binghamton University and a JD from Brooklyn Law School.

Brenda Schultz is the Chief Contracting Officer at the New York City Council where she oversees all procurement and contract actions for the Council’s central staff.  Prior to assuming her current position, Brenda worked at several governmental agencies including the Mayor’s Office of Contract Services, the NYC Office of Emergency Management (OEM) and Health & Hospitals Corporation (HHC).  Brenda received a Bachelor of Science degree from New York University and a Masters of Public Administration from NYU’s Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service.

Anson Telford is the Program Director for Technical Services in the Bureau of Quality Assurance, Division of Municipal Supply Services at the Department of Citywide Administrative Services. In this role, Anson oversees the Technical Services Team and Environmental Group and is responsible for the pre-award product evaluation process, the final step before vendors can qualify for contracts.  Additionally, Anson ensures that the City’s Purchasing Plan complies with all Federal, State and Local environmental regulations. Before joining City government, Anson worked for a major corporation where he led new product development and quality improvement teams that saved millions of dollars.  He is a graduate of New York City College of Technology and Pratt Institute.

Molly Wasow Park is the Director of Resource Planning and Analysis at the Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD).  In this capacity, Molly provides analytical support to build programs’ financial resources.  This includes working with program staff to implement policy and process changes that generate revenue, reduce costs, and/or use existing resources more efficiently.  Molly also helps HPD anticipate its resource needs by analyzing data to develop financial benchmarks for agency performance.  She began her career in New York City government at the Independent Budget Office, where she spent five years as a Housing Policy Analyst.  Molly has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Amherst College, and a Master of Public Policy degree from the Goldman School at the University of California, Berkeley.

Barbara Woods is the Director of Special Projects for the Human Resources Administration (HRA). As Director, Barbara plans and coordinates Agency-wide staff meetings for over 15,000 HRA employees, plans interdepartmental seminars and events such as; World AIDS Day, the Father’s Day Picnic for non-custodial parents, African American History and Women’s History Months, Latino Heritage Month, and other events and presentations as needed.  She also works with other City and Mayoral agencies on initiatives that serve the citizens of New York City. Before City service, Barbara was an award-winning writer/producer for the pay-per-view television network iN DEMAND.  She received a Bachelor in Fine Arts in Drama and Theatre at the University of Georgia and completed the Intensive Film Production Program at New York University.


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