Leadership Institute Class of 2011

Solita Alexander serves as the Director of Employment Counseling for the Department of Parks and Recreations’ Parks Opportunity Program (POP), one of the nation’s largest welfare-to-work transitional employment programs.  In her role, Solita designs and oversees the implementation of counseling services at multiple sites located throughout the five boroughs.  Solita guides her staff to assess clients’ social needs, provide referrals for education, employment and professional training opportunities, and develop clients’ skills prior to job application.  Before joining Parks, Solita worked as a family therapist and as an educator, teaching 7-12th grades and advising students at CUNY.  Solita graduated from Harvard University with Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology and holds a Master’s in Education in Counseling Psychology from Columbia University, Teachers College.

Brian Aucoin is the Director of the GreenApple Corps and the MillionTrees Training Program, divisions of the Department of Parks and Recreation.  Brian has directed the GreenApple Corps since its inception in 2004 and the MillionTrees Training Program since its inception in 2008.  He began his career with Parks as an Outreach Coordinator for Partnerships for Parks, where he engaged community organizations and volunteers in Parks-based improvement projects.  Brian previously served as the Bronx River Conservation Manager, where he helped create and manage the first ecological restoration team and oversaw conservation projects for the Bronx River Alliance.   Before joining Parks, Brian worked as a Forester with Southwestern Environmental Consulting Company (SEC) based in Sedona, Arizona as well as a Landscape Supervisor for Flagstaff Native Plant and Seed in Flagstaff, Arizona.  Brian earned a Bachelor's degree in Environmental and Sustainable Resources from the University of Louisiana, Lafayette.

Brad Bishop is the Executive Director of Strategic Planning and Implementation at the Department of Buildings (DOB), where he leads his team in the Agency’s strategic planning efforts.  His work includes the development of the strategic plan, regular prioritization and re-prioritization of strategic efforts, and constant consideration of new processes and methods DOB can adopt to help further its strategic goals.  Included in his division is the Operations Redesign Unit, whose sole responsibility is the successful implementation of DOB’s change efforts employing a number of project management methodologies, and regularly partnering with groups outside of the Department, such as the Mayor’s Office and other City agencies. Brad holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and a Master of Public Administration from Binghamton University.

Jared Bosk is the Special Assistant to the Deputy Commissioner at the Human Resource Administration’s (HRA) Office of Child Support Enforcement. He supports all operational aspects of the NYC child support program including special projects and initiatives, program reporting and analysis, program and policy events, and communications and publications. Prior to working for HRA, Jared worked for several research organizations where he conducted studies on policy issues such as health care, education and environmental issues. Jared graduated from Wesleyan University with a degree from the College of Social Studies, an integrated program of political science, economics, history and social theory. 

Shawn Cargil serves as the Pelham Bay Park Manager for the Department of Parks and Recreation (Parks) where he is responsible for assisting in the planning, organization and supervision of recreation operations and maintenance activities for park facilities in his jurisdiction. Shawn works closely with his staff to prioritize objectives that will meet specific goals set out by the Department. He also directs special projects such as; social services programs, special employment programs and Agency-wide training programs. Shawn holds a Master’s degree in Professional Studies, with a focus on Human Resource Management, and a Bachelor’s degree in Business and Economics from the State University of New York at Stony Brook. 

Daniel Cho serves as the Director of Candidate Services for the New York City Campaign Finance Board (CFB).  The Candidate Services Unit is responsible for all candidate outreach, trainings, and everyday support to ensure candidates and their staff are in compliance with the Campaign Finance Act and CFB Rules. Since August 2008, Dan has overseen the communications between his staff and candidates for election to the CFB’s five covered offices – Mayor, Public Advocate, Comptroller, Borough President, and City Council.  He ensures all registered candidates file periodic disclosure statements using the CFB’s software and assists with the fundraising and documentation requirements for public matching funds. Dan is a graduate of Boston College.

Lori Cohen is the Director of Business Systems and Strategy for the Bureau of HIV/AIDS Prevention and Control at the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH). In this capacity, she oversees contracting for approximately $120 million of HIV prevention and care funds that are subcontracted to New York City direct services organizations. Lori is also responsible for identifying ways to streamline work processes within the Bureau and is currently leading the development of a new data reporting system to be used by funded subcontractors to report services and by the Bureau to measure the effectiveness of its funded programs. Prior to joining DOHMH, Lori worked for HIV/AIDS-focused health services non-profits in New York City and San Francisco. Lori graduated from Bowdoin College with a Bachelor’s degree in Women’s Studies and French and received a Master’s in Public Health from San Jose State University.

Raquel de los Reyes is the Chief of Staff to the Commissioner of the Department of Information Technology and Telecommunications.  As Chief of Staff, Raquel is directly responsible for overseeing critical agency matters and for working closely with key members of the agency to maintain its strategic direction. She is involved in decisions around personnel, budget, and major citywide projects. She also manages the Commissioner’s office to ensure that daily matters such as scheduling and sensitive personnel and agency matters are handled in a timely manner. Raquel has worked for the City of New York for the past seven years.  She started in the Government Scholars program as an intern at the Taxi and Limousine Commission.  She also worked in various roles at the Department of Parks & Recreation. Raquel has a Master’s degree in Urban Planning from New York University.  She also holds a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations from William and Mary.

Yongli (Tony) Duan is the Director of Technology Services at the Department of Transportation (DOT). Yongli leads several groups of professionals who provide IT technical support to more than 4,500 employees agency-wide. In order for the Agency to meet the demands of a diverse, high technology driven population, he formulates plans, oversees their execution, measures the results and supports the use of new technologies within the Agency. Prior to joining DOT, Yongli worked in the financial and computer manufacturing industries as an IT consultant and manager. He has a Bachelor’s degree in Electronics Engineering from China’s Xidian University and worked in the China Academy of Space Technology before pursuing his graduate studies in America. Tony obtained his Master of Science Degree in Electrical Engineering from Oklahoma State University.

Franco Esposito is Senior Counsel at the Department of Transportation (DOT) where he advises the agency on a wide range of legal and program policy issues.  His responsibilities include contract drafting and negotiation, dispute resolution on contractor claims, handling of ADA compliance issues, drafting licenses, permits and other agreements that involve DOT’s capital program, and providing legal advice on federal and state grants. He is also responsible for the training and supervision of Agency staff attorneys.  Franco earned his Bachelor’s degree from the Binghamton University and Juris Doctorate from New York Law School.

Stephen G. Fisher is the Executive Director of Technology Operations in the Financial Management & Administration Division at the Department of Small Business Services (SBS). He is responsible for managing the technical support staff and oversees the maintenance and support of the Agency’s Data Center assets, core switches, and servers as well as the LAN/WAN connectivity to the Agency’s 350+ staff members. He also serves as the agency’s Network Security Officer; responsible for creating and implementing network security policies that meet and/or exceed citywide security directives. Stephen holds a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from the New York Institute of Technology and is a Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer.

Irma Fontaine is an Architect for the Fire Department where she engages in complex research, investigations, studies, and examinations related to the architectural functions and activities of the Agency.  Her responsibilities include coordinating and managing the design work of multiple consultants; and managing projects that involve a team of architects, designers, engineers, estimators, construction managers, and end users.  Irma began her career in public service 12 years ago as an Architectural Intern at the New York City Housing Authority.  As an intern, she assisted with the designs and the construction administration of various projects, and rose through the ranks, serving as Assistant Section Chief and eventually Lead Architect.  Irma is graduate of The City College of New York and is licensed and registered to practice Architecture in the State of New York.  She is currently studying to become LEED certified.

Amy Hebert is the Director of Human Resources and Training at the Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS). As Director, Amy is involved in the design and development of several of DCAS’ HR procedures and trainings including; the development of the e-Guide, A Guide to Employment at DCAS; the creation of the Interviewing & Hiring at DCAS training program and the development of a procedural manual for Human Resources’ PAR process that included the creation of new procedures used to simplify the PAR process within DCAS. Prior to her current appointment, she served as Director of Training and Development at DCAS and as a Training Manager at the New York City Retirement System (NYCERS). Amy graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Finance from Miami University in Oxford Ohio and holds a Master’s in Education in Human Resource Development from Xavier University.

Sang Hong is the Deputy Director of the Management Benefits Fund and Pre-Tax Benefits Program at the Office of Labor Relations (OLR).  As Deputy Director, Sang ensures that the day-to-day operations of the program are run in a way that best serves active employees and retirees of the City of New York. His responsibilities include; program education, enrollments, claims processing, payment processing and payroll interface.  Sang also serves as a liaison to third party administrators and ensures that program provisions comply with the City's regulations.  Sang is a recipient of the Hundred Year Association of New York Award for Outstanding Achievement in Public Service and a graduate of San Diego State University where he received a Bachelor’s degree in Theater Arts.

Mary Matuszak is Director of Library Services at the New York County District Attorney’s Office.  Prior to joining the DAs office, Mary worked in the libraries of The Association of the Bar of the City of New York, Legal Aid Society, Piper & Marbury LLP and Levittown Public Library. She received her Bachelor’s degree from the State University of New York at Binghamton and her Master’s in Library Science from Long Island University. 

Kristin Misner is the Chief of Staff to the Deputy Mayor for Health and Humans Services in the office of the Mayor. As Chief of Staff, Kristin manages the day-to-day operations of the Deputy Mayor’s portfolio and works with nine city agencies with a combined budget of over $20 billion. She plays a major role advancing important mayoral initiatives on issues ranging from senior services to workforce development. She also continues to oversee the implementation of the social service programs funded by the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009. Prior to becoming Chief of Staff, Kristin worked at the Department of Homeless Services and assisted in implementing the Mayor’s five-year action plan, Uniting for Solutions Beyond Shelter, which focused on prevention, rental assistance, and housing.  Kristin began her career in government as an Urban Fellow and has a Master in Public Administration from New York University.  She is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the College of the Holy Cross where she earned a Bachelor’s in English. She was also recently named in City Hall Newspaper as one of the Rising Stars in NYC government.

Lisa Nakanishi is the Executive Director of the Division of Citywide Equal Employment Opportunity with the Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS).  Her responsibilities include managing the division’s City Charter-mandated role to develop and implement Citywide EEO policies and procedures to create and maintain equal employment opportunity; assisting City agencies in identifying and developing EEO diversity strategies and initiatives; providing policy and legal guidance to agency EEO personnel, attorneys, and personnel staff; and assisting in planning and delivering EEO training programs.  Lisa earned her Bachelor’s degree from Drew University, her Master’s degree in Political Science from the University of Connecticut and her Juris Doctorate degree from Northeastern University School of Law.

David Ogula began his public service career at the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, where he served in various Analyst positions for 7 years.  He is currently the Executive Assistant to the Assistant Commissioner for Human Resources at the Fire Department (FDNY) where he plays a critical role in managing the Bureau of Personnel Resources and overseeing the administration of personnel matters.  David is a scholar-practitioner who integrates concept and practice in implementing public policies and process changes.  He holds a doctorate degree in Management from the University of Phoenix, a Master’s degree in Public Administration from John Jay College of Criminal Justice and a Bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Lagos, Nigeria. 

Tanya Pope is the Director of Vendor Education & Training at the Department of Small Business Services (SBS) where she works with Minority and Women-owned Business Enterprises (M/WBE) to build their capacity and instruct them on how to sell to government. Prior to joining SBS, she founded her own consulting firm, The Pope Consulting Group, LLC and was Vice President of Travel Technology & Operations at MTV Networks/Viacom. Tanya has extensive experience managing sourcing and procurement processes.  She also excels at contract management and negotiation. She holds a Bachelor of Science in Communications Management and a Master of Science in Leadership and Strategic Management both from Manhattanville College in Purchase, NY.  

Meggan Schilkie is the Deputy Director for Mental Health in the Division of Mental Hygiene at the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene.  In this role she is responsible for the management of operations for the Bureau of Mental Health including all human resources, finance, contraction, budget, and data management for the Bureau.  She also oversees 5 offices and approximately $150 million contracted Mental Health services throughout New York City including housing, rehabilitation, case management, and the 9/11 Mental Health and Substance Use Benefit Program.  Meggan has been with the Department for 5 ½ years in various capacities including as a Legislative Liaison in Intergovernmental Affairs and as a Special Projects Director and Senior Advisor to the Executive Deputy Commissioner for Mental Hygiene.  She has a Bachelor’s degree in Theatre from Fordham University.

Estelle Strykers-Santiago is Special Assistant for Crime Prevention at the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office. She serves as a member of the newly formed Crime Strategies Unit and works on special projects that focus on crime prevention. Her current projects include reentry initiatives and reducing recidivism of those released from state prison and returning to Manhattan. During her twenty years at the DA’s Office, Estelle has worked in a number of different capacities including; supervisor in the Witness Aid Service Unit,  community liaison for the office’s Community Affairs Unit, and  administrator in the Investigation Division for a unit which investigates and prosecutes complex financial crimes. Prior to joining the DA’s Office Estelle worked with runaway and homeless youth and did tenant and community organizing in the South Bronx. Estelle has a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology from the University of Santa Clara.

Warren Tobin started his career with New York City Transit in 1980 and has risen through the ranks to his current position as Assistant Chief Signals Officer. In this capacity, Warren is responsible for the safety, critical testing, inspecting and maintenance of the signal system. The maintenance division support of the Capitol Program is crucial to ensuring asset integrity for the lifecycle of the federally funded program.  This is accomplished through rigorous inspection, analysis and planning. Warren has been recognized for his contributions having received the prestigious Presidents Circle Award in 2004.

Lourdes Torres-Esquilin is the Director of Planning and Administrative Services for the Human Resources Administration’s Adult Protective Services Program where she has oversight of the program’s Contracts Division.  The Division is responsible for developing and monitoring both human and non-human services contracts that include; RFP’s, bid specifications, encumbrance and vendor payment processing. She is also responsible for program wide strategic management planning and oversight of infrastructure and facilities management. Lourdes is a graduate of Hunter College with a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science.

Andrew C. Ulon is the Deputy Capital Budget Director at the Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD). Together with the Capital Budget Director, Andrew is responsible for the management and oversight of over $3 billion in HPD capital resources. He works closely with program staff across the agency in assessing capital needs, identifying available resources, proposing savings programs, and establishing capital priorities. He assists in the development of HPD’s capital budget and liaisons regularly with the Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget on all issues relating to capital budgeting. Andrew began his career in City government at the Mayor’s Office of Management and Budget where he worked in developing the expense, capital, and revenue budgets for various agencies including the Department of Correction, the Department of Juvenile Justice, and the NYC Court System. Andrew holds a Bachelor’s degree from Cornell University.

Carolyn Williams began her career in City government in 2006 at the Department of Housing Preservation and Development (HPD) as a Senior Analyst in the Division of Housing Incentives – Low Income Housing Tax Credit Unit.  In this capacity, she worked for the highly publicized NYCHA Preservation Project, whereby the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) received federal financing in conjunction with federal tax credits.  The transaction generated in excess of $400 million in tax exempt bonds allowing NYCHA to fund the rehabilitation of more then 14,000 public housing units in all five boroughs.  Carolyn received her Bachelors in Business Administration from Marymount Manhattan College and graduated from Baruch Graduate School of Public Affairs with a Master’s degree in Public Administration.


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