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Faculty & Staff Directory

Manhattan Country School faculty and staff may be reached by phone at (212) 348-0952. Email addresses are first initial last name at manhattancountryschool.org. (Ex. jsmith@manhattancountryschool.org)

Classroom Teachers and Specialists

Callan Angrisani's picture

Callan Angrisani

4-5s Assistant Teacher
B.A. SUNY New Paltz
Callan Angrisani's picture

Callan Angrisani

4-5s Assistant Teacher
B.A. SUNY New Paltz
Hometown: New York, New York

Joined MCS in 2017

Prior Work Experience: MCS Farm Camp Counselor, Server, SUNY New Paltz Secretary, New York Sports Club Receptionist

I work at MCS because...after attending MCS and studying education, I wanted to work at a school that values diversity and alternative education. MCS embodies many things that I stand for and I am hoping to give back what I have learned from my own education.
Paulo Cesar Arango's picture

Paulo Cesar Arango

4-5s Head Teacher
B.A. Universidad de Nariño
M.S.Ed. Sarah Lawrence College
Paulo Cesar Arango's picture

Paulo Cesar Arango

4-5s Head Teacher
B.A. Universidad de Nariño
M.S.Ed. Sarah Lawrence College
Hometown: Pasto-Nariño, Colombia

Joined MCS in 2010

Prior Work Experience: Director and Teacher, The Go Project at St. Luke’s and Saint Mary’s; Counselor, Camp Sunshine; Assistant Teacher, The Sarah Lawrence College Early Childhood Center; Spanish Teacher, Dillard University; Counselor and Director, Camp Sloane

Hobbies: Traveling, reading, making art and exploring New York City.

I work at MCS because...guiding young children in non-traditional settings has been a lifetime goal.

 
Robert Berkman's picture

Robert Berkman

Math Coordinator
B.A. Brown University
M.S. Brookyln College
Robert Berkman's picture

Robert Berkman

Math Coordinator
B.A. Brown University
M.S. Brookyln College
Hometown: Jericho, New York

Joined MCS in 2010

Prior Work Experience: Math and Science Teacher, The Berkeley Carroll School; Math and Science Teacher, The Bank Street School for Children; Science Director, Mary McDowell Center for Learning; Chess and Math Teacher, M.S. 88: The Peter Rouget School; K-4 Mathematics Coordinator, Friends Seminary; Founder and Director, Better Living Through Mathematics

Hobbies: Cooking, open water long distance swimming and concertina.

I work at MCS because…it’s where innovation is thoughtful, and I work with colleagues and children who are stimulating and interesting.
Shani Charles (Brignolle)'s picture

Shani Charles (Brignolle)

Fifth Grade Head Teacher
B.A. State University of New York, Stony Brook
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
Shani Charles (Brignolle)'s picture

Shani Charles (Brignolle)

Fifth Grade Head Teacher
B.A. State University of New York, Stony Brook
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
Hometown: New York, New York

Joined MCS in 2014

Prior Work Experience: Children’s Museum of Manhattan School and Public Programs Educator; 7-8s Assistant Teacher, Bank Street School for Children; First Grade and 4th Grade Assistant Teacher, Brooklyn Friends

Hobbies: Camping and kickboxing.

I work at MCS because…it is the only place I’ve found that has policies in place to match the school mission.
Gillian Christian's picture

Gillian Christian

5-6s Assistant Teacher
B.A. Wheaton College (IL)
M.A. Teachers College, Columbia University
Gillian Christian's picture

Gillian Christian

5-6s Assistant Teacher
B.A. Wheaton College (IL)
M.A. Teachers College, Columbia University
Gillian is an elementary educator, certified literacy specialist, and a Spanish-language and TESOL educator. During her undergraduate studies at Wheaton College, she worked as a teacher aide and English tutor for low-income children in Seville, Spain, in addition to working as a summer camp counselor in New Jersey. She completed her undergraduate student teaching in a bilingual second-grade class at a Title I school in Illinois, where she designed and taught lessons in both Spanish and English before graduating in May 2016 with a dual degree in childhood education and Spanish-language education. Straight from college, Gillian relocated to New York City to enroll at Teachers College, Columbia University, from which she just graduated with a master of arts, literacy specialist degree. During her time in graduate school, she worked as an associate teacher in first- and third-grade classrooms at The School at Columbia University.

Why I Love MCS: Our daily visits to Central Park. It's wonderful to be able to spend so much time together out in nature!

More About Me: I love learning new languages, working on craft projects, and riding my bike around the city.
Jessica Contreras's picture

Jessica Contreras

8-9s Head Teacher
B.A. SUNY New Paltz
M.S. Hunter College
Jessica Contreras's picture

Jessica Contreras

8-9s Head Teacher
B.A. SUNY New Paltz
M.S. Hunter College
Jessica is an elementary educator with 12 years of experience teaching in New York City classrooms. After graduating from SUNY New Paltz with a bachelor’s degree in Spanish in 2005, Jessica honed her skills in numerous schools and summer camps. At the International School of Brooklyn, she created and implemented a summer arts-based Spanish-immersion curriculum for children ages 4-to-10 years old. In 2010, she began working as an assistant teacher at Friends Seminary, in both kindergarten and first grade classrooms. In 2013 Jessica graduated from CUNY Hunter College with a master’s degree in childhood education, and soon after began teaching at Williamsburg Northside Schools (WNS), launching the first third-grade classroom as the school expanded. As the first third-grade head teacher, she developed and shaped the student-centered curriculum inspired by the Reggio Emilia approach. Additionally, while at WNS she served as the school’s service learning coordinator and also as a founding member of the Inclusivity Task Force.

Why I Love MCS: Being part of a community that embodies and values social justice, progressive education, and environmental sustainability

More About Me: I love camping, hiking, running, cooking, and traveling.
Alaina A Daniels's picture

Alaina Autumn Daniels

Upper School Science Teacher
B.A. Amherst College
M.A. Smith College
Alaina A Daniels's picture

Alaina Autumn Daniels

Upper School Science Teacher
B.A. Amherst College
M.A. Smith College
Hometown: Wilmette, Illinois

Joined MCS in 2012

Prior Work Experience: Assistant Instructor, Smith Summer Science and Engineering Program; Biology Substitute and Student Teacher, Amherst Regional High School; Robotics Instructor, Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth

Hobbies: Swimming, sailing, biking, reading, cooking and computers.

I work at MCS because…I love that Manhattan Country School is committed to social justice, activism and equality for all; these ideals make MCS a wonderfully open and familial community. I really appreciate that these themes are woven into all aspects of the school especially the curriculum. I feel that science is an extremely powerful tool to use for activism and I love teaching young scientists to generate data and use their results to make the world a better place.
Sean Dolgin's picture

Sean Dolgin

7-8s Assistant Teacher
B.A. University of Vermont
Sean Dolgin's picture

Sean Dolgin

7-8s Assistant Teacher
B.A. University of Vermont
Why I Love MCS: I love going to Central Park with the kids and I’m excited to bring the 7-8s to the farm for the first time!

More About Me: I am aspiring to hike all 46 high peaks in the Adirondacks!
Carolina Drake's picture

Carolina Drake

Upper School Spanish Teacher
B.A. University of North Carolina, Charlotte
M.A. Stonybrook University
Carolina Drake's picture

Carolina Drake

Upper School Spanish Teacher
B.A. University of North Carolina, Charlotte
M.A. Stonybrook University
Hometown: Buenos Aires, Argentina

Joined MCS in 2014

Prior Work Experience: Freelance journalist; Middle school and high school Spanish teacher; Broadway dance extra

Hobbies: Dancing in crowded studios, ballet, writing, reading poetry and wandering around and getting lost in the city.

I work at MCS because…it is a place where my thinking and my teaching align, and I can bring every aspect of my human self into the classroom. It is also a space that allows me to teach and be taught by others. I am always learning new things at MCS.
Teresa Edwards's picture

Teresa Edwards

Physical Education Teacher
Basketball Coach
Maxwell Fletcher's picture

Maxwell Fletcher

7-8s Co-Head Teacher
B.A. University of Southern California
M.S. Sarah Lawrence College
Maxwell Fletcher's picture

Maxwell Fletcher

7-8s Co-Head Teacher
B.A. University of Southern California
M.S. Sarah Lawrence College
Hometown: San Francisco, California

Joined MCS in 2016

Prior Work Experience: Director of Programs at the Katherine Michiels School

Hobbies: camping, cooking, biking, swimming, music, movies and going to museums

I work at MCS because...of a sense of shared values by the whole community, with the goal of creating a more just society.

 
Carissa Fleury's picture

Carissa Fleury

5-6s Assistant Teacher
B.A. Tufts University
M.S. (c) Bank Street College of Education
Carissa Fleury's picture

Carissa Fleury

5-6s Assistant Teacher
B.A. Tufts University
M.S. (c) Bank Street College of Education
Why I Love MCS: The warm community of educators, staff, students and families who make MCS feel like home!

More About Me: I love gardening and teaching American Sign Language to preschoolers at the local library.
Jay Fung's picture

Jay Fung

Librarian
B.A. California State University, Fresno
M.Ed. (c) Bank Street
Jay Fung's picture

Jay Fung

Librarian
B.A. California State University, Fresno
M.Ed. (c) Bank Street
Hometown: Fresno, California

Joined MCS in 1998

Prior Work Experience: Associate Teacher, The Dalton School

Hobbies: Playing and listening to all genres of music, reading books, sports, watching movies of all kinds, eating and trying excellent foods.

I work at MCS because…I can’t imagine any other place where I get to do what I do with the amazing diversity of students, families and colleagues with whom I have been associated all these years.
Laleña Garcia's picture

Laleña Garcia

5-6s Head Teacher
B.A. Yale University
M.S. Bank Street
Laleña Garcia's picture

Laleña Garcia

5-6s Head Teacher
B.A. Yale University
M.S. Bank Street
Hometown: Buffalo, New York

Joined MCS in 2013

Prior Work Experience: Head Teacher, 5-8s, Brooklyn Free School; Head Teacher, 3-5s, Rockefeller University; Head Teacher, Kindergarten, Explore Charter School; Head Teacher, 4s, Riverside Weekday School; Assistant Teacher, 3s, 5-6s, Bank Street School for Children; New Haven Junior Counselor Resource Advisor, Leadership, Education, and Athletics in Partnership

Hobbies: Surfing, biking, knitting, reading, activism (especially with the Rude Mechanical Orchestra) and sewing.

I work at MCS because…it’s inspiring to come to work every day in a place that not only speaks compassionately about diversity and progressive education, but lives, models and breathes these values in a myriad of ways. I want to work in a place where my activism is supported as a resource for my students, not something that I have to ignore. I love feeling challenged and inspired by my colleagues. I want to have the freedom to do what is best for each class, unencumbered by decisions made by politicians who have never met a five-year-old, much less my five-year-olds.
Rosalinda Glennon's picture

Rosalinda Glennon

7-8s Co-Head Teacher
B.A. City College of New York
M.S. Bank Street College of Education
Rosalinda Glennon's picture

Rosalinda Glennon

7-8s Co-Head Teacher
B.A. City College of New York
M.S. Bank Street College of Education
Rosalinda is an elementary and visual-arts educator with more than five years of experience teaching in both public and independent schools. Rosalinda graduated from The City College of New York with a bachelor’s degree in Art Education in 2012, and subsequently worked as a surface design instructor for a summer arts program and as assistant art teacher in a K-5 New York City public school. For two years she taught at The Dalton School as an kindergarten associate teacher, where she integrated art concepts into everyday lessons with hands-on activities. For the past two years, she has taught in fourth- and second-grade classrooms as an associate teacher at the Bank Street School for Children, where she also served as a facilitator for the Kids of Color affinity group and taught a racial justice and advocacy unit. She is currently finishing up her graduate studies at Bank Street College of Education, from which she will graduate with a dual master’s degree in childhood general and special education.

Why I Love MCS: Working with a diverse group of children and colleagues.

More About Me: I was born in Venezuela and speak Spanish fluently. I like knitting and going to hockey games.
Maryam Gonzalez's picture

Maryam Gonzalez

4-5s Assistant Teacher
B.S. University of Texas at Austin
M.S. Texas State University
M. Ed. Brooklyn College
Maryam Gonzalez's picture

Maryam Gonzalez

4-5s Assistant Teacher
B.S. University of Texas at Austin
M.S. Texas State University
M. Ed. Brooklyn College
Maryam is an early childhood educator and certified child life specialist. She earned her bachelor’s degree in human development and family sciences from The University of Texas at Austin, and her master’s degree in family and child studies from Texas State University. She worked as a child life specialist from 2007 to 2013, first at a children’s medical center in Austin, Texas, and later at Mount Sinai’s Children’s Hospital. She recently graduated from CUNY Brooklyn College with a master’s degree in early childhood education, and completed her student teaching and fieldwork at both public and independent New York City schools. From 2016 to 2017 she was a kindergarten teaching assistant at P.S. 321 in Brooklyn, and since the fall of 2017 has been teaching at MCS as a student teacher in the 6-7s and a part-time resource teacher in the Lower School.

Why I Love MCS: I love the diverse community that makes up MCS. Students and families travel from all parts of the city to form a cohesive family of social justice-oriented individuals.

More About Me: When I'm not busy being inspired by 4-5s, I'm busy exploring the city with my three year old son.
Tom Grattan's picture

Tom Grattan

Seventh & Eighth Grade English Teacher
B.A. Siena College
M.Ed. Teacher's College, Columbia University
M.F.A. Brooklyn College
Tom Grattan's picture

Tom Grattan

Seventh & Eighth Grade English Teacher
B.A. Siena College
M.Ed. Teacher's College, Columbia University
M.F.A. Brooklyn College
Hometown: Waterford, New York

Joined MCS in 2001

Prior Work Experience: Adjunct Professor, Brooklyn College; Academic Tutor, Various Locations; Teacher, Gotham Writers' Workshop

Hobbies: Writing, running, cooking and traveling.

I work at MCS because…it is a place that values and is committed to diversity, equity, activism and progressive education.
Ilene Green's picture

Ilene Green

School Psychologist
B.A. Antioch College
M.A. and Ph.D. New York University
Ilene Green's picture

Ilene Green

School Psychologist
B.A. Antioch College
M.A. and Ph.D. New York University
Hometown: New York, New York

Joined MCS in 2008

Prior  Work Experience: Director of Psychological Center, City University of New York; Associate Professor, Mental Health Counseling Program , Brooklyn College

Hobbies: Taking care of my kids, pets, and home, and guitar playing.

I work at MCS because…I believe in progressive education.
Bonnie Greenwald's picture

Bonnie Greenwald

Learning Specialist
B.A. University of Massachusetts
M.S., Ed.M. Bank Street
Bonnie Greenwald's picture

Bonnie Greenwald

Learning Specialist
B.A. University of Massachusetts
M.S., Ed.M. Bank Street
Hometown, Orangeburg, New York

Joined MCS in 2017

Prior Work Experience: Special Education Teacher: District 11, District 2; Inclusion Teacher: PS 89M; Learning Specialist: The Cathedral School; Literacy Liaison: The School at Columbia University

Hobbies: Travel and fitness (as both a trainer and trainee)
Susan Harris's picture

Susan Harris

Lower School Music Teacher
B.A. Manhattan School of Music
M.Ed. Bank Street
Dalcroze License, Longy School of Music
Susan Harris's picture

Susan Harris

Lower School Music Teacher
B.A. Manhattan School of Music
M.Ed. Bank Street
Dalcroze License, Longy School of Music
Hometown: Mount Vernon, New York

Joined MCS in 1981

Prior Work Experience: Music Theory Instructor, Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, Preparatory Program; Eurhythmics Instructor, Metropolitan Music School; Music and Movement Instructor, The Dalton School, The Walden School, P.S. 158

Hobbies: Organizing teams to lop invasive vines in Westchester County.

I work at MCS because…for 35 years, it has been the place where I grew up as a progressive educator. It was here that I was mentored and nurtured and I feel MCS is my second home.
Kevin Hershey's picture

Kevin Hershey

Lower School Resource Teacher
B.A. University of Portland
M. Ed. Bank Street College of Education
Kevin Hershey's picture

Kevin Hershey

Lower School Resource Teacher
B.A. University of Portland
M. Ed. Bank Street College of Education
Kevin is an early childhood educator with more than four years of experience working with children in schools and community organizations. After Kevin graduated from the University of Portland with a bachelor’s degree in Spanish in 2012, he worked as a food justice advocate at a community center in Minneapolis. There he designed and implemented a food justice curriculum for low-income teenagers and co-facilitated a culinary arts program for unemployed adults and teens. From there Kevin moved to New York City and worked at a community meditation center in Brooklyn, facilitating more than 30 arts-based anti-violence workshops in public school classrooms and community centers for students ages 7 to 21 years old. Soon after, he began his graduate studies at Bank Street College of Education, where he also worked as a math club facilitator for small groups of kindergarteners in three public schools as part of a city-wide research project. For the past two years, Kevin has taught as an associate teacher in a second-grade classroom at Ethical Culture Fieldston School.

Why I Love MCS: The way MCS reflects the diversity of New York and participates in a shared democratic life of the city. I love that from their first days here, children use the city’s parks and public transportation system.

More About Me: I often take long bike rides through Manhattan or find time to enjoy public parks and beaches. I am a dual citizen of the U.S. and Ireland and I enjoy Irish music and dance.
Cosima Higham's picture

Cosima Higham

8-9s Head Teacher
B.A. Bucknell University
M.S.Ed Bank Street College of Education
Cosima Higham's picture

Cosima Higham

8-9s Head Teacher
B.A. Bucknell University
M.S.Ed Bank Street College of Education
Hometown: Brooklyn, New York

Joined MCS in 2017

Prior Work Experience: Assistant Teacher at Brooklyn Friends School

Hobbies: Graphic design, trying new restaurants and going to the theater

I work at MCS because...I believe in providing a progressive education to all students.
Cosima Highman's picture

Cosima Highman

8-9s Head Teacher
B.A. Bucknell University
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
Lynne Iijima's picture

Lynne Iijima

Reading Specialist
B.A. Beloit College
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
Lynne Iijima's picture

Lynne Iijima

Reading Specialist
B.A. Beloit College
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
Hometown: New York, New York

Joined MCS in 1991

Prior Work Experience: Freelance Film Editor
Nicole Joseph's picture

Nicole Joseph

7-8s Co-Head Teacher
B.A. Medgar Evers College
M.S. Bank Street
Nicole Joseph's picture

Nicole Joseph

7-8s Co-Head Teacher
B.A. Medgar Evers College
M.S. Bank Street
Hometown: Brooklyn, New York

Joined MCS in 2012
Lo Kartzman's picture

Lo Kartzman

Upper School Resource Teacher
B.A. University of the Pacific
M.S. Bank Street
Lo Kartzman's picture

Lo Kartzman

Upper School Resource Teacher
B.A. University of the Pacific
M.S. Bank Street
Hometown: Guam and Fresno, California

Joined MCS in 2016

Prior Work Experience: Head Green Arts Teacher at PS 20 Clinton Hill; Freelance Educator at The Whitney

Hobbies: Travel, hiking, art, live music

I work at MCS because...of the collaborative and supportive environment for both educators and students.
Sarah Leibowits's picture

Sarah Leibowits

4-5s Head Teacher
B.A. Denison University
M.Ed. Bank Street
Sarah Leibowits's picture

Sarah Leibowits

4-5s Head Teacher
B.A. Denison University
M.Ed. Bank Street
Hometown: New York, New York

Joined MCS in 1991

Hobbies: Singing and watching Broadway musicals.

I work at MCS because…it is a community in which all children’s diverse voices can be heard, valued and respected.
Jermaine Lloyd's picture

Jermaine Lloyd

9-10s Science Teacher
Lower School Sports Teacher
A.A.S. Borough of Manhattan Community College
B.S.Ed. City University of New York
Jermaine Lloyd's picture

Jermaine Lloyd

9-10s Science Teacher
Lower School Sports Teacher
A.A.S. Borough of Manhattan Community College
B.S.Ed. City University of New York
Hometown: Bronx, New York

Joined MCS in 2002

Prior Work Experience: Founder/Director - Back 2 Basics Academy; Head Teacher 4-5s - Mott Haven Early Childhood Center; Founder/Director - Y.E.S. 2 LIfe; Mail Clerk/Marine Claims Assistance - Frenkel & Co., Inc

Hobbies: Sports, books, cars, poetry and films

I work at MCS because...the school believes in the development of the whole child and our responsibility to raise the bar as an institution.
Nehemiah Luckett's picture

Nehemiah Luckett

Piano Accompanist
B.A. Sarah Lawrence College
Tiffani Lynch's picture

Tiffani Lynch

6th Grade Head Teacher
B.A. University of Arizona
M.Spec.Ed. Arizona State University
Tiffani Lynch's picture

Tiffani Lynch

6th Grade Head Teacher
B.A. University of Arizona
M.Spec.Ed. Arizona State University
Tiffani is an elementary and middle school educator with several years of experience in public and independent schools in Arizona and New York City. She holds a bachelor’s degree in political science and Spanish from the University of Arizona and a master’s degree in special education and elementary education from Arizona State University. Most recently, Tiffani was a learning specialist at Riverdale Country School, where she also was a co-advisor for the middle school dance team. Prior to Riverdale she was a special education teacher at Coyote Ridge Elementary School in Glendale, Arizona.

Why I Love MCS: The kids. They are the most empathetic, thoughtful, and enthusiastic students I’ve ever taught. I also love the sense of community (and the food!).

More About Me: In my free time I like to dance, hike, rock climb, camp and eat ice cream.
Reese Mason's picture

Reese Mason

6-7s Head Teacher
B.A. University of California
J.D. New York University School of Law
M.S.Ed. (c) Bank Street
Reese Mason's picture

Reese Mason

6-7s Head Teacher
B.A. University of California
J.D. New York University School of Law
M.S.Ed. (c) Bank Street
Hometown: Temple City, California

Joined MCS in 2014

Prior Work Experience: Stay-at-Home Dad; Managing Director, Credit Suisse; Associate, Cadwalader

Hobbies: Playing guitar, bicycling, tree-house building and whatever my son Mason is into.

I work at MCS because…teaching here is my dream job.
Janice Movson's picture

Janice Movson

Art Teacher
B.F.A. University of Whitwatersrand
M.F.A. School of Visual Arts
Janice Movson's picture

Janice Movson

Art Teacher
B.F.A. University of Whitwatersrand
M.F.A. School of Visual Arts
Hometown: Durban, South Africa

Joined MCS in 1991

Prior Work Experience: International Baccalaureate Art Teacher, United Nations International School

Hobbies: Working as an artist—my primary studio practice of late is ceramic sculpture.
Dawn Newman's picture

Dawn Newman

Lower School Resource Teacher
B.F.A. Emerson College
M.S.Ed. Sarah Lawrence College
Dawn Newman's picture

Dawn Newman

Lower School Resource Teacher
B.F.A. Emerson College
M.S.Ed. Sarah Lawrence College
Hometown: New York, NY

Joined MCS in 2012

Prior Work Experience: Professional Equity Actor, New York City Children's Theater; Tutor, Little Orchestra Society; Sesame Street Live!

Hobbies: Travel, singing, dancing, acting, yoga, pilates, cooking, gardening and learning something new

I work at MCS because...MCS is who I am. As an alumna, Manhattan Country School is part of my everyday life, engrained in the roots of my being. All of my interactions and relationships have been deeply molded and inspired by the experiences and lessons learned in my elementary years at MCS.
Christine Olszewski's picture

Christine Olszewski

Lower School Assistant Teacher
B.A. Boston College
M.Ed. Bank Street College of Education
Christine Olszewski's picture

Christine Olszewski

Lower School Assistant Teacher
B.A. Boston College
M.Ed. Bank Street College of Education
Hometown: Deer Park, New York

Joined MCS in 2016
Ava Parnes's picture

Ava Parnes

Upper School Math Teacher
B.A. Yale University
M.E. Lesley University
Ava Parnes's picture

Ava Parnes

Upper School Math Teacher
B.A. Yale University
M.E. Lesley University
Ava is a middle school educator with more 10 years of classroom experience. She has a bachelor’s degree in linguistics from Yale University and a master’s degree in middle school mathematics and science from Lesley University. Ava completed her formal teacher training at Shady Hill School in Cambridge, Massachusetts. In addition, she has worked as a science apprentice at Watertown Middle School in Watertown, Massachusetts and has spent 12 years working at Camp Killooleet, a progressive summer camp in Hancock, Vermont run by Pete Seeger’s family. Ava has spent the last five years working at Rodeph Sholom School as a middle school math and science teacher.

Why I Love MCS: The welcoming community that works to give each member a voice. I am excited to learn so much from each of these voices!

More About Me: Over the summer, I work at an overnight camp teaching canoeing, garden, and music. I learned to play guitar because I think music is a powerful tool for creating community, and I like to lead songs that everyone can sing together.
Leo Reynoso's picture

Leo Reynoso

Shop Teacher
B.F.A. School of Visual Arts
Leo Reynoso's picture

Leo Reynoso

Shop Teacher
B.F.A. School of Visual Arts
Hometown: Santiago, Dominican Republic

Joined MCS in 1987

Prior Work Experience: Artist

Hobbies: Tennis

I work at MCS because…of its tradition of social justice and progressive education.
Lesly Rodriguez's picture

Lesly Rodriguez

5-6s Assistant Teacher
A.A.S. Borough of Manhattan Community College
B.A. (c) Brooklyn College
Daniel Rubins's picture

Daniel Rubins

5th Grade Head Teacher
BA in English from Yale University
MA in Elementary Inclusive Education from Teachers College, Columbia University
MA in Shakespeare Studies from King's College London
Daniel Rubins's picture

Daniel Rubins

5th Grade Head Teacher
BA in English from Yale University
MA in Elementary Inclusive Education from Teachers College, Columbia University
MA in Shakespeare Studies from King's College London
Dan has worked in a number of educational settings and roles in New York City, New Haven, and London. Outside of teaching, Dan can often be found composing music, reviewing theatre productions, singing in choirs, and watching tennis. Read Dan’s Letters to 5th Grade Families from the MCS Farm.
Anna Sobel's picture

Anna Sobel

5-6s Head Teacher
B.A. Wesleyan University
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
Anna Sobel's picture

Anna Sobel

5-6s Head Teacher
B.A. Wesleyan University
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
Hometown: Dobbs Ferry, New York

Joined MCS in 2007

Prior Work Experience: Head Teacher, three-year-old class, Marin Country Schools; Head Teacher, 5-6s, Manhattan Country School; Teacher, Ready Set Go! Program for three- and four-year-olds; Transition Assistant, Manhattan Country School

Hobbies: Cooking, playing with my wonderful daughter Emma, dancing, knitting, being outside and soaking up the warmth of friends and family.

I work at MCS because…I am consistently inspired by the colleagues, students and families around me.
Lee Solomon's picture

Lee Solomon

Physical Education Teacher
B.A. City College of New York
Lee Solomon's picture

Lee Solomon

Physical Education Teacher
B.A. City College of New York
Hometown: Bronx, New York

Joined MCS in 1987

Prior Work Experience: Teacher, Boys & Girls Harbor

Hobbies: Watching movies.

I work at MCS because...of the diversity of its educational system.
Donavon Soumas's picture

Donavon Soumas

Choral Director
B.M. Centenary College of Louisiana
Laura Swindler's picture

Laura Swindler

6-7s Head Teacher
B.A. Evergreen State College
M.A. Bank Street
Laura Swindler's picture

Laura Swindler

6-7s Head Teacher
B.A. Evergreen State College
M.A. Bank Street
Hometown: Anchorage, Alaska and Seattle, Washington

Joined MCS in 2000

Prior Work Experience: Head Start Teacher; Montessori Toddler Teacher 

Hobbies: Traveling, dancing, being with friends and playing the ukulele.

I work at MCS because…it allows me to be the teacher I want to be.
MariaTere Tapias-Avery's picture

MariaTere Tapias-Avery

Lower School Spanish Teacher
B.A. Wesleyan University
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
MariaTere Tapias-Avery's picture

MariaTere Tapias-Avery

Lower School Spanish Teacher
B.A. Wesleyan University
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
Hometown: Brooklyn, New York

Joined MCS in 2003

Prior Work Experience: Spanish Teacher, Cypress Hills Community School, P.S. 89

Hobbies: I am a textile artist. In my grandmother’s creative tradition, I re-purpose materials in my sewing, knitting, crocheting, felting and patchwork quilts.

I work at MCS because…I want to continue the work that Gus and Marty Trowbridge began with a dream.
Julianna Trementozzi's picture

Julianna Trementozzi

9-10s Head Teacher
B.A. Smith College
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
Julianna Trementozzi's picture

Julianna Trementozzi

9-10s Head Teacher
B.A. Smith College
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
Hometown: Norwich, Vermont

Joined MCS in 2003

Prior Work Experience: Bank Street Intern, City and Country School; Match Advocate and Development Associate, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Massachusetts Bay

I work at MCS because…of the community created by our commitment to sliding-scale tuition, social justice and progressive education.
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Ian Weill

Lower School Science Teacher
B.A. Boston College
Ian Weill's picture

Ian Weill

Lower School Science Teacher
B.A. Boston College
Hometown: Woodbridge, Connecticut

Joined MCS in 2014

Prior Work Experience: Garden Educator, Campos Community Garden; Conversational English Teacher, Greenway China; Paraprofessional, Cambridgeport

Hobbies: Photography, piano, drums, gardening, skateboarding and basketball
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Paul Williams

Technology Instructor
IT & Educational Technology Manager
B.A. Albion College
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
Paul Williams's picture

Paul Williams

Technology Instructor
IT & Educational Technology Manager
B.A. Albion College
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
Hometown: Albion, Michigan

Joined MCS in 2010

Prior Work Experience: Head Teacher, The Browning School; Head Teacher, Washington Episcopal School, Washington, DC; Director of Technology, Alexandria Country Day School, Alexandria, Virginia; Technology Coordinator, Sandy Spring Friends School

Hobbies: Farming at Mobius Fields in Westchester, New York and massage therapy as a New York State Licensed Massage Therapist

I work at MCS because…of its long history of political and environmental activism. MCS encourages and empowers students at every developmental stage to make the world a better place for all.
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Nassim Zerriffi

Seventh & Eighth Grade History Teacher
Activism Coordinator
B.A./B.F.A. The New School
M.A. Teacher's College, Columbia University
Nassim Zerriffi's picture

Nassim Zerriffi

Seventh & Eighth Grade History Teacher
Activism Coordinator
B.A./B.F.A. The New School
M.A. Teacher's College, Columbia University
Hometown: Mississauga, Canada

Joined MCS in 2013

Prior Work Experience: Assistant Director, Global Kids

Hobbies: Guitar, percussion and learning languages

I work at MCS because… I am able to teach honestly with a team of colleagues all dedicated to social justice. We can address the students as individuals while recognizing all the communities we belong to, the political realities we face as communities and our power to create change.
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Qing Zhuang

Lower School Resource Teacher
B.F.A. Maryland Institute College of Art
M.A.T. School of Visual Arts
Qing Zhuang's picture

Qing Zhuang

Lower School Resource Teacher
B.F.A. Maryland Institute College of Art
M.A.T. School of Visual Arts
Hometown: Brooklyn, New York

Joined MCS in 2017

Prior Work Experience: Lead Art Teacher, Global Community Charter School; Art Specialist, University Settlement; Art Teacher, LaGuardia Liberty Partnership Program

Hobbies: Collecting folk crafts and picture books, experimenting with new art techniques to share with students, dreaming of new ideas for future children's books, running in Central Park.

I work at MCS because...it fights for its ideals and challenges me to be a stronger, bolder individual. Its unique ties to the natural world and social issues move me. It inspires and excites me as an educator.

MCS Farm

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Garth Battista

Farmwork Teacher
Maintenance Supervisor
B.A. Wesleyan University
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Cathy Cammer

Farmwork Teacher
A.A. SUNY Morrisville
B.A. Albany State University
Cathy Cammer's picture

Cathy Cammer

Farmwork Teacher
A.A. SUNY Morrisville
B.A. Albany State University
Hometown: Roxbury, New York

Joined MCS in 1994

Prior Work Experience: Rural Carrier Associate, U.S. Postal Service; Plumber's Assistant, Kurt Flach's Plumbing and Heating; Greenskeeper, Shephard Hills Golf Course

Hobbies: Reading, hiking, photography, beekeeping and skiing

I work at MCS because...it has a farm where children have the opportunity to grow their own food, explore the natural world around them and where children's work helps the farm run on a daily basis.
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Ed Fersch

Farm Consultant
Garden Supervisor
B.A. Hartwick College
Ed Fersch's picture

Ed Fersch

Farm Consultant
Garden Supervisor
B.A. Hartwick College
Hometown: Rutherford, New Jersey

Joined MCS in 1982

Prior Work Experience: Volunteer Park Ranger, National Park Service; Outdoor Educator, Nature's Classroom; Dairy Farm Worker; Greenhouse Worker, Stamford Greenhouses
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Gabrielle Harp

Farm Cooking Teacher
B.A. in Early Childhood Education from SUNY Potstdam
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Gabrielle Harp

Farm Cooking Teacher
B.A. in Early Childhood Education from SUNY Potstdam
Gabrielle's favorite thing about MCS is the endless animals she gets to snuggle with at the farm and the continued support from her co-workers. Everyone is always ready to jump in and help! During her free time, Gabrielle enjoys hiking, camping, knitting and spending her time helping out on her and her mom's hobby farm.
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Leila Jacobson

2019 Farm Intern
BA in Environmental Studies at Earlham College
Leila Jacobson's picture

Leila Jacobson

2019 Farm Intern
BA in Environmental Studies at Earlham College
Leila is a native New Yorker and recently received her BA in Environmental Studies at Earlham College. During her time at college, she discovered her love of the outdoors. She went on to lead several backpacking trips where she taught participants how to engage safely and respectfully in nature. Additionally, she is an avid birder and can't wait to hear the bird songs in spring at the farm. Leila loves working with children of all ages and has 8 years of experience as a camp counselor at the Studio School.
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Donna McDaniel

Textiles Teacher
A.A.S. State University of New York at Morrisville
Donna McDaniel's picture

Donna McDaniel

Textiles Teacher
A.A.S. State University of New York at Morrisville
Hometown: Walton, New York

Joined MCS in 1988

Prior Work Experience: Restaurant Manager

Hobbies: Knitting, rug hooking, reading, ping pong, walking with friends and learning new things

I work at MCS because...MCS provides a warm, nurturing environment. I have grown while working at MCS and value its mission.

 
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John McDaniel

Farm Director
Nature Teacher
John McDaniel's picture

John McDaniel

Farm Director
Nature Teacher
Hometown: New Windsor, New York

Joined MCS in 1989

Prior Work Experience: First Delaware Land Development 

Hobbies: Skiing, travel, reading, gardening, hiking and photography.

I work at MCS because…it allows me to help children make lifelong connections to nature, their food and each other in an authentic, farm-based setting.
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Annie Pevear

Nature Teacher
B.A. Wheaton College
Annie Pevear's picture

Annie Pevear

Nature Teacher
B.A. Wheaton College
Hometown: Winthrop, Massachusetts

Joined MCS in 2015

Prior Work Experience: Practice Coordinator, Tufts Medical Center; Program Director, Altogether Outdoors

Hobbies: Running, hiking, film, reading and dancing

I work at MCS because...I want to help foster a place where students are able to explore their curiosities and realize their capabilities as global citizens, both as individuals and as a part of a community. The students have the opportunity to live and work together on the farm, learning both their role in the environment as well as in a close community with each other. They are able to blend their farm experience with their urban education, draw connections and engage in wider conversations.
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Mary Ann Todd

Farm Morning Cook
The Culinary Institute of America
Mary Ann Todd's picture

Mary Ann Todd

Farm Morning Cook
The Culinary Institute of America
Mary Ann Todd is what we call “a natural” in the cooking world. 25 years ago, Mary started her first business. With the love of cooking and no formal training, Mary’s sandwich shoppe treated happy customers for over 6 years. Shortly after, she ventured into another restaurant for 5 years.

However, this wasn’t enough for Mary. She wanted to learn more and fine-tune her self-taught skills. She became a student at the prestigious C.I.A. in Hyde Park, NY. After graduating, Mary put all of her efforts into the catering side of the business. And today Mary continues to amaze us with her fabulous cooking and her wonderful staff.
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Stacey Walker

Administrative Assistant
B.S. Concordia College

Administration, Finance & Human Resources

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Stephanie Bloom

School Nurse
B.S. Boston College
M.S.N. University of Pennsylvania
ACNP-BC Board Certified Nurse Practitioner
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Stephanie Bloom

School Nurse
B.S. Boston College
M.S.N. University of Pennsylvania
ACNP-BC Board Certified Nurse Practitioner
Stephanie has nursing degrees from Boston College and the University of Pennsylvania. She has been a nurse for more than 20 years and a nurse practitioner since 2005. For much of her nursing career, she has focused on intensive care and neurology. Most recently she worked as a school nurse at Trinity School, where she fell in love with school nursing.

Why I Love MCS: The warm sense of community.

More About Me: I have a 7 year old daughter named Zoe, a cat named Patty Patty Cake and a dog named Booda. We are local Upper West Siders and can be found every Sunday morning on a Unicorn scooter at the Columbus Avenue green market.
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Barbara Calamari

Business Assistant
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Nancy Diekmann

Director of Finance
B.A. Clark University
Nancy Diekmann's picture

Nancy Diekmann

Director of Finance
B.A. Clark University
Hometown: Cranford and Fanwood, New Jersey

Joined MCS in 2008

Prior Work Experience: Theatre Communications; Managing Director, New York Theatre Workshop; Director, Jonathan Larson Performing Arts Foundation

Hobbies: Cooking, travel, writing and walking my dog.

I work at MCS because…the progressive educational philosophy and mission rooted in diversity, sustainability and the social values of the 1960s are very much in line with my background and beliefs.
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Anne Elliott

Afterschool Assistant
B.S. Miami University
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Maiya Jackson

Upper School Director
B.A. Brown University
M.S. Teacher's College, Columbia University
Maiya Jackson's picture

Maiya Jackson

Upper School Director
B.A. Brown University
M.S. Teacher's College, Columbia University
Hometown, Portland, Oregon

Joined MCS in 2005

Prior Work Experience: Co-Director, Breakthrough Long Island; High School English Teacher, Friends Academy

I work at MCS because...it is an amazing gift to work in a school that shares my values and embraces social justice and progressive education. I am inspired by MCS students and teachers every day.
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Ruben Ortiz

Finance and Human Resources Associate
A.A.S. Borough of Manhattan Community College
Ruben Ortiz's picture

Ruben Ortiz

Finance and Human Resources Associate
A.A.S. Borough of Manhattan Community College
Hometown: Brooklyn, New York

Joined MCS in 2015

Prior Work Experience: Business Affairs Officer, Dance Theatre of Harlem, Inc.

Hobbies: Fishing, watching movies, team sports and working on cars.

I work at MCS because…of its rich history and belief in educational diversity and progressive learning.
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Ellen Porter

Executive Assistant
B.A. Hunter College
J.D. New York Law School
Ellen Porter's picture

Ellen Porter

Executive Assistant
B.A. Hunter College
J.D. New York Law School
Hometown: Queens, New York

Joined MCS in 2011

Prior Work Experience: Curator/Producer, Fez under Time Café

Hobbies: Reading, cooking and watching movies.
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Cynthia Rogers

Director of High School Placement
B.S. Central Connecticut State University
M.Ed. Bank Street
Cynthia Rogers's picture

Cynthia Rogers

Director of High School Placement
B.S. Central Connecticut State University
M.Ed. Bank Street
Hometown: New York, New York

Joined MCS in 1974

Prior Work Experience: First Grade Head Teacher, New Lincoln School

Hobbies: Travel, square dancing and gardening.

I work at MCS because…it is a place that has allowed me to explore many facets of who I am as an educator.
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Michele Sola

Director
B.A. Cornell University
M.A.T. Indiana University
Ed.D. Boston University
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Mary Trowbridge

Lower School Director
B.A. University of Colorado
M.Ed. Bank Street
Mary Trowbridge's picture

Mary Trowbridge

Lower School Director
B.A. University of Colorado
M.Ed. Bank Street
Hometown: New York, New York

Joined MCS in 1985

Prior Work Experience: Head Teacher, Ethical Culture School
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Tiffany Tsung

Assistant to The Lower School Director
B.A. New York University
M.A. (c) Teachers College, Columbia University
Tiffany Tsung's picture

Tiffany Tsung

Assistant to The Lower School Director
B.A. New York University
M.A. (c) Teachers College, Columbia University
Why I Love MCS: I love the community and how much everyone here cares about the students and the school as a place for learning and exploring. The mission at MCS is not just a tagline but a real commitment to produce better citizens of society.

More About Me: Volleyball is my favorite pastime! I play on two league teams throughout the week and tournaments on the weekends.
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Lorraine Walton

Administrative Assistant
A.A.S. State University of New York
Certified in Child Abuse and Child Care for New Professionals
Licensed Notary Public
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Chawon Williams

Afterschool Director
Program Associate
B.A. College of New Rochelle
M.S. Mercy College
Certificate in School Counseling
Chawon Williams's picture

Chawon Williams

Afterschool Director
Program Associate
B.A. College of New Rochelle
M.S. Mercy College
Certificate in School Counseling
Hometown: Bronx, New York

Joined MCS in 2008

Hobbies: Spending time with my family, reading and gardening.

I work at MCS because…of the strong sense of community and the beauty of its diversity.

Admissions

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Mónica Amaro

Director of Admissions
B.A. University of Texas
M.A. Arizona State University
M.Ed. Teachers College, Columbia University
Mónica Amaro's picture

Mónica Amaro

Director of Admissions
B.A. University of Texas
M.A. Arizona State University
M.Ed. Teachers College, Columbia University
Hometown: El Paso, Texas

Joined MCS in 2013

Prior Work Experience: Teacher, The School at Columbia University; Curriculum Developer, Tucson Unified School District; Teacher, Phoenix Elementary school District; Youth Organizer, Austin City; Substitute Teacher, Austin Independent School District
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Caroline Biggers

Admissions Associate
BA from New York University
MS in General and Special Early Childhood Education from Teachers College, Columbia University.
Caroline Biggers's picture

Caroline Biggers

Admissions Associate
BA from New York University
MS in General and Special Early Childhood Education from Teachers College, Columbia University.
Caroline is an educator with over a decade of experience working with children, both in and out of the classroom. She previously taught at Williamsburg Northside Schools and Mary McDowell Friends School, and helps to run a sleep-away summer camp in western Massachusetts.
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Nadra Holmes

Admissions Associate
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Vicki Kolomensky

Admissions Associate
B.A. Rutgers University
M.A. Syracuse University
Vicki Kolomensky's picture

Vicki Kolomensky

Admissions Associate
B.A. Rutgers University
M.A. Syracuse University
Hometown: New York, New York

Joined MCS in 2016

Prior Work Experience: Teacher, JCC Manhattan and Buckley School; Adjunct Professor, William Paterson University; Tutor

Hobbies: Biking, bird watching, street photography, architecture and exploring the new music scene

I work at MCS because...this community is where the great social change of the future will be nurtured.

Advancement

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Nancy Hsu

Parent Fundraising and Special Events Manager
B.A. Barnard College
Nancy Hsu's picture

Nancy Hsu

Parent Fundraising and Special Events Manager
B.A. Barnard College
Hometown: Queens, New York

Joined MCS in 2011

Prior Work Experience: Membership and Program Affairs Director, Network 20/20

Hobbies: Event planning, traveling, exploring the great outdoors, board games and eating

I work at MCS because...its values and very existence are vital to the thriving of New York City and our nation as a whole.
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Adam Isler

Advancement & Alumni Relations Associate
B.S. State University of New York, Buffalo
Adam Isler's picture

Adam Isler

Advancement & Alumni Relations Associate
B.S. State University of New York, Buffalo
Hometown: Westchester, New York

Joined MCS in 2012

Prior Work Experience: Marketing & Sales Intern, Solve Media; Marketing and Communications, Manhattan Edit Workshop, The Padcaster

Hobbies: Biking, rock climbing, basketball, attending live music shows, traveling and exploring restaurants.

I work at MCS because…I want to support the community in a positive and meaningful way.
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Akemi Kochiyama

Director of Advancement
B.A. Spelman College
Ph.D. (c) City University of New York Graduate School
Akemi Kochiyama's picture

Akemi Kochiyama

Director of Advancement
B.A. Spelman College
Ph.D. (c) City University of New York Graduate School
Hometown: New York, New York

Joined MCS in 2008

Prior Work Experience: Grant Writer, Japan Society; Researcher, Center for the Study of Philanthropy and Civil Society; Paperback Marketing Coordinator, Scholastic Inc.

Hobbies: Bike riding

I work at MCS because...the program, community and educators here inspire me.
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Stephanie Pilla

Advancement Associate
B.A. Wesleyan University

Facilities & Kitchen

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Gregory Bednarsh

Kitchen Assistant
B.F.A. University of North Carolina
Gregory Bednarsh's picture

Gregory Bednarsh

Kitchen Assistant
B.F.A. University of North Carolina
Hometown: New York, New York

Joined MCS in 2014

Prior Work Experience: Summer Editing Teacher, University of North Carolina School of the Arts

Hobbies: Filmmaking, board games, technology, photography and videography

I work at MCS because...I want to make a change, a difference in the lives of people. I want students to have an education where they feel like their future is not distant, but in reach. It is our privilege and responsibility to provide the keys, serve as the catalysts and tend the talents of those who hold the promise of tomorrow.
 
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Romina Dedvukaj

Assistant Cook
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Celia Dominguez

Assistant Cook
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Emilie Esders

Head Chef
B.A. Lewis and Clark College
Natural Gourmet Institute, Chef's Training Certificate
Emilie Esders's picture

Emilie Esders

Head Chef
B.A. Lewis and Clark College
Natural Gourmet Institute, Chef's Training Certificate
Hometown: Lake Tahoe, Nevada

Joined MCS in 2016

Prior Work Experience: Lead Line Cook, Prune Restaurant; Preschool Teacher, Roots and Wings Preschool; Children’s Ski Instructor, Heavenly Valley Resort; Afterschool and Summer Camp Counselor, Douglas County Parks and Recreation; Assistant in Summer Program, Portland French School

Hobbies: Running, cycling, making art and traveling.

I work at MCS because…it’s exciting to feed and nourish a vibrant community with fresh and local food.
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Jamie Evans

Facilities Manager
B.A. San Jose State University
Jamie Evans's picture

Jamie Evans

Facilities Manager
B.A. San Jose State University
Hometown: San Jose, California

Joined MCS in 2017

Prior Work Experience: Job Site Super, Big Tree Woodworking

Hobbies: Cooking, reading and projects of any kind.

I work at MCS because...what we all do here can make a difference in the world. And it's fun.

 
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Amanda Hallowell

Food Program Coordinator
B.A. Colby College
Amanda Hallowell's picture

Amanda Hallowell

Food Program Coordinator
B.A. Colby College
Hometown: North Haven, Maine

Joined MCS in 2015

Prior Work Experience: Chef and Manager, Nebo Lodge

Hobbies: Cooking, parenting, reading and food.

I work at MCS because…I believe in the mission of the school.
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Leonard Luca

Afternoon Maintenance
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George Popovic

Morning & Afternoon Maintenance
New York State Licensed Building Superintendent

Technology

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David Medina

IT System & Network Manager
MCSA, MCP
Security+ Certified, Network+ Certified
A+ Certified
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Paul Williams

Technology Instructor
IT & Educational Technology Manager
B.A. Albion College
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
Paul Williams's picture

Paul Williams

Technology Instructor
IT & Educational Technology Manager
B.A. Albion College
M.S.Ed. Bank Street
Hometown: Albion, Michigan

Joined MCS in 2010

Prior Work Experience: Head Teacher, The Browning School; Head Teacher, Washington Episcopal School, Washington, DC; Director of Technology, Alexandria Country Day School, Alexandria, Virginia; Technology Coordinator, Sandy Spring Friends School

Hobbies: Farming at Mobius Fields in Westchester, New York and massage therapy as a New York State Licensed Massage Therapist

I work at MCS because…of its long history of political and environmental activism. MCS encourages and empowers students at every developmental stage to make the world a better place for all.