BFS
Our Strategic Vision
 

Colleague Directory

The School's phone number is 718-852-1029. Find any colleague in alphabetical order by last name, or use our Search function.

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Name

Title

Email

Extension

Razi Abdur-Rahman

Lower School Head Teacher, 4A

rarahman@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Razi Abdur-Rahman

Lower School Head Teacher, 4A

He/Him/His Razi has taught at BFS for over a decade. Before arriving on Pearl Street, following earlier careers as an art handler, photographer, print shop manager, chef, and cooking instructor, Razi taught at a variety of public and private schools. Razi enjoys that every year he works with a new group of students and gets to discover and work with their individual learning styles. When he’s not in the classroom, Razi loves to play basketball, ride his bicycle through the crowded NYC streets, practice Mixed Martial Arts, and cook food for his family and friends. Razi holds a BA from Bard College and a M.Ed from Bank Street.

rarahman@brooklynfriends.org

Brittany Adkins-Williams

Assistant Director of Educational Technology

badkins-williams@brooklynfriends.org

Technology
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Brittany Adkins-Williams

Assistant Director of Educational Technology

she/her/hers Before coming to BFS, Brittany was an Educational Technology Specialist at Christian Brothers High School in Sacramento, Calif., and a math and computer science teacher at St. Vincent High School in Vallejo, Calif. She enjoys researching emerging technology and educational technology trends. In addition, Brittany is a huge basketball fan and has a Shih Tzu named Kobe, in tribute to Kobe Bryant, who was her favorite player. She has a Masters of Education in Curriculum & Instruction and a Bachelor's of Science in Computer Science.

badkins-williams@brooklynfriends.org

Chris Aiken

Safety & Security Officer

caiken@brooklynfriends.org

Security
×

Chris Aiken

Safety & Security Officer

caiken@brooklynfriends.org

Felix Alberto

Middle School Spanish Teacher

falberto@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School
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Felix Alberto

Middle School Spanish Teacher

he/him/his Felix moved to the United States with his family from the Dominican Republic in the early 1980s. Before arriving at BFS in 1997, Felix worked as a collegiate and club volleyball coach. He also enjoys cooking, especially discovering how to create his own recipes based on ingredients and seasonings he thinks might work well together.

falberto@brooklynfriends.org

Tasfia Ali

Lower School Head Teacher, 4C

tali@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
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Tasfia Ali

Lower School Head Teacher, 4C

she/her/hers Tasfia has always loved working with young people because they bring so much joy to the spaces they're in, and she is thrilled that she is able to be a role model for them. Tasfia puts her heart in everything that she does and takes great pride in that quality. She has a BS from City College and an MSEd from Hunter College.

tali@brooklynfriends.org

Kim Allen

Middle School Spanish Teacher

kallen@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School
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Kim Allen

Middle School Spanish Teacher

she/her/hers ‘Señora Kim' is the daughter and granddaughter of teachers, and has taught history and Spanish for more than 30 years in New York City. She has worked actively in the field of human rights education with organizations such as Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights and Amnesty International. She believes in the sanctity of each child who she teaches, and recognizes the Light within all people. Kim has a BA from Wichita State and an MA from University of Kansas.

kallen@brooklynfriends.org

Andrew Andrade

Lower School Associate Teacher, KB

aandrade@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
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Andrew Andrade

Lower School Associate Teacher, KB

he/him/his Before arriving at BFS, Andrew was a substitute teacher in middle school at Poly Prep. His favorite part about teaching is watching the students grow both socially and academically. He is a very active person outside of work, and enjoys playing sports, working out, and being outside! He received a degree from Gettysburg College.

aandrade@brooklynfriends.org

Sobeira Andrade

Custodian

sandrade@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

Sobeira Andrade

Custodian

sandrade@brooklynfriends.org

Magna Antoine

Lower School Collaborating Teacher (4th Grade)

mantoine@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
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Magna Antoine

Lower School Collaborating Teacher (4th Grade)

she/her/hers Magna has been a preschool educator in the past and thrives on being present with the children—learning with and from them. When she is not teaching at BFS, she is probably watching an old western movie! Magna has a BA and an MS.

mantoine@brooklynfriends.org

Charitin Arce

Custodian

carce@brooklynfriends.org

×

Charitin Arce

Custodian

carce@brooklynfriends.org

Jose Arcila

Assistant Director of Facilities & Operations Manager

jarcila@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
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Jose Arcila

Assistant Director of Facilities & Operations Manager

jarcila@brooklynfriends.org

Adam Atherton

All-School Systems Manager and Scheduler

aatherton@brooklynfriends.org

Technology
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Adam Atherton

All-School Systems Manager and Scheduler

he/him/his Before arriving at BFS, Adam was the Registrar and Assistant Head of Upper School at Hawaii Preparatory Academy on the Big Island of Hawaii. He greatly enjoys being able to work with the entire school community in the charge of creating the best student experience possible. He loves to ride bikes and has a beautiful five year old boy named Aengus. He has a M.Ed from Trinity College in Dublin.

aatherton@brooklynfriends.org

Sam Avis

Lower School Associate Teacher, 3C

savis@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
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Sam Avis

Lower School Associate Teacher, 3C

she/her/hers Before joining the Brooklyn Friends School community, Sam worked as a second grade associate teacher at Berkeley Carroll in Park Slope for three years. Sam’s favorite part of being a teacher is the moment when everyone in the room breaks out into laughter. Her simple pleasures are being outside, long walks with her dog, watching basketball, the smell of grass, and being around people that she loves! Sam attended the University of Colorado, Boulder where she received a BA in Art Practices with a Minor in Art History.

savis@brooklynfriends.org

Amadou Ba

Kindergarten – 2nd Grade Lunch Helper

aba@brooklynfriends.org

Dining Services
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Amadou Ba

Kindergarten – 2nd Grade Lunch Helper

aba@brooklynfriends.org

Alex Balbin

Safety & Security Officer

abalbin@brooklynfriends.org

Security
×

Alex Balbin

Safety & Security Officer

abalbin@brooklynfriends.org

Katie Banks

Assistant Head of Lower School for Academics

kbanks@brooklynfriends.org

245

Lower School
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Katie Banks

Assistant Head of Lower School for Academics

she/her/hers Before arriving at BFS, Katie was a classroom teacher for 12 years, teaching English on a Fulbright Fellowship to Taiwan to 1st–6th graders. Following that, Katie taught 4th grade, 3rd grade, and 1st grade in independent schools in New York. When she is not at BFS, Katie enjoys baking and reading all sorts of books. She received her B.A. from Vassar College, her MSed from Bank Street College, and her M.A. from Teachers College.

kbanks@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #245

Caroline Bannan

Lower School Head Teacher, 3C

cbannan@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
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Caroline Bannan

Lower School Head Teacher, 3C

she/her/hers Before arriving at Brooklyn Friends, Caroline taught English at elementary schools in Marseille. Her favorite part of teaching is getting to know the children and their families and watching students learn and grow. She loves collaborating with her colleagues and outside of school loves camping, hiking, and cooking. Caroline has a BA from Oberlin College and an MSEd from Bank Street College.

cbannan@brooklynfriends.org

Loreto Barranco

Lower School Spanish Teacher

lbarranco@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
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Loreto Barranco

Lower School Spanish Teacher

she/her Prior to arriving at BFS, Loreto taught English for more than 10 years in an independent school in Spain, as well as English for Business for different multinationals. Right before joining BFS, she worked as a Spanish instructor at Stony Brook University. In 2021, Loreto became the mother to a wonderful child named Justice. She says that the name is a reflection of all she lives and works for. She received degrees from Universidad de Almería and Stony Brook University.

lbarranco@brooklynfriends.org

Caitlin Barry

Upper School English Teacher

cbarry@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
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Caitlin Barry

Upper School English Teacher

she/her/hers Caitlin enjoys discussing texts and ideas with students, and genuinely loves when students notice something she hasn't or have a new interpretation. When she is not in the classroom, she loves roller disco on Friday nights in Prospect Park, and spends much of her time upstate exploring, hiking, and swimming in creeks. Caitlin has a BA from Brown and an MA from Columbia.

cbarry@brooklynfriends.org

Matt Batastini

General Counsel and Director of Human Resources

MBatastini@brooklynfriends.org

Human Resources
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Matt Batastini

General Counsel and Director of Human Resources

He/him/his Before arriving at BFS, Matt was a practicing employment and education attorney working at three different law firms. Matt enjoys that his work is never dull or repetitive, and on his best days, he gets to solve problems for colleagues and make their lives easier. Matt is the father of three young children, and together they enjoy the many outdoor activities where they live - beaches, hiking, skiing, golf. Matt received his JD from Seton Hall School of Law and BA from Middlebury College.

MBatastini@brooklynfriends.org

Maria Batista

Facilities Coordinator

mbatista@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

Maria Batista

Facilities Coordinator

mbatista@brooklynfriends.org

Tyler Bauer

Music Teacher

tbauer@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School Performing Arts
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Tyler Bauer

Music Teacher

he/him/his Prior to arriving at BFS, Tyler performed and taught as a professional musician in Arizona, Indiana, and New York. In addition, he has taught instrumental and music composition lessons as well as classes on softwares such as Soundtrap and Logic Pro X. He loves engaging students and colleagues in direct and authentic ways while playing and listening to music. Tyler has degrees from Arizona State and Indiana Universities.

tbauer@brooklynfriends.org

Winston Benons

Middle & Upper School Dance Teacher

wbenons@brooklynfriends.org

Performing Arts Upper School Middle School
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Winston Benons

Middle & Upper School Dance Teacher

He/Him/His Prior to teaching at BFS, Winston worked as a corporate training project manager. He led cross-functional (domestic and international) teams to develop and deliver training of internal financial systems. This included working closely with M&A as both training specialist and change management agent. Winston also worked as the brand manager for a national hair product company. In the classroom, Winton enjoys helping students go from "I can't dance" to finding security and joy in the way they dance in space. Outside of school, Winston really enjoys culinary arts shows and creating dinner menus and signature adult beverages. Winston received his BA in Dance Performance and Pedagogy.

wbenons@brooklynfriends.org

Katie Bradley

Middle School Science Teacher

kbradley@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School Science
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Katie Bradley

Middle School Science Teacher

she/her Before arriving at BFS, Katie taught high school math and science at an independent school in NYC. Before teaching, she taught and did research about sustainable and just food systems. More specifically, she spent over a year as a traveling faculty member for a multi-country study program for college students about food systems and food justice (International Honors Program). She especially loves when she gets to witness a spark going off, a new connection being made, or a student really making their learning their own, either through new inquiry/curiosity or integrating new learning in their life/way of being. When she is not at work, Katie loves the ocean! She as a BA from the University of Pittsburgh, an MS from University of California/Davis, and a PhD from University of California/Davis.

kbradley@brooklynfriends.org

Kristin Brady

Preschool Educational Director

kbrady@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool
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Kristin Brady

Preschool Educational Director

she/her Before joining us at BFS, Kristin served as the Director of Cobble Hill Playschool, a 50+ year old progressive, parent cooperative preschool serving children ages 2-5 in Brooklyn. She was previously a classroom teacher and math specialist at the same school. Kristin has coordinated a suite of children's programs including daycare, nursery school, and school-aged after care and summer programming in Amherst, Massachusetts. She enjoys creating collaborative spaces for play and learning for children, their teachers, and their families. Kristin is passionate about partnering with families as they begin their school journeys! Kristin is a parent to two boys, aged 15 and 17, and one cat, aged 12. She is a lifelong Red Sox fan. She received her Masters Degree in Early Childhood Education from Hunter College Graduate School of Education and her Bachelors Degree from Stanford University.

kbrady@brooklynfriends.org

Christian Brown

Director of Athletic Program and Vision

crbrown@brooklynfriends.org

Athletics
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Christian Brown

Director of Athletic Program and Vision

He/His Before arriving at Brooklyn Friends, Christian was the Director of Athletics and a physical education and health teacher at Our World Neighborhood Charter Schools for 15 years. His favorite part of his profession is being in a field that he loves (athletics and sports), while building life-shaping relationships with students at the same time. Christian shares that outside of work, he finds joy from Latin dancing! Christian received his BA from St. Francis College.

crbrown@brooklynfriends.org

Tracy Bucci

Upper School World Languages Teacher

tbucci@brooklynfriends.org

402

Upper School
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Tracy Bucci

Upper School World Languages Teacher

she/ her/ hers Tracy has permanent New York State teaching certifications in English, French, Spanish, and Italian. Before coming to BFS, she taught math, reading, and swimming at Nuestros Pequeños Hermanos—an orphanage in Cuernavaca, Mexico. Her favorite pastimes include swimming in the Mediterranean with snorkel and mask and generally exploring French and Italian life. Tracy has a BA from Notre Dame, an MA from NYU and another from Middlebury College.

tbucci@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #402

Stephen Buck

All-School Performing Arts Department Chair, Middle and Upper School Choral Teacher

sbuck@brooklynfriends.org

Performing Arts
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Stephen Buck

All-School Performing Arts Department Chair, Middle and Upper School Choral Teacher

he/him/his Before arriving at BFS, Stephen taught as a vocal music teacher at The Fessenden School in Massachusetts. Most of his personal and professional life involves singing in choirs, and he has been a member of the Tanglewood Festival Chorus for the past 11 years singing with the Boston Symphony Orchestra. Stephen is passionate about traveling and making music, meeting new people, and trying new foods. He has an MM from Boston University.

sbuck@brooklynfriends.org

Tom Buckley

Director of Dining Services

tbuckley@brooklynfriends.org

Dining Services
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Tom Buckley

Director of Dining Services

he/him/his Tom has worked in restaurants, catering halls, and corporate cafeterias. He loves to see the look on people's faces when they realize how good school food can be when prepared correctly. Tom is a bit of an outdoorsman, and enjoys hiking, backpacking, and fishing. He has a 17-foot canoe named ‘Ol' Scratch’, enjoys reading non-fiction books and loves to create his own hot sauces.

tbuckley@brooklynfriends.org

Latrina Buckner

Safety & Security Officer

lbuckner@brooklynfriends.org

Security
×

Latrina Buckner

Safety & Security Officer

lbuckner@brooklynfriends.org

Mark Buenzle

Upper School Visual Arts Teacher

mbuenzle@brooklynfriends.org

304

Upper School
×

Mark Buenzle

Upper School Visual Arts Teacher

he/him/his Mark has spent his entire career as an educator at BFS, while working as an artist, as well. He loves developing long-lasting relationships with his students and their families based on engagement, curiosity, and appreciation for one another and the world we share. Mark is a licensed psychoanalyst in private practice and serves on the faculties of the New York Graduate School for Psychoanalysis and The Center for Modern Psychoanalytic Studies. He also loves spending time at the beach. Mark has degrees from Parsons School of Design, Bank Street, and Hunter College.

mbuenzle@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #304

Joyce Bullock-Vigdor

Lower School Associate Teacher, 2A

jbullock-vigdor@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Joyce Bullock-Vigdor

Lower School Associate Teacher, 2A

she/her/hers Before joining the Brooklyn Friends community, Joyce taught English in China and South Korea for over eight years. She enjoys working with young minds and experiencing the joy that they bring into the classroom. In her free time, Joyce enjoys spending time with my two cats, tending to her plants, and exploring different neighborhoods in Brooklyn. Joyce received her BA in Applied Linguistics from Georgia State University and is currently working on an MSEd in Childhood Education from Hunter College.

jbullock-vigdor@brooklynfriends.org

Frank Cabrera

Director of College Counseling

fcabrera@brooklynfriends.org

518

College Counseling
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Frank Cabrera

Director of College Counseling

he/him/his Before joining BFS Frank spent five years as an Associate Director of College Counseling at the Horace Mann School in the Bronx. He loves helping students think about their future and the many ways in which they could become impactful and caring adults. Frank does not hide the fact that he has a deep appreciation for anyone who slips in a reference to ‘The Simpsons’ in any scenario. He has a BA from Skidmore College and an MSEd from Penn.

fcabrera@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #518

Crissy Caceres

Head of School

ccaceres@brooklynfriends.org

216

Head of School's Office
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Crissy Caceres

Head of School

Crissy Cáceres, a 27-year veteran in independent education, is in her fifth year as the proud head of Brooklyn Friends School. Currently, she serves as a Trustee for the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) Board. She also sits on the Board of the New York State Association of Independent Schools (NYSAIS) and the Caedmon School and is a commissioner on the New York State Association Commission on Accreditation. She was a long-time member of Call to Action, an NAIS think-tank devoted to social justice efforts nationwide, and she is currently on her 17th year as a faculty member at the NAIS Diversity Leadership Institute. Prior to joining the BFS community, Crissy served in several leadership positions within the independent school landscape. She was the Assistant Head of School for Equity and Social Impact at Georgetown Day School (D.C.), and before that she served as Head of Lower School at Abington Friends School (PA). She also held the Assistant Head of Lower School position at Episcopal Academy (PA) where she began her independent school teaching career. Crissy is committed to utilizing her voice within collaborative settings centered on creating socially just and healthy experiences for our schools. Crissy has served as a Middle States Accreditation Commissioner, co-chaired the People of Color Conference in Philadelphia, served on various leadership associations, and has partnered with schools and organizations nation-wide as a consultant, presenter, and facilitator on various topics. Some topics include Conflict and Change Management, Governance, and Strategic Frameworks. A graduate of Wellesley College, Crissy Cáceres then earned her Master’s Degree in Educational Policy and Leadership from the University of Pennsylvania. At her core, she embraces the values of a love-based, joyful, and inclusive education for all. Above all, Crissy cherishes her time with her family.

ccaceres@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #216

Michael Capers

Custodian

mcapers@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

Michael Capers

Custodian

mcapers@brooklynfriends.org

Alex Cardasis

Middle School English Teacher

acardasis@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School English
×

Alex Cardasis

Middle School English Teacher

she/her/hers Alex joined the teaching profession through NYC Teaching Fellows. She has had the pleasure of teaching both elementary and middle school in three of NYC's fabulous boroughs. Prior to joining BFS, Alex worked at Girls Prep Lower East Side Middle School, where she taught 6th and 8th grade English, served as the Department Chair and, in 2018, joined the school leadership team as the Academic Director of Humanities. Alex is excited to return to the classroom, as her passions are reading, discussing, and writing about literature with middle schoolers as they navigate the world and make connections to their own lives. Outside of the classroom, Alex loves to spend time in the woods with her husband, three young kids, and her old dog, Nort. Alex received her BA from the University of Vermont, her MSEd with NYC Teaching Fellows: Mercy College, and participated in the New Leaders: School Leadership Program.

acardasis@brooklynfriends.org

Sharon Carter

Preschool Head Teacher, Red Room

scarter@brooklynfriends.org

349

Preschool
×

Sharon Carter

Preschool Head Teacher, Red Room

Sharon is an expert early childhood educator in her 30th year at Brooklyn Friends School. She particularly enjoys crafting nurturing and holistic curriculum ideas, mentoring new teachers, and working to support parents. Sharon is a graduate of Medgar Evers College (CUNY University) in Early Childhood Education. She is passionate about social justice and building communities in the classroom and beyond.

scarter@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #349

Lyman Casey

Middle and Upper School Math Teacher, 8th Grade Program Coordinator

lcasey@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School
×

Lyman Casey

Middle and Upper School Math Teacher, 8th Grade Program Coordinator

he/him/his Prior to arriving at BFS, Lyman taught math at The Heritage School, Brooklyn Prep, and The Mandell School. He was also an assistant men’s basketball coach at Columbia University. In addition to teaching math, he enjoys helping middle schoolers navigate the famously tough years with joy and a sense of accomplishment. Interesting fact: He is not the tallest person in his family. Lyman has a BS from Santa Clara University and an MA from Columbia Teachers College.

lcasey@brooklynfriends.org

Michael Castelluccio

Assistant Director of Enrollment

mcastelluccio@brooklynfriends.org

Enrollment
×

Michael Castelluccio

Assistant Director of Enrollment

He/Him Before BFS, Michael worked in Admissions at an Episcopal K-8 school on the Upper West Side, and taught PreK and Kindergarten in Jersey City. Michael enjoys getting to interact with the whole family of a student during the admissions process. He also enjoys the fact that he can still step into the classroom and interact with students on a daily basis. Michael has many diverse hobbies which include playing the violin, basketball, dungeons & dragons, going to trivia nights, and attending concerts and broadway shows. Michael received a bachelor's degree in Social Sciences.

mcastelluccio@brooklynfriends.org

Maman Cisse

Upper School Learning Specialist

mcisse@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
×

Maman Cisse

Upper School Learning Specialist

She/Her/Hers Prior to joining BFS, Maman worked at Achievement First Endeavor Middle School as a fifth and sixth grade Science and History Learning Specialist. Before becoming a teacher, she worked as a linguist for immigration law firms and courts translating and interpreting documents. She loves having beautiful daily interactions, during which students share about their lives, hobbies, vacations, etc. She speaks five languages. She has degrees from City University and the Relay Graduate School of Education

mcisse@brooklynfriends.org

Catherine Clark

Upper School Theater Teacher

cclark@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School Performing Arts
×

Catherine Clark

Upper School Theater Teacher

she/her/hers Catherine started out as a scenic and costume designer and her work has been seen at SoHo Rep, HERE, FringeNYC, NY Musical Theater Festival, and many off-off Broadway theaters around NYC. Catherine is also passionate about environmental issues, specifically around waste from the garment industry. Not only does she make many of her own clothes, but she loves to teach people to mend and care for their own garments. She received her BA from NYU.

cclark@brooklynfriends.org

Henry Clark

Middle School Humanities and English Teacher; Head Coach, Boys Middle School Soccer

hclark@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School English Athletics
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Henry Clark

Middle School Humanities and English Teacher; Head Coach, Boys Middle School Soccer

he/his Prior to joining us at Brooklyn Friends, Henry taught at Tandem Friends School. Henry shares that he most enjoys learning from the students and community members in his work as a teacher. Outside of teaching, Henry loves being outside, live music, and road trips. Henry holds a Bachelors from Middlebury College and a Masters in Teaching Social Studies from Teachers College.

hclark@brooklynfriends.org

Chantel Cleckley

Preschool Associate Teacher, Blue Room

ccleckley@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool
×

Chantel Cleckley

Preschool Associate Teacher, Blue Room

she/her/hers Chantel has been a preschool educator for more than a decade. She enjoys getting to watch young children find and gain their confidence for the first time. She has taken several culinary classes in pastry arts and enjoys listening to crime podcasts and reading fantasy novels.

ccleckley@brooklynfriends.org

Kathleen Clinchy

Assistant Head of Middle School for Academics; Assistant Coach, Girls Middle School Basketball; Head Coach, Girls Middle School Softball

kclinchy@brooklynfriends.org

661

Middle School Athletics
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Kathleen Clinchy

Assistant Head of Middle School for Academics; Assistant Coach, Girls Middle School Basketball; Head Coach, Girls Middle School Softball

kclinchy@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #661

Melanie Closs

Preschool & BFX Extended Day Program Manager

mcloss@brooklynfriends.org

BFX Extended Day Preschool
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Melanie Closs

Preschool & BFX Extended Day Program Manager

She/Her Before arriving at BFS, Melanie taught drama and music at various afterschool programs around Brooklyn and also taught private music lessons. Melanie was the founder and Educational Director of The Other Side Intercultural Theatre, a non-profit that created a cross-cultural community of girls and gender diverse youth that uses performing arts as intercultural exchange. Melanie enjoys working within an educational community that values equity, creative expression, and teamwork! Melanie sings in an Eastern European folk-metal band. She received her BA in Theatre Education from Emerson College.

mcloss@brooklynfriends.org

David Conrad

In-House IT Specialist

dconrad@brooklynfriends.org

×

David Conrad

In-House IT Specialist

dconrad@brooklynfriends.org

Kevin Cooney

Middle School Science Teacher, 7th Grade Program Coordinator

kcooney@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School
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Kevin Cooney

Middle School Science Teacher, 7th Grade Program Coordinator

he/him/his Before arriving at BFS, Kevin taught at St. Bernard's School, showing young people new ways of exploring and understanding the natural world. He has his BA and MA from Columbia.

kcooney@brooklynfriends.org

Dr. AnaMaria Correa

Director of Diversity, Equity and Belonging

acorrea@brooklynfriends.org

Diversity, Equity, and Belonging
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Dr. AnaMaria Correa

Director of Diversity, Equity and Belonging

she/her/hers Before arriving at BFS, AnaMaria served as Miami City Ballet’s Chief Community Engagement Officer. In her role, AnaMaria bridged, deepened and cultivated relationships between MCB and the arts, culture, education and local communities ensuring that constituencies have access to, and claim a place for themselves, at MCB. In her role as a “bridge builder” she is also a “conscience raiser,” leading efforts of equity and inclusion practices and competencies for the organization. In her previous role as the director of community engagement and inclusion at Avenues: The World School, she spearheaded the practice of community engagement ethics and program partnerships as well as being the founding DEI practitioner establishing cultural competency strategies for an inclusive school community. At Ballet Hispanico she held a dual role as the senior director of community engagement and the director for their accredited school of dance. As director of community arts programs she conceptualized and implemented community dance education programs in partnership with communities, classrooms and universities. Having a small and mighty part in moving consciousness toward spaces where individuals belong. Being able to serve as a support for colleagues and a mirror for students and families. AnaMaria knows the NYC arts & culture landscape extremely well, and is the co-founder and artistic director of the Performance as Education: Las Memorias Program. When she is not at school, she can teach social dance and knows how to roller-skate. AnaMaria earned her Ph.D in Urban Education from City University of New York, her MFA from Brooklyn College, her BA from Hunter College, and her AA from Queensborough Community College.

acorrea@brooklynfriends.org

Emma Cothren

Middle School Humanities and English Teacher, 5th Grade Program Coordinator, Temporary Academic Coordinator Leave Replacement

ecothren@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School English
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Emma Cothren

Middle School Humanities and English Teacher, 5th Grade Program Coordinator, Temporary Academic Coordinator Leave Replacement

she/her/hers Emma worked at five different independent schools across three states prior to coming to Brooklyn Friends. Most recently, she spent two years as a 3rd grade teacher at Avenues. Emma is a runner who has completed four marathons. She is very close with her parents and her entire family is very important to her. Emma received her BA from Barnard College.

ecothren@brooklynfriends.org

Emily Cowles

Associate Director of Digital Content & School Events Manager

ecowles@brooklynfriends.org

211

Advancement
×

Emily Cowles

Associate Director of Digital Content & School Events Manager

Emily has worked at Brooklyn Friends since graduating from college. She enjoys getting to visit classrooms and documenting the daily life of our school and working with volunteers who are passionate about supporting our school. When she is not at BFS, Emily loves exploring the City with her husband and daughter, as well as watching movies! She received her BA from Kenyon College.

ecowles@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #211

Leigh Cross

Upper School English and History Teacher

lcross@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
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Leigh Cross

Upper School English and History Teacher

she/her/hers After graduate school, Leigh worked in hospitality for 10 years, and for the past two years she has taught 8th grade History at Achievement First Endeavor Middle School in Brooklyn. She enjoys watching students discover something new and then nerd out about it! She is a die-hard Chicago Cubs fan. Leigh received degrees from Notre Dame and Teachers College at Columbia.

lcross@brooklynfriends.org

Emilia Curcic

Lower School Associate Teacher, 3A

ecurcic@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Emilia Curcic

Lower School Associate Teacher, 3A

she/her/hers After shifting from a career in marketing, Emilia did fieldwork placements in second grade at PS261 and fifth grade at Manhattan Country School. She enjoys spending time getting to know her students and having silly moments together in the classroom! Outside of school, you can often find Emilia reading, sewing, or spending time with her pup Phoebe. Emilia earned a BBA from Wilfrid Laurier University, and an MSEd from Bank Street College of Education.

ecurcic@brooklynfriends.org

Emma Daley

Lower School Library Assistant

edaley@brooklynfriends.org

Library
×

Emma Daley

Lower School Library Assistant

she/her Before moving to Brooklyn, Emma was an art educator at the Storm King Art Center, Assistant Managing Editor for MAYDAY Magazine, a volunteer at the Olive Free Library, and substitute teacher at Woodstock Day School. Emma’s favorite part of being a librarian at BFS is empowering students to become creative thinkers, enthusiastic readers, and resourceful information-users. Emma hopes to fuel students’ curiosities by connecting them with new materials. In summer 2023, Emma studied at the Iowa Writers’ Workshop. She has published original prose and poetry in Cleveland Review of Books, Small Orange, and Empty House Press and is currently working on a poetry manuscript. Emma received a Bachelor of Arts in Written Arts, Poetry from Bard College and a Master of Arts in Library and Information Science from the University of Iowa.

edaley@brooklynfriends.org

Jane Davidson

Preschool Developmental Specialist

jdavidson@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool
×

Jane Davidson

Preschool Developmental Specialist

she/her/hers Much of Jane’s professional life has been spent working with staff, students, and families in a variety of educational settings, most recently as the early childhood consultant at Rockefeller Universities Child and Family Center. When she is not at school, Jane loves being in nature and soaking in the wonder all around me. She received degrees from Brandeis University and Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology.

jdavidson@brooklynfriends.org

Jon DeGraff, Ph.D.

Upper School History Teacher

jdegraff@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
×

Jon DeGraff, Ph.D.

Upper School History Teacher

he/him/his Throughout his career, Jon has taught students in grades 8 through the college level. He greatly enjoys learning about students' passions. Jon has a BA from Howard University, an MA from Fordham, and a PhD from Maryland.

jdegraff@brooklynfriends.org

Rafael De La Rosa

Facilities Colleague

rdelarosa@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

Rafael De La Rosa

Facilities Colleague

rdelarosa@brooklynfriends.org

Max DeLott

Interim Director of Advancement

mdelott@brooklynfriends.org

298

Advancement
×

Max DeLott

Interim Director of Advancement

mdelott@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #298

Syntyche Dennis

Lower School Associate Teacher, KC

sdennis@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Syntyche Dennis

Lower School Associate Teacher, KC

She/Her/Hers Fall 2023 represents Syntyche’s tenth year in the classroom. She has had the opportunity to teach in independent, charter, and public schools in New Jersey, Ohio, and here in New York City. Before joining BFS, Syntyche worked as an Associate Teacher at The School at Columbia University, where she taught third and second grade. When not teaching, she enjoys looking up fashion ideas and trends on Pinterest, learning sewing, cooking, shopping, or reading a picture book. Syntyche received her BA from Rider University and M.Ed in Special Education from Grand Canyon University.

sdennis@brooklynfriends.org

Elizabeth Deull

Upper School Visual Arts Teacher

edeull@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School Visual Arts
×

Elizabeth Deull

Upper School Visual Arts Teacher

She/Her/Hers After completing her Masters in painting, Elizabeth exhibited in various galleries as a professional artist. During this time, she also worked in two Chelsea galleries where she assisted in curating and running all aspects of artists' exhibitions. Additionally, she became an adjunct professor in the art department at NYU'S Steinhardt School of Education, which piqued her interest in going back to school to become a K-12 Art Educator. She then worked in a variety of educational settings, including many schools through the Studio in a School program. Elizabeth loves working with her IB students and helping to guide them on their artistic journeys. When not at BFS, creating is still a way of life for her, even if it is simply cooking a yummy meal or making a really cool fort "installation" with her kids at home. Elizabeth holds a BFA from School of The Art Institute of Chicago, an MA in Studio Arts from the NYU Steinhardt School of Education, and a Certificate from the Art Education MA program at Brooklyn College.

edeull@brooklynfriends.org

Jean Ducelus

Safety & Security Officer

jducelus@brooklynfriends.org

Security
×

Jean Ducelus

Safety & Security Officer

jducelus@brooklynfriends.org

Beth Duffy

Middle School Learning Specialist

bduffy@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School
×

Beth Duffy

Middle School Learning Specialist

she/her/hers Beth has been teaching at Quaker middle schools since 2006, first at Greene Street Friends School in Philadelphia and then at Mary McDowell Friends School, before coming to Brooklyn Friends. She loves working alongside students to problem-solve and help them realize that they can accomplish more than they ever thought they could. She has a BA from the University of Pittsburgh and an MSEd from Bank Street.

bduffy@brooklynfriends.org

Stephen Eckert

Middle School Drama Teacher and Productions Manager

seckert@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School Performing Arts
×

Stephen Eckert

Middle School Drama Teacher and Productions Manager

he/him/they/them Stephen has been a theatre-maker for more than a decade, directing musical theatre, opera, and performance art throughout the U.S. and in London. He most recently founded a middle school Shakespeare program while teaching 8th grade Humanities in New York. When he is not teaching or directing, he is a big Dungeons & Dragons player. He received his BA and BFA degrees from Tulane and an MFA from Carnegie Mellon University.

seckert@brooklynfriends.org

Jonathan Edmonds

Lower School Math Specialist

jedmonds@brooklynfriends.org

317

Lower School
×

Jonathan Edmonds

Lower School Math Specialist

he/him/his Prior to arriving at BFS, Jonathan was a reading tutor in Nashville, an English teacher in Nanjing, China, and an elementary student teacher in NYC public schools. He greatly enjoys finding, creating, adapting, teaching, and playing mathematical games with young children. He is always interested in book recommendations! Jonathan received his BA from Oberlin College and MSEd from Bank Street College.

jedmonds@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #317

Vanessa Ehler

Upper School World Languages Teacher

vehler@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
×

Vanessa Ehler

Upper School World Languages Teacher

Prior to arriving at BFS, Vanessa taught Spanish at a suburban public high school in Connecticut for eight years. Among her favorite parts of her job are lesson planning and storytelling! She received her BA from Indiana University and MA from Middlebury College.

vehler@brooklynfriends.org

Edson Elcock

Lower School Physical Education Teacher

edelcock@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School Athletics
×

Edson Elcock

Lower School Physical Education Teacher

he/him/his Edson came to Brooklyn Friends School following a professional soccer career. He enjoys watching his students succeed at something that they never thought they could have accomplished. One of his favorite things to do outside of work is listening to music, which he makes sure to do every single day!

edelcock@brooklynfriends.org

Natalie Emery

Lower School Associate Teacher, 1A

nemery@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Natalie Emery

Lower School Associate Teacher, 1A

she/her/hers Before arriving at BFS, Natalie worked as a school social worker for the DOE, providing individual and group counseling in all five boroughs. She also tutored children in literacy for 718READ, a nonprofit literacy organization. Outside of school, Natalie loves dancing and nature, and to hike and camp with her husband, kids, and dog Rocket. She received her BA from UMass and her MSW from Fordham.

nemery@brooklynfriends.org

Hande Erkin-Guler

Preschool Head Teacher, Green Room

herkinguler@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool
×

Hande Erkin-Guler

Preschool Head Teacher, Green Room

she/her/hers Hande was born and raised in Turkey. Before arriving at BFS, Hande was a head teacher in 3s and 4s classes at The International Preschools. Hande is passionate about creating a welcoming classroom community and providing a loving and nurturing environment for children, knowing that they learn best when they feel safe and loved. She loves to share her interests in music, movement, animals and languages with children. Outside of school, she enjoys spending time with her family and her cat, going to concerts, traveling, and exploring new places in the city and tasting new food. She holds a Bachelors in Translation/Interpretation in English/French/Turkish from Bilkent University in Ankara, a Masters in Early Childhood from Long Island University, and a Masters in Early Childhood and Special Education from Touro College.

herkinguler@brooklynfriends.org

Lisa Favata

Human Resources Manager

lfavata@brooklynfriends.org

x203

Human Resources
×

Lisa Favata

Human Resources Manager

lfavata@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #x203

Yaneri Fernandez

Facilities Colleague

yfernandez@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

Yaneri Fernandez

Facilities Colleague

yfernandez@brooklynfriends.org

Jill Fiengo

Lower School Head Teacher, 1C

jfiengo@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Jill Fiengo

Lower School Head Teacher, 1C

she/her/hers Before teaching first grade at BFS, Jill was a Preschool teacher, creating classroom communities each year and working with colleagues to create engaging learning for young children. When she is not in the classroom she likes to watch good movies. She has a BA from City College and an MS from Bank Street College.

jfiengo@brooklynfriends.org

Eric Fingerman

Upper School Math Teacher

efingerman@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
×

Eric Fingerman

Upper School Math Teacher

he/him/his/they/them/theirs Before arriving at BFS, Eric taught middle-school math in Paramus, New Jersey for eight years. He greatly enjoys connecting with students and watching their abilities in math grow stronger and the lightbulb moments when they make discoveries. He received his BS from Northwestern University and is MA from Montclair State University.

efingerman@brooklynfriends.org

Camille Fobbs

Co-Director, BFX Extended Day & BFS Summer Experience

cfobbs@brooklynfriends.org

BFX Extended Day
×

Camille Fobbs

Co-Director, BFX Extended Day & BFS Summer Experience

she/her/hers Camille begins her sixteenth year at Brooklyn Friends School, and this year marks her second year working in both an administrative and teaching role. Born and raised in Trinidad, Camille has a Masters in Educational Theater from NYU and has developed her own drama curriculum for young children. She has co-presented at WPC (White Privilege Conference) and NYSAIS (New York State Association for Independent Schools) Diversity Conference and developed a “frequently asked questions” guide to talking about differences in early childhood. She is a graduate of The Interschool Leadership Institute and NYSAIS Institute for Teaching Diversity and Social Justice. Camille is a passionate advocate in her Anti-Bias work with young children.

cfobbs@brooklynfriends.org

Cheryl Foote

Safety & Security Officer

cfoote@brooklynfriends.org

200

Security
×

Cheryl Foote

Safety & Security Officer

cfoote@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #200

Donna Foote

Safety & Security Officer

dfoote@brooklynfriends.org

Security
×

Donna Foote

Safety & Security Officer

dfoote@brooklynfriends.org

Salvatore D. Fratto, Jr.

Controller

sfratto@brooklynfriends.org

602

Finance
×

Salvatore D. Fratto, Jr.

Controller

He/Him The 2023-2024 school year marks Sal's 30th year of professional financial services and 20th within independent schools, where he has served in leadership positions ranging from CFO, Finance Director, Controller, and Business Manager. Before joining BFS in 2016, he served as Controller at Saint Ann's School. Prior to working in independent schools, Sal served 8 years as a Senior Auditor at PKFOD, whose main clients were independent schools, religious organizations and other non-profit entities. Sal says that the most rewarding part of his profession is the successful planning, execution, and completion of financial projects including the annual audit, budgeting, and daily operations. Outside of work, Sal enjoys spending time with his family and is an avid baseball card collector.

sfratto@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #602

Julia Friedman

Enrollment Office Manager

jfriedman@brooklynfriends.org

Enrollment
×

Julia Friedman

Enrollment Office Manager

jfriedman@brooklynfriends.org

Alexa Galberth

Upper School Counselor

agalberth@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
×

Alexa Galberth

Upper School Counselor

she/her Before arriving at Brooklyn Friends, Alexa worked as a school counselor at a high school in Harlem. Prior to that, she taught both middle school and high school Spanish. She shares that her favorite part of her profession is being on the journey with students as they navigate the undiscovered parts of their identities and grow to reach unimaginable heights. Outside of the school day, Alexa shares that she is passionate about photography and one of her favorite photographers is Diane Arbus. Alexa holds a Bachelor's Degree in Adolescent Education and Spanish from St. John's University and a Master's Degree and Advanced Certificate in School Counseling from Manhattan College.

agalberth@brooklynfriends.org

Erika Garcia

Preschool Head Teacher, Blue Room

esanchez@brooklynfriends.org

×

Erika Garcia

Preschool Head Teacher, Blue Room

she/her/hers Erika finds joy in engaging with the many different students, families, and colleagues at BFS each day. Erika holds a Master’s Degree in Bilingual Education.

esanchez@brooklynfriends.org

Laleña Garcia

Lower School Head Teacher, KC

lgarcia@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Laleña Garcia

Lower School Head Teacher, KC

she/her/hers Laleña has been teaching 3-6 year olds in New York City since 2000, most recently at Manhattan Country School. In the summer of 2020, she began teaching an online course for adults called Rooted, which offers contextual background and concrete strategies for anti-bias work in ECE. Laleña’s first children’s book, What We Believe: A Black Lives Matter Activity Book, was published in 2020. She received her BA from Yale University and MS from Bank Street College of Education.

lgarcia@brooklynfriends.org

Luis Garcia

Handyperson Helper

lgarciafilpo@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

Luis Garcia

Handyperson Helper

lgarciafilpo@brooklynfriends.org

David Gardella

Director of Athletic Operations & Management; Head Coach, Girls Varsity Softball

dgardella@brooklynfriends.org

234

Athletics
×

David Gardella

Director of Athletic Operations & Management; Head Coach, Girls Varsity Softball

he/his David has been a key part of the BFS community for more than 25 years. This school year, he transitions into the role of Director of Athletic Operations & Management. In the past, he has been BFS’ Director of Athletics and Physical Education. He also coaches various teams at Brooklyn Friends. During his “free time” David is involved with Division 1 College Basketball and NBA games and serves as a volunteer for the Camp Friendship Youth Basketball Program in Brooklyn, which is one of his personal highlights. He has a B.S. from St. Francis College in Downtown Brooklyn.

dgardella@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #234

Q Gardere

Lower School Associate Teacher, 1C

qgardere@brooklyfriends.org

Lower School
×

Q Gardere

Lower School Associate Teacher, 1C

she/her/hers/ella Before arriving at BFS, Q was an elementary ESL teacher in Korea, and then a first grade homeroom teacher at an international school in Colombia. In the classroom, Q really enjoys reading books together and listening to all of the interesting things that first graders have to say. Outside of school, Q enjoys trying new foods and exploring NYC! Q received a BA from The City College of New York in Psychology.

qgardere@brooklyfriends.org

Julie Gibson

Dance Teacher, Grades K-5

jgibson@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School Performing Arts
×

Julie Gibson

Dance Teacher, Grades K-5

she/her/hers Before arriving at Brooklyn Friends School, Julie taught dance full time for the NYC Department of Education. She spent 17 years teaching dance for grades 6-8 at Middle School 51, and 3 years teaching dance at P.S. 295 for grades Pre-K through 5. Julie has also performed professionally with several New York-based dance companies and choreographers. Sharing her love of dance and making meaningful connections with students and colleagues is extremely important to her. Julie lives spending time with her family and dogs! She has degrees from Mount Holyoke College, Edna Manley College of Visual and Performing Arts, and NYU Steinhardt School of Education.

jgibson@brooklynfriends.org

Megan Glionna

Lower School Head Teacher, 3B

meglionna@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Megan Glionna

Lower School Head Teacher, 3B

she/her/hers Growing up, Megan pursued a career in acting, moved to New York City after college, and acted in many productions. In her mid-twenties, she observed her mom teaching a 5th grade class, which inspired her to go back to school and become a teacher! She loves sharing laughs, stories, dance parties, and deep conversations with third graders. Dancing outside to live music brings her immeasurable joy! She received a BFA from East Carolina University and her MAT from Simmons College.

meglionna@brooklynfriends.org

Zoe Goldberg-Stewart

Preschool Head Teacher, Yellow Room

zgstewart@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool
×

Zoe Goldberg-Stewart

Preschool Head Teacher, Yellow Room

she/her/hers Zoe spent many years teaching children ages 2 -5 in the Boston Area and in New York City. She stepped away from teaching for 13 years to raise her own three children, before returning to Brooklyn Friends. She is passionate about child development and loves the opportunity to work with families to better understand and support their children's growth and learning. She received a double-major BA from Smith College and an MS from Bank Street College of Education.

zgstewart@brooklynfriends.org

Bella Gonzalez Cruz

Lower School Associate Teacher, 1B

igonzalez@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Bella Gonzalez Cruz

Lower School Associate Teacher, 1B

igonzalez@brooklynfriends.org

Theodore Goodman Sr.

Director of Security

tgoodman@brooklynfriends.org

333

Security
×

Theodore Goodman Sr.

Director of Security

he/him/his Goody has been a security and safety specialist for decades. He is an emergency medical technician and instructor, a fire safety director, and is an armed security supervisor in NYC. His first love is helping people and keeping everyone safe.

tgoodman@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #333

Gabe Gordon

Middle School History Teacher

ggordon@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School
×

Gabe Gordon

Middle School History Teacher

he/him/his For several years, Gabe worked with the Center for Urban Pedagogy—a nonprofit organization that uses the power of design and art to increase meaningful civic engagement—particularly among underrepresented communities. As a teaching artist and graphic designer, he got to collaborate on investigative projects, researched, illustrated, and designed with middle and high school students from across the city. He loves to witness students unlock new levels of confidence and curiosity and having lots of fun together along the way. He received his BA from Wesleyan University and is currently working toward his MA at Brooklyn College.

ggordon@brooklynfriends.org

Sarah Gordon

Lower School Head Teacher, 3A

sgordon@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Sarah Gordon

Lower School Head Teacher, 3A

she/her/hers Sarah has been teaching at BFS since 2006. Before coming to BFS, she did fieldwork at Manhattan School for Children in first and fourth grades and in a literacy clinic. Her favorite part of teaching is helping foster a strong classroom community where kids become empowered learners and great friends. When she is not at BFS, she sings Yiddish music at festivals around the world. She received her BA from Sarah Lawrence College and her MA from Bank Street College of Education.

sgordon@brooklynfriends.org

Alex Guzchenko

Director of Facilities Management

aguzchenko@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

Alex Guzchenko

Director of Facilities Management

he/him/his Alex has degrees from multiple trade schools and also received his BA in Criminal Justice from John Jay College. Before arriving at BFS, Alex spent many years serving in the military as a radio communications specialist back in his home country. He loves challenges and travel.

aguzchenko@brooklynfriends.org

Janzen Harding

Health & Wellness/Student Support Specialist

jharding@brooklynfriends.org

Health Services
×

Janzen Harding

Health & Wellness/Student Support Specialist

she, her, hers Janzen began her career as a middle and high school Latin and history teacher and basketball coach in central Florida. Since then, she has worked as a teaching fellow at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, as an executive functioning coach for students in middle, high school, and college, and as a D1 student-athlete support specialist in higher education. Janzen enjoys learning from and having fun with her students. She is passionate about supporting students' growth in the classroom, on the court/field, and everywhere in between and beyond! In her free time, Janzen enjoys being active outside and reading books (especially fiction!). Some of her favorite activities include surfing, playing basketball and pickleball, and participating in local trivia events. Janzen received her BA from the University of Florida and Ed.M. from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

jharding@brooklynfriends.org

Emily Hardy

Junior Accountant

ehardy@brooklynfriends.org

Finance
×

Emily Hardy

Junior Accountant

ehardy@brooklynfriends.org

Liz Heck

Upper School English Teacher

eheck@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
×

Liz Heck

Upper School English Teacher

she/her/hers After graduating from law school, Liz worked in publishing in the Bay Area and then transitioned to teaching, before moving to Costa Rica to teach middle and high school students. She enjoys a wide range of literature and learning joyfully with students in the classroom. In addition to being a voracious reader, she is a huge fan of theater and museums and always wants to help chaperone everyone's field trips. She received her BA from Bryn Mawr College and JD from Fordham University School of Law.

eheck@brooklynfriends.org

Laurice Hwang

Middle School Science Teacher and Student Activities Coordinator

lhwang@brooklynfriends.org

396

Middle School
×

Laurice Hwang

Middle School Science Teacher and Student Activities Coordinator

she/her/hers Laurice taught math and science at the Frederick Douglass Charter School in Boston, before coming to BFS in 2001. She loves helping students develop as whole people, not just intellectually, but also as artists and activists. She enjoys being outdoors and being active, and is an avid runner, swimmer, scuba diver, and martial artist. She received her BA from Brown University and M.Ed. from Lesley University.

lhwang@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #396

Admir Ivojevic

Physical Education Teacher; Head Coach, Girls Varsity Soccer; Assistant Coach, Girls Varsity Basketball

aivojevic@brooklynfriends.org

Athletics Middle School
×

Admir Ivojevic

Physical Education Teacher; Head Coach, Girls Varsity Soccer; Assistant Coach, Girls Varsity Basketball

he/him Prior to arriving at BFS, Admir worked as a Physical Education teacher at Forte Prep Academy in Queens. He also helped to start a sports program at Forte when he created co-ed Basketball and Soccer teams. Admir enjoys witnessing the joy on his student’s faces in PE class and on the athletic field. Admir immigrated to New York from Bosnia, and he frequently goes back to visit family and friends. Admir also enjoys a good bike ride! He received his BA in Physical Education from Queens College.

aivojevic@brooklynfriends.org

Amelia Jenison

Lower School Music Teacher

ajenison@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School Performing Arts
×

Amelia Jenison

Lower School Music Teacher

She/Her/Hers Amelia grew up in Madison, Wisconsin. Before arriving at BFS, she taught K-8 General Music and Chorus in Massachusetts. She has experience in music directing children's theater productions, as well as serving as a professional cantor and choral singer. Her favorite part of teaching music is experiencing the joy that the children bring to music. Amelia holds a Post Baccalaureate License in Music Education from Gordon College, a Master of Music in Vocal Performance from New England Conservatory, and a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from DePauw University.

ajenison@brooklynfriends.org

Uniysha Jones

Lower School Head Teacher, 2C

ujones@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Uniysha Jones

Lower School Head Teacher, 2C

she/her/hers Before arriving at BFS, Uniysha was a pre-kindergarten teacher and direct support professional for children with special needs. She shares that she views each day at school as an opportunity to teach as well as be taught in return by her students. Uniysha enjoys traveling, spa dates, and trying new restaurants. She holds an Associate’s Degree in educational studies with a concentration in grades 1-6, a Bachelor's Degree in psychology, and a Master's Degree in Mental Health Counseling. Uniysha is currently studying at Long Island University to receive her doctorate in education and transformational leadership.

ujones@brooklynfriends.org

Ellen Kahan

Middle & Upper School Visual Arts Teacher

ekahan@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School Upper School Visual Arts
×

Ellen Kahan

Middle & Upper School Visual Arts Teacher

she/her/hers Ellen greatly enjoys teaching students who have never touched clay and guiding them to become passionate about the material. Ellen loves sports and her father used to work for the Harlem Globetrotters. At one point of her life, Ellen lived in France for 19 years. She holds a MA of art education

ekahan@brooklynfriends.org

Christopher Kavanaugh

Lower School Educational Technology Integrator

ckavanaugh@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School Technology
×

Christopher Kavanaugh

Lower School Educational Technology Integrator

he/him/his Before coming to BFS, Chris worked at several schools, including Packer Collegiate and Trevor Day School. He enjoys helping teachers and students use technology in the classroom in new creative ways. Chris is also a classically trained pianist. He received his BA from Williams College and his MA from Middlebury College.

ckavanaugh@brooklynfriends.org

Thomas Keasling

Lower School Visual Arts Teacher

tkeasling@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School Visual Arts
×

Thomas Keasling

Lower School Visual Arts Teacher

he/him/his Thomas returned to teaching full-time in 2013 as a founding art and design teacher in a Brooklyn public charter school. Three years later, he started teaching and loved seeing the surprise and wonder on 5-year-old faces when they realize he is actually going to give them a saw, and trust them to learn to use it. He loves watching his students grow into confident, creative problem solvers. He received his BA from St. Olaf College and his MA from the University of Arizona.

tkeasling@brooklynfriends.org

Yvette Kennedy

Lower School Science Teacher

ykennedy@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School Science
×

Yvette Kennedy

Lower School Science Teacher

she/her/hers Prior to teaching at Brooklyn Friends, Yvette taught science at another independent school. Her favorite part of teaching LS Science is being able to work with—and getting to know—all of the students. Outside of work, she is married to fellow teacher and has two children. She received her BS from SUNY College of Environmental Science & Forestry and her MS.Ed. from Bank Street College of Education.

ykennedy@brooklynfriends.org

Natalie Kirch

Lower School Head Teacher, KB

nkirch@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Natalie Kirch

Lower School Head Teacher, KB

she/her/hers Natalie has experience teaching preschool through 3rd grade, with a primary focus on pre-kindergarten through first grade. She has mostly taken on the role as a classroom teacher in both general and special education settings, but also has experience as an art teacher. Natalie is a self-taught musician. She received her BA from Skidmore College and her MS from Hunter College.

nkirch@brooklynfriends.org

Rachel Kleinman

Preschool Head Teacher, Orange Room

rkleinman@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool
×

Rachel Kleinman

Preschool Head Teacher, Orange Room

she/her/hers Before arriving on Pearl Street, Rachel taught preschool in Brookline, MA. She shares that she loves that each day in the Preschool is a new and exciting adventure. Rachel loves to read in her free time. Rachel holds a B.A. from Lewis and Clark College as well as an M.S.Ed. from Bank Street College of Education.

rkleinman@brooklynfriends.org

Lucien Kouassi

Upper School Science Teacher

lkouassi@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School Science
×

Lucien Kouassi

Upper School Science Teacher

lkouassi@brooklynfriends.org

Joel Kwabi

Upper School Math Teacher

jkwabi@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School Mathematics
×

Joel Kwabi

Upper School Math Teacher

Before arriving at BFS, Joel worked for seven years as a Math Teacher/Department Chair at EF Academy in Thornwood, NY. Before that, he worked for two years at Morgan Stanley as an Operations Analyst for their FX and derivatives trading desks. Solving hard math problems with students and experiencing their wonder (consternation, frustration, and satisfaction) at the process, is his real passion. He is a Christian, a husband to an amazing wife, and a father to two incredible kids. He received his BS from Haverford College and his MA from Teachers College Columbia University.

jkwabi@brooklynfriends.org

Theodore Lane

Upper School Math Teacher

tlane@brooklynfriends.org

Mathematics Upper School
×

Theodore Lane

Upper School Math Teacher

He/Him Prior to arriving at BFS, Teddy worked through Teach For America as an anatomy teacher at Great Oaks Charter School in Bridgeport, Connecticut. Teddy truly enjoys being a part of the academic and professional growth that students experience each day at school. Every student has their niche, and he enjoys listening to them talk about their passions. Outside of work, Teddy likes to stay active by rock climbing and playing soccer in different leagues throughout the City. He also has a very busy life as an artist outside of the classroom. Teddy’s main medium is oil paint, but he likes to dabble in metal work, ceramics, film photography, drawing, and collage. Teddy studied Biology at Amherst College, and enjoys taking classes at School of Visual Arts.

tlane@brooklynfriends.org

Jaime Lassman

Educational Technology Integrator

jlassman@brooklynfriends.org

Technology Middle School
×

Jaime Lassman

Educational Technology Integrator

he/him/his Jaime has worked as a third and fourth grader teacher, and has served as Director of Technology Integration and Curriculum Mapping, Director of Studies, and Head of Lower School at schools in Delaware, Kentucky, and Ohio. He loves designing curriculum and solving puzzles. He has degrees from the University of Delaware and the University of Kentucky.

jlassman@brooklynfriends.org

Rebecca Lawrence

Preschool Associate Teacher, Orange Room

rlawrence@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool
×

Rebecca Lawrence

Preschool Associate Teacher, Orange Room

she/her/hers Prior to arriving at BFS, Rebecca worked as a Pre-K Assistant Teacher at The Blake School in Hopkins, Minnesota for three years. She received her BA from Oberlin College.

rlawrence@brooklynfriends.org

Liz Layne

Executive Assistant to the Head of School's Office

llayne@brooklynfriends.org

210

Head of School's Office
×

Liz Layne

Executive Assistant to the Head of School's Office

Liz Layne, She, her, hers Before arriving at BFS, Liz has had an extensive career in NYC independent school office management. She leads professional development workshops for administrative support professionals, and is a mentor to many. In her spare time, she enjoys watching all sports, especially football and basketball, further demonstrating her well-rounded interests and engagement beyond her work commitments.

llayne@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #210

Auguste Leach

Middle School History Teacher

aleach@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School History
×

Auguste Leach

Middle School History Teacher

he/him/his Auguste taught at a charter school in Bedford-Stuyvesant before coming to BFS in 2019. Creating honest spaces where people can be their whole selves is his true passion. Auguste is a third-generation history teacher. Born and raised in Brooklyn, Auguste is an avid baseball player who practices as often as possible. He received his BA from Wheaton College and his MA from the Relay Graduate School of Education.

aleach@brooklynfriends.org

Rita Lee

Middle School Administrative Assistant

rlee@brooklynfriends.org

224

Middle School
×

Rita Lee

Middle School Administrative Assistant

she/her/hers Rita first worked in publishing following college, but soon left to go to pastry school. After working mostly part-time in bakeries for a couple years, Rita found herself at Poly Prep as an assistant to the college counseling department. Five years later, she arrived at BFS. Her favorite part of Middle School is the opportunity to collaborate with like-minded friends and being an integral part of a student's Middle School experience. Rita is a born and bred Brooklynite and received her BA from Hunter College.

rlee@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #224

Sinae Lee

Visual Arts Teacher

silee@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School Visual Arts
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Sinae Lee

Visual Arts Teacher

Prior to arriving at BFS, Sinae taught art at several different colleges in the tristate area, as well as in Denver and Philadelphia. Sinae is a practicing artist, and has exhibited widely, both domestically and abroad. In 2007, she received a Fulbright Fellowship to research and make artwork about gender and human rights issues in the Netherlands. Her favorite part of teaching art is creating a safe outlet for students to express themselves artistically. Sinae loves hiking, running, and swimming. She holds an M.F.A. from University of Pennsylvania, a B.F.A. from the Maryland Institute College of Arts, and attended the Center for Art and Culture, American University, Aix-en-Provence, France.

silee@brooklynfriends.org

Luis Leon

Custodian

leon@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

Luis Leon

Custodian

leon@brooklynfriends.org

Nick Lerangis

Lower School Associate Teacher, 3B

nlerangis@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
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Nick Lerangis

Lower School Associate Teacher, 3B

he/him Before arriving at Brooklyn Friends, Nick spent many years as a performer. He toured with bands, wrote some music that's charted on the Billboard Hot 100, and has been featured on TV and in video games. He spent time working as an actor/musician in regional theater, in productions where the cast and the band were one and the same. If it's a job in music, he's likely done it! In 2021, he enrolled in a Masters in Childhood Education program and worked the 2021-2022 school year as a paraprofessional in a bilingual public school in Sunset Park. Nick shares that his favorite part of his job is when students make a conceptual leap. Nick has a BA in music and is currently working on an MS in childhood education.

nlerangis@brooklynfriends.org

Chen Li

MS/US Mandarin Teacher - Leave Replacement

cli@brooklynfriends.org

World Languages Middle School Upper School
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Chen Li

MS/US Mandarin Teacher - Leave Replacement

cli@brooklynfriends.org

Kerri Lindstrom

BFX Extended Day Guide

klindstrom@brooklynfriends.org

BFX Extended Day
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Kerri Lindstrom

BFX Extended Day Guide

she/her Kerri is excited to be returning to BFS for the extended day program and as a substitute teacher! She joined BFS last spring. After studying theatre and art history at Emerson College, Kerri also worked with Melanie Closs, fellow BFS colleague, on The Other Side Intercultural Theatre, followed by a decade in nonprofit and higher education grants administration. Kerri runs an art gallery which produces several youth artist solo shows and community exhibitions each year.

klindstrom@brooklynfriends.org

David Liu

Handyperson Helper

dliu@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

David Liu

Handyperson Helper

dliu@brooklynfriends.org

Kin Liu

Handyperson

kliu@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

Kin Liu

Handyperson

kliu@brooklynfriends.org

Chloe Lombardi

BFX Extended Day Guide

clombardi@brooklynfriends.org

BFX Extended Day
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Chloe Lombardi

BFX Extended Day Guide

She/Her Chloe is excited to be joining the BFS community as an Extended Day Guide working primarily with kindergartners. She discovered her passion for childcare after working as a children’s ski instructor in Telluride, Colorado last winter. She has a Bachelors of Science in Journalism from Northwestern University where she focused on reporting on mental health and has plans to further her education in youth and adolescent mental health counseling. In her free time Chloe enjoys painting, reading, and making homemade pasta. At BFX she most enjoys drawing and crafting with the kids as well and getting to know their individual passions and interests.

clombardi@brooklynfriends.org

Guadalupe Lopez

Facilities Colleague

glopez@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

Guadalupe Lopez

Facilities Colleague

glopez@brooklynfriends.org

Peter Mackie

Design, Advancement, and Data Systems Specialist

pmackie@brooklynfriends.org

479

Advancement
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Peter Mackie

Design, Advancement, and Data Systems Specialist

Peter has seemingly been at BFS for most of his life, attending the school through Middle School and now having worked for various departments for nearly a decade. He attended SUNY Empire State College.

pmackie@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #479

Dr. Rachel Maldonado

Lower School Psychologist & All School Well-Being Coordinator

rmaldonado@brooklynfriends.org

222

Lower School Health Services
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Dr. Rachel Maldonado

Lower School Psychologist & All School Well-Being Coordinator

she/her/hers Prior to Rachel’s arrival at BFS in 2015, she worked with children, teens, and families in a variety of settings, including community mental health settings, schools, private practice, and hospitals. She believes in the validation of feelings and capacity for growth in all people—children and adults alike, and approaches mental health and wellbeing from an integrated stance. She received her BS from Brown University, and her MS and PsyD from Ferkauf Graduate School of Psychology.

rmaldonado@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #222

Vlad Malukoff

Upper School History Teacher

vmalukoff@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School History
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Vlad Malukoff

Upper School History Teacher

he/him Prior to arriving at BFS, Vlad served as a Program Director at the International Center in New York where he ran programs to help newly arrived immigrants, refugees, and students get adjusted to life in the United States and helped to promote cross-cultural understanding. He was also a teacher at several other schools. In the classroom, Vlad enjoys being able to read and talk about history. Outside of work, Vlad is a big fan of classical and ethnic-folk music. Vlad received his B.A. in History/Russian at Dalhousie University (Canada) and his M.A. in History from Wesleyan University.

vmalukoff@brooklynfriends.org

Lucinda Mandel

BFX Extended Day Guide

lmandel@brooklynfriends.org

BFX Extended Day
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Lucinda Mandel

BFX Extended Day Guide

Lucinda is excited to be returning to BFS for the extended day program and as a substitute teacher! She joined BFS last spring, after making the move from Chicago. After studying film at Northwestern, she has worked as both an art teacher and in film production. Lucinda enjoys guiding the students in creative problem-solving and using art as a form of self-expression.

lmandel@brooklynfriends.org

Edgar Marshall

Middle School Dean of Students

emarshall@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School
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Edgar Marshall

Middle School Dean of Students

He/Him Before arriving at BFS, Marshall worked at a charter school in East Harlem. At school, he truly enjoys working with children and providing support to them. Outside of school, Marshall loves football. J-E-T-S! JETS! JETS! JETS! Marshall received his MSEd from Long Island University.

emarshall@brooklynfriends.org

Mariah Martens

Health and Human Development Teacher

mmartens@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School Middle School
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Mariah Martens

Health and Human Development Teacher

she/her/hers Mariah has worked in NYC public schools for the past six years—most recently as a relationship abuse prevention educator at STEPS to End Family Violence. Her favorite thing about being a Health teacher is—everything! She lives in the East Village with her transmasculine partner and their two cats. She loves ice cream, the sound of playgrounds, and a good card game. She received her BFA from Cornish College of Arts and MA from NYU.

mmartens@brooklynfriends.org

Suzie Matthews

Assistant Head of School

smatthews@brooklynfriends.org

201

Head of School's Office
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Suzie Matthews

Assistant Head of School

she/her/hers Before arriving at BFS, Suzie was the Assistant Head of School/Upper School Head at Santa Fe Prep in New Mexico. Prior to that, Suzie was a High School Mathematics Teacher and Department Chair/Chair of Professional Growth and Evaluation at Georgetown Day School in Washington, D.C. She is passionate about being part of a true learning community, believes that we are all learners at our core, and loves helping others. When not at school, Suzie loves to sing, hike, bake, and solve puzzles (not all at the same time!) She received her BA from Drew University and her MA and MEd from Teachers College Columbia University.

smatthews@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #201

Stephanie Mayer

Music Teacher

smayer@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School Performing Arts
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Stephanie Mayer

Music Teacher

she/her/hers Prior to arriving at BFS, Steph taught middle school general music at a public school in Far Rockaway. She feels that the best part of being a music teacher is when her students share their music with her! Whether it's music they listen to, beats they create, or a piece they've been practicing they would like to share—I love listening to all of it. Outside of work Steph loves to read, go running, and of course listen and play music! She received her Bachelors of Music Education from Ball State University, her Bachelors of Clarinet Performance from Ball State University, and is currently pursuing an Advanced Certificate for Reimagining Education from Columbia University.

smayer@brooklynfriends.org

Katharine McCall

Physical Education Teacher & Extended Day Guide - Leave Replacement (January 2024)

kmccall@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School Science
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Katharine McCall

Physical Education Teacher & Extended Day Guide - Leave Replacement (January 2024)

she/her/hers Kat recently moved to New York City from Colorado where she was a ski instructor for several years prior to teaching in the classroom. Besides skiing, Kat also loves yoga, running, camping, hiking, traveling, and cooking. Prior to BFS, Kat taught for several years at public schools in Denver, Colorado. Kat received her B.A. from Hobart and William Smith Colleges and her M.A. from the University of Colorado.

kmccall@brooklynfriends.org

Kevin McDonald

Assistant Director of Dining Services

kmcdonald@brooklynfriends.org

Dining Services
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Kevin McDonald

Assistant Director of Dining Services

kmcdonald@brooklynfriends.org

Ruth A. McQuiggan

Preschool Associate Teacher, Yellow Room

rmcquiggan@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool
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Ruth A. McQuiggan

Preschool Associate Teacher, Yellow Room

she/her/hers Ruth A. started her career after college working in theater. Soon after, she began working in commercial production as a producer and editor. She eventually directed a documentary about fertility and modern concepts of motherhood. However, Ruth A. shares that her richest experience learning about early childhood came when she stepped away from her professional life to raise her two children. Ruth A. shares that she takes April Fools Day very seriously and looks forward to it each year with much excitement. Ruth A. holds a B.A. in Film from Hampshire College.

rmcquiggan@brooklynfriends.org

Cory Meara-Bainbridge

Lower School Associate Teacher, 2C, Leave Replacement

cmeara-bainbridge@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
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Cory Meara-Bainbridge

Lower School Associate Teacher, 2C, Leave Replacement

she/they Cory earned a BA in Anthropology and Race and Ethnic Studies from Wesleyan University and a MsED in Bilingual Education (English/Spanish) from Hunter College. She has taught at 4 schools in New York City, and 1 in Málaga, Spain. In addition to her work in schools, Cory has worked as the Director of a traveling summer day camp. Her favorite part of being a teacher is that joy, creativity, and care get to be at the center of everything that they do. In her free time, Cory enjoys singing karaoke and knows every word of a very large amount of songs.

cmeara-bainbridge@brooklynfriends.org

Caleb Miller

Middle and Upper School Visual Arts Teacher

cmiller@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School Visual Arts
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Caleb Miller

Middle and Upper School Visual Arts Teacher

he/him/his Caleb has been working in education for 18 years, teaching many age ranges, from Pre-K at Alonzo Daughtry Daycare to high school students at the International Center of Photography. He was a founding teacher at Excellence Boys Charter school, where he taught art to students grades K through 7. At BFS, Caleb has taught many different classes, including: Woodworking, 6th grade Ceramics, 5th grade Art Studio, Digital Photography, Video Production, Sculpture, and US Studio Art. When he is not at school, Caleb enjoys spending time outdoors. He received his BA from Oberlin College and MA from Hunter College.

cmiller@brooklynfriends.org

Tyler Miller

Lower School Associate Teacher, 2B

tmiller@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
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Tyler Miller

Lower School Associate Teacher, 2B

he/him/his After college, Tyler worked as a reporter for his local newspaper in Jamestown, New York, and then headed to New York City to work as a communications assistant at an arts and education based foundation. Tyler then moved over to the food service industry and to coaching tennis. At school, Tyler enjoys watching all of the different personalities grow in an elementary classroom. When he’s not working, you can find Tyler playing tennis at Fort Greene Park or trying out different foods throughout the city. Tyler received his BA from Allegheny College, and is working towards his Masters in Childhood Education at Hunter College.

tmiller@brooklynfriends.org

Kate Minear

Lower School Math Specialist (Grades 3-4)

kminear@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School Mathematics
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Kate Minear

Lower School Math Specialist (Grades 3-4)

she/her/hers After graduating from Swarthmore College, Kate spent one year teaching first and fourth graders at City and Country School. The following year, she started at Brooklyn Friends—and says that this is where she has really grown as a teacher. She loves listening to third and fourth graders talk about math and believes that everyone has important math ideas, and every year hears new, creative ideas. Kate grew up in Portland, Oregon and still considers the Pacific Northwest her second home. Reading and theater are two of her favorite hobbies. In addition to receiving her BA from Swarthmore, she earned her MS from Bank Street College of Education.

kminear@brooklynfriends.org

Jazelyn Montanez '98

Preschool Associate Teacher, Green Room

jmontanez@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool
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Jazelyn Montanez '98

Preschool Associate Teacher, Green Room

Jazz is a singer and dancer who loves to promote an environment of artistic and holistic exploration. She has worked in the Brooklyn Friends School Preschool, Afterschool, and Camps. A marathon runner, she organized the Brooklyn Friends School Community Running Team in 2014, in sponsorship of our Student Financial Aid Fund. Jazz is an anti-bias education leader and has worked as a facilitator for our Upper School Latinx and The Youth Action Project of WPC (White Privilege Conference) student groups. She is an alumna of Brooklyn Friends, graduating in the class of 1998.

jmontanez@brooklynfriends.org

Patrick Morris

Prep Person - Dining Services

emorris@brooklynfrieds.org

Dining Services
×

Patrick Morris

Prep Person - Dining Services

emorris@brooklynfrieds.org

Jamie Morrissey

Physical Education Teacher

jmorrissey@brooklynfriends.org

Athletics
×

Jamie Morrissey

Physical Education Teacher

She/Her/Hers Jamie ran professionally from 2018-2022, with her main event being the 1500 meter run. She has been coaching runners ranging from middle school athletes to first-time marathoners in their 50s since graduation from college. Jamie truly enjoys spending her free time sharing her passion for running. She is a true believer that movement should be fun, and hopes to instill that value in her students. Outside of coaching and teaching, Jamie enjoys live music, ice cream, and dogs! She earned her B.S. in Kinesiology and B.A. in Germanic Studies from the University of Michigan.

jmorrissey@brooklynfriends.org

Hannah Munger

Lower School Head Teacher, 2A

hmunger@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
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Hannah Munger

Lower School Head Teacher, 2A

she/her/hers Before arriving at BFS, Hannah enjoyed working for arts organizations and artists in New York, India, and Germany. She pursued a master's degree in museum education which happily led her to classroom teaching. Before Brooklyn Friends, she taught at two nearby Brooklyn elementary schools. When not at school, Hannah loves to eat, cook, and explore different neighborhoods with her family! She received her BA from Barnard College and her MS from Bank Street College of Education.

hmunger@brooklynfriends.org

Kevin Murungi

Director of Global Civic Engagement and Social Impact

kmurungi@brooklynfriends.org

none
×

Kevin Murungi

Director of Global Civic Engagement and Social Impact

He/Him/His Before arriving at BFS, Kevin was the Director of Global Extensions at Avenues The World School. He deeply enjoys working with young people to activate their global citizenship and develop the core competencies that will enable them to actively, thoughtfully, critically, and ethically engage with the world around them and help make it a more just and sustainable place. He was born and raised in Nairobi, Kenya and encourages everyone to visit Kenya. He loves to travel and is a big fan of football (or what's referred to as soccer in these parts). He received his BA from Middlebury College and his MA from American University.

kmurungi@brooklynfriends.org

Neha Nascimento

Social Justice Programs Coordinator

nnascimento@brooklynfriends.org

Diversity, Equity, and Belonging
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Neha Nascimento

Social Justice Programs Coordinator

she/her Before joining BFS, Neha received her Master of Arts from Wesleyan University where she composed a thesis exploring the lasting impact of COVID-19 on students of color. This background propels her desire to intersect her passion of DEIB work with the real lived experience of students in the aftermath of COVID. She loves how DEIB programming facilitates connection across people. The ability to collaborate and form bonds that transcend identity is what makes her feel inspired to do this work. Neha is passionate about the arts, and believes that storytelling through performing and visual arts is an extremely powerful process. Neha is excited to take opportunities to intersect the arts with DEIB work at Brooklyn Friends.

nnascimento@brooklynfriends.org

Nicole Ngokwey-Andah

World Languages Teacher, 6th Grade Program Coordinator

nngokwey@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School Upper School World Languages
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Nicole Ngokwey-Andah

World Languages Teacher, 6th Grade Program Coordinator

she/her/hers Before arriving at BFS, Nicole taught K-8 French and Spanish in an Independent School on the Upper West Side of Manhattan. One of her favorite parts about being a teacher is to experience students' “a-ha!" moments. She received her BA from Temple University and her MS from Capella University.

nngokwey@brooklynfriends.org

Jason Novak

Head of Lower School

jnovak@brooklynfriends.org

225

Lower School
×

Jason Novak

Head of Lower School

he/him/his Prior to arriving at Brooklyn Friends School, Jason served as the Director of Primary School, K-5 at the Lowell School in Washington, D.C. He has served school populations in Nevada, Washington, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C. in both public and independent school settings. In addition to his roles as school administrator, and formerly as music educator and choral director, Jason worked closely with educational and child advocacy groups, including the National Association for Independent Schools, the Pennsylvania Association of Environmental Educators, the Human Rights Campaign, the Friends Council on Education, and local and national chapters of the American Orff-Schulwerk Association. Jason also has facilitated work in the areas of white identity, white affinity, diversity, and inclusion, and has served as a member of the faculty for the NAIS School Leadership Institute. Jason enjoys spending time outdoors in nature, traveling, and spending time with friends and family. He received his BS in Music Education, K-12, from Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, and his MA in Educational Leadership from Teachers College, Columbia University.

jnovak@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #225

Megan Nuxoll

Chief of Staff

mnuxoll@brooklynfriends.org

210

Head of School's Office
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Megan Nuxoll

Chief of Staff

she/her/hers Prior to arriving at BFS, Megan worked at The Field School in Washington, D.C., where she taught ninth grade English. She loves the opportunity to build bridges across people, departments, and divisions. Working at an independent school is a labor of love for Megan. Megan is a native Midwesterner whose family is regularly surprised she has found herself in Brooklyn. Her two enormous dogs feel similarly. She received her BA from Earlham College and earned her Masters in Private School Leadership from Teachers College at Columbia University.

mnuxoll@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #210

Tiffany Olson

Nurse

tolson@brooklynfriends.org

Health Services
×

Tiffany Olson

Nurse

she/her/hers Tiffany is a Registered Nurse who has worked in a hospital setting, in pediatrics, and in an asthma and allergy clinic. Nurse Tiffany is a refugee from Moldova (in 1996) and shares that she is still enjoying the abundance in this country, especially in regards to the HUGE amount of food options! She received her BS in Nursing, from LIU-Brooklyn.

tolson@brooklynfriends.org

Ana Oropeza-Parra

Preschool and Lower School Librarian

aoropeza-parra@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool Lower School Library
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Ana Oropeza-Parra

Preschool and Lower School Librarian

She/her/hers Ana was a head classroom teacher for grades K-6 for many years. After completing her second MA, she worked as a reading specialist and started her own learning services practice. She also teaches children’s yoga and mindfulness as well social and emotional learning. She joined BFS in the spring of 2022 in a part time capacity as library assistant. Ana shares that her favorite parts of her work are empowering students, witnessing the world through their perspectives, and getting to see their evolution. Ana shares that outside of work, she loves a good road trip (short or long distance) and playing DJ! Ana holds a BA in Psychology and Family Studies from the University of Arizona, an M. ED in Bilingual multicultural education from Northern Arizona University, and an M.A as a Reading Specialist from Teachers College/Columbia University.

aoropeza-parra@brooklynfriends.org

Lisette Ortega

Prep Cook

lortega@brooklynfriends.org

Dining Services
×

Lisette Ortega

Prep Cook

lortega@brooklynfriends.org

Jacqueline Ortiz

All Preschool Assistant and BFX Extended Day Teacher

jortiz@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool BFX Extended Day
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Jacqueline Ortiz

All Preschool Assistant and BFX Extended Day Teacher

she/her/hers Jackie has been teaching at BFS for 20 years. She holds a bachelor's degree in English Literature and a minor in Early Childhood Education. Jackie works as an All Preschool Assistant Teacher in the Preschool and was previously Head Teacher in the Afterschool program, and will be teaching in the new BFX Extended Day program launching in September 2021. Jackie has taught in both Threes and Fours classes. She has a talent for promoting a calm, nurturing and caring environment for children. Additionally, Jackie is very creative and loves to sit with the kids to create arts and crafts. She loves to listen to the creative stories the children come up with and nurtures their love for reading and storytelling. Over the years Jackie has worked one-on-one with children with medical conditions and other special requirements. Outside of school her interests are staying indoors curled up with a good novel, and she's also passionate about writing.

jortiz@brooklynfriends.org

Dora Ortiz Contreras

Custodian

dOrtizContreras@brooklynfriends.org

×

Dora Ortiz Contreras

Custodian

dOrtizContreras@brooklynfriends.org

Daniel Paccione

Interim Head of Upper School

dpaccione@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
×

Daniel Paccione

Interim Head of Upper School

he/him/his Before arriving at BFS, Daniel was the Deputy Head of School for Learning and Support at EF Academy New York. In this role, Daniel led a team of Counselors and University Advisors who were focused on providing the highest quality experience for every single student at our school. Daniel has traveled to 48 countries and looks forward to growing that list! He received his BA from Hunter College and MA from Teachers College, Columbia University.

dpaccione@brooklynfriends.org

Mariano Paniagua

Custodian

MPaniaguaColas@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

Mariano Paniagua

Custodian

MPaniaguaColas@brooklynfriends.org

Danielle Perkins

Middle School English Teacher

dperkins@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School
×

Danielle Perkins

Middle School English Teacher

she/her/hers Danielle has been teaching for 12 years, in both public and charter schools. Her passion has always been working with middle school students, and she also loves curriculum writing. These two passions opened doors for her to write curriculum for several national organizations, including the National Summer School Initiative and MicroSociety. Danielle shares that she loves talking with students about their big ideas, and that hearing the way that they make connections and explore the content is truly the most wonderful part of her job. Outside of the workday, Danielle loves storytelling and has dabbled in writing poetry and short stories. Danielle has a Master’s in Secondary Education from the Relay Graduate School of Education, a Master’s in Secondary Education from the University of Missouri St. Louis, and a Bachelor’s Degree from The King’s College.

dperkins@brooklynfriends.org

Heather Phan

Upper School Science Teacher

hphan@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School Science
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Heather Phan

Upper School Science Teacher

She/Her/Hers Heather received her B.Ed from Ontario Institute for Studies in Education of the University of Toronto (B.Ed) and B.Sc (Honors Biology) from The University of Western Ontario. Prior to arriving at BFS, Heather taught at schools around the world including in South Korea, Canada, Shenzhen, China, Hong Kong, and London. Most recently, she taught Middle School Science at UNIS here in New York City. Heather enjoys forming positive bonds with her students and colleagues. Outside of school, Heather enjoys spending time with her dog Ernie!

hphan@brooklynfriends.org

Tina Piccolo

Middle and Upper School Visual Arts Teacher

tpiccolo@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School Visual Arts Upper School
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Tina Piccolo

Middle and Upper School Visual Arts Teacher

she/her/hers Before arriving at BFS, Tina was an art director and designed and manufactured electronic jewelry. She also previously worked at Roy H. Mann Middle School and The Heschel School. She loves being in the classroom with her students, while watching them gain confidence and joy in their art-making process. She loves birds, and has them as pets, Tina is also a “crow whisperer!” She received her BFA from Cooper Union and MA from Brooklyn College. She also has a Certification from Bank Street School of Education.

tpiccolo@brooklynfriends.org

Joanna Pimentel

Custodian

jpimentel@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

Joanna Pimentel

Custodian

jpimentel@brooklynfriends.org

Jamie Pine

Associate Director of Admissions and Retention

jpine@brooklynfriends.org

Enrollment
×

Jamie Pine

Associate Director of Admissions and Retention

Before arriving at Brooklyn Friends, Jamie served as the Assistant Director of Admissions at Middlesex School in Concord, MA. While there, she also worked in social media, communications, and marketing, coached tennis and squash, taught a global studies class, and was a dorm parent. About her work at Brooklyn Friends, Jamie shares that she enjoys meeting prospective BFS families and sharing all that is special about our community. She also appreciates getting to know current BFS students through her work! Outside of work, she loves playing tennis, reading, and finding any excuse to talk about her home state of Rhode Island!

jpine@brooklynfriends.org

Mary Post

Preschool Dance Consultant

mpost@brooklynfriends.org

×

Mary Post

Preschool Dance Consultant

Before arriving at Brooklyn Friends, Mary was the PreK, Kindergarten and 1st grade dance teacher at The Berkeley Carroll School for 15 years. Mary currently also teaches dance to twos, threes, fours, and Kindergarteners at The Riverside Church Weekday School where she’s worked for 12 years. Mary studied in the Teacher’s College Dance Education Master’s Degree program and approaches her work from the perspective of play-based learning. She uses Laban concepts and explores dance through the lens of space, time, energy and shape. Mary uses a great deal of literature in her work and loves helping children explore words kinesthetically.

mpost@brooklynfriends.org

Alyssa Postman Putzel

Lower School Learning Specialist

apostmanputzel@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Alyssa Postman Putzel

Lower School Learning Specialist

she/her/hers Prior to arriving at BFS, Alyssa taught elementary special education for 10 years, initially in charter schools and most recently for seven years at Mary McDowell Friends School. She greatly enjoys watching students grow, not only in academics, but in their confidence over the course of each year, and as they realize greater access to all the doors that literacy can open! Alyssa’s favorite places in NYC are the Brooklyn Botanic Garden and Governor's Island. She has a B.S. from Northwestern University and an MAT from National Louis University.

apostmanputzel@brooklynfriends.org

Matthew Presto

Middle School Math Teacher

mpresto@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School Mathematics
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Matthew Presto

Middle School Math Teacher

they/them Prior to coming to BFS, Matt worked as a baker and a cook. They enjoy imparting their passion for mathematics to children. Outside of work, they recently took up rock climbing and skateboarding, and they enjoy playing board games. They received their BA from Oberlin College and their MS.Ed. from Bank Street College of Education.

mpresto@brooklynfriends.org

Melissa Providence

Director of Enrollment Management

mprovidence@brooklynfriends.org

Enrollment
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Melissa Providence

Director of Enrollment Management

she/her/hers Before arriving at Brooklyn Friends, Melissa worked in admissions and placement for 15 years at schools and community based organizations, mostly in New York. Melissa shares that her favorite part of enrollment work is getting to know families and seeing how much growth happens during the school-search process. When asked to share some fun facts about herself, Melissa shared that she is a first generation American citizen, she lives and commutes to and from Queens each day, and she LOVES her daily coffee (hot or iced, morning or night). Melissa holds a BA from the University of Pennsylvania.

mprovidence@brooklynfriends.org

Michael Rae-Grant

Lower School Head Teacher, 1A

mraegrant@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
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Michael Rae-Grant

Lower School Head Teacher, 1A

he/him/his Before arriving on Pearl Street, Michael taught 1st and 2nd grade in Brooklyn for 11 years and then taught Master’s courses at Teachers College, Columbia University, worked as a staff developer supporting several schools in growing their K-2 literacy practices, and designed a line of "decodable" books for early readers. Michael shares that he loves helping students learn together, laugh together, and grow into the citizenry our democracy needs. He also enjoys learning about New York City history. Michael holds a BA in English from Yale University, an MSEd in Childhood Education from Hunter College, and is working toward an EdD in Curriculum & Teaching from Teachers College, Columbia University.

mraegrant@brooklynfriends.org

Jay Rapp

Assistant Director of Alumni Engagement & Strategic Initiatives

jrapp@brooklynfriends.org

Advancement
×

Jay Rapp

Assistant Director of Alumni Engagement & Strategic Initiatives

he/him/his Jay began his career teaching at-risk students in a public school, served as assistant principal for a large middle school for three years, and worked at a day and Fountain Valley boarding school in Colorado, where he started as Assistant Director of Admission and moved into Director of Residential Life and Director of Studies. Most recently, Jay was a consultant for Mission & Data and served as their Leadership Strategist and Executive Coach. He loves working with different constituency groups in support of education. In his time away from work, Jay loves to travel and has been to more than 25 different countries around the world. He has a BA from Kalamazoo College, an MA from Eastern Michigan University, and is a Certified Executive Coach, iPEC.

jrapp@brooklynfriends.org

Vanessa Reynolds

Dean of Financial Aid and Associate Director of Preschool Enrollment

vreynolds@brooklynfriends.org

526

Enrollment
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Vanessa Reynolds

Dean of Financial Aid and Associate Director of Preschool Enrollment

she/her/hers Before arriving at BFS in 2008, Vanessa was an early childhood teacher and a bassoonist. She enjoys getting to know families when they first come to Brooklyn Friends, and seeing all that they bring to the BFS community over the years. Vanessa enjoys traveling, exploring, and learning new things with her daughter, their family, and friends. Vanessa received a Bachelor of Music from the Eastman School of Music, a Master of Music from the Yale School of Music, and Master of Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

vreynolds@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #526

Michael Reynoso

Utility Person

mreynoso@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

Michael Reynoso

Utility Person

mreynoso@brooklynfriends.org

Joy Roberts

Co-Director, BFX Extended Day & BFS Summer Experience

jroberts@brooklynfriends.org

213

BFX Extended Day
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Joy Roberts

Co-Director, BFX Extended Day & BFS Summer Experience

she/her/hers Joy has been part of the BFS community since 2014. This is her third year co-managing the BFX Extended Day program. Before coming to Brooklyn Friends, Joy spent many years in healthcare as an educator and advocate, and is also a licensed acupuncturist. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Community Health Education from Hunter College, and a Masters in Chinese Medicine from the NY College of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Joy loves writing, watercolor painting, the outdoors, and hanging out at home in Westchester with her sweet kitty Gracie!

jroberts@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #213

Doris Rodriguez-Graber

Lower School Visual Arts Teacher

drodriguez-graber@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School Visual Arts
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Doris Rodriguez-Graber

Lower School Visual Arts Teacher

she/her Prior to arriving at Brooklyn Friends, Doris worked in a variety of educational programs including the New York public schools through the Studio in a School Program, the Miami Dade County Public School system, and the Classical Charter Schools in the South Bronx. She is a passionate art educator and artist. In her classroom, she strives to create an atmosphere conducive to inquiry, skill development, collaboration, and creativity. She has exhibited internationally and participated in artist in residence programs in Miami and Abu Dhabi. She painted murals in Harlem and the Lower East Side, working with an arts coalition to uplift communities through art. She also illustrated several children’s books. Doris received her MS in Arts Education from Florida International University and her BFA in Illustration from Parsons School of Design.

drodriguez-graber@brooklynfriends.org

Verónica Rodriguez-Torres

Upper School World Languages Teacher

vrodriguez@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School World Languages
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Verónica Rodriguez-Torres

Upper School World Languages Teacher

she/her/hers Before coming to Brooklyn Friends, Verónica taught beginners to advanced level college courses at both Columbia University and Lebanon Valley College. She feels that a well-planned language class can be a true lesson in intercultural and international awareness. That it exposes children not only to realities different than their own, but it can also lead them to evaluate how their lifestyle and points of view are just one way among many equally valid ones of approaching the world. She has an 8-year-old beagle named Ludovicus Maximus Josephus Rodríguez Romanov. Verónica received her BA from Universidad de Puerto Rico and her PhD from Columbia University.

vrodriguez@brooklynfriends.org

Robenson Romaine

Safety & Security Officer

rromain@brooklynfriends.org

Security
×

Robenson Romaine

Safety & Security Officer

rromain@brooklynfriends.org

Maegen J. Rose

Director of Library Program and Upper School Librarian

mjrose@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School Library
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Maegen J. Rose

Director of Library Program and Upper School Librarian

mjrose@brooklynfriends.org

Brandon Roth

Philosophy, Religion and Ethics and Theory of Knowledge Teacher

broth@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
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Brandon Roth

Philosophy, Religion and Ethics and Theory of Knowledge Teacher

he/him/his Before arriving at BFS, Brandon taught introductory philosophy courses at Stony Brook University and at William Paterson University. He also worked on an organic vegetable farm for two years. He enjoys when students express wonder at questions or perspectives they had never considered before. Outside of school, he likes to do Crossfit and to listen to the music of Bob Dylan—but not usually at the same time. He received his BA from Swarthmore College and a Ph.D. from Stony Brook University.

broth@brooklynfriends.org

M'Balia Rubie - Miller

Middle School Learning Specialist & All School Learning Support Coordinator

mrubiemiller@brooklynfriends.org

260

Middle School
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M'Balia Rubie - Miller

Middle School Learning Specialist & All School Learning Support Coordinator

she/her/hers Prior to Brooklyn Friends, M'Balia worked at charter and public schools, in both middle and elementary levels as a classroom teacher and as a coordinator of academic support. Learning specialists often have the opportunity to work with students for more than one year and she finds it extremely rewarding to witness the progress and growth that happens over multiple years. She is a proud native New Yorker! She received a BA in Psychology and an MSEd in Special Education.

mrubiemiller@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #260

Charlie Russell

Assistant Controller

crussell@brooklynfriends.org

223

Finance
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Charlie Russell

Assistant Controller

he/him/his Prior to arriving at BFS, Charlie worked in educational finances as the business manager of a preschool for several years. He also served as a financial consultant for a firm supporting charter schools in the New York City area. When he is not at school, Charlie loves basketball and has played in a Thursday night game religiously for at least 25 years. He received his BA from Drew University and his MA from Rutgers. He also has a Certificate in Accounting from City University of New York.

crussell@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #223

Katie Ryan

Lower & Middle School Librarian

kryan@brooklynfriends.org

Library Middle School
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Katie Ryan

Lower & Middle School Librarian

she/her/hers Before coming to BFS, Katie worked for six years as an elementary and middle school librarian in Franklin Park, Illinois. The favorite part of her job is sharing books and stories with children and young people. Katie has an identical twin sister who also lives in Brooklyn. If you say hello to someone you think is her and they look confused, it's probably her! She received her BA from Elmhurst University and her MLIS from Dominican University.

kryan@brooklynfriends.org

Maria Sanchez

Middle School Math Teacher

mariasanchez@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School Mathematics
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Maria Sanchez

Middle School Math Teacher

she/her/hers Maria loves working with middle school students, having taught 5th through 8th grade throughout her career. She is passionate about math. However, in addition to teaching content, she believes that students need to be empowered to view themselves as mathematicians. One of her goals in every class is to foster a growth mindset by encouraging students to take risks, embrace mistakes, and continue to challenge themselves. Maria lives in Queens with her son and enjoys reading, dancing, working out, going to the beach, and spending time with family and friends. Maria holds a BS in Computer Science and an MS in Mathematics Education from Brooklyn College.

mariasanchez@brooklynfriends.org

Rose Sanchez

Custodian

rsanchez@brooklynfriends.org

Facilities
×

Rose Sanchez

Custodian

rsanchez@brooklynfriends.org

Tammy Small

Assistant Director of Enrollment

tsmall@brooklynfriends.org

Enrollment
×

Tammy Small

Assistant Director of Enrollment

she/her/hers Tammy began her career serving as a counselor for boarding school students. This role gave her an opportunity to visit some incredible learning institutions while supporting students on their academic journeys. This experience inspired her career in recruitment and admissions, primarily at organizations that prepared students for independent schools, and most recently at a charter school network. Tammy has also managed after-school and summer camp teen travel programs across New York City. In her work, she truly enjoys connecting families and students to new educational opportunities and supporting their academic journeys through adulthood. Tammy was born in Guyana and loves Caribbean culture.

tsmall@brooklynfriends.org

Angel Soba

Social Justice Programs Coordinator

asoba@brooklynfriends.org

Diversity, Equity, and Belonging
×

Angel Soba

Social Justice Programs Coordinator

they/he Prior to arriving at BFS, Angel did activist work centered around youth engagement, community development, and food justice. Angel worked on a Meal Resources Project locating free meals for students K-12 during the pandemic, and did curriculum writing focused on food justice for a nonprofit as part of a social entrepreneurship program for high schoolers. Angel is passionate about amplifying the voices of marginalized individuals and communities. They believe that the answers to our most pressing societal issues often already exist and have been imagined within the affected populations. Providing tools and infrastructure for these visions and solutions is what Angel is most excited to do. Outside of school, Angel enjoys trying new foods and exploring new cuisines. They also see food as not only a resource, but as a political tool and a cultural and societal element that strengthens community bonds! Angel received a Bachelor's of Arts Degree from University of Chicago where they majored in Environmental and Urban Studies and minored in Spanish.

asoba@brooklynfriends.org

Tony Soll

Early Childhood Sing Teacher

tsoll@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool Performing Arts
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Tony Soll

Early Childhood Sing Teacher

Tony has had many jobs in addition to being a music specialist at BFS, including in childrens’ book production, as a professional bass player, and as a teacher at Bank Street School for Children, the Brooklyn New School, and, of course BFS. He received his BA from City College and his MS from Bank Street College of Education.

tsoll@brooklynfriends.org

Cam Solomon-Clarke

Upper School Dean

cclarke@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
×

Cam Solomon-Clarke

Upper School Dean

she/they Prior to arriving at BFS, Cam taught middle and upper school history for six years in various NYC independent schools. In those school communities, she also helped to build the DEIB programs. She truly enjoys building connections, and spaces of safety for all in school communities. Cam is a huge foodie and shares that she will always be down to try out some new foods! Cam received a BA in Human Rights and a BA in Philosophy from Trinity College, and an MSEd from the Independent School Teaching Residency Program at UPenn Graduate School of Education.

cclarke@brooklynfriends.org

Eliseo Sosa Rodriguez

First Cook

esosarodriguez@brooklynfriends.org

Dining Services
×

Eliseo Sosa Rodriguez

First Cook

esosarodriguez@brooklynfriends.org

Elena Speridakos

Lower School Learning Specialist (K&1)

esperidakos@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Elena Speridakos

Lower School Learning Specialist (K&1)

she/her/hers Before arriving at Brooklyn Friends School, Elena taught at independent schools for the past eight years in Seattle, Mumbai, and Washington, D.C. She especially loves working with early childhood learners. When she is not teaching, Elena loves doing Zumba, exploring new cities, making pottery, and spending time with her dogs. She received her BA from Denison University and her Ed.M. from Harvard Graduate School of Education.

esperidakos@brooklynfriends.org

Michal Stobierski

Upper School Science Teacher

mstobierski@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School Science
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Michal Stobierski

Upper School Science Teacher

he/him/his Prior to arriving at Brooklyn Friends, Michal taught IB Physics at UNIS. Michal most enjoys working directly with students, be it by facilitating classroom discussions and activities or through office hours or extra curricular opportunities. Michal has very broad interests in the humanities. He enjoys discussing history, geography, philosophy, and linguistics. Michal received his Bachelor's of Science and Master's of Science degrees in physics from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

mstobierski@brooklynfriends.org

Brian Sullivan

Assistant Head of Upper School for Academics

bsullivan@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
×

Brian Sullivan

Assistant Head of Upper School for Academics

He/Him/His Before arriving at Brooklyn Friends, Brian taught at several independent schools in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. He also spent years working with young people in summer camps as well as delivering pizza for Dominos (very well, he adds!) Brian holds an M.A. in the Teaching of Social Studies and a B.A. in History and Political Science.

bsullivan@brooklynfriends.org

Thomas Talty

Physical Education Teacher and BFX Extended Day Lower/Middle School Coordinator

ttalty@brooklynfriends.org

BFX Extended Day Athletics
×

Thomas Talty

Physical Education Teacher and BFX Extended Day Lower/Middle School Coordinator

he/him/his Before arriving at Brooklyn Friends, Tommy taught Kindergarten and 1st grade at KIPP: THRIVE Academy. Tommy loves getting to witness the growth of his students and student-athletes over time. In his free time, Tommy is an avid golf and softball player. He received a B.A. in Economics from The University of Connecticut and is currently enrolled in an M.Ed. program in Sports Administration at The University of Miami.

ttalty@brooklynfriends.org

Nancy Tanney

Preschool Music Consultant

ntanney@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool Performing Arts
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Nancy Tanney

Preschool Music Consultant

Nancy is the Preschool Music teacher and is in her 15th year teaching at Brooklyn Friends School. Once a week, Nancy teaches songs and rhythm instruments, and helps everyone move and groove to music! In past years Nancy has taught Music at the Family Center and to our Kindergarteners. She has also taught Science in the Kindergarten and First Grade.

ntanney@brooklynfriends.org

Idiatou Thiam

Middle School Humanities Teacher

ithiam@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School
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Idiatou Thiam

Middle School Humanities Teacher

She/Her Before arriving at BFS, Idiatou was a second grade science teacher for five years. She enjoys meeting and getting to know new people each school year. Idiatou enjoys listening to music. She received her undergraduate degree from Pennsylvania State University and her Masters at RELAY Graduate school.

ithiam@brooklynfriends.org

Sharesa Thomas

Athletic Trainer

sthomas@brooklynfriends.org

Athletics
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Sharesa Thomas

Athletic Trainer

she/her Before Brooklyn Friends, Sharesa worked at Harlem Children's Zone Promise Academy 1, working with high school and middle school basketball players as they competed at summer basketball tournaments throughout Harlem. Prior to that, she worked as an athletic trainer with professional athletes, student athletes, and older adults at many different organizations. She shares that her work as an athletic trainer doesn't feel like work at all. Outside of Brooklyn Friends, Sharesa is an avid plant mom as well as human mom. Sharesa holds a BA in sociology from Stony Brook University and an MS in Athletic Training from Seton Hall University.

sthomas@brooklynfriends.org

Jamie Tomik

Lower School Head Teacher, 1B

jtomik@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
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Jamie Tomik

Lower School Head Teacher, 1B

she/ her/ hers Jamie graduated from James Madison University, majoring in interdisciplinary liberal studies and minoring both in elementary education and photography. She received her masters in teaching from the same school. Prior to BFS, Jamie worked at Sidwell Friends School in DC for five years. In addition to co-teaching, Jamie was the lower school's service learning clerk. Prior to working at Sidwell, Jamie worked in public school in general education inclusion classrooms, collaborating with special education teachers. When Jamie is not at school, you can find her road tripping/ visiting roadside attractions, attending concerts, crafting, reading, and hiking/camping.

jtomik@brooklynfriends.org

Brett Topel

Director of Communications & Marketing; Assistant Coach, Girls Middle School Softball

btopel@brooklynfriends.org

209

Advancement Athletics
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Brett Topel

Director of Communications & Marketing; Assistant Coach, Girls Middle School Softball

he/him/his Prior to arriving at Brooklyn Friends School, Brett was the Director of Communications at Buckley Country Day School on Long Island for seven years. He enjoys being able to collaborate with many different people who all have the same goal—doing what's right for the students. He has written five books about baseball—four of which are about the New York Mets. He also loves Peking Duck and the Filet-o-Fish sandwich! He received his BA from Hofstra University.

btopel@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #209

Brian Tridgell

Upper School History Teacher

btridgell@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
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Brian Tridgell

Upper School History Teacher

he/him/his Before arriving at Brooklyn Friends, Brian taught IB economics, IGCSE Global Perspectives, and ESL Geography at an international boarding school in Westchester County, New York. Prior to that he taught IB economics and Social Studies at an international school in Abu Dhabi in the UAE. Brian loves to share his passion for current events, economics, and history with his students. He received a BA from the University of Minnesota and an M.Ed in Teaching Social Studies.

btridgell@brooklynfriends.org

Eliza Van Rootselaar

Lower School Head Teacher, 2B

evanrootselaar@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Eliza Van Rootselaar

Lower School Head Teacher, 2B

she/her/hers For several years prior to teaching, Eliza waited tables and loved it! She worked at one restaurant in particular for five years and it became her family and her second home. It also afforded her the opportunity to travel the world. Eliza has lived in Amsterdam and has traveled to Indonesia, Japan, Colombia, and hiked the Inca trail that leads to Machu Picchu in Peru. One of her favorite things is laughing with second graders! She received her undergraduate degree from Hunter College and her MS from Brooklyn College.

evanrootselaar@brooklynfriends.org

Julieta Varela

Lower School Associate Teacher, KA

jvarela@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
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Julieta Varela

Lower School Associate Teacher, KA

She, her, hers She, her, hers Julieta attended Hunter College and received a double major BA in Studio Art and Art History. She is currently pursuing her Masters Degree at CCNY in Early Childhood Education. Julieta spent the last three years teaching at Little Red Elizabeth Irwin, as a Kindergarten, First, and Third Grade Teacher. Before that she worked for 5 years as an art teacher in public schools across all of the five boroughs, for preschool through high school students. Julieta's favorite part of teaching is getting to collaborate with many creative, caring, and playful people, of all ages. She loves adventuring throughout the city for good friends, art and music.

jvarela@brooklynfriends.org

Linda E. Villamarin

Preschool Associate Teacher, Red Room

lvillamarin@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool
×

Linda E. Villamarin

Preschool Associate Teacher, Red Room

she/her/hers Prior to arriving at BFS, Linda volunteered at PS 64. She loves observing children, asking questions, and developing relationships with them on a deeper level. When she is not at school, Linda enjoys spending time with her family, reading books, and listening to music. She received her BA from Brooklyn College, he AS from Borough Manhattan Community College and also attended the University of Guayaquil in Ecuador.

lvillamarin@brooklynfriends.org

Isaiah Vogler

Custodian

ivogler@brooklynfriends.org

×

Isaiah Vogler

Custodian

ivogler@brooklynfriends.org

Bina Vora

All Preschool Assistant and BFX Extended Day Teacher

bvora@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool BFX Extended Day
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Bina Vora

All Preschool Assistant and BFX Extended Day Teacher

Before arriving at BFS, Bina worked with elementary age students with challenging behaviors and provided support for them to meet all curriculum learning. Working with young children brings Bina pure joy! She likes to enjoy all aspects of life, especially engaging in conversations of positivity and where she gets to learn something new. Bina also enjoys Indian vegetarian cooking! She received her B.A. in Psychology.

bvora@brooklynfriends.org

Trish Walkin

Lower School Administrative Assistant

twalkin@brooklynfriends.org

226

Lower School
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Trish Walkin

Lower School Administrative Assistant

she/her/hers Prior to arriving at BFS, Trish worked at the Plymouth Church School in Brooklyn Heights. She also worked for the Metropolitan Transportation Authority. She enjoys being a part of the BFS community and working with “inspiring, extraordinary, and committed colleagues.” Trish’s daughter, Sarah, was a BFS “Lifer” and a member of the Class of 2011. Her passions include cooking, sports, Fantasy Football, manatees, and music. She is an avid Bruce Springsteen fan, having seen him in concert well over 150 times! Trish received her AAS in Business Technology from Nassau Community College.

twalkin@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #226

Kaila Warner-Haakmat

Middle School Counselor

kwarnerhaakmat@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School
×

Kaila Warner-Haakmat

Middle School Counselor

she/her/hers Kaila began her career doing prison re-entry and bail reform work in Brooklyn. She has done extensive work connecting court-involved people to community resources and providing mental health support. Just before arriving at BFS, Kaila served as a middle school counselor at another independent school in Brooklyn and is passionate about working with people, understanding that everyone has unique and complex identities that impact how they interact with the world. She loves traveling, baking, organizing, and spending time with loved ones in her free time. Kaila received her BS from the University of Delaware & LMSW from Hunter College, Silberman School of Social Work.

kwarnerhaakmat@brooklynfriends.org

Eva Warren

Lower School Head Teacher, 4B

ewarren@brooklynfriends.org

Lower School
×

Eva Warren

Lower School Head Teacher, 4B

she/her/hers Before arriving at BFS, Eva taught third grade at a small progressive school in Red Hook, NJ, as well as at a special education school on the Upper West Side called Gateway. Her favorite part of teaching is making connections with students and learning from them. When she is not at school, Eva loves spending time outdoors with her puppy, Roo. She received her BA from Sarah Lawrence College and her MSEd from Bank Street College of Education.

ewarren@brooklynfriends.org

Lisa Whitbeck

Preschool Head Teacher - Leave Replacement (January 2024)

lwhitbeck@brooklynfriends.org

Preschool
×

Lisa Whitbeck

Preschool Head Teacher - Leave Replacement (January 2024)

lwhitbeck@brooklynfriends.org

E Wolfson

BFX Extended Day Guide

ewolfson@brooklynfriends.org

BFX Extended Day
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E Wolfson

BFX Extended Day Guide

E is thrilled to be joining the BFS community as an Extended Day Guide! E studied Theatre and Psychology at Williams College, focusing on LGBTQ+ psychology and development, and is passionate about mental health advocacy. In her free time, E enjoys making ice cream, reading fantasy books, singing, and baking challah. At BFX, E enjoys drawing with the students and chatting during snack time.

ewolfson@brooklynfriends.org

Dr. Tiffany Wright

Assistant Head of Upper School for Student Life

twright@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
×

Dr. Tiffany Wright

Assistant Head of Upper School for Student Life

she/her/hers Dr. Tiffany Wright arrived at BFS prior to the 2021–2022 school year and brings a great deal of experience to the role of Middle School English Teacher. When she is not working with students in the classroom, she loves to travel. Dr. Tiffany received her BA from SUNY Albany, an MS from the College of Saint Rose, and an Ed.D from the University of San Francisco.

twright@brooklynfriends.org

Lin Yang

Associate Director of College Counseling

liyang@brooklynfriends.org

318

Upper School College Counseling
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Lin Yang

Associate Director of College Counseling

she/her/hers Spending a year teaching physical sciences at Astrocamp in Idyllwild, California confirmed Lin’s love for education. It also motivated her to help create more equitable access to education. Before joining the BFS College Counseling Team, Lin worked at the Harvey Mudd College Office of Admissions, as well as the St. Mark's School (MA) College Counseling Office. Lin shares that she believes that it's a privilege to be a part of a student’s college search, which is a very personal decision-making and transition process. She feels like she really gets to know the students through helping them move towards their goals. Outside of BFS, Lin enjoys being outside. She also enjoys spicy food, fruits, and noodles! Lin received her B.S. in Applied Physics from Harvey Mudd College.

liyang@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #318

Nitya York

Head of Middle School

nyork@brooklynfriends.org

221

Middle School
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Nitya York

Head of Middle School

she/her/hers The majority of Nitya’s professional years have been in education and administration. Before arriving at BFS, she was most recently the Dean of Students for 7th & 8th grades at The Packer Collegiate Institute. Nitya is an English teacher at heart and a huge fan of Young Adult Fiction. She is an avid biker and can be seen zipping around the streets of Brooklyn (and sometimes Manhattan) on her Surly—very often with her daughter, Harlow, in tow. She received her BS from SUNY Fredonia, her MS from SUNY Fredonia, and her MS.Ed from Teachers College Columbia University.

nyork@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #221

Clarence Zachery

Chief Financial and Operations Officer

czachery@brooklynfriends.org

656

Finance
×

Clarence Zachery

Chief Financial and Operations Officer

he/him/his Before arriving at BFS, Clarence served as an investment banker, private equity professional, and university and public school finance and operations professional. Outside of Brooklyn Friends, he also coaches many youth sports and serves as a mentor. He received his BA from Yale University, his JD from the Georgetown University Law Center, his MBA from the Georgetown University McDonough School of Business, and his LLM from the University of Arizona.

czachery@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #656

Maritza Zapata

Upper School Administrative Assistant

mzapata@brooklynfriends.org

Upper School
×

Maritza Zapata

Upper School Administrative Assistant

mzapata@brooklynfriends.org

Jingyi Zhang

7th-12th Grade Mandarin Teacher & World Languages Department Chair

jzhang@brooklynfriends.org

Middle School Upper School World Languages
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Jingyi Zhang

7th-12th Grade Mandarin Teacher & World Languages Department Chair

she/her/hers Jingyi grew up in Xi'an, China, which was the ancient capital of the 13 dynasties in Chinese history. Before coming to Brooklyn Friends, she taught Mandarin to 6-8th grade students at Village Community School in Tribeca. She also taught AP Mandarin courses in a New York City Public High School, where she designed the Mandarin curriculum. She received her BA from Shaanxi Normal University in China and her MA in TESOL & Foreign Language Education from NYU.

jzhang@brooklynfriends.org

Colleague Spotlight

Cam Solomon-Clarke

Upper School Dean

×

Cam Solomon-Clarke

Upper School Dean

she/they Prior to arriving at BFS, Cam taught middle and upper school history for six years in various NYC independent schools. In those school communities, she also helped to build the DEIB programs. She truly enjoys building connections, and spaces of safety for all in school communities. Cam is a huge foodie and shares that she will always be down to try out some new foods! Cam received a BA in Human Rights and a BA in Philosophy from Trinity College, and an MSEd from the Independent School Teaching Residency Program at UPenn Graduate School of Education.

cclarke@brooklynfriends.org

Idiatou Thiam

Middle School Humanities Teacher

×

Idiatou Thiam

Middle School Humanities Teacher

She/Her Before arriving at BFS, Idiatou was a second grade science teacher for five years. She enjoys meeting and getting to know new people each school year. Idiatou enjoys listening to music. She received her undergraduate degree from Pennsylvania State University and her Masters at RELAY Graduate school.

ithiam@brooklynfriends.org

Katie Banks

Assistant Head of Lower School for Academics

×

Katie Banks

Assistant Head of Lower School for Academics

she/her/hers Before arriving at BFS, Katie was a classroom teacher for 12 years, teaching English on a Fulbright Fellowship to Taiwan to 1st–6th graders. Following that, Katie taught 4th grade, 3rd grade, and 1st grade in independent schools in New York. When she is not at BFS, Katie enjoys baking and reading all sorts of books. She received her B.A. from Vassar College, her MSed from Bank Street College, and her M.A. from Teachers College.

kbanks@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #245

Rachel Kleinman

Preschool Head Teacher, Orange Room

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Rachel Kleinman

Preschool Head Teacher, Orange Room

she/her/hers Before arriving on Pearl Street, Rachel taught preschool in Brookline, MA. She shares that she loves that each day in the Preschool is a new and exciting adventure. Rachel loves to read in her free time. Rachel holds a B.A. from Lewis and Clark College as well as an M.S.Ed. from Bank Street College of Education.

rkleinman@brooklynfriends.org

Sharon Carter

Preschool Head Teacher, Red Room

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Sharon Carter

Preschool Head Teacher, Red Room

Sharon is an expert early childhood educator in her 30th year at Brooklyn Friends School. She particularly enjoys crafting nurturing and holistic curriculum ideas, mentoring new teachers, and working to support parents. Sharon is a graduate of Medgar Evers College (CUNY University) in Early Childhood Education. She is passionate about social justice and building communities in the classroom and beyond.

scarter@brooklynfriends.org

Ext. #349

Stephen Eckert

Middle School Drama Teacher and Productions Manager

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Stephen Eckert

Middle School Drama Teacher and Productions Manager

he/him/they/them Stephen has been a theatre-maker for more than a decade, directing musical theatre, opera, and performance art throughout the U.S. and in London. He most recently founded a middle school Shakespeare program while teaching 8th grade Humanities in New York. When he is not teaching or directing, he is a big Dungeons & Dragons player. He received his BA and BFA degrees from Tulane and an MFA from Carnegie Mellon University.

seckert@brooklynfriends.org

Sarah Gordon

Lower School Head Teacher, 3A

×

Sarah Gordon

Lower School Head Teacher, 3A

she/her/hers Sarah has been teaching at BFS since 2006. Before coming to BFS, she did fieldwork at Manhattan School for Children in first and fourth grades and in a literacy clinic. Her favorite part of teaching is helping foster a strong classroom community where kids become empowered learners and great friends. When she is not at BFS, she sings Yiddish music at festivals around the world. She received her BA from Sarah Lawrence College and her MA from Bank Street College of Education.

sgordon@brooklynfriends.org

Dr. Tiffany Wright

Assistant Head of Upper School for Student Life

×

Dr. Tiffany Wright

Assistant Head of Upper School for Student Life

she/her/hers Dr. Tiffany Wright arrived at BFS prior to the 2021–2022 school year and brings a great deal of experience to the role of Middle School English Teacher. When she is not working with students in the classroom, she loves to travel. Dr. Tiffany received her BA from SUNY Albany, an MS from the College of Saint Rose, and an Ed.D from the University of San Francisco.

twright@brooklynfriends.org

``The genuine relationships that BFS teachers create with the children speaks to how special and unique they are as people and professionals.”

Lower School Parent