2019 Emerging Leaders Conference

Meet our speakers 


William Goodloe

Keynote Speaker

Since William joined SEO as President & CEO in 2001, he and the SEO team have focused on steadily enhancing SEO’s programs targeting young people underserved and/or underrepresented at top colleges and in coveted industries.(more) 

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Kim Ashby Fowler

Panelist-  Employer Compliance and  Protections for LGBTQ  Employees and Sexual Harassment Laws

Kim Ashby Fowler is the founding principal of RestorativeHR, a human resources consultancy. For the past ten years she has advised the business and non-profit communities on legal compliance, harassment & discrimination prevention issues.... (more)


Erol Bal

Panelist- Next Gen:  Streamlining Organizational Operations with Technology

Erol Bal is the Community Development Specialist at the flagship Microsoft Store NYC. His lifelong motto is “meeting people is easy!” From working over 10 years in the entertainment industry for various TV networks and TV shows to switching gears into the business world, he has been successful in bringing his unique skill...(more)

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Gaurav (Mike) Bawa

Panelist- Career Advancement & Professional Development 

“Gaurav (Mike) Bawa has served as the Associate Director of the New York Community Trust Leadership Fellows since August 2015. Prior to joining the Fellowship, Gaurav served as the Director of Marketing & Communications for  (more)

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Nerou Cheng, CPA

Trainer- Executive Director Oversight of Finance & Employee Fraud

Nerou Cheng, CPA, is the founder and Managing Partner of NCheng LLP, a multi-cultural accounting and advisory firm based in New York.  Over the past 30 years, Nerou has built NCheng LLP into an 110-person firm dedicated exclusively to serving.... (more

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Dr. De Lacy Davis

Panelist- Trends in Faith-Based Human Service Organizations

Currently, De Lacy Davis is Director of De Lacy Davis Consultants, LLC, where he leads a team of talented professionals from around the United States of America with expertise in the areas of education, organizational development, organizational leadership, police practices...(more)

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Barbara Diggs

Panelist- Health & Wellness in the Workplace

Barbara Diggs is Vice President - Account Executive for Alliant Insurance Services. She has been in the Insurance Business since 1999. Her role is to manage and facilitate day to day activities with her team, while maintaining a strong client base. Barbara’s client base consists of mostly Non Profit organizations including but not limited to Community Health Centers, Nursing Home... (more)

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Rob Fields

Panelist- Why the Arts Matter:  Leading While Black During a Time of Change

Rob Fields is the President & Executive Director of Brooklyn’s Weeksville Heritage Center, a black historic house museum.  He recently spearheaded a crowdsourcing campaign that raised over $700,000 to save the institution from closing its doors.  Because of his close work with New York City, Weeksville is on the path to becoming the first new member of the City’s Cultural Institutions Group (CIG) in over 20 years. (more)

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Allen Geller

Panelist- Career Advancement  & Professional Development

With more than 40 years of executive search experience and specific expertise in the finance function, Allen Geller is the Head of Raines International’s Financial Officers Practice. Throughout his career, Allen has demonstrated a commitment to identifying progressive, accomplished leaders....(more)

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Rev. Dr. Lisa D. Jenkins

Panelist- Trends in Faith-Based Human Service Organizations

Rev. Dr. Lisa D. Jenkins is the tenth Pastor and first female to lead the St. Matthew's Baptist Church located in Harlem, New York.  In the short time since she assumed the pastorate in July 2013, Rev. Jenkins has implemented an AIDS/HIV program in partnership with the New York City Council Faith Based (more)


Dominique Jones

Moderator- Marketing & Social Media Clinic

Dominique joined The  Boys & Girls Club of Harlem  as its Executive Director in March 2015. Prior to her arrival Dominique served as Chief Programs Officer for Food Bank For New York City. In this role she oversaw the development and implementation of programs that assist New Yorkers access critical income supports and information to prevent hunger. (more)

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Coco Killingsworth

Panelist- Why the Arts Matter:  Leading While Black in a Time of Change

Coco Killingsworth joined the Brooklyn Academy of Music’s executive team in December, 2016 as the organization’s Vice President of Education and Community Engagement. In this post, Killingsworth guides BAM’s community and education programming in alignment with the institution’s overall mission. (more)

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Traci Lester

Moderator- Why the Arts Matter:  Leading While Black During a Time of Change

Traci Lester is Executive Director of National Dance Institute (NDI) an arts education organization founded by New York City Ballet principal dancer Jacques d’Amboise in the belief that the arts have a unique power to engage all children and motivate them toward excellence. (more)

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Sheilah Mabry

DEI Trainer- Leadership Tactics for Black Women Executives

Sheilah Mabry, LCSW-R, CPC has 20+ years of clinical and leadership experience working within the field of health and human services with special focus on LGBTQ, gender identity, mental/sexual health, HIV/AIDS, youth development and domestic violence. (more)


Odell Mays

Trainer- What You Should Know about Budgeting & Financial Analysis 

Odell Mays is a nonprofit executive with over 25 years of experience managing nonprofits and serving in the capacity of board leadership on nonprofit boards. He has served in the capacity of an Executive Director and Chief Operating Officer for nonprofits. (more)

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Shalima L. McCants

Panelist- Understanding and Managing a Multi-Generational Workplace

Shalima L. McCants is the President of the New York Urban League Young Professionals, an affiliate of the New York Urban League composed of volunteers ages 21-40 who seek to empower communities and change lives through volunteerism, philanthropy, civic engagement and membership development.   (more)


Jonathan McLean

DEI Trainer- Leadership Tactics for Black Men Executives

Jonathan McLean is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with over sixteen years of experience working with children, families and adults in the New York child welfare and mental health systems and currently serves at the Vice President of Residential and Youth Justice Services for SCO Family of Services. (more)

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Donald C. Notice

Panelist- Understanding & Managing a Multi-Generational Workplace

Donald C. Notice, as Executive Director of West Harlem Group Assistance, Inc. (WHGA), oversees the implementation and compliance of all programs in WHGA’s comprehensive housing and social service portfolio. With 120 staff members and a $9 million budget, WHGA is one of NYC’s oldest and largest Community Development Corporations (CDCs). (more)

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Eon Parks

Moderator- Leadership Tactics for Black Men Executives

Eon Parks is a highly skilled educational and non-profit organizational leader with vast experience developing, implementing and managing diverse educational and human service programs. Over the past 18 years, Mr. Parks has demonstrated the exceptional ability to leverage his organizational managemen and financial experience (more)

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Merble Reagon

Moderator- Employer Compliance and  Protections for LGBTQ Employees & Sexual Harassment Laws

Merble  is Executive Director of the Women’s Center for Education 

and Career Advancement in New York City that serves low-income women and their families through a variety of programs and services designed to help them achieve economic security. Throughout her career, she has worked to create greater opportunities for low-wage workers in the business and public sectors. (more)

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Jacqueline Shaw

Panelist- Next Gen: Streamlining Organizational Operations with Technology

Jacqueline is a Professor of Computer Science, Information Technology and Mathematics at Metropolitan College of New York. She has worked in technology for over 20 years specializing in computer networks, programming, systems, IOT, hardware/software, cloud computing  (more)

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Lisa Skinner

Panelist- Trends in Faith-Based Human Service Organizations

Lisa Skinner is the founder of Child Care Boss, LLC, a consulting and professional development firm in the early childhood education industry for over 15 years. She received her undergrad from the College of New Rochelle in Liberal Arts in 2006 and is currently pursuing a Masters of Divinity at the Union Theological Seminary in New York. (more)

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Sunay Tamashev

Trainer- Marketing & Social Media Clinic

Sunay Tamashev is an online and social media marketing professional with more than 15 years of experience in the field. He works with small businesses, startups, and non-profit organizations to build their online presence and develop creative strategies for successful growth. (more)

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Sandra E. Timmons

Panelist- Fundraising for Success

Sandra E. Timmons became President of A Better Chance in 2003.  A Better Chance’s mission is to increase substantially the number of well-educated young people of color who are capable of assuming positions of responsibility and leadership in American society.  (more)

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Rachel Watts

Panelist- Why the Arts Matter:  Leading While Black During a Time of Change

Rachel Watts is a multidisciplinary arts educator who focuses on advocating for meaningful and equitable programming for young people. She designs programs and facilitates professional development workshops that promote organizational equity and support student growth as learners, artists (more)

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Donna Williams

Panelist- Why the Arts Matter:  Leading While Black During a Time of Change

Donna Williams is CEO of D.J. Williams Consulting Group and Senior Vice President of Bridge Philanthropic Consulting.  A pioneer and leader in audience development and marketing, Donna dedicated her career to expanding opportunities for individuals from varied communities to experience art and culture in our society.  (more)

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Michelle Paige

Moderator- NEXT GEN: Streamlining Organizational Processes Using Technology

Dr. Michelle Paige has dedicated her career to the education of children throughout New York City.  She started her career as an elementary school teacher at PS 117 in Briarwood, Queens.  Dr. Paige is currently the Associate Executive Director at University Settlement.  (more)

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Rev. Jacques De Graff

Moderator- Opening Session

Reverend Jacques De Graff has been an outspoken advocate for economic and social justice for communities of color. W ell known and respected in New York leadership circles, he has been a tireless advocate for Minority...(more)

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Rev. Reginald L. Bachus

Panelist- Trends in Faith-Based Human Service Organizations

Reverend Reginald Lee Bachus is Associate Pastor of the landmark Abyssinian Baptist Church in Harlem and the president of The 400 Foundation, a faith-based effort to advance economic equity in NYC’s development and construction industry. (more)


Clayton Banks

Panelist- Next Gen:  Streamlining Organizational Operations with Technology

Clayton Banks advocates and stretches the boundaries of broadband connectivity, to bring parity to zip codes, preparing citizens for current and future jobs, and leading communities to sustainable economic opportunities.

Clayton Banks is the CEO and co-founder of Silicon Harlem (more)

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Dr. Grace Beasley-Matthews

Panelist- Understanding & Managing a Multi-Generational Workplace

Dr. Grace Beasley-Matthews is the CEO of GEB’s Enterprise Consulting LLC, a human capital management consulting boutique. She is also the Chief HR Officer for a nonprofit housing organization located in Harlem, NYC. (more)

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Stephanie Charmevil

Panelist- Health & Wellness in the Workplace

Stephanie Charmevil is a Health & Productivity Consultant with over 12 years of experience providing comprehensive wellness strategies. She has worked with diverse populations from corporate to manufacturing workers, employers of all sizes, and even (more)

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Dr. Mika'il DeVeaux

Panelist- Trends in Faith-Based Human Service Organizations

Mika’il DeVeaux is a lecturer at Nassau Community College (SUNY) and Executive Director of Citizens Against Recidivism, Inc. Dr. DeVeaux is also the founder and principal at DeVeaux Association, a consulting firm that provides evaluation, monitoring, and other services for nonprofits. (more)

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Karen Dixon

Moderator- Health & Wellness in the Workplace

Karen Dixon is the Executive Director of Harlem Dowling-West Side Center for Children and Family Services.  Harlem Dowling-West Side Center for Children and Family Services founded in 1836 as the Colored Orphan’s Asylum, provides Family Preservation, Family Support Services for children with development disabilities, After School programming, and Emergency Food Pantry services. (more)

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Traci Gardner, MD

Panelist- Health & Wellness in the Workplace

Dr. Traci Gardner makes history as the first woman and African-American as Chief Medical Officer for the Division of Immigration Services at the Children’s Village. She also holds past and current positions as the Chief Medical Officer/Medical Director for the Valhalla Union Free School District in Valhalla NY and Director of Foundations of Clinical Medicine Community Engagement and Preceptor Experience at New York Medical College respectively. (more)

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Zoë E. Jasper, Esq.

Panelist- Employer Compliance and  Protections for LGBTQ  Employees & Sexual Harassment Laws

Zoë E. Jasper, Esq. – is an attorney in private practice in New York and New Jersey, focusing on litigation, labor & employment, and non-profit governance.

Zoë counsels employers on all aspects of employment affairs, workplace polices and dispute prevention. (more)

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Yolanda F. Johnson

Moderator- Fundraising for Success

Yolanda F. Johnson has had nearly two decades as a successful fundraising professional and nonprofit development executive. She is currently President of YFJ Consulting, LLC, a fundraising consultancy focused on major gifts, campaigns, individual giving, board development and special events. (more)

Damyn Kelly CEO of Lutheran Social Servi

Damyn Kelly, Esq.

Moderator- Trends in Faith-Based Human Service Organizations

Damyn Kelly serves as the President and CEO of Lutheran Social Services of NY an organization with an operating budget of more than $50million, 650 employees and 39 sites. Lutheran provides services and programs in the areas of: early childhood education, Foster care, Supportive and residential housing; Immigration Legal Services, food pantries, (more)


Khary Lazarre-White

Panelist- Fundraising for Success

Khary Lazarre-White is a social entrepreneur, novelist, organizer and attorney. In 1995 he co-founded The Brotherhood/Sister Sol - https://brotherhood-sistersol.org/ a nationally renowned, comprehensive youth development and educational organization that provides rites of passage programming, arts and enrichment (more)


Keith Little

Moderator: Executive Director Oversight of Finance & Employee Fraud

Keith Little was appointed President & CEO of SCO Family of Services on January 1, 2018. In this role, he assumes oversight of the agency’s extensive continuum of residential and community-based child welfare, early childhood, youth development, family support, special needs, (more)

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Raymond Maldonado

Panelist- Next Gen:  Streamlining Organizational Operations with Technology

Raymond Maldonado is the Director of Information Technology Operations for Graham Windham. In his current role Raymond assures collaboration with program leadership by co-developing, implementing and continually assessing technology plans that meets the unique needs of. (more)

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Neema Mbonela

Panelist- Career Advancement & Professional Development 

Neema Mbonela is a HR professional with over ten years of experience working in all facets of human resources in for-profit and non-profit organizations. In her career, she has helped organizations scale up, build HR capacity, implemented HR systems (more)

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Wendy McClinton

Co-Chair, Emerging Leaders Conference

As an Administrator, Wendy's leadership and management skills have given way to her prolific role as President/CEO of Black Veterans for Social Justice.   Currently, Wendy serves on the Board of Directors of the National Coalition for Homeless Veterans, the NYC Mayor's Advisory Board.  (more)

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Benita Miller

Moderator: Understanding & Managing a Multi-Generational Workplace

Benita Miller is the current Executive Director of Brooklyn Kindergarten Society. Miller recently served as the Executive Director of the NYC Children’s Cabinet in the Office of the Mayor and was also Deputy Commissioner of the Division of Family Permanency Services in the Administration for Children's (more)

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Gary A. Padmore

Panelist- Why the Arts Matter:  Leading While Black During a Time of Change

Gary A. Padmore joined the New York Philharmonic last season with more than 15 years of experience that has led him to schools and community organizations throughout New York State. Prior to the Philharmonic, he was the director of Education & Community at Orchestra of St. Luke’s (OSL), where he created a free concert series that celebrates works (more)

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Dr. Malcolm A. Punter

Moderator- Trends in Faith-Based Human Service Organizations

Dr. Punter coordinates and manages the strategy for Harlem Congregations for Community Improvement, Inc.’s (“HCCI”) 77 building housing portfolio valued approximately $500 million dollars. Reporting to the HCCI Board of Directors on all matters related to the financial and operational sustainability of its real estate assets, commercial leasing including the marketing strategy for 60 ground floor retail stores (more)


Robin L. Robin

Panelist-  Employer Compliance and  Protections for LGBTQ Employees & Sexual Harassment Laws

Robin is the Associate Vice President of Human Resources for The Fortune Society.  She is a Human Resources consultant with 25+ years in Human Resources, Information & Technology and Nonprofit Management. Most recently, she served as the Vice President of Human Resource  (more)

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Sonya Shields

Panelist- Fundraising for Success

Sonya Shields is a seasoned marketing, communications and development nonprofit executive with over 25-years’ experience raising funds and increasing the visibility of local, national and international organizations. Currently Sonya works as a Senior Associate with Cause Effective where she takes on consulting projects, trainings, coaching and   (more)

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Kim St. Bernard

Co-Chair Emerging Leaders Conference

Kim is Senior Affiliate Consultant on nonprofit management with Cause Effective and Interim Executive Director for the Support Center for Nonprofit Management. She served as the principal executive promoting a broad service platform, volunteerism, and giving for Make-A-Wish (more)

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Beverly Tillery

Employer Compliance & Protections for LGBTQ Employees and Sexual Harassmen

Beverly Tillery is the Executive Director of the New York City Anti-Violence Project, an organization that empowers lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer (LGBTQ) and HIV-affected communities and allies to end all forms of violence through organizing and education and (more)

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Kimberly Hardy Watson

Moderator- What You Should Know about Budgeting & Financial Analysis

Kimberly (Kym) Hardy Watson is currently the Chief Operating Officer at Graham Windham Services for Children and Families, in New York City.  Founded in 1806, Graham Windham is the oldest non-sectarian child caring organization in the country. Kym joined the Graham Windham team in 2010. (more)

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Dr. Darlene Williams

Moderator- Career Advancement & Professional Development

Dr. Darlene Williams is an executive and community leader, agent of change, author, professor, and unwavering advocate for issues related to social injustice, inequity, disparities and the community.  She currently serves as the founding Chief Program Officer at Women in Need (Win) overseeing Win’s extensive programmatic portfolio of transitional homeless shelters and supportive housing facilities across New York City as well as their associated programs and mental health services. (more)

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Stephanie Lynch

Panelist- Marketing and Social Media Clinic

Sabrina Lynch is an integrated-marketing communications specialist, providing strategic counsel for blue-chip brands, start-up businesses and philanthropic organizations spanning America, Europe and Australasia.   (more)

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Lakythia Ferby

Content Development: Marketing & Social Media Clinic

 Lakythia joined STRIVE in 2013 as Vice President of Programs, bringing extensive experience in the workforce development field.  In 2018, she was promoted to Executive Director of STRIVE New York.  (more)