EDGAR RODRIGUEZ | Principal
Edgar Rodriguez moved to the United States from his native Caracas, Venezuela to attend the University of Utah in Salt Lake City where he studied biology and worked as a laboratory researcher. Upon graduating with a bachelor's degree, Mr. Rodriguez moved to New York City where he pursued a M.A. in Secondary Mathematics Education at Hunter College. He began his teaching career in the New York City public schools at Vanguard High School where he developed and implemented innovative mathematics curriculum for seven years. Mr. Rodriguez was a founding member of the TvF planning team and served as the school's assistant principal from 2008 to 2013, when he was appointed the school's Principal. Mr. Rodriguez is an accomplished contemporary dancer who performs with the New York based dance company Rastro.
DEB LIN | Assistant Principal
Deb Lin earned her bachelor's degree in science at Michigan State University where she earned a graduate assistantship award, and taught a lab class for non-science majors. Upon deciding to pursue a career as a high school educator instead of one in research, Ms. Lin moved to New York City and joined the NYC Teaching Fellows as a science teacher. Her high school teaching career began in Harlem where she worked for two years prior to coming to TvF as a founding staff member in 2008. She has taught Living Environment, Health, and Earth Science at TvF. During the 2013-2014 school year, Ms. Lin began serving as Assistant Principal.
ROB McCUBBIN | Assistant Principal
Rob McCubbin is originally from Rochester, NY. After earning his BA from Purchase, he spent five years working in admissions and financial aid at Purchase College and SVA, helping high school students make their art school dreams a reality. In 2005, he decided to follow his own passion and became a history teacher. After earning his teaching degree from NYU, he joined the Urban Assembly School of Business in lower Manhattan. Before joining TvF, he also worked at the NYC Department of Education central office, supporting teachers and schools in understanding the Common Core standards and helping launch the Learning Partners and Showcase Schools programs. Rob is very excited to be part of the TvF team.
ALAN METZGER | Director of Production
Alan Metzger is an award winning director of over twenty-five network and cable movies and numerous one hour episodes. For fifteen years, Mr. Metzger worked as a director of photography on commercials, TV series, and features before working for twenty years as a director and producer on over thirty projects including episodes of Law and Order and The Equalizer. After retiring from the industry, Mr. Metzger pursued a master's degree in English Education from the Cal State, Long Beach. Mr. Metzger taught English at Santa Monica High School before returning to his native New York where he worked teaching documentary filmmaking at the Department of Education's laboratory school, City Hall Academy. Mr. Metzger holds a degree in English Literature from Wesleyan University. He was a founding member of the TvF planning team and serves as the director of the production unit.
SABRINA ALANO | English
Sabrina Alano worked for two years as a web and graphic designer. In 2003, she decided to pursue teaching after leading classes in multimedia and web design in after-school programs. She received an M.S.Ed from Queens College as part of the New York City Teaching Fellows program, and an M.A. in English and American Literature from Middlebury College. Ms. Alano taught at Long Island City High School for nine years before joining the faculty of TvF in 2012.
SHAZIYA ALI | Mathematics
Shaziya Ali grew up in Queens, NY. She graduated with her bachelor's degree from the Macaulay Honors College at Hunter College studying Anthropology, Biochemistry, and Mathematics. She discovered she wanted to be a teacher through volunteering to teach health workshops in public high schools for 5 years during her undergraduate career while also tutoring students in mathematics. She graduated with her M.A. in Adolescent Mathematics Education at Hunter through the New Visions Math and Science Teacher Education Residency and is an Early Career Fellow at Math for America. She loves being a math teacher at TvF!
DEVON ANDERSON | English
Devon Anderson was born and raised in California. She earned a B.A. in English from the University of California, Berkeley, in 2008. She earned an M.A. from Brown University, where she taught undergraduate seminars in literature and writing composition. When she decided to pursue a career in high school education, Devon moved to New York and enrolled in the Urban Teacher Residency through New Visions for Public Schools. She earned an M.S. in Education from Hunter College in 2016. She is excited to join the TvF staff.
NILSA ARBOLEDA | Parent Coordinator
DANIELA BEJAR | Social Work
Daniela grew up in San Juan, Puerto Rico, where she spent most of her life before moving to Maryland to attend Towson University. Daniela graduated from Towson with a B.S. in Psychology, and then went on to earn a Masters Degree in Social Work from Fordham University. Prior to joining TvF, Daniela worked at a therapeutic foster care in The South Bronx and interned at The Facing History School in Manhattan.
JARED BELOFF | English
Jared Beloff is a graduate of Rutgers University and Johns Hopkins University where he earned a B.A. and an M.A. in English Literature respectively. He has taught English at the middle school, high school and college level since 2007. He currently teaches 9th Grade ELA and AP English Literature & Composition for TvF.
HEATHER CARR | Guidance Counselor
Heather Carr was raised in Massachusetts where she fell in love with high school education and psychology from a young age. Heather graduated with her B.A. in Psychology and minored in English Writing from Marist College in Poughkeepsie. Heather then moved to New York City to earn her M.A. and Ed.M in Psychological Counseling with a Certificate in School Counseling at Columbia's Teachers College. She has worked in a college office in another high school within the Department of Education and is excited to be supporting the students at TvF through the college application process!
NATE CARROLL | School Business Manager
Growing up in Fort Collins, Colorado, near the Foothills of the Rocky Mountains, Nate Carroll spent much of his early life outdoors, camping, hiking, swimming, and rock climbing. After graduating from Metropolitan State University of Denver, he decided it was time for a lifestyle change, and joined Teach for America as a New York City Corps Member in 2012. He taught for four years as a Special Education teacher at an ELL school in the Bronx while pursuing his M.S. in Education at Fordham University. In that time, he also worked as the school's Technology Coordinator, getting to combine his passion for technology with his love of the classroom. As Technology Coordinator, he implemented a full 1:1 Chromebook program, and trained all teachers on how to get the most out of Google Classroom and other Google Apps. Nate joined TvF as the Business Manager in June of 2016.
JEFF CROOK | Production
Writer, Director and Producer Jeffrey Crook has been involved in independent film making and commercial production since finishing graduate school at NYU in 1999. Since that time he has produced dozens of commercial for clients such as Heineken and Amstel, and has directed or produced nine feature films as part of the Crook Brothers Production team. His films have all achieved wide distribution through companies such as Artisan and Lions Gate and have been shown at festivals including Sundance, Berlin and Toronto. Jeff’s latest film, the intense crime drama, La Soga, was released in theatres in August 13, 2010. Jeff joined TvF in the Fall of 2009 and teaches production classes.
VAL DAUGHTREY | Community Associate
Valen Daughtrey has been an athlete his entire life. He started playing basketball at a young age and in high school he competed for a final four position in the New York City Public School Athletic League championship. Val attended The Fashion Institute of Technology (FIT) where he continued to play basketball for the NJCAA. He majored in Illustration and developed skills in both digital and hand drawn illustration, air brush, and more. His studies included anatomy in order to understand proportions and movement of the body, it is that experience that sparked Val’s interest in sports specific training. Val is a National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM) certified personal trainer, and he uses these skills to teach students fundamentals of physical education and fitness at TvF.
THEA DIMOPOULOS | Production
Thea Dimopoulos attended Queens College where she initially majored in English with aspirations to become an author and an English teacher. Her interests soon turned to film, however, which she pursued as a second major. Upon graduating college, Ms. Dimopoulos moved to Los Angeles where she started as a production assistant and quickly moved into casting and talent management. In the years that followed, she worked writing, producing, and shooting for a wide range of production companies in Los Angeles, New York and Greece. With these diverse experiences, Ms. Dimopoulos once again turned her attention to education by entering the NYC Teaching Fellows and teaching English Language Arts at IS 145 in Jackson Heights. Ms. Dimopoulos came to TvF in 2008 where she teaches in the production department.
GEORGE DRIVAS | Science
George Drivas, a native New Yorker, earned his PhD in Cell Biology from New York University in 1991. He previously worked as a research scientist and a healthcare investment analyst. In 2013, he decided to pursue his long time desire of becoming a high school educator and is completing an M.A. in Adolescent Education at Hunter College. George teaches Living Environment and Health at TvF.
DREW ELIAS | Production
Drew earned his Bachelor's degree from UMass Amherst and majored in Communications with a Film minor. He also earned a Master's of Fine Arts in Film and Video Production from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. Working primarily as a Gaffer, Key Grip, or Camera Operator, Drew has earned ten years of professional film/tv production experience based out of New York City.
SHERIN FRANK | Mathematics
Sherin Frank grew up in Yonkers, NY and knew she wanted to teach math since high school. She attended Barnard College, majoring in Mathematics and minoring in Psychology. She worked for Yonkers Public Schools during this time. While later attending Bard college for her M.A. in Teaching Mathematics, Sherin was an apprentice teacher in both the South Bronx and Washington Heights. She is also a 2011 Fellow with Math for America, an organization dedicated to improving math education. At TvF, Sherin teaches mathematics.
SHANE GILL | Social Studies
Shane Gill was born and raised in Queens. He earned a B.A. from the City College of New York as a double major in political science and history and his M.S. in Adolescent Education from Pace University through the New York City Teaching Fellows. Prior to his career in teaching, Shane worked as a publicist, a freelance writer, and a production assistant for documentary film directors Michael Moore and Barbara Kopple, among others.
HENRY GONZALEZ GRIMM | Social Studies
A New York City native, social studies teacher Henry Gonzalez Grimm rarely goes a week without reading a history book. He received his B.A. from Denison University in 2007 where he majored in political science and minored in Spanish. He subsequently worked at the Manhattan District Attorney’s office as a trial preparation assistant with stints at financial firms. Henry pursues interests in theater, film, soccer, squash, fitness, and politics.
JOE GROGAN | Mathematics
Joe is thrilled to pursue his passion for teaching at TvF after a career in science/research. Joe earned a B.E. in Mechanical Engineering from Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, NJ, followed by a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, PA. As a science ninja trained in the arts of microfabrication and electron microscopy, Joe worked at Penn and IBM, and then a tech company in Seattle, WA before returning home to NY. Joe is completing his M.A. in Adolescent Mathematics Education at Hunter College through the New Visions Math and Science Teacher Education Residency. Joe’s free time is dedicated to music and filling his apartment with records.
CHARLES HEALY | Physical Education
Charles Healy received his bachelor's degree in Physical Education from Cortland State and his master's degree from Mt. St. Vincent. For fifteen years he taught middle school physical education before coming to TvF to teach and oversee the development of a competitive sports program. TvF now has 8 PSAL teams. Mr. Healy coached the girls volleyball to the playoffs last year for the first time. He also coaches the girls basketball team which has made the playoffs all 3 years, won the league title twice and had an undefeated 2013-2014 regular season.
BETH HENRY | Science
Beth Henry graduated with a degree in Psychology from St. Olaf College in MN. While in college, she studied at Lancaster University in England and in Northern Thailand. She worked in insurance after college then spent time living in Alaska. She began her career in education as a paraeducator and softball coach in Milton, VT. After that experience, she decided to return to school to pursue an undergraduate degree in biology teaching and a master's degree in curriculum and instruction from St. Cloud State University. She also has a Master Teaching Fellowship with Math for America, an organization dedicated to improving math and science education. Prior to TvF, she taught Earth Science at a public high school in Harlem for 4 years. She teaches Earth Science and Health at TvF.
ADAM IANNAZZONE | Science
Growing up outside Atlanta, GA, Adam was always interested in science and engineering. He went to Georgia Tech where he majored in physics and minored in Japanese. After graduating in 2013, he moved to New York to get his M.A. in Secondary Science Education at Columbia Teachers College. He now lives in Brooklyn with 3 cats, and enjoys photography, biking, and making artisanal coffee.
CHANTEL JACKSON | Social Worker
Chantel Jackson, a native New Yorker, began her education at City College where she graduated with a BA in Psychology. In 2014 she graduated from Adelphi School of School of Social Work and became a licensed social worker in December of that same year. For the last nine years Chantel has worked within numerous high schools as a college advisor. She is currently an adjunct at The College of New Rochelle. She joined the TvF team in March of 2016.
MAGGIE JANIK | English
Originally from California, Maggie Janik has been teaching in New York City since 2004. She received her bachelor's degree in Social Theory from Hampshire College, and her master's degree in Teaching with a focus on Academic Support Services from Mercy College as part of the New York City Teaching Fellows. Although her teaching experience in New York began in 2004, Ms. Janik has spent nearly ten years working in schools and homes with students in need of academic and social support. When she is not teaching, she loves to be outdoors, travel, and spend time with friends and family. Ms. Janik teaches English Language Arts at TvF.
ANNIE KELLY | Social Studies
Annie Kelly graduated with a degree in history and archaeology from the University of Michigan. After deciding to go into education, she got her teacher certification from Michigan State University. She now has a Masters from Teachers College at Columbia University. Before ACTvF, she taught for three years in Charlotte, North Carolina. Outside of teaching, Annie enjoys binge-reading, admiring dogs in parks, and exploring different neighborhoods throughout the city. She is very excited to be at ACTvF!
ALISHA KENNELL | Science
Alisha Kennell earned her B.S. in Zoology with minors in Marine Biology and Animal Behavior from the University of New Hampshire. Alisha previously worked in community development as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the South Pacific. Upon her return, she decided to pursue a career as a high school educator instead of one in research. Alisha completed her M.A. in Science Education at Teachers College, Columbia University. She teaches Living Environment and Health at TvF.
HYUNG KIM | Technical Support Coordinator
Hyung Kim started working at TvF as a technical support intern through CUNY Institute for Software Design and Development (CISDD) in 2008. He majored in Computer Science from Queens College. He is certified with CompTIA A+ and Network+ certification. Currently, Hyung is pursuing for CompTIA Security+ and CCNA certification.
JOEL KIRKHART | Social Studies
Joel Kirkhart graduated with a degree in history from Carleton College in Minnesota and earned his master's degree at Columbia's Teachers College. Mr. Kirkhart has also taught at Mott Hall High School in Harlem. Prior to his career in teaching, Mr. Kirkhart lived for nine years in China where he worked as a reporter, an editor at English-language publications and an English teacher while studying China's language and culture. Mr. Kirkhart is originally from Bethesda, Maryland and teaches social studies, English, and AP Psychology at TvF.
ANDREW LASSMAN | Production
Andrew Lassman received a B.A. in Theater from Rider College in New Jersey. To pay for his classes, he worked in the school’s theater as a stage technician. After graduating from Rider, Mr. Lassman moved to NYC and tried to start a career in modern dance. When this proved unsuccessful, he went on to work as an apprentice in a scenery building shop and a prop maker at the New York Shakespeare Festival. This brief stint in theater led Mr. Lassman to the television and film business where he spent twenty years as a union prop master. His work ranged from music videos, industrials and commercials to feature films and television shows. At TvF, Mr. Lassman teaches production classes.
JEREMY MATUK | Social Studies
Jeremy Matuk has been teaching in New York City since January 2007. He earned a Bachelor’s Degree in History and Master’s Degree in Social Studies Education from Stony Brook University. Mr. Matuk joined TvF in September 2009 and currently teaches an innovative, one-year Global History course and Advanced Placement United States History. He also acts as Adjunct Lecturer for the College Now program, where students earn college credit at TvF through courses like Literacy and Propaganda and Critical Thinking.
CHRIS McLAUGHLIN | Production
Chris McLaughlin holds a B.F.A in Theatre Arts from the University of Connecticut, a M.A. in Radio, TV & Film from the New York Institute of Technology, and a M.A. in Storytelling from the Graduate Institute. Previously, Mr. McLaughlin has worked teaching video production in public schools, constructing sets, props and puppets for the Connecticut Repertory Theatre, and producing independent films. Mr. McLaughlin teaches production classes at TvF.
SANDRA MORENO | School Secretary
DENISE OZER | English
Denise Ozer grew up in Ossining, New York and is honored to be teacher at ACTvF. Denise received her B.A. from Muhlenberg College as a double major in Theater and Dance. She spent an amazing year working with the non-profit organization City Year New York, which changed her path from performing artist to teacher. Denise earned her M.S. in Special Education through the New Visions Urban Teacher Residency at Hunter College, during which she was a resident teacher at ACTvF. She currently teaches Special Education and English.
LEIGH PAFFORD | Mathematics/History
Leigh Pafford graduated from The College of St. Elizabeth in Morristown, NJ where she received a BA in Communications and a MA in Business. She is now pursuing a MA in Education from Long Island University. She started her career in radio, then shifted to marketing where she worked for international companies and nonprofits. Leigh has also dabbled in television where she anchored a local news program. In her spare time Leigh enjoys exploring NYC neighborhoods while walking her dog, watching live theater, and reading. At TvF Leigh teaches in the math and history departments.
JEREMY POSERIO | Science
Jeremy Poserio is a graduate of Binghamton University for undergrad and Pace University for grad school. Before teaching, I've had previous management experience, but I've always wanted to follow this calling. I've always loved chemistry and I'm hoping I could make you love chemistry too. I'm extraordinarily glad to be teaching here at ACTvF and I'm looking forward to the upcoming year!
CARY RIINA | Mathematics
Cary Riina grew up in Brooklyn, NY. Mr. Riina received his B.A. in Mathematics and Physics from Rice University. Recently, Mr. Riina graduated from the New Vision's Urban Teacher Residency Program and earned an M.A. in Adolescent Mathematics
Education from Hunter College. Mr. Riina is also an Early Career Fellow at Math for America, an organization devoted to improving the quality of mathematics education throughout the country. At TvF, Mr. Riina teaches mathematics!
SARAH ROSENWASSER | Social Worker
Sarah graduated from Washington University in St. Louis with a B.A. in Art History. She then went on to earn a Master's Degree in Social Work from Columbia University. Prior to joining the TvF staff in September 2009, Sarah interned at the Cumberland Diagnostic and Treatment Center in Brooklyn and The Facing History School in Manhattan.
ALICIA SANTIAGO | Mathematics
Born and raised in Queens, Alicia Santiago received her B.A. in American Studies with a concentration in Latino Studies from Williams College. Ms. Santiago pursued a career in teaching because of summers during college as the TA for an adolescent enrichment program. She joined the New Visions-Hunter College Urban Teacher Residency earning her M.S. in Special Education in 2011. In her free time she enjoys reading, cooking, and traveling. She loves the performing arts, having previously been on a step and Latin dance team, and continues to take dance classes. At TvF Ms. Santiago provides instructional support and teaches mathematics/English.
CRISTINA SIGUENZA | Mathematics
Cristina grew up in Queens, NY in a bilingual household and is fluent in Spanish. Ever since high school, Cristina has liked math. Math was always like a puzzle to be solved. She went to St. John's University and earned her B.A in Finance. In 2015, Cristina joined the New York City Teaching Fellow program. She is now pursuing my a Master's Degree in Education at St. John's University and will graduate in 2017.
GERALD TABAOSARES | Mathematics
Gerald grew up in Queens, and earned a B.S. in Public Affairs from Baruch College. He is pursuing a Master's in Adolescent Education from St. John's University through the NYC Teaching Fellows program. Gerald enjoys reading, solving puzzles, and the performing arts. He is excited to teach math at TvF!
RICARDO THOMPSON | Production
Ricardo Sean Thompson earned a B.B.A. in Advertising from Baruch College in New York City. He then spent the next decade pursuing independent film projects on the East Coast. His first feature film Rap War One premiered at the 2003 American Black Film Festival where Maverick Entertainment acquired it for distribution. A year later Mr. Thompson worked as Producer and Editor on the Lion’s Gate released urban action feature film Ghetto Dawg 2. The success of those urban film projects led to Mr. Thompson being hired to write film projects for multi-platinum selling artists such as 50 Cent, Sean “P-Diddy" Combs, and Jay-Z while working for MTV Networks and Nickelodeon. That was then followed by his work as writer and director of the independent feature length film Back Stab. Mr. Thompson’s most recent feature film, which he wrote, directed, and edited, is a Latino crime thriller titled A Kiss Of Chaos. A Kiss Of Chaos went on to be in competition for the Grand Prize at the American Black Film Festival; NY International Latino Film; and won Best US Feature Film at the Soho International Film Festival. Mr. Thompson teaches film production classes at TvF.
JOSH WEISBROT | Mathematics
Josh Weisbrot was born in Brooklyn but grew up in the forest in upstate New York. He earned his BA from NYU and his MS from Pace University through New York City Teaching Fellows. Before joining TvF, Josh spent the last eight years teaching math at a school in the John Jay Campus in Park Slope, Brooklyn.
HANELY ACOSTA | UTR
Hanely Acosta has a Master’s degree in English from Western Connecticut State University, where she also taught English and Communication. She has also worked with bilingual middle school students Before teaching, she worked at the YMCA of Greater Hartford as assistant to the COO and the VP of Child Development. Returning to New York, she continues to pursue her passion for education and literature by becoming an ELA teacher at the high school level.
BEN MIZEL | UTR
Ben Mizel grew up in Scottsdale, Arizona and received a BA in English from the University of Chicago. He is currently pursuing an MA in Adolescent English Education through the New Visions Urban Teacher Residency at Hunter College. Ben is excited to be teaching English at TvF!
OLIVIA ROACH | UTR
Olivia Roach was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York and received her undergraduate degree in Criminology and English from John Jay College. There, she did student teaching in a creative writing course. She is currently pursuing her MSED as a resident of the New Visions for Public Schools' Urban Teacher Residency program and Hunter College. She is currently teaching 9th grade English and she has a specialty in Special Education. Olivia is excited to be a first year teacher here at TvF!
ALAN WALES | UTR
Alan Wales is a special education teaching resident for New Visions through which he will receive his MA in Adolescent Education at Hunter College. He holds an MFA in Theatre from the University of Houston where he had the opportunity to teach as a adjunct faculty member and collaborate with Edward Albee and Mark Medoff. He has previously worked as an Educator and Facilitator for Whole Foods Market throughout New York City. In his time outside of school, Alan holds his CFL-1 training certification as a CrossFit Instructor and enjoys teaching acting and public speaking to others. Alan provides instructional support and teaches English.