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Our dedicated Board of Directors supports our organization with its philanthropic generosity and expert vision setting.
Managing Director, Kita Capital Management, LLC
Joshua S. Levine, an award-winning technology executive with extensive management experience, serves on the boards of FINRA (Financial Industry Regulatory Authority), FreshDirect, Fantex, NPower, and MSTERIO. In 2006, Josh co-founded Kita Capital Management, providing capital, operational, and strategic assistance to technology-driven organizations. Prior to founding Kita, Josh served as Managing Director at Morgan Stanley, Global Technology Head at Deutsche Bank, and Chief Technology Officer at E*Trade. Under his leadership, E*TRADE moved to cheaper open source technologies, became the first online broker with a two-second trade execution guarantee, introduced the first consumer use of secure, two-factor authentication, and reduced costs 25 percent by converting the back office to commercially available technology. Additionally, Josh served on the National Academies committee for Improving Processes and Policies for the Acquisition and Test of Information Technologies in the Department of Defense; acted as an advisor to the National Counterterrorism Center; and was appointed to the Georgia Technology Authority overseeing state government technology spending. He and his teams have received several industry awards, including: People’s Choice award at South by Southwest, a CLIO for best design and best interactive, a Webby for the best banking and bill pay, and a Stevie for the best technology team. He has been listed on InfoWorld magazine’s “Top 25 Most Influential CTOs,” the CIO magazine “CIO 100,” and CIO Forum’s “Top 20 Financial IT Executives,” and he was a finalist for the 2009 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year.
Seven Turns, LLC
Jon Friedland manages the private investment firm Seven Turns, LLC. He previously spent 19 years in the hedge fund industry, at Amici Capital where he was a Portfolio Manager, Director of International Research and served on the firm’s Investment Committee; and at Zweig-Dimenna Associates where he was responsible for investments in the media, consumer, telecommunications and technology industries. Prior to this, Jon worked for 5 years in foreign aid at The Synergos Institute in New York City and the University Foundation of Thailand in Bangkok. Jon received a bachelor of arts degree in political science from Vassar College and a master’s degree with Beta Gamma Sigma honors from Columbia Business School. Jon has an intense personal interest in environmental protection and in educational reform and innovation. He serves on the Global Leadership Council of the Natural Resources Defense Council and on the board of Classroom, Inc. Jon is from Cleveland, Ohio and lives in New York City with his wife and four children.
Partner, Gilder, Gagnon, Howe & Co., LLC
Michael McCormick has spent over 25 years in the finance industry as a partner and portfolio manager at Gilder, Gagnon, Howe & Co, LLC. He has successfully built an investment strategy and organization focused on finding unique, growth-oriented companies with management skills to navigate dynamic industries. In 2000, he and his wife, Genine, started the McCormick Family Foundation to support programs that create a positive impact on children’s lives. Over the years this foundation has grown and assisted various programs that are collectively helping to achieve this goal. Michael holds a B.S. in Business Administration from Marist College and an MBA in Finance from Pace University.
Treasurer, Classroom, Inc.; Chairman, Napier Park Global Capital
John Havens is the chairman at Napier Park Global and is the former president and COO of Citibank. Prior to joining Citigroup, Mr. Havens was a founder and partner of Old Lane, LP, a multi-strategy hedge fund and private equity fund manager that was acquired by Citi in 2007. Upon acquisition, Old Lane’s total assets under management and private equity commitments amounted to approximately $4.5 billion.
Before forming Old Lane in 2005, Mr. Havens was head of Institutional Equity at Morgan Stanley and a member of the firm’s Management Committee. In his 19-year career at Morgan Stanley, Mr. Havens held several positions of increasing authority and served on the new product, risk, and capital allocation committees. He managed global sales and new-issue distribution, served as head of Global Cash Equity Trading, oversaw Japanese Equity trading globally, and was a senior trader on the Block Desk. Mr. Havens has served on many NYSE committees over the years and just ended a term as a director of the NASDAQ market. He began his career in 1979 as a trader of convertible securities at Kidder Peabody. Mr. Havens holds a B.A. degree from Harvard University.
Advisor, Public Education Organizations
Cynthia King Vance is an experienced management consultant and executive who works primarily with nonprofit and public sector organizations tackling strategy, change management, and organizational effectiveness. She has specific expertise in education, healthcare, and media.
Cynthia has been involved in many initiatives to strengthen urban public education. She led projects as part of the original “Children First” team for the NYC Department of Education (2002-04), oversaw a 2011 transition for Newark Public Schools, and, currently, advises Hunter College on student success initiatives and raising graduation rates.
From 1992 to 1999, Cynthia lived in London where she helped launch and manage the cable and satellite channels UK Gold and UK Living as CFO and Commercial Director. She also served as a founding non-executive director of the Chelsea and Westminster Trust (a National Health Service Hospital). Cynthia was a management consultant with McKinsey & Company and an investment banking analyst with Kidder Peabody.
Cynthia serves on several boards, with a commitment to equal opportunity and empowerment through knowledge. Cynthia chairs New York Public Radio’s (WNYC, WQXR) board, is a trustee of the Montefiore Health System in the Bronx, and former chair of SCO Family of Services. She serves on advisory boards for NewSchools Venture Fund, the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University, and the Clayman Institute for Gender Research at Stanford University. She is a graduate of Princeton University, with a BA from the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, and of the Harvard Business School. She lives in New York with her husband and has three children.
Carl W. Turnipseed recently retired as executive vice president of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York where he served 44 years in a variety of leadership positions including the head of the financial services group, human resources, the Buffalo Branch, accounting, check processing, government securities, treasury operations, and foreign relations. He was also a member of the New York Fed’s management committee.
During his career at the New York Fed, Carl served on numerous boards connected with international trade, business and economic development, as well as higher education. He has received numerous professional and community awards, including an honorary doctorate of humane letters from Felician College where he delivered the commencement address at its 45th commencement ceremony.
Carl has distinguished himself as a mentor especially to young people and enjoys giving back to his community. He is a founding board member of Classroom, Inc., president of the Zeta Boule Charitable Foundation, a member of the board of directors of the Morgan State University Foundation. He is an active member of the Sigma Pi Phi Fraternity, Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, the NAACP, and the Morgan State University Alumni Association. Carl is also a proud veteran having served as a lieutenant in the US Army.
A native of Baltimore, MD, Carl received his BS degree from Morgan State College (now University) where he is an inductee in their Hall of Fame and the Alumnus of the Year for 2014. He received his MBA degree from New York University and he graduated from the Executive Management Program at Columbia University and the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School.
Among his extra activities, he enjoys running and has finished two New York City marathons.
President, Market Partners International
Lorraine Shanley is president of Market Partners International, a New York-based consultancy that specializes in traditional and digital publishing in the US and internationally. MPI works with the major book and magazine publishers in the US, Europe and Asia. In addition to publishers, MPI works with brands and museums, cultural institutions and foundations, on various aspects of content development, distribution and digital initiatives.
Shanley, a member (and past president) of Women’s Media Group, is on the advisory board of New York University’s Center for Publishing, and is Chair of Digital Book World’s Launch Kids Digital Media Conferences. She graduated from the University of Rochester and received her M.A. from the University of Virginia, where she serves on the Jefferson Fellowship selection committee. A longtime supporter of Let’s Get Ready, she is vice chair of its annual Gala.
Shanley began her career at Barnes & Noble and Book-of-the-Month Club before moving to HarperCollins and subsequently, co-founding Market Partners International in 1990.
Nick Rudenstine was most recently a managing director at JPMorgan Chase & Co. and global head of the firm’s Custody & Fund Services business, with approximately $22 trillion of assets under custody. Rudenstine was also a member of the firm’s Fiduciary Risk Committee, and on the Advisory Board of JPMorgan’s PAC. He held a variety of other senior positions at JPMorgan prior to that role, including Global of Strategy for the T&SS division. Prior to joining JPMorgan, he was an investment professional at Stone Point Capital, a private equity firm based in Connecticut, where he helped launch several new investment funds focused on the financial services industry. Nick began his career in the Mergers & Acquisitions group at Smith Barney, and worked at Classroom, Inc. in the early 1990’s. He received a B.A. from Princeton University and an M.B.A. from Harvard University.
Managing Director, Carrick Capital Partners
Mr. McMorris is co-founder and managing director of Carrick Capital Partners.
Prior to Carrick Capital Partners, Mr. McMorris was with General Atlantic, a growth-oriented $15 billion global private equity firm since 1999. As a managing director, Mr. McMorris led investments in enterprise services and software and was head of the Palo Alto office. Mr. McMorris has extensive experience investing in minority deals, recaps, carve-outs and a wide range of experience with outcomes that include both public offerings and sell-side deals with companies valued from $50 million to $3 billion and equity investment sizes ranging from $30 million to $400 million.
As a managing director with General Atlantic, Mr. McMorris was lead or co-lead in approximately $900 million in investments in business services, financial services and software including successful IPOs of numerous companies. A number of those companies achieved more than $1 billion in market capitalization, including ServiceSource, Inc. (NASDAQ: SREV), SSA Global, Inc (former NASDAQ: SSAG), and First Republic Bank, Inc (NYSE: FRB).
Prior to General Atlantic, Mr. McMorris served as a vice president in the high-tech mergers and acquisitions group of Goldman Sachs, Inc. Notable transactions include: Netscape/AOL and US Robotics/3Com. Before working at Goldman Sachs, Mr. McMorris was an associate at Morgan Stanley where he worked in the telecom/media mergers & acquisitions group.
Mr. McMorris has a MBA from The Wharton School of Business of The University of Pennsylvania with a concentration in Finance and Accounting and a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from The University of Pennsylvania. Mr. McMorris is a serving Trustee for the University and is a member of the Board’s audit committee, Budget and Finance Committee and chairs the Local, National and Global Engagement Committee.
Secretary, Classroom, Inc.; Senior Counsel, Davis Polk & Wardwell LLP
Ms. Chase is a senior counsel member at Davis Polk & Wardwell, LLP where she advises businesses, boards of directors and individuals on executive compensation and advises individual clients on personal trust, estate and charitable planning matters. Her pro-bono activities have involved a variety of charitable organizations, including organizations providing services to the arts and the indigent.
Ms. Chase joined Davis Polk in 1976 and became a partner in 1985. She graduated, magna cum laude, from Radcliffe College in 1970 and in 1974 received her J.D., cum laude, from Fordham University School of Law, where she was articles editor of the Law Review. She clerked for the Honorable Kevin Thomas Duffy, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, from 1974 to 1976.
Ms. Chase is a member of the American Bar Association and the New York State Bar Association, where she has served on the executive committee of Tax Section and, from 1990 to 1991, as co-chair of the Committee on Estates and Trusts of the Tax Section. She also is a member of the New York City Bar Association, where she was a member of the Committee on Trusts, Estates and Surrogate’s Courts from 1987 to 1990 and from 1999 to 2001. She is also a member of the Metropolitan Museum of Art Professional Advising Council, the New York Public Library Planned Giving Advisory Board and the New York Presbyterian Hospital Planned Giving Advisory Council.
Ms.Chase is a Trustee of the Altman Foundation and served as a Trustee of the Wennergren Foundation, a foundation that supports scholarship in anthropology, from 1992 to 2006 and as a Trustee of The Town School from 1988 to 1999.
She is married to Dr. Herbert S. Chase, Jr. and is the mother of two grown sons, Benjamin and Dylan.
President, Classroom, Inc.
As president, Lisa Holton sets the strategic vision across the entire organization. Most recently, she was founder and CEO of Fourth Story Media, a highly-regarded digital studio, which produced The Amanda Project, a print and online program of creative writing, reading and art for teen girls. Prior to Fourth Story Media, Lisa was president of Scholastic Trade and Book Fair divisions, where her responsibilities included publishing Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, developing the interactive book and online games series The 39 Clues, and overseeing new digital initiatives for School Book Fairs. Lisa was also head of Disney’s Global Children’s Books, overseeing all aspects of the global publishing business. During her nine-year tenure at Disney,she built Hyperion Books for Children, developed English language learning programs, and founded Jump at the Sun, an imprint dedicated to African-American culture. As editor-in-chief and associate publisher of HarperCollins Children’s Books, she developed a number of curriculum-based math and literacy programs, including Math Start, and led whole language initiatives in her roles as marketing director at HarperCollins and Penguin.
Lisa is a board member of the New York Women’s Foundation, where she has worked with community-based organizations devoted to economic and social justice for women and girls. She is a trustee of The Carle Museum and is on the advisory board of First Book. She speaks regularly about the intersection of literacy and technology.
She holds a B.A. from Colgate University and lives in Brooklyn.
Chairman, Classroom, Inc.; Chair, American Museum of Natural History
Lewis W. Bernard is the founder and chairman of Classroom, Inc. Classroom, Inc. began as a demonstration project in September 1991 in two New York City high schools. Since its inception, it has served more than 750,000 students around the country.
Mr. Bernard is the chairman of the American Museum of Natural History, a trustee of the Commonwealth Fund, and Chairman of The John and Mary R. Markle Foundation. He is a director of the Harvard Management Company and the Marsh and McLennan Companies, Inc.
In June 1994, Mr. Bernard retired from the Board of the Morgan Stanley Group where for almost thirty years he held a number of positions including, upon his retirement, chief administrative and financial officer with responsibilities for strategic planning.