Biographies

Board of Directors

Geoffrey Canada is the author of Fist Stick Knife Gun: A Personal History of Violence in America and was the recipient of the Heinz Award in 1994 for his work as president and CEO of Harlem Children’s Zone (HCZ) in New York City. He has served in that position since 1990. In June 2004, the New York Times Magazine called the agency’s Zone Project “one of the most ambitious social experiments of our time.” Mr. Canada’s work at HCZ has become a national model. He is regarded as an expert on violence, children and community redevelopment. Mr. Canada grew up in the South Bronx and is dedicated to helping children of similar backgrounds secure educational and economic opportunities. Mr. Canada holds a B.A. from Bowdoin College and a M.A. from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

Angela Diaz, M.D., M.P.H. is the Jean C. and James W. Crystal Professor of Pediatrics at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine and director of Mount Sinai Adolescent Health Center. Dr. Diaz earned her medical degree from Columbia University in 1981 and completed her post-doctoral training at the Mount Sinai School of Medicine in 1985. She has a history of involvement in mental and primary health services, particular to trauma-affected adolescents. Dr. Diaz is also director of health services for the Children’s Aid Society in New York City. Her involvement includes international health projects in Asia, Central and South America, Europe, Africa and health advocacy and policy in the U.S. Dr. Diaz, a former White House Fellow, was named one of the best doctors in New York by New York magazine and received the American Academy of Pediatrics Founders of Adolescent Health Award in 2001. She also recently received the Alexander Richman Commemorative Award for Ethics and Humanism in Medicine from the Mount Sinai School of Medicine.

Peter Edelman is a Professor of Law at Georgetown University Law Center, where he teaches constitutional law and poverty law. During President Clinton’s first term he was Counselor for HHS Secretary Donna Shalala and then Assistant Secretary for Planning and Evaluation. Professor Edelman has been Associate Dean of the Law Center, Director of the New York State Division for Youth, and Vice President of the University of Massachusetts.  He was a Legislative Assistant to Senator Robert F. Kennedy and Issues Director for Senator Edward Kennedy’s 1980 Presidential campaign. Prior to working for RFK, he clerked for Supreme Court Justice Arthur J. Goldberg and before that for Judge Henry J. Friendly on the U.S. Court of Appeals.  He also served as Special Assistant to U.S. Assistant Attorney General John Douglas, and was a partner in the law firm of Foley & Lardner. Mr. Edelman’s book, Searching for America’s Heart: RFK and the Renewal of Hope, is available in paperback from the Georgetown University Press. His article in the Atlantic Monthly, entitled “The Worst Thing Bill Clinton Has Done,” received the Harry Chapin Media Award. With Harry Holzer and the late Paul Offner, he recently co-Authored Reconnecting Disconnected Young Men, published by Urban Institute Press. He is currently chair of the District of Columbia Access to Justice Commission and recently co-chaired a blue-ribbon Task Force on Poverty for the Center for American Progress, and is board chair for the Public Welfare Foundation and the National Center for Youth Law. Mr. Edelman has received numerous honors and awards for his work, including the William J. Brennan, Jr. Award from the D.C. Bar in 2005. He grew up in Minneapolis, Minnesota, and graduated from Harvard College and Harvard Law School.

Lisa Jackson is a partner in the Pathways Fund at New Profit, Inc. She works with the Pathways team to create and execute on the fund’s strategy and helps support the growth of the Pathways portfolio, continuously honing and applying New Profit’s approach to driving impact. Before joining New Profit, Ms. Jackson was an assistant professor of education at Boston College.  She served as a project director for GEAR UP Boston (Gaining Early Awareness and Readiness for Undergraduate Programs), where she managed partnerships between colleges and universities and Boston Public middle schools to increase access for middle school students to after-school programs focused on college preparation. In addition to providing technical assistance to the individual partnerships, Ms. Jackson also developed systems that fostered collaborations across partnerships in a variety of areas including curriculum development, staff training, and evaluation. After leaving GEAR Up Boston, she became the vice president for performance and outcomes at The Home for Little Wanderers, where she built a department dedicated to measurement from the ground up, integrating the value of data for the purpose of program improvement. Ms. Jackson then joined the Center for Effective Philanthropy as the Vice President for Research. There she worked closely with a variety of foundation leadership teams to use comparative data for the purpose of assessing their effectiveness. Lisa received her B.S. from Howard University in Psychology and her M.S. and Ph.D. in Education from Stanford University. Ms. Jackson is married with two children.

John Kennedy is a partner in Dewey & LeBoeuf’s Intellectual Property and Technology Practice Groups in New York. In 25 years of practice, Mr. Kennedy has advised on information technology; intellectual property licensing and litigation; advice and negotiation on outsourcing arrangements, including the restructuring of outsourcing agreements; information security and privacy compliance; intellectual property protection; strategy and commercialization; and the law of unfair competition. His transactional practice includes licensing, outsourcing, joint ventures, M&A, strategic alliances, and commercial arrangements that involve general intellectual property and technology issues. Mr. Kennedy holds a J.D. from Columbia University, a M.A. from the University of Chicago and a B.A. from Carlton College.

Matthew Klein is executive director of Blue Ridge Foundation New York. Mr.Klein’s prior experience includes nonprofit management and civil rights law. Mr. Klein is co-founder of Leadership, Education and Athletics in Partnership (LEAP), a Connecticut-based youth development agency. In his legal work, he focused on equal opportunity issues with the NAACP and the civil rights division of the U.S. Department of Justice. He also served as a law clerk for the Honorable Robert L. Carter, one of the principal litigators in the landmark case Brown V. Board of Education. Mr. Klein sits on the Committee on Civil Rights of the Association of the Bar of New York City and the Steering Committee of New York City Youth Funders Network. He is also a board member of several nonprofit agencies. He has been a fellow of the Echoing Green Foundation and the Next Generation Leadership program of the Rockefeller Foundation. Mr. Klein attended Boston public schools, Yale College and Yale Law School.

Daniel Lurie is the president and founder of Tipping Point Community, a grant-making organization focused on fighting poverty in the Bay Area. Before founding Tipping Point in 2005, Daniel worked for the Bill Bradley Presidential Campaign, Accenture Consulting and the Robin Hood Foundation in New York City. Daniel earned a BA in Political Science from Duke University and received his Masters in Public Policy from the Goldman School at UC Berkeley. Daniel sits on the Board of Directors for the Mimi and Peter Haas Fund as well as the Levi Strauss Foundation.

William O’Leary is the executive director of Health and Human Services (HHS) for Microsoft Corporation, U.S. Public Sector. He directs HHS solution sales across state, local and federal markets and is responsible for the subject expertise, strategy development and thought leadership of Microsoft Health and Human Services. He has authored several whitepapers including, “Microsoft Architectural Vision for Health and Human Services” and “Modernization of Medicaid Management Information Systems.” As former Secretary of Health and Human Services in Massachusetts, O’Leary was responsible for a $9 billion budget, and oversight of 15 agencies. He also co-chaired the Mass Health Care Task Force. He developed MassCares, a comprehensive technology based initiative to better integrate service delivery to children and families. He implemented the most dramatic expansion of Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance coverage in the country, resulting in less than a five percent uninsured rate for children. As former state commissioner of the Department of Youth Services he developed a comprehensive community based system of services and supervision. He was a principal in the development of sweeping juvenile court reform. An attorney, and graduate of Western New England College School of Law, O’Leary holds a master’s degree from the School of Criminal Justice at the State University of New York in Albany. He is a former court monitor for a justice of the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court and former deputy director of the Crime and Justice Foundation. He has served as consultant to the United States Justice Department, and numerous states regarding development of health, human service, and criminal justice systems.

Perri Peltz is a distinguished television news journalist and public health advocate. Most recently she served as an anchor and reporter for WNBC-TV where she focused on issues relating to poverty and health. Ms. Peltz has previously worked at the Robin Hood Foundation, served as a co-anchor for “Today in New York”, and was a contributor for NBC’s “Dateline” and a reporter and anchor for the award-winning show “CNN.com”. She also produced the feature film “The Knights of the South Bronx” and has won numerous awards for a piece on the misdiagnosis of melanoma. She was recently honored by the Mount Sinai Adolescent Health Center for her contributions to public health advocacy. Ms. Peltz is currently on the board of the Irvington Institute for Medical Research. She holds a master’s degree in Public Health from Columbia University.

Daniel Simkowitz is a Managing Director in Global Capital Markets at Morgan Stanley, the Chair of the Firm’s Capital Commitment Committee and leads Morgan Stanley’s Strategic Financing effort. His transaction experience includes four of the largest IPOs in history; Lucent Technologies ($3.0 BN), Conoco ($4.4 BN), Agere Systems ($4.1 BN) and Accenture ($1.9 BN). Mr. Simkowitz has managed spin-off and subsidiary IPOs for AT&T, Lucent, Dupont, General Motors, First Data, McDonalds, Procter & Gamble and other major corporations. In addition, he has executed several of the largest convertible financings in U.S. history for Amgen, Tyco, Ford, Medtronic and Wells Fargo. After spending three years managing the Firm’s equity activities in Japan and Southeast Asia, Mr. Simkowitz returned to New York in 1995 as a senior member of the equity syndicate desk and went on to manage the Firm’s equity origination efforts for industrial and technology issuers. Mr. Simkowitz is a graduate of Harvard University and holds an MBA from Columbia University.

Herbert Sturz(Co-Founder) is the founding chairman of The After-School Corporation and serves as a trustee of the Open Society Institute. He represents the Open Society on the board of National Urban Reconstruction and Housing Agency (NURCHA), a non-governmental organization that has facilitated construction of over 200,000 low-income houses throughout South Africa. He was also the founding director of the Vera Institute of Justice; New York deputy mayor for criminal justice; chairman of the New York City Planning Commission and editorial board member of the New York Times. Mr. Sturz received a B.A. from the University of Wisconsin and a M.A. from Columbia University. He was a finalist for the Purpose Prize, which celebrates individuals over the age of 60 who make significant contributions to society through social entrepreneurship efforts. His honors include the Rockefeller Public Service Award, the Roscoe Pound Award and the August Vollmer Award.

Michael M. Weinstein(Co-Founder) is director of programs for the Robin Hood Foundation. He holds a Ph.D. in economics from MIT and was chairman of the economics department at Haverford College. He provided economics analysis and commentaries for National Public Radio, served on the New York Times editorial board and was the paper’s economics columnist in the 1990s. In 2001, he became director of the Maurice R. Greenberg Center for Geoeconomic Studies at the Council on Foreign Relations, also holding the Paul A. Volcker chair at the council. Mr. Weinstein directs the Institute for Journalists at the New York Times Company Foundation and is president and founder of W.A.D. Financial Counseling, a nonprofit foundation that provides free financial counseling to poor families. He is editor of Globalization: What’s New, coauthor of The Democracy Advantage: How Democracies Promote Prosperity and Peace, author of Recovery and Redistribution Under the N.I.R.A. and has written extensively about welfare, inequality, poverty, health care, energy, social security, tax, budget, trade, environment, regulation, antitrust, telecommunications, education, banking and many other public policy issues.

Elisabeth Mason(Co-Founder) is the CEO and one of the founders of Single Stop USA, a major national poverty-fighting organization.  Elisabeth is an expert on venture philanthropy, children’s rights, start-up organizations and poverty-fighting programs. She attended the first White House Summit on Community Colleges in October 2010, and the White House meeting on “Opportunity and Security for Vulnerable Communities: Building Partnerships to Fight Poverty” in June 2010. She was a co-presenter at the annual meeting of the Association of Community College Trustees in October 2010 and was named the Huffington Post’s “Greatest Person of the Day”on Oct. 27, 2010. She has over 15 years of experience, including her work at Atlantic Philanthropies developing a $1 billion, 10-year spend-down plan to help disadvantaged children. Elisabeth was also a Managing Director at the Robin Hood Foundation, Senior Advisor at Innovative Philanthropy, and practiced Law at Cleary, Gottlieb, and Steen & Hamilton in New York City. In her early career, Elisabeth was the founder and Executive Director of Fundacion Kukula, an agency serving street and working youth and their families. During her tenure with Fundacion Kukula, she was one of the founding members of the Central American branch of the Latin American Street Kids Movement. Elisabeth has also served as an advisor to the United Nations and to local and international agencies on various human and children’s rights, legislative reform, juvenile justice, and community and youth development programs throughout the Latin American region. Additionally, she has participated in projects in India and Africa and served as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Costa Rica, where she lived for six years. A lifelong resident of East Harlem, Elisabeth holds a J.D. from Columbia University and an A.B. and a M.A. from Harvard.

 Advisory Committee


Julian Bond  From his student days to his current Chairmanship of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), Mr. Bond has been on the cutting edge of the movements for civil rights and economic justice since 1960 when he founded the Atlanta student sit-in and antisegregation organization and of the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee. The holder of twenty-five honorary degrees, he is a Distinguished Professor at American University in Washington, DC, and a Professor in history at the University of Virginia. Mr. Bond also serves as Chairman of the Premier Auto Group PAG (Volvo, Land Rover, Aston-Martin, and Jaguar) Diversity Council and is on the Boards of People for the American Way, the Southern Poverty Law Center and the Council for a Livable World, and the advisory board of the Harvard Business School Initiative on Social Enterprise, among others. In 2002, he received the prestigious National Freedom Award.

J. Noah Brown was named the fourth president and chief executive officer of the Association of Community College Trustees (ACCT) by the association’s Board of Directors on October 1, 2005. An experienced association executive specializing in public policy, legislative advocacy, and strategic planning, Noah is a nationally recognized authority on community college governance, a contributor to national publications, and a speaker on a broad range of topics to large audiences. His experience spans more than 29 years in the nation’s capital working in the nonprofit sector. Noah provides national leadership on behalf of more than 6,000 elected and appointed officials governing 1,200 community colleges throughout the United States. Much of his work has focused on strengthening the strategic connections between community college boards and the array of national and state organizations important to supporting the mission of community colleges. Noah serves an ex officio member of the Board for Community Colleges for International Development, Inc., and Board of Directors for the Council for Resource Development (CRD). He also serves on the Board for the National Association for Community College Entrepreneurship (NACCE), and the Board of Directors for the Association Mutual Health Insurance Company (AMHIC), where he serves as Secretary on the Executive Committee. Noah represents ACCT on the Washington Higher Education Secretariat and Committee for Education Funding. He is an appointed member on the Steering Committee for the United States – Denmark Partnership for Vocational Education, U.S. Department of Education. He serves on the Executive Advisory Council for Sungard Higher Education. Noah previously served a three-year term (through 2010) as Commissioner on the U.S. National Commission for UNESCO, U.S. Department of State.

Eduardo J. Padrón serves as the President of Miami Dade College. Dr. Padrón served as the Chairman at Association Of American Colleges And Universities. He served as a Director of Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta since March 2009 and serves as its Director of Miami Branch. He serves as a Director at Association Of American Colleges And Universities. He serves as a Trustee of Miami Dade College. Dr. Padrón serves on many boards, including: the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching; the American Council on Education; the American Association of Colleges and Universities; the League for Innovation; and the Collins Center for Public Policy. In addition, he has served on the Governing Board of the Hispanic Association of Colleges and Universities; the Board of Directors of the U.S. Congressional Hispanic Caucus Institute; and on advisory councils for former Secretaries of State Cyrus Vance and Ed Muskie and Secretary of Education Shirley Hufstedler. Dr. Padrón served as the Chair of the Florida Community Colleges Council of President from 1999 to 2000. He is nationally respected for his advocacy for underserved populations in higher education, innovative teaching and learning strategies, and focus on support for student success. Dr. Padrón has received appointments from four American presidents. Dr. Padrón is the recipient of numerous national and international awards. He is a prolific writer with several articles and publications to his credit. He is a regular columnist for national and Florida publications. He has received the highest orders of distinction from the governments of Spain, France, Mexico and Argentina for his outstanding leadership and record of commitment to educational opportunity and cultural enrichment. Dr. Padrón holds a Doctorate in Economics from the University of Florida and is an alumnus of Miami Dade College.

Norman Pearlstine joined Bloomberg L.P. in June 2008 as Chief Content Officer, a newly-created position. In this role Mr. Pearlstine is charged with seeking growth opportunities for Bloomberg’s television, radio, magazine and online products and to make the most of the company’s existing news operations. Prior to joining Bloomberg, Mr. Pearlstine was a Senior Advisor to The Carlyle Group’s telecommunications and media group in New York. Before joining the private equity firm, Mr. Pearlstine had spent nearly four decades working as a reporter and editor. He was editor-in-chief of Time Inc., the magazine division of Time Warner Inc. from 1995 through 2005 before becoming a Senior advisor to Time Warner Inc. in January 2006. Mr. Pearlstine also worked for The Wall Street Journal for 23 years before joining Time Inc., including nine years in which he was responsible for the Journal’s news department, as managing editor and then executive editor. He is the author of OFF THE RECORD: The Press, the Government, and the War over Anonymous Sources, published by Farrar, Straus and Giroux in June 2007.

Robert W. Pittman is a founding member of Pilot Group, LLC. Mr. Pittman was formerly chief operating officer of AOL Time Warner. Mr. Pittman has played a key role in two major industry revolutions. Until 2001, he served as president and COO of America Online, which emerged as a mass-market consumer medium during his tenure; and in 1981, Mr. Pittman, co-founder of MTV, led the team that created the MTV cable network. He later became CEO of MTV Networks, where he oversaw the growth of MTV, the relaunch of Nickelodeon, the launch of Nick at Nite, VH-1 and the expansion of the company into international markets. MTV Networks became the first profitable cable networks group during his tenure. Mr. Pittman began his career at age 15 as a radio announcer in his native Mississippi and later successfully programmed radio stations in Pittsburgh, Chicago and NBC Radio’s flagship station, WNBC in New York City. Mr. Pittman currently serves on the boards of New York City Ballet, The Public Theater, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, NYU Medical School Foundation, Alliance for Lupus Research, Trinity School and the Robin Hood Foundation, where he is currently chairman. Despite trying for three years, Pittman never earned a college degree.

John Sykes is the President & CEO of Playlist.com, a website that allows users to search for music and create custom online playlists, which can be shared with friends. Mr. Sykes was co-founder of MTV, former president of VH1, and former president of CBS Radio (formerly Infinity Broadcasting), one of the largest radio broadcasting companies in the US. Sykes had previously served as a boardmember at Playlist prior to taking the helm of the company. He is also a boardmember for Shazam Inc., Robin Hood Foundation and CBS Radio.

David Wilkins is the Vice Dean for Global Initiatives on the Legal Profession, the Lester Kissel Professor of Law, and the faculty director of the Program on the Legal Profession at Harvard Law School. He is also a senior research fellow of the American Bar Foundation and a faculty associate of the Harvard University Edmond J. Safra Foundation Center for Ethics.

Professor Wilkins has written extensively on the legal profession in leading scholarly journals and the popular press and is the co-author (along with his Harvard Law School colleague Andrew Kaufman) of one of the leading casebooks in the field. His current scholarly projects on the profession include After the JD, a ten-year nationwide longitudinal study of lawyers’ careers, the Harvard Law School Career Study, a quantitative and qualitative examination of how corporations purchase legal services, an empirical project on the development of “ethical infrastructure” in large law firms based on a series of focus groups with leading practitioners and regulators, an examination of the practice of “offshoring” legal work to India, and over 200 in-depth interviews in connection with a forthcoming Oxford University Press book on the development of the black corporate bar.

Joseph Zebrowitz is Executive Vice President of Executive Health Resources. Dr. Zebrowitz was instrumental in the development of EHR’s suite of medical necessity compliance and denials management solutions, endorsed by the American Hospital Association and is highly involved in EHR’s strategic planning. In addition, Dr. Zebrowitz oversees EHR’s education and regulatory assessment teams, conducts educational sessions at EHR’s client hospitals, and has completed hundreds of regulatory assessment audits for EHR’s hospital clients. Prior to joining EHR, Dr. Zebrowitz was a founder and Vice President of Strategic Alliances at eHealthContracts, now Concuity Inc., a revenue cycle management software provider. Prior to Concuity, Dr. Zebrowitz was a practicing obstetrician/gynecologist. Dr. Zebrowitz speaks regularly at regional and national healthcare events and provides expert commentary to many leading healthcare magazines and journals. Dr. Zebrowitz received his medical degree from Temple University School of Medicine and a bachelor’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania. He also attended the Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania, where he is a frequent lecturer.