Darian Ahmadizadeh is a 13-year-old mathematician residing in New York City. As a math lover, he wants to spread his passion for math to other students. He has received numerous awards, one being a perfect scorer on the American Mathematics Competition 8 in 2016. He also featured in the Riverdale Press in September of this year.
David Howard King is the editor/associate publisher of the Capital Region’s new alternative newsweekly The Alt. He spent 7 years covering state government from a New York City perspective for The Gotham Gazette. In 2012, he served as the state reporter for The Center for Public Integrity’s State Integrity Investigation that was backed by Public Radio International.
He’s the winner of multiple New York Press Association Awards, including “Writer of the Year” 2007 and “Feature of the Year.”
He started his journalism career through an internship at Metroland, Albany’s defunct alt-weekly. He was hired there later that year.
Dr John Drazan
Dr. John Drazan is a Lecturer in biomedical engineering at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. In addition to his biomedical research, John is the STEM director for 4th Family Inc., where he engages urban students in STEM outreach using sports science and analytics. As STEM director, John has assembled a diverse team of academics, teachers, basketball coaches, and players united by a common goal of broadening educational opportunity for our youth through a shared love of sports. His work in STEM outreach has won several major awards including the “Best Research Paper” at the MIT-Sloan Sports Analytics Conference, the NSF GK12 Fellowship, and the NIH-IRACDA Postdoctoral Fellowship.
Dr. Paul Miller
Dr. Paul Miller is the Principal and CEO of Green Tech High Charter School, a highly successful school for boys in Albany, NY. An expert in urban education, Dr. Miller has specialized in school reform and redesign for over fifteen years, counseling school officials and administrators on effective strategies to increase student performance and establish a culture of success. He has committed his life to educating and empowering low-income, urban youth with the hopes of facilitating change and undoing the trend of academic underachievement that often plagues inner-city, minority males.
Director of BGIA
James Ketterer is Director of BGIA and Dean of International Studies at Bard College. He also teaches in Bard’s Political Studies and Middle East Studies programs. Ketterer previously served as Egypt Country Director for AMIDEAST, an educational and cultural affairs organization. Prior to that he was Vice Chancellor for Policy & Planning and Deputy Provost at the State University of New York (SUNY).
Janet Carmosky met the co-founder of AlbanyCanCode, Annmarie Lanesey in 2015 after a long career in start-ups and business strategy base in China. She approaches Albany Can Code as a workforce development initiative that can draw from success factors she saw at work between 1985 and 2015 – stakeholder engagement, an ecosystem-based model, and extensive partnerships between educators, employers and community – which established China’s modern economy (manufacturing, transportation, telecommunications, banking, IT, retail sectors) while simultaneously pulling more than 600 million people out of poverty. She runs the day to day operations of AlbanyCanCode.
Jené Luciani is an internationally-renowned bestselling author of three books, and a regular lifestyle expert on NBC’s Today, Dr. Oz, Wendy Williams and many others. She is the author of The Bra Book: An Intimate Guide to Finding the Right Bra, Shapewear, Swimwear, and More (BenBella Books, 2009 & 2017), which is now in its 2nd edition, and the co-author of Get It! A Beauty, Style and Wellness Guide to Getting Your “It” Together (BenBella Books, 2016). Luciani has hundreds of bylines to her name in publications such as SHAPE, and the Huffington Post, and the busy mom-of-four is the go-to-gal on everything from wardrobe to waxing for publications such as FIRST, Woman’s World and Cosmo.
Kelly O’Connor is passionate about helping government deliver better products to users. Kelly joined the U.S. Digital Service (USDS) in 2015 and manages one of their largest products: Vets.gov. Prior to USDS, Kelly was a founding member of Deloitte’s Federal Practice in 2002.
Kelly teaches part-time in Georgetown University’s School of Continuing Studies and has been an active volunteer with the Buffalo Veterans Treatment Court since 2009, which was the first Veterans treatment court in the country.
Invasive Species Database Coordinator
Meg Wilkinson is the Invasive Species Database Coordinator for the New York Natural Heritage Program. In 2014, at the age of 54, being an active, healthy woman, she was diagnosed with stage 2 ovarian cancer; she completed surgery and chemo, and has a good prognosis. Meg is committed to making a difference in the ovarian cancer world. Meg grew up in Nyack, NY and has lived in Rexford, NY since 2000 where she and her husband, Tony, raised their son, Tristan, who is now in graduate school studying Physics. Meg enjoys biking, skiing, Tai Chi, and yoga.
Grant Program Assistant
Nico Meyering was born and raised in Oneonta, NY. He earned his BA from Hartwick College and his MPA from Binghamton University. He has lived and worked in San Francisco CA, Denton TX, and Ithaca NY. He has been a drug counselor, a marketing professional for nonprofits, and an actor. He is a two-time recipent of the President’s Volunteer Service Award, and previously served on the boards of Literacy Volunteers of Otsego-Delaware Counties and Buffalo Street Books. He is a board member of the CCHS Family Network. He lives in Albany NY with his girlfriend Brittany and their two cats.
Pritam is in his third year of PhD at Rochester Institute of Technology, working at the recently established AMPrint Center. At the center, he works on developing processes for 3D printing carbon fibers. After getting his bachelors degree in Mechanical Engineering from his hometown of Kolkata, India, Pritam came to Rochester in 2012 for a master’s degree in Industrial Engineering, and later continuing on to his PhD. Currently, he serves as the Vice President of Education at Tiger Tales Toastmasters, a public speaking organization on campus. His first TEDx talk, “Sitting: The silent addiction,” described how sitting is similar to smoking in our generation, was a well received by audiences at the event, and especially online, gathering over 56,000 views in just 8 months. Pritam’s life-long passion has been uncovering the mysteries of human existence through investigation, experimentation, and friendship!
Tim Sarrantonio is a team member at NeonCRM and has more than 10 years of experience working for and volunteering with nonprofits. He has raised over $3 million for various causes, engaged and enhanced databases of all sizes, procured multiple successful grants, and formulated engaging communications and fundraising campaigns for several nonprofits. He volunteers heavily in his home of Niskayuna, NY.