Fulbright’s Greater New York Board of Directors and Advisor Bios
JOSEPHINE DORADO (President)
Fulbright: Netherlands, 2003
Josephine Dorado is a social entrepreneur, professor, and performing artist whose work focuses on the innovative convergence of physical and digital experiences, arts with technology, and games with calls to action. Her work has been awarded both a Fulbright Scholarship and a MacArthur Foundation Award in Digital Media & Learning, and she happily continues to be involved with the Fulbright community as President of the Board of Directors in NYC. Previously, Josephine founded Kidz Connect, a virtual cultural exchange program that connects youth internationally through creative collaboration and theatrical performance in virtual worlds. She currently teaches at The New School, specializing in Networked Collaboration and Virtual Learning Environments, and is a trainer for the State Department’s TechCamps, an initiative to aid civil society organizations in developing countries by building their digital capacities. In addition, Josephine is the Live Events Producer for This Spartan Life, a talk show in the video game Halo – dubbed by Wired magazine as “a mash-up of The Charlie Rose Show and Doom.” Her speaking engagements include Talks @ Google, TEDxFulbright, SXSW, IgniteNYC and SIGGRAPH. She balances her work in online spaces with her passion for teaching Pilates, combining a technology-infused life with a physical, embodied way of being. Her next venture is reACTor, a mobile news game that encourages activism around news stories that people care about. http://funksoup.com
ANJALI DESHMUKH (Vice President)
Fulbright: India, 2006
Anjali Deshmukh is Director of Knowledge & Communications at Nonprofit Finance Fund, a nonprofit dedicated to improving the giving and use of money for social impact. Previous to NFF, she has worked as a writer at LaPlaca Cohen, a firm specializing in communications services to cultural institutions nationwide, and served as an Americorps Vista volunteer at the Massachusetts Housing and Shelter Alliance. Ms. Deshmukh received her BA from Amherst College in 2001 in English and Fine Arts and MFA at the Rhode Island School of Design in 2005. She has participated in exhibitions at the venues including the Brooklyn Museum, Dumbo Art Festival, Queens Museum of Art, India Habitat Center (Delhi, India), and Higher Bridges Gallery (Ireland). Her work can be viewed at anjalideshmukh.com.
KATIE BAKARICH (Secretary)
Fulbright: Germany, 2009
Katie attended Fairfield University in Connecticut, majoring in Accounting and graduating with a Bachelor of Science degree in 2008. During the summer of 2006, Katie had the opportunity to study abroad in Florence, Italy. This experience furthered her desire to spend time abroad after graduating. During high school and in the summers off during college, she studied German and developed an affinity for the culture and language. Upon completion of her undergraduate studies, Katie spent her Fulbright year at the University of Frankfurt in Germany. While there, she attended courses and conducted research on German accounting and the EU business environment. When she returned to the US, she joined the public accounting firm McGladrey LLP, for whom she had interned during college. Katie served as an external auditor for three years, conducting financial statement audits of companies in a variety of industries and obtained her CPA license for the state of New York. In 2012, she began a full-time PhD program at The City University of New York (Baruch College) in accounting, with the goal of becoming a professor at a business school focusing on international accounting and business.
RON GONELLA (Treasurer)
Fulbright: Wales 1981; India, 1987
Ron Gonella has retired from teaching and administration after almost 40 years in the classroom. Ron began his educational career in the Peace Corps in Ethiopia (now Eritrea) then returned to teach in NYC. He was awarded a Fulbright Teacher Exchange appointment to Wales in 1981-2. Ron’s second Fulbright was as a curriculum specialist in 1987 when he joined a team of educators who spent a summer in India developing a series of lesson plans & resources to be used in the nation’s classrooms towards establishing the global classroom in schools & colleges. Ron is a charter member of the NY Chapter, having joined in 1982. He has served as treasurer and board member for more than a decade. More recently, his primary role has been to serve as liaison with the Yonkers Board of Education & Sarah Lawrence College in the Youth Mentoring/Global Curriculum Initiative which endeavored to connect high school students to the Fulbright goal of international understanding & cooperation. The Global Curriculum Initiative is now engaged with Palisades Prep in Yonkers in developing curriculum using chapter personnel & resources in a variety of disciplines in the classroom, in the hopes of developing a model that can be replicated in other educational settings.
General Board Members:
Fulbright: Dutch Fulbright alumna to US, 2012
After getting her Masters in Clinical psychology from the University of Leiden in the Netherlands, as well as a degree in Music Conservatory, Vivienne Aerts worked as a therapist in a private practice and a choir conductor and singer for 2 years. In 2012, she received a Fulbright to study in Boston at Berklee College of Music, jazz and vocal performance. In December 2014, she graduated and moved to NYC to work on her new album. http://www.vivienneaerts.nl
ANNA LORRAINE TONNA BROWN
Fulbright: Spain, 2007
Anna Lorraine Tonna Brown is a native New Yorker classical singer, with many ties to the music culture of Spain and Latin America. Her career as a performer includes opera, recital, chamber repertoire, musicology investigation, as well as arts education. She works with both children and seniors in music projects that she programs or receive grants for, to bring the arts to the underserved populations of the borough of the Bronx, of which she has been a resident since 2005. Anna is currently self employed as a performer as well as a teaching artist in the NYC area. She is also associated with the Hispanic Society of America, doing music consulting work and grant writing for this organization. http://www.annatonna.com
Fulbright: Denmark, 2013
Renée Y. Cooper completed her Fulbright in Copenhagen Denmark February through April 2013. While there she lectured on marketing, business development and sales. Before returning to the States she presented “Omni-Channel Retailing in the U.S.” to the Danish business community. She has been on the faculty of FIT’s Fashion Merchandising Management (FMM) department since 2000. She is the recipient of the Chancellor’s Award for Excellence in Faculty Service from the State University of New York (SUNY) for consistently superior service. As acting chairperson from 2008 to 2010, she played a major role in the launch of FMM’s first fully online degree program. Cooper wrote and teaches online and hybrid versions of courses in Contemporary Retail Management and Leadership Development for Retailing. She has been FIT’s liaison with the National Retail Foundation for the past thirteen years. Cooper is co- advisor of the National Retail Federation Student Association at FIT, which she co-founded. She is a member of the Board of Directors of the non-profit Black Retail Action Group (BRAG) where she is Vice President of Planning. She is also the Co-Advisor of the FIT student BRAG Club. As Chair of BRAG College Chapters she has grown the organization to 9 chapters across the U.S., which gives more students internship and scholarship opportunities. As FMM’s former International Coordinator, Cooper has facilitated student exchange programs in Italy, England, Australia, and France. She also designed and coordinated several of FIT’s collaborative summer programs with Moscow State University. Before joining FIT, Cooper was a buyer and sourcing manager for major retail companies. Cooper earned a BS in Business Administration from Morgan State University in Baltimore, Md. and a Master’s of Professional Studies degree in Global Fashion Management at FIT.
RONIT LEVIN DELGADO
Fulbright: Israeli Fulbright alumna to US, 2011
Ronit Levin Delgado is an Israeli multimedia artist who currently lives and works in New York. She has a BFA from Bezalel Academy of Art and Design in Jerusalem (2008), and during her studies, she was chosen for the exchange students program and studied for a semester at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburg. In 2011, Ronit won the MA Fulbright program in Israel and was sent for her MFA in studio arts at Montclair State University. During her studies, she was selected to be the Assistant Set Designer for ZINNIAS: The Life Of Clementine Hunter, by Director Robert Wilson at Alexander Kasser Theater, NJ. After her graduation in 2013, she did the Academic Training program for a year, working with the world-renowned artist Nir Hod as his studio assistant at his Meatpacking Studio. Ronit has exhibited in group exhibitions in in Israel, Europe and the US, such as Magnan Metz Gallery and Pratt Manhattan Gallery in NYC, Solo Gallery and Index Gallery in Newark, Cardiff, Wales and Leeds in UK and Ramle Station for Contemporary Art and Hertzelilinblum Museum in Israel. http://www.ronitlevindelgado.com
Fulbright: Chile, 2006
Clarisa Diaz is an interdisciplinary designer and artist based in NYC. In 2007, she began her career as a Fulbright scholar in Architecture with social housing residents in Chile. She has since evolved her practice to designing tools for services with various organizations, manifested in collaborative projects producing books, toolkits, web features and other interactive experiences. In 2010, Clarisa founded Places for All, a platform of her work addressing community-based development. Based on her fieldwork experiences abroad, she has guest critiqued at various universities from the Royal University of Fine Arts in Cambodia to Amherst College and NYU, and was honored as a visiting academic at Oxford Brookes University. Clarisa has taught design courses at Pannasastra and Limkokwing universities in Cambodia and at Parsons The New School for Design as a teaching fellow. She currently teaches Interactive Design as part of the adjunct faculty at the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism. Clarisa has exhibited and presented her work with the North American and Chilean Institute of Culture, Shanghai Biennale, Queens Museum, and SUPERFRONT. She has worked as a designer and developer at the former Newsweek & The Daily Beast, as a design research fellow at NYPL Labs, and works currently at Penguin Random House on the Penguin digital production team. She received a Master of Fine Arts in Design and Technology from Parsons The New School for Design and holds a professional degree in Architecture from the University of Kansas, in the town of Lawrence where she grew up as a first generation Venezuelan-Taiwanese American. http://clarisadiaz.com
Fulbright: Bulgaria, 2008
J. Michelle Hill is a computer graphics artist, faculty at “Parsons The New School for Design”, digital literacy consultant, residing in New York. She has a BFA_1977 in Textile Design, from Rhode Island School of Design and a Masters_1982 in Printmaking from Howard University. Her educational experience and work conducting women’s development projects in Zimbabwe, Nigeria, Morocco, Egypt and rural Africa, lead her to lecturing at the museum of African Art, New York and production contracting on Walt Disney Theatrical Productions of “The Lion King and Aida”. She has also worked on Broadway productions of Mamma Mia. Michelle’s digital printing background allowed her to set up a digital print factory in China for an international lingerie company. Her lecturing opportunities have included The Textile Museum in Washington DC to Digital Print conferences in Istanbul, Turkey. Additionally, Michelle has exhibited at galleries and museums nationally and internationally including the Museum of Art and Design in New York. One of her career highlights was acceptance of a Lecture/Teaching Fulbright fellowship in Sofia, Bulgaria where she researched “Thracian culture” and taught computer graphics at “The National Academy of Art. During her stay in Bulgaria she collaborated with the U.S Embassy to sponsor exhibitions for her Fulbright project along with student exhibitions and acted in a movie. She has been published in Mademoiselle magazine, Black Enterprise, Surface Design, ESSENCE and One world magazine. She has written essays regarding early experimental digital printing technology on smart cloth. Her interests range from acting, animation and digital storytelling for ESL training.
Fulbright: Colombia, 2010
Though born in New York to Jewish-American parents, from her teen years onward, Laura developed a fascination with and passion for other cultures, particularly drawn to those of Latin America and the Middle East. As a student at Tufts University, she graduated with degrees in International Relations and Peace and Justice Studies. While there, she headed various campus organizations including J-Street U, dedicated to promoting a viable, peaceful, and equitable two-state solution for Israel/Palestine, and an ESL and Citizenship program at a local Latino community center, for which she recruited and trained volunteer student teachers. This passion for teaching and community work, in addition to her fascination with South America after having spent eight months studying abroad in Chile and traveling extensively throughout the region, left her with a desire to apply for a Fulbright ETA grant. She chose to apply to Colombia, because her Peace and Justice Studies capstone project addressed the shortcomings of reinsertion programs for former paramilitaries and guerilla fighters there, and outside of teaching, she wanted to work with internally displaced peoples (IDPs). Laura absolutely fell in love with Colombia – the people, the food, the dancing, and the land – and keeps Colombia alive through maintaining contact with friends and avidly following the country’s political situation. Upon returning to the states, Laura briefly worked for the National Democratic Institute’s Latin America and Caribbean Team, and shortly thereafter, moved to rural Ecuador to work as the regional coordinator for a social enterprise that recruited and trained women to sell high social and economic impact products such reading glasses, solar lamps and water filters to rural villages. Currently, Laura is gaining exposure to social justice issues in low income minority communities in New York City as a paralegal at a civil rights law firm.
Fulbright: Nepal, 2010
Piero Passacantando is an interdisciplinary artist. He has been focusing on two main bodies of work: paintings exploring patterns, geometry and color; a series of workshops aimed at artistic research and discussion around the corporate office space, which have lately taken place at the Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts in Manhattan. Recently, he was also a resident at Flux Factory in Queens. In 2012, Piero participated in Art in Odd Places in Manhattan and the Dumbo Arts Festival in Brooklyn. He also partook in Summer Decompression Camp, a residency program at the Corniolo Art Platform, Corniolo, Italy. In 2011, he was a Create Change Fellow at the Laundromat Project in Harlem. In 2010, Piero received a Fulbright grant to research Thangka in Kathmandu, Nepal. He has an MFA from the California College of the Arts, San Francisco, and a BFA from the Corcoran College of Art and Design, Washington DC. He has exhibited both nationally and internationally. He currently lives in Harlem and has a studio in the Bronx. pieropassacantando.com my-nerva.com
Fulbright: German, 2006
Krista Sande-Kerback served as a Fulbright Teaching Assistant at a comprehensive school in Hamburg, Germany from 2005-2006, working with students in a primarily Muslim migrant community. She is a graduate of Dartmouth College (2005) where she studied Geography, Public Policy, and German. Krista completed her MBA at Columbia Business School (2014) and also took courses around immigration, multiculturalism and Turkish for a year at the Universitat Hamburg as part of her Fulbright. Krista is currently a Senior Analyst at IBM and is part of a global team of market research analysts and consultants that conduct projects on topics of importance to IBM business leaders and strategists, accelerating the understanding of new or emerging markets. https://www.linkedin.com/in/kristasande
VANESSA SIMONE TROIANO
Fulbright: Austria, 2008
Vanessa Simone Troiano holds an Enhanced Chancellor’s Fellowship at The Graduate Center, CUNY, where she is pursuing a PhD in Art History with a focus area on 20th Century German and Austrian Art. She also teaches Art History at Brooklyn College and Sotheby’s Institute of Art in New York. Vanessa’s career and life have greatly been shaped by the international exchange experiences she has had, including her Fulbright-funded teaching assistantship in Austria in 2008-2009. Prior to this year, she studied at the University of Vienna as part of an undergraduate exchange program with her alma mater, Wellesley College. In 2011, Vanessa completed her Masters in Art History at the Courtauld Institute of Art in London, and remained in England for an additional year to manage The Park Gallery. This summer, she was awarded a DAAD scholarship to study at the Goethe Institut in Berlin. In New York, Vanessa is deeply involved in the arts community. Since 2012, she has been a member of the Guggenheim Museum, where she also completed a curatorial internship this past Spring. She often participates in the museum’s events, including their Mind’s Eye program, which offers opportunities for visually impaired individuals to experience art. Although I am not blind, I accompany my blind father to these programs, as well as my visually impaired friend Jasmin Sethi, who is also a Fulbright alumna. Vanessa is a member of several organizations in New York that promote international exchange. Last year, she joined the Quadrille Society, which helps to raise funds for scholarships sponsored by the Germanistic Society of America, an organization that partners with Fulbright to support exchanges between the United States and Germany. Vanessa is also a member of the National Organization of Italian American Women, which sponsors scholarships and cultural exchanges between the United States and Italy. https://www.linkedin.com/in/vanessatroiano
ROSALBA DEL VECCHIO
Fulbright: Italy, 1980
Dr. Rosalba Corrado Del Vecchio is Director of the Master Degree Program in School Building Leadership for aspiring principals and administrators in the non public schools. She also teaches Master and Doctoral level courses and mentors students in the Department of Administrative and Instructional Leadership (DAIL). A member of the St. Vincent de Paul team for the Catholic Institute, she provides professional development to principals and board members of the new academies in the Diocese of Brooklyn and coordinates The Catholic Principals Academy (TCPA), which prepares future school administrators for the Archdiocese of New York and the Diocese of Brooklyn. A proponent of global programs, Dr. Del Vecchio taught in the first DAIL Instructional Leadership global initiative, on the Rome campus. She received the Global Certificate Program sponsored by St. John’s Office of Global Studies and the Center for Teaching and Learning. An active member of St. John’s Chapter of the Ladies of Charity, she served as the former Chair of the Spirituality Committee.
Prior to her work at St. John’s, Dr. Del Vecchio served as a high school teacher of Spanish, Italian, French and English, then as a school building and central office administrator in one of the Big Four Districts in New York State. For over ten years, she was Director of Funded Programs responsible for the management of over $ 60 million in categorical and competitive grants in the Yonkers Public School District. A grant proposals reader for the US Department of Education and New York State Education Department, she is also a Board of Directors member of the Yonkers Partners in Education (YPIE) Foundation, which seeks to provide career and college opportunities to underserved children.
A former Fulbright and National Endowment for the Humanities Fellow, Dr. Del Vecchio was Vice President of the Fulbright Association of Greater New York and continues to serve on its Board. She is the founder of the Youth Mentoring Initiative for International Understanding, a partnership program with the Fulbright Association of GNY, Sarah Lawrence College and an urban school district.
A graduate from Fordham University, Dr. Del Vecchio specializes in educational leadership, administration and policy, with a concentration on partnership development and professional development of aspiring school administrators. Recently, she traveled to China, where she presented a paper on the preparation of the next generation of school leaders, at the International Education Leadership Conference sponsored by the Beijing Institute of Education, The Beijing Institute of Educational Sciences, Global Interactions, the National Staff Development Council, and The Council of Chief State School Officers. The Business Review Cambridge just published her article on The Disconnect between workplace and graduate school motivation, written in collaboration with a colleague from Tobin School of Business.
Fulbright: Hungary, 1979
Immediate Past President of Greater NY Chapter
Prior to retirement, Prof. Mike Uretsky was Co-Director of the New York University Center for Advanced Technology and Professor of Information Systems at New York University’s Stern School of Business (a department that he founded, chaired and led to the point where it was and still is one of the top-rated programs in the country. He has a long entrepreneurial career with extensive accomplishments in both the academic and public service Under his leadership, the Center for Advanced Technology (CAT) identified promising university technologies, refined them and then developed technology transfer programs for bringing them to industry and the public sector. Dr. Uretsky’s specialty is evaluating the impact of technologies. Towards this end, he was Co-Chair of the World Wide Web Conference, he Co-Chaired NSF studies on simulation methodologies and comparing US and USSR technology negotiation practices, and along with Margaret Mead and Barry Commoner, he served on the Board of Directors of the Scientist’s Institute for Public Information. Dr. Uretsky has a long-standing interest in medical education and delivery services. Under his directorship, the CAT developed visualization technologies for use at NYU School of Medicine. He served on the Educational Technology Committee of the NYU School of Medicine. He and his colleagues developed health education modules that are in use at Montefiore Children’s Hospital, and the Children’s Health Fund. Major corporations have called upon him for strategic planning assistance. He was part of the effort leading to IBM’s movement into the personal computer and laser disk markets. He has worked with the Bay Area Science and Innovation Consortium (comprised of senior executives from leading technology corporations and universities) to address problems of international productivity and competitiveness. At the request of the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment, he evaluated FBI use of criminal identification and record systems for the Subcommittee on the Constitution of the House Judiciary Committee. At the request of the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment, he evaluated the impact of technology embargos on the operations of U.S. companies. He served on a Task Force established by the National Petroleum Council, at the request of Secretary of Energy Chu, taking primary responsibility for overseeing the work dealing with technology development efforts. This task force developed policy recommendations that – subject to the need to address national security, economic development and environmental goals – take the country to 2035.
Dr. Uretsky’s activities balance academic and business needs. He has consulted with major companies and organizations evaluating new technologies, developing market plans, justifying market entry, and producing market support programs. He has served on the board of the Delaware Highlands Conservancy. He is Past President of the New York Fulbright Alumni Association, and serves on the boards of the Delaware Valley Opera and the Northern Wayne Property Owners Alliance – a group working to balance economic development associated with gas exploration, environmental needs and community interests.
Eliot Cotton is an associate at Vinson and Elkins and his principal area of practice is mergers and acquisitions. Eliot received his J.D. from the University of Texas School of Law in 2010 and his B.A. from the University of Texas in 2007. He was admitted to practice in New York in 2011.
Dan Komarek is an associate at Vinson & Elkins and represents private equity funds and their portfolio companies, including mergers & acquisitions, executive compensation arrangements, general corporate matters and restructuring. Dan received his J.D from Columbia Law School in 2007 (Harlan Fiske Stone Scholar; Human Rights Law Review) and his B.A. in History from University of California at Berkeley in 2004 (High Honors and Distinction). He was admitted to practice in California in 2007 and New York in 2012.