We help address disputes so that they don't escalate, end up in court, or turn violent.

ABOUT US            CONTACT               VISION              MISSION              OUR TEAM             OUR BOARD



New York Peace Institute is committed to promoting peace in our communities. Whether a dispute involves two people, dozens of people, or several groups, we can help.

We work in three areas:


For more information on New York Peace Institute you can email us any time at  info@nypeace.org or contact us at one of our Mediation Center locations

Manhattan Mediation Center
111 John Street, Suite 600, New York, NY 10038
Hours: Monday 12:00 pm – 8:00 pm,
Tuesday-Friday 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

T:  212.577.1740
F:  212.577.1748

Brooklyn Mediation Center
210 Joralemon St., Suite 618 Brooklyn, NY 11201
Hours: Monday-Wednesday 12:00 pm – 8:00 pm,
Thursday and Friday 9:00 am – 5:00 pm

T:  718.834.6671
F:  718.834.6681

Manhattan Mediation Center

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Brooklyn Mediation Center

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Our vision

New York Peace Institute envisions a world in which all people have the resources to creatively and constructively resolve their differences.

Our mission

People disagree and arguments escalate. As experts in conflict response, New York Peace Institute empowers people to find creative and durable solutions to their disputes. We teach vital conflict resolution skills to communities and organizations, and we advance the field by training and certifying professional mediators.

Our values

Everything we do comes out of the core belief that active peacemaking requires direct, respectful, and creative communication. We’re here to get in the middle when people or communities have disputes, and our work is driven by these six values:

We see every conflict as an opportunity for better understanding. Mediation is a valuable tool, so we strive to make it more accessible to everyone.
We encourage openness—from ourselves and from people in disputes—because direct communication is the best way to find solutions.
We don’t simply remain neutral—we strive to understand and honor the different points of view of the individuals, parties, or communities in conflict.
We create a private, collaborative environment to help individuals and communities find practical solutions to their disputes. We also help them gain the tools to handle future conflicts.
We demand nothing but the best from ourselves on behalf of the people we work with—whether in mediation, in trainings, or during any other discussions.
We think differently—and we encourage the people we work with to think differently—to find innovative, and perhaps unexpected, solutions to make New York City a more peaceful place.

Our team

Koren Gaines, Acting CEO and Chief Operations Officer
Koren has been with New York Peace Institute since 2015. She has over 20 years of non-profit management experience; focusing on management, operations, finance, human resources, technology, fundraising, and communications. Previously she worked for national organizations like the YWCA and American Red Cross, International organizations like Shared Interest, and local organizations like the Center for Employment Opportunities and Maysles Documentary Center. Koren has a degree in Physics from Vassar College, a Certificate in nonprofit leadership from Columbia University. Koren is a Certified Public Accountant and a Certified Fraud Examiner.

Michele Kirschbaum, Director of Programs
Michele was formerly the Director of the Safe Horizon Brooklyn Mediation Center, providing court-based and specialized programs to the Brooklyn community. She is expressly recognized for her leadership in the field of Special Education Mediation as a recipient of the Lawrence Cooke Peace Innovator Award.

Will Nassau, Director of Training & Business Development
Will oversees client trainings, and the Basic Mediation Training and Apprenticeship. He has trained UNICEF, the NYPD, the FDNY, the Department of Education, Harlem Children’s Zone, and several other major non-profit organizations and government agencies. During six years at American Jewish World Service, Will ran human rights programs across the developing world. He has experience working in India, Thailand, Kenya, Ethiopia, Mexico, Peru, Argentina, Chile, Cuba, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Latvia, Lithuania and Russia. Will holds a Master of Arts in International Relations from The University of Exeter.

Samantha Adler, Civil Court and Lemon Law Coordinator
Samantha oversees the Brooklyn Civil Court program and the Small Claims Diversion program for both Brooklyn and Manhattan. She earned her B.A. in Political Science at the University of Delaware. She then earned her M.S. at NYU studying Global Affairs and concentrating in human rights, international law, and conflict resolution. Samantha wrote her graduate thesis on unusual forms of international and local conflict resolution and is excited to be part of mediation on a local, community level.

Kailani Capote, Restorative Justice Coordinator for Urban Assembly School for Global Commerce
Kailani comes to us having experience with BronxWorks as a mediator in an elementary school in the Bronx as well as a Senior Resident Assistant in college. She earned her B.S. in Psychology from Delaware State University and holds a M.A. in Psychology from CUNY Hunter College. As a Restorative Justice Coordinator with the New York Peace Institute, she assists the Urban Assembly School for Global Commerce in their quest to becoming more restorative and less punitive when it comes to discipline, by conducting mediations and harm circles when conflict arises in the school community.

Anastasia Tomkin, Case Manager, Manhattan
Anastasia is our Case Manager for the Manhattan Mediation Center. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in French and Spanish, and has worked within the
Language Learning Services Unit (LLSU) at the United Nations Headquarters. A proud social justice warrior, she channels her passion into freelance writing. Anastasia is thrilled to combine her interpersonal and communication skills to help resolve conflicts within the community.

Meredith Gray, Restorative Justice and Training Officer
Meredith oversees the Criminal Court Mediation Program for Kings and New York counties. Her restorative justice skills and experience are enriched by INCITE! Women of Color Against Violence, the Creative Interventions Toolkit, The Revolution Starts at Home, Baltimore’s Community Conferencing Center, Kay Pranis, and New York Peace Institute. In addition to her work with NYPI, Meredith is an educator focusing on the intersections of community, identity, spirituality, and anti-oppression practice. She brings a background in social justice movement-building to this work.

Carol Lieb Himes, Special Education Mediation Coordinator
Carol Lieb Himes is the Coordinator of the Special Education, Early Intervention, and ACCES-VR Mediation Programs. These programs provide mediations to resolve disputes between individuals with disabilities, parents of children with disabilities, and service-providing agencies, including the NYC DOE and Department of Health. She enjoys mentoring new Special Education and Early Intervention mediators.  In the past, Carol practiced law in several areas and is very happy to have found her work in mediation.    Carol is a member of the New York State bar.

Elena-Margarita McCalla, Trainings and Operations Assistant
Elena provides administrative support for trainings and assists with day-to-day operations. She holds a BA in Creative Non-Fiction Writing/Latin America and Caribbean Studies from New York University and an MS in Education from Mercy College. Born, raised, and currently living in Brooklyn, Elena shares her space with four cats, one dog and possibly a rescue greyhound in the future. Her interests include gardening, playing the piano, writing and training for her first half marathon in the fall.

Anne Marie McFadyen, Restorative Justice Manager – Schools and Community Conferencing
Anne Marie has been working in the conflict arena as a mediator, conflict coach, community conference facilitator and trainer for the past ten years. She works collaboratively with schools and within communities and organizations where she designs conflict management programs and supports the implementation of restorative practices. Her goal is to support individuals and organizations use the experience of harm and hurt to create more conflict resilient cultures.

Skye Roper-Moses, Restorative Justice Coordinator for Rachel Carson High School for Coastal Studies
Skye has 12 years experience working with families as a case manager for the City of New York department of Social Services. Skye began as a volunteer mediator in 2010 with Safe Horizon as she was completing her Master’s degree at Columbia University Conflict Resolution and Negotiation Program. Skye is drawn to mediating family cases and conflict coaching.

JoAn Pangilinan-Taylor, Program Manager: Civil Court and Co-Parenting Mediation
JoAn is a member of the Illinois State Bar and has been involved with New York Peace Institute since 2013 where she passionately pursues mediation work in family and the civil court. JoAn is originally from the Philippines. She received her BFA in Modern Dance at Texas Christian University and her Juris Doctor from Northern Illinois University.  JoAn danced with Hedwig Dances Company in Chicago and choreographed and has performed in the United States and Asia. A practitioner and teacher of Ashtanga Yoga since 1998, JoAn enjoys exploring the common ground in the practice of mediation and the mindfulness cultivated in the practice of yoga.

Caitlin Strawder, Case Manager, Brooklyn
Caitlin graduated from Florida State University in 2013 with degrees in Political Science, emphasis in Leadership Studies, and Social Science, emphasis in Human Rights. Caitlin has worked in various immigrant and refugee social and legal services programs and researched social justice movements in El Salvador.  She completed two consecutive Fulbright English Teaching grants in Colombia, where she volunteered with social rehabilitation programs, indigenous displacement, and studied conflict resolution and the ongoing Colombian peace process.  Caitlin is thrilled to continue working with conflict resolution at a community level.

Tony Yost, Program Manager: Mediation & Conflict Coaching
Hailing from Maryland, Tony previously worked and volunteered with the Bosserman Center for Conflict Resolution and the Conflict Analysis and Dispute Resolution (CADR) department at Salisbury University where he spent several years honing his skills in mediation, research, and dispute systems design. He has also researched, written and presented on a wide variety of conflict resolution issues. Tony earned his MA and BA in Conflict Analysis and Dispute Resolution from Salisbury University in Salisbury, Maryland.

Brad Heckman
Brad was our Founding CEO and still provides mediation trainings with New York Peace Institute. He has championed mediation and peacebuilding in more than 25 countries. Before becoming New York Peace Institute’s founding CEO, he served as Vice President of Safe Horizon and International Director of Partners for Democratic Change. He’s also an Adjunct Professor at New York University’s Center for Global Affairs.

Our Board

Michael H. Williams, Chair
Hugh LaRoche, Treasurer
Tanya Goldfarb, Secretary
Yxa Bazan
Simon Des-Etages

Jennifer Glueck Bezoza
Elliott Lee
Damali Peterman
Gay Rosenblum-Kumar

For Donors

Donor Privacy Policy

New York Peace Institute retains the names and contact information of its donors in order to acknowledge donations that have been received, and to communicate with donors about our programs and activities and for the purpose of future funding solicitations.  All such information is contained in an internal, secure, password-protected database that is not accessible to the public.  New York Peace Institute does not publish or otherwise make public the addresses, phone numbers or other personal information about its donors, either on its website or in any other publication.  New York Peace Institute may include the names of donors in its annual report as an acknowledgement of their generosity to the organization, but donors may request that their names be excluded from that listing.  New York Peace Institute does not lend, lease or sell its donor list to any other entities.

At any time donors may contact New York Peace Institute at 111 John Street, Suite 600, New York, NY 10038, or by emailing info@nypeace.org, and can:

(1) request an opportunity to review any personal information that has been collected;

(2) request corrections to that information; and/or

(3) indicate that they do not want their names shared on donor acknowledgement lists.

Financial Statements

You can request a printed copy of our most recent audit, annual report, or 990 by writing to us at info@nypeace.org or

New York Peace Institute
111 John Street, Suite 600
New York, NY 10038

Privacy Policy

This privacy policy discloses the privacy practices for nypeace.org. This privacy policy applies solely to information collected by this web site. It will notify you of the following:

  1. What personally identifiable information is collected from you through the web site, how it is used and with whom it may be shared.
  2. What choices are available to you regarding the use of your data.
  3. The security procedures in place to protect the misuse of your information.
  4. How you can correct any inaccuracies in the information.

Information Collection, Use, and Sharing
We are the sole owners of the information collected on this site. We only have access to/collect information that you voluntarily give us via email or other direct contact from you. We will not sell or rent this information to anyone.

We will use your information to respond to you, regarding the reason you contacted us. We will not share your information with any third party outside of our organization, other than as necessary to fulfill your request, e.g. to ship an order.

Unless you ask us not to, we may contact you via email in the future to tell you about specials, new products or services, or changes to this privacy policy.

Your Access to and Control Over Information
You may opt out of any future contacts from us at any time. You can do the following at any time by contacting us via the email address or phone number given on our website:

• See what data we have about you, if any.

• Change/correct any data we have about you.

• Have us delete any data we have about you.

• Express any concern you have about our use of your data.

We take precautions to protect your information. When you submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected both online and offline.

Wherever we collect sensitive information (such as credit card data), that information is encrypted and transmitted to us in a secure way. You can verify this by looking for a closed lock icon at the bottom of your web browser, or looking for “https” at the beginning of the address of the web page.

While we use encryption to protect sensitive information transmitted online, we also protect your information offline. Only employees who need the information to perform a specific job (for example, billing or customer service) are granted access to personally identifiable information. The computers/servers in which we store personally identifiable information are kept in a secure environment.


Our Privacy Policy may change from time to time and all updates will be posted on this page.

If you feel that we are not abiding by this privacy policy, you should contact us immediately via telephone at 212-577-1740 or via email info@nypeace.org.