Our Team and Board

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Development and Outreach Officer

Anna leads development and outreach strategy and partnerships with foundations, city agencies, individuals, and others to increase New York Peace Institute’s impact. Anna has over 10 years’ experience in program and event management and development at nonprofits. She has worked with a number of organizations, including the Global Network of Women Peacebuilders, American Red Cross and the International Women’s Health Coalition. She also served as Board Chair of the United Nations Association Young Professionals, Southern New York Division. Anna holds a degree in Urban Studies from The New School and a Master’s in International Relations from City University of New York, City College.

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Senior Manager

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.


Community Mediation Service Corps Member

Arianna serves as a Community Mediation Service Corps Member within the Co-Parenting tract at NYPI. She assists the intake process, outreach, and is an aspiring mediator. Arianna also assists Mediators Beyond Borders International by serving as a Social Media Coordinator, Partnerships and Global Engagement Assistant, and as the Outreach and Community Engagement Chair of MBBI’s 2019 International Peace Congress in Indonesia. Arianna graduated from the University of Connecticut where she majored in Global Studies and English, and minored in Human Rights and Middle Eastern Studies. As a Human Rights Fellow at the Croatian Mediation Association, she worked to normalize nationwide access to mediation in Croatia. In Morocco, Arianna researched the capacities of local organizations to act as intercultural mediators between Moroccan nationals and Sub-Saharan refugees.

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Program Associate

Barbara mediates and assists with intake and administration in all areas of the Family Program, including Special Education, Surrogate’s Court and Co-Parenting. She received her undergraduate degree from Duke University and a JD from Harvard Law School. Barbara was formerly a lawyer specializing in mediation and settlement and a member of the New York State Bar. She clerked for The Honorable Ronald R. Lagueux, Chief Judge, Federal District Court of Rhode Island. She was also a volunteer for CASA as an advocate for foster care children.


Program Associate

Charlie, works tirelessly with our clients – in her native English and Spanish – to ensure they receive mediation and conflict coaching services. She also assists with our NYPD trainings, to provide officers with communication skills to de-escalate conflict. In addition to her passion for conflict resolution, Charlie has a strong interest in disability advocacy, as evidenced by her work for the Florida Division of Blind Services. She has also served as a mentor and a tutor for students K-12, and worked in the Chemistry Department of Florida State University. Charlie received a Bachelor of Science in Political Science and International Affairs from Florida State University. An avid art, food and film lover, Charlie is always on the lookout for the most unique art exhibits, delicious cheap eats and charming theatres in all five boroughs. Now a New Yorker, Charlie is a first-generation American raised in Venezuela. Using alternative dispute resolution and restorative justice skills we have gained from established indigenous and historical practices, she believes that as conflict resolution professionals, we are most successful when we act as a silent partner with a goal of strong and resilient communities.

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Senior Manager

Carol Lieb Himes is the Program Manager for the Special Education, Early Intervention, Family Care, and ACCES-VR Mediation Programs. The Special Education, Early Intervention and ACCES-VR 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. The Family Care Mediation Program is being developed to provide conflict resolution services for interpersonal disputes between participants in the foster care system. Carol also enjoys mentoring new program 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.

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Associate Director of Training

Chris is an attorney, trainer and a certified conflict coach & mediator. She oversees the growth and development of New York Peace Institute’s certified mediators and is a member of the Executive Team. Chris manages our competitive Apprenticeship Program, an education program for aspiring conflict resolution professionals. Prior to joining New York Peace Institute, Chris was a domestic violence prosecutor for 10 years at the District Attorney’s Office in Bronx County. Chris has a master’s degree in education from Harvard University and a law degree from Boston College. Chris was a Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar in New Zealand, Australia, and Fiji, where she promoted cross-cultural understanding. She is actively involved in the New York State Bar Association, particularly in the Law, Youth & Citizenship Committee. Chris is dedicated to identifying innovative approaches to bringing people together so they can manage disagreements creatively and constructively.

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Program Associate

Deborah Shapiro provides programing, outreach, training and mediation services in the area of Special Education and Early Intervention. Deborah received her BA from Tufts University and her JD from the University of Pennsylvania Law School. Deborah is a former corporate attorney and a member of the New York State Bar. She is grateful to be providing a service that can make a difference in a child’s education and development.

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Training Associate

Elena-Margarita is an experienced mediator and trainer. In her capacity as Training Associate, she provides training and coaching for the Police Mediation Partnership, the Basic Mediation Training, and logistical support for the Apprenticeship Program, Advanced Mediation Training and Divorce Mediation Training. A special focus of Elena’s work is to ensure trainings reflect the diverse communities we serve. Elena holds a BA in Creative Non-Fiction/Latin American and Caribbean Studies from the Gallatin School of Individualized Study at New York University and an MS in Education/Special Education Grades 1-6 from Mercy College. Born, raised and currently living in Brooklyn, Elena, lives with four cats and a greyhound recently retired from the Florida racing tracks. Her interests include gardening, reading, classical piano, blog writing, opera and running half and full marathons with a smile.

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Chief Executive Officer

Prior to joining  New York Peace Institute as the Chief Executive Officer, Jennifer was Founder and Executive Director of Youth Advocacy Corps, an organization that empowers and mobilizes young people in NYC to combat poverty and become advocates and catalysts for change in their own communities.  Before that, Jennifer worked for almost ten years as a public interest attorney in New York City, with the Special Litigation Unit at the New York Legal Assistance Group and at the Urban Justice Center. Jennifer has also served on the Boards of Directors of multiple NYC-based non-profits and offered her services at a legal aid clinic in Cape Town, South Africa, at UNESCO in Paris, France, and at the AIRE Centre, a human rights organization in London, England. Jennifer received her J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School and her B.A. from Yale University. Jennifer is a strategic thinker with a demonstrated passion for and interest in conflict resolution.



Program Associate

As a Case Manager, Jessica oversees client intake for community mediations and our Small Claims Diversion Program. She completed a vocational training in the Human Services Field which then led her to the New York Peace Institute to complete her internship. She interned for a year in the Manhattan office where she learned about mediation and developed an interest in learning how to resolve conflict in a peaceful manner. Jessica is very passionate about helping others and has been improving her communication and listening skills to better assist her clients. Jessica is also fluent in Spanish.

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Restorative Justice Coordinator

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.

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Program Associate

Laura Young is a graduate of UC Davis, School of Law and has passed the California and New York Bar Exams. Although an attorney by training, she is a devoted mediator and is especially passionate about helping families. Having started with NYPI in the fall as an intern in the Civil Court Diversion Program, she is now a Program Associate and splits her time between our Family and Civil Court programs.


Program Manager

Markie oversees the Criminal Court Mediation Program for Kings and New York counties and has been involved in various programs with New York Peace Institute since 2015. She earned her B.A. in Forensic Psychology and Dispute Resolution Certification from John Jay College of Criminal Justice. Markie has also completed many trainings such as Basic Mediation Training through Columbia University’s-Mediation Clinic and became a certified Mediator through New York Peace Institute. Markie’s passion for Restorative Justice and Dispute Resolution comes with vast experience with various city agencies including Housing Preservation and Development (HPD); Department of Corrections (DOC), and New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) through NYC’s 311. Markie strives to reduce conflict and engender peace through her many restorative efforts.

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Director of Programs

Michele is a member of the Executive Team and is regarded as a leader in the field of conflict resolution. She is regarded as an expert in mediation, conflict coaching and restorative justice, and oversees all New York Peace Institute programs that are offered in the courts, schools, workplace, and community. Prior to New York Peace Institute, Michele was formerly the Director of the Safe Horizon Brooklyn Mediation Center.

Michele is a recipient of the Lawrence Cooke Peace Innovator Award, given by the New York State Dispute Resolution Association for providing innovative leadership in her work in Special Education Mediation. She was also given the Bertrum Beck Achievement Award by Safe Horizon and distinguished by the Brooklyn District Attorney’s office with an Extraordinary Women’s Award.

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Program Manager

Nicholas manages and administers the court-annexed mediation programs in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Harlem courts for NYPI. He graduated from Cardozo School of Law in 2015 where he studied under the tutelage of renowned mediator, trainer, and professor, Lela Porter Love, in the Kukin Program for Conflict Resolution. He is the co-author of a paper on mediating Intellectual Property disputes and was one of the subjects of a U.S. News & World Report article on the changing landscape of lawyering skills in law school. Nicholas is also on the panel of mediators for the Civilian Complaint Review Board.

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Program Associate

Onawa Gigliotti supports the Civil Court Team at NYPI as a Program Associate specializing in the fast-paced Housing Court Mediation program and the presumptive Small Claims Mediation Program. She has always been drawn to helping people navigate uncertain times; with her degree in Psychology from Bradford College, she first worked with Dual Diagnosis individuals as a case manager, then in the Human Resources field, and then as a recruiter helping people secure jobs and transition in their careers. Most recently, she has been teaching yoga, meditation and mindfulness to private clients. Onawa is enthusiastic and grateful to work for and support such an amazing organization.


Program Manager

Samantha oversees the Internship Program and Lemon Law arbitration program and manages the Civil Court and Community Programs. 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.

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Program Associate

Shana-Kay Parchment recently joined New York Peace Institute as a Program Associate. She earned her BA in History at The University of the West Indies-Mona, Jamaica and then went on to earn a Bachelor of Laws at The University of Technology, Jamaica before immigrating to the United States in August of 2012. Her study of the Law introduced her to Alternative Dispute Resolution which would later spark her interest in Mediation. Prior to joining NYPI as a staff member, Shana-Kay interned in the Civil Court Diversion Program and worked as a volunteer mediator.


Program Coordinator

Sharon oversees the Brooklyn Community Resolve Initiative as well as the Restorative Mediation Program for Kings and New York County. She graduated from Macaulay Honors College with a BA in International Public Policy and Political Science. Sharon’s research has focused on interpretations of justice from racial and gendered perspectives. As a Koch Public Service Fellow and a Skadden Legal Scholar, she began working with NYPI in 2016 as a Criminal Court Intern. Additional fields of experience include creating equitable college access and campus organizing. Sharon also spent time in Cambodia studying restorative justice practices among genocide survivors and former soldiers. Sharon is currently a We Are All New York Fellow.

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Director of Training & Business Development

As a member of the Executive Team, Will contributes to New York Peace Institute’s organizational governance. As Director of Training & Business Development, his role is to build partnerships, generate revenue, and represent New York Peace Institute to clients and funders. Will oversees all client and partner accounts having to do with our training services. A special focus of Will’s work is with the NYPD, where he helps train 600 officers a year to de-escalate conflict, mediate disputes, and improve police/civilian relations. Will has trained UNICEF, the United Nations Population Fund, NYU, CUNY, BMCC, Open Society Foundations, the ASPCA, the NYC Department of Education, Harlem Children’s Zone, and several other major non-profit and government partners.

Our Board of Directors


Board Chair

Michael has worked a lawyer in the government and nonprofit sectors for his entire career. He has been working by day as General Counsel of Safe Horizon since 2007. Michael has served on the Board of New York Peace Institute since its inception in 2011 when he helped establish the organization as a spin-off of Safe Horizon, the largest non-profit victim services agency in the United States. He has served as Board Chair since 2014. Michael also co-founded and serves as Board Chair of start-up nonprofit called Cuala Foundation. Michael received a JD from Brooklyn Law School and a BA in Sociology from Tufts University.

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Vice Chair

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Harleen joined the board of the New York Peace Institute in 2019, and is training to become a mediator through the Institute’s program. She is a graduate of King’s College, London and the Sorbonne, Paris, and currently resides in Brooklyn, NY with her husband and two children.


Yxa is an Executive Director at JPMorgan, where she is a Wholesale Payments Product Manager in the Corporate and Investment Bank division. Yxa served as Americas Head for Bank Network Management and as Global Head of Relationship Management and Americas Regional Sales within the Depositary Receipts business. Yxa also worked as a Client Experience and Compliance Program Manager at the firm.


Before joining JPMorgan in 1999, Yxa worked as an Investment Banker and Equity Research Assistant at Credit Suisse in New York. She was also a Fixed Income Research Analyst at Crédit Agricole Corporate and Investment Bank in Paris and London.


Yxa has a degree in International Business from Hofstra University’s Zarb School of Business, where she serves on the Dean’s Advisory Board. She also holds a Master’s degree in Negotiation and Conflict Resolution from Columbia University, where she teaches a Negotiation course and serves on the Alumni Advisory Committee.


Yxa is a Board member of the New York Peace Institute and has served as a volunteer judge in negotiation competitions for Law students. She speaks Spanish, French and Portuguese and resides with her family in New York City.

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Gay Rosenblum-Kumar is a peacebuilder with 25 years’ experience designing and managing conflict transformation projects with the UN and international NGOs. After a dozen years of anti-apartheid work, she spent two years as a UN Peace Observer in South Africa in the run up to the election of Nelson Mandela. She spent the next twenty years at UN Headquarters developing the UN’s Programme on Building National Capacities for Conflict Prevention and the UN Peace and Development Advisor (PDA) cadre.


Gay now serves as the UN Representative for two peacebuilding NGOs, Nonviolent Peaceforce and Peace Direct, and advocates for unarmed civil protection, building peace side by side with local communities, amplifying the voices of local peacebuilders, and for systemic change in how peace operations and peacebuilding are done.


Meredith (DiGiovanni) Stockman joined the board of the New York Peace Institute in 2019. She is currently the Director of Global People Operations at Pace Gallery. She is a mediator, strategist and leader having applied her expertise across a range of industries including ADR, luxury fashion, and AI technology. She believes her mediation background and diverse industry exposure is the key to being an effective solver of organizational obstacles large and small. In her current role, she oversees projects aimed at cross-gallery efficiency and harmony. Prior to joining the Gallery, she held the position of VP of People Operations at an AI tech company where she designed and built organizational infrastructure from the ground up. At Kate Spade & Co. Meredith took ownership of organizational development for the corporate side of the business. She designed and launched a multifaceted learning and development curriculum, managed large scale OD projects, coached executives across the organization and partnered with senior leadership on succession planning. Meredith began her career at JAMS where she learned the commercial ADR business whilst realizing her true proclivity towards organizational problem solving. Meredith has a master’s degree in Negotiation and Conflict Resolution from Columbia University.