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    Paul M. Higbee (Chair)

    Mr. Higbee is a partner of G.C. Andersen Partners, LLC, a merchant banking firm engaged in investment banking for emerging growth and middle-market companies. Mr. Higbee advises clients regarding, mergers, restructurings, and financings and has over 30 years of experience in all facets of investment banking. Prior to joining G.C. Andersen in 2001, he was a Managing Director at Deutsche Banc Securities, PaineWebber, and Burnham Lambert. Mr. Higbee serves as a member of the board of directors for several public and private companies. He received a BA in Economics from Princeton University and an MBA from the Wharton School.

     Dr. Paul Arcario 
    Dr. Paul Arcario

    Dr. Paul Arcario is the Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs at LaGuardia Community College. As the chief academic officer for the College, Dr. Arcario supervises the creation, development and assessment of over 50 academic programs and majors. He is responsible for the recruitment, hiring and personnel management of more than 300 full-time faculty, 700 part-time faculty and over 100 professional and clerical staff. Dr. Arcario oversees faculty development programs, monitors the promotion and tenure process, and administers a divisional budget in excess of $40 million.
    Michael Anthony Baston, J.D.

    Michael A. Baston is the Vice President for Student Affairs at LaGuardia Community College and is responsible for managing a student services portfolio that includes Admissions, International Student Services, Educational Planning and Testing, the Early Childhood Learning Center, Recreation and Intramural Programming, Student Life, Advocacy and Adjudication, the Registrar’s Office, the Mental Health Initiative, the Black Male Empowerment Initiative, the Enrollment Services Center, Student Financial Services (Financial Aid), Office of Students with Disabilities, Health Services, the Women’s Center and the Student Information Center. For the past 15 years Michael has served in various capacities in higher education including college legal counsel, adjunct faculty member and dean of students. A graduate of Brooklyn Law School where he earned his JD degree and Iona College where he earned a BA in Political Science, Michael currently is a doctoral student in executive leadership at St. John Fisher College.
    BOD Nellie Borrero

    Nellie Borrero

    A LaGuardia Community College alumna, Ms. Borrero is the Global Inclusion & Diversity Director for Accenture. In that capacity she leads an international team which is responsible for career development programs and opportunities for women and minorities in Europe, Latin America, South Africa and Asia. Ms. Borrero leads Accenture’s involvement in the United Nations-sponsored International Women's Day in all 49 countries in which Accenture does business. She has received numerous awards including: 2000 National Society of Hispanic MBA's Individual Corporate Executive Award; 1999 National Management Consulting Diversity Achievement Award; 1999 ASPIRA Circle of Achievers Award.

    BOD Cecilia Briones

    Ms. Cecilia Briones 

    Ms. Briones is currently a Director in the Wealth Management Division of UBS AG serving Latin American clients. She was born in Santiago, Chile and immigrated to the U.S. in 1969. She has had an extensive career in the Wealth Management business working with Latin American countries at Marine Midland Bank, ABN Amro N.V. and Merrill Lynch. Ms. Briones has traveled extensively because of her work and enjoys visiting new countries and experiencing different cultures. She resides in Bayside, New York with her husband Gaston, who runs his own export business.

     BOD Deborah Chan

    Deborah Chan

    Ms. Chan is a 1982 graduate of LaGuardia Community College and she is currently a trust and estate attorney practicing in Lower Manhattan. Ms. Chan also now serves as the Board of Director of CMP, a community based organization works with new immigrants in job training and development; and serves as the Executive Officer of Mei Hua Society which supports many Asian American organizations serving in the areas of youth, family and women services. She was the former chairperson of the Chinatown Partnership Lower Development Corporation and had played a key role in the formation & success of the Chinatown Business District. Ms. Chan was given a Mission Award for Integrity by Saint Vincent Catholic Medical Centers for her outstanding leadership benefiting their Department of Community Medicine in 2008. Ms. Chan is also a speaker in planned & charitable giving seminars for many high net worth individuals & not-for-profits organizations in New York City. Ms. Chan’s extensive prior work experience and knowledge working in the youth and family services at YMCA, Chinatown Planning Council & Chinatown Health Clinic played a key role in her leadership development throughout her professional and volunteer services.

    Arvind Dharia

    Mr. Dharia has been the CFO and Secretary of Steven Madden Corp. since 1992. He also served as a Board Director of the Company from 1993 through 2004. With an MBA in Finance, Mr. Dharia helped take the Company public in 1993 and oversaw the growth in annual sales revenues from $1 million in 1992 to 1.3 billion in the current fiscal year due to his strong financial leadership. Steve Madden is now the second largest company in Queens in both revenues and profitability. Away from Steve Madden, Mr. Dharia is very active in his community. He is serving as a trustee of Vaishnav Temple of New York and was a director of the Indian Chamber of Commerce in New York and is a committee member of Balasinor Association of America. Mr. Dharia served on the Internal Audit and Finance Committee and is a Trustee of the VRAJ temple of Pennsylvania. He is currently an Arthritis Foundation's Queens Leader Honoree. He is a passionate believer in Gujarati Community unity and serves as Trustee of Gujarati Samaj, NY. He is also serving as advisory board in senior citizens of New York organization and is an ardent believer in the activities and goals of LaGuardia Community College.
    Michelle V. Francis  Michelle V. Francis

    Ms. Francis, the founder and principal at The FRANCIS COMPANY, an intellectual property advisory company, has 23 years of experience in intellectual property. Having worked with 50-plus companies in both the US and abroad, Michelle has a unique perspective on business strategy: specifically, the important role intellectual property can play in achieving business objectives and aggressive revenue goals that can set a company apart from its competition.

    Just prior to founding The FRANCIS COMPANY, Michelle served as Senior Vice President and Deputy General Counsel for News Corporation, a Fortune 100 company and world leader in multi-media, where she headed up the intellectual property practice for over seven years and was charged with the global business strategy, management and protection of the intellectual property and Internet assets of News Corp and many of its operating and joint venture companies, including HarperCollins, the New York Post, News America Marketing and various satellite platforms, such as Sky in Italy and Tata Sky in India and various Sky branded satellite platforms in Latin America. She has also advised on IP matters for STAR TV in Asia, myspace.com, DirecTV and the various Fox companies.

    Prior to this, Michelle worked at Fox Entertainment Group in Los Angeles handling worldwide film and television intellectual property enforcement matters. Michelle started her legal career in 1990, as a litigator in private practice in Los Angeles, focusing on general litigation, as well as entertainment and intellectual property law at Knapp Petersen and Clarke, and subsequently at Kulik Gottesman and Mouton.

    Joel Glasky

    Joel Glasky is Senior Advisor at Financo, a boutique investment bank that serves the consumer sector. He joined in 2007 as Managing Director and was previously head of the Securities Division. He has over 35 years of investment banking experience. Prior to joining Financo, he was at JPMorgan for 15 years where he held a number of leadership roles, including heading the Private Placement and Ratings Advisory Groups, as well as having previously developed and managed the Firm's High Grade Capital Markets desk. He joined the Chase Securities' management team in 1991 and contributed to the growth of the capital markets businesses as the Firm evolved through mergers with Chemical Bank, JPMorgan, and Bank One. Prior to joining Chase, Mr. Glasky had been a Managing Director at Lehman Brothers where he directed its Private Placement Group. Mr. Glasky started his investment banking career at Citibank in the Corporate Finance Group. Mr. Glasky received his Bachelor of Science with distinction in Electrical Engineering from Cornell University and his Masters in Business Administration from Harvard Business School. He serves on the Board of the Harvard Business School Club of New York and the Advisory Council of Cornell CFEM Program.

    Mark C. Healy

    Mark is President and Chief Executive Officer of American Stock Transfer & Trust Company, LLC (AST) and Canadian Stock Transfer Company Inc. (CST) which together form the North American division of the Link Group. Prior to joining AST in 2009, Mark was Executive Vice President for National Financial Services, a Fidelity Investments company, for over seven years. Mark was responsible for all of National Financial's sales and relationship teams — covering over 325 broker dealer clients nationwide, custody of almost $700B in assets and execution of over 1 million daily trades. He is well-known in the clearing industry as a champion of technology solutions that drive growth and manage risk. Mark has over 28 years of experience in the financial services sector. Mark received the HeartShare Human Services of New York's 2011 Monsignor Thomas G. Hagerty Humanitarian Award and was a 2011 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year finalist. Mark is on the Board of Directors of the Stock Transfer Association.
     BOD Nick Lugo

    Nick Lugo

    After serving as President of the New Bronx Chamber of Commerce for three and half years, Nick announced in April, 2006 the establishment of the New York City Hispanic Chamber of Commerce. Mr. Lugo founded Casa Publications, Corporation, parent company of the Spanish-language weekly newspaper, La Voz Hispana. He also took over the family travel business in memory of his father and mentor, changed the name from Cophresi to Nick Lugo Travel, a name that has become synonymous with air travel in New York’s Hispanic communities. The same year, Mr. Lugo founded the Hispanic Marketing & Advertising Group where he serves as CEO. Mr. Lugo served as a member of numerous boards including the National Economic Development Association, Ponce De Leon Federal Bank, the Governor’s Committee on Transportation Bond Issue, the Puerto Rican Dance Theatre, Inc., and the South Bronx Puerto Rican Development Corporation and as a member of the Advisory Boards for the NYC Off Track Betting Corp and Banco Popular

    Susan Lyddon

    A marketing and communications professional with over 17 years of experience, Susan Lyddon is the vice president for the Division of Institutional Advancement at LaGuardia Community College in Long Island City, Queens. Ms. Lyddon joined the College as director of Marketing and Communications in 2008. As vice president, Ms. Lyddon manages a team of 25 professionals in 3 offices: Marketing and Communications, College and Community Relations, and Development. In addition, she is the executive director of the LaGuardia Community College Foundation. Under her leadership, LaGuardia successfully completed a re-branding of the Institution as a national leader among community colleges. Additional projects completed include the development and launch of the College’s rebranded website and college-wide communications campaigns supporting new information systems software, as well as the development of fundraising campaigns that create scholarships for students. As former associate executive director of the 14th Street Y in New York City, Ms. Lyddon increased membership revenue from $730,000 to $1.35 million. In addition to teaching English in Japan, Ms. Lyddon also founded and served as CEO of the Apple School, an international language school in Jakarta, Indonesia that served students from 10 countries. Ms. Lyddon earned her B.A. in English from the University of Massachusetts.

     Content: Commencement - Gail Mellow 
    Dr. Gail O. Mellow

    President of LaGuardia Community College in NYC, one of the most ethnically diverse campuses in the U.S. LaGuardia is a two-year public college, serving 50,000 students from over 150 countries. Under her leadership, the College has won numerous awards. Dr. Mellow spearheads local economic development with LaGuardia’s Small Business Development Center, and NYDesigns, a business incubator for design professionals. Dr. Mellow is the co-author of three books and more than thirty articles. Her third book, Minding the Dream: The American Community College, was published in 2008. Dr. Mellow received an AA from Jamestown Community College, a BA from SUNY Albany, and her MA and PhD from The George Washington University.

    Mr. John Orrico

    John Orrico, CFA formed Water Island Capital, LLC in 2000 and its affiliate Water Island Advisors, LLC in 2005. He serves as President of the Firm and Chief Investment Officer of the Arbitrage Funds, leading the investment management team. Mr. Orrico has worked in the securities industry since 1982, joining the Corporate Finance group at Morgan Stanley & Co., with experience in institutional equity trading, equity research analysis, and portfolio management. He joined Gruss & Co. in 1994, focusing on merger arbitrage and special situations, and became Senior Arbitrage Analyst in 1996. Mr. Orrico directed arbitrage/special situations/distressed hedge fund portfolios at Lindemann Capital, which he joined in 1999. Mr. Orrico received a Bachelors degree in Finance and International Management from Georgetown University, and achieved the Chartered Financial Analyst designation in 1988.

    Julia Park

    Julia Park is the principal attorney of Law Offices of Julia Park, LLC. Julia’s immigration practice focuses on the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Visa and she is a frequent speaker on the topic. Julia assists immigrant investors in the EB-5 application process and facilitates Regional Center designation filings for real estate developers. Julia is also the Managing Director of Advantage America New York Regional Center, an approved EB-5 regional center that received its federal designation in March 2013. Julia began her legal career as an associate at Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP in New York City providing transactional legal services to Fortune 500 companies and global financial institutions. Prior to practicing law, Julia was a simultaneous interpreter in Seoul, Korea, where she facilitated communications for hundreds of seminars and conferences working with corporations such as the WTO, OECD and IBM, as well as with such VIPs visiting Korea as President Bill Clinton and Treasury Secretary Robert Rubin, Lou Gerstner of IBM and Jeffery Katzenberg of Dreamworks Animation.

    Henry Saltiel 

    Dr. Henry Saltiel

    Dr. Saltiel is a member of the College’s executive management team responsible for guiding strategic planning and policy implementation initiatives related to technology infrastructure and the uses of technology in support of the College’s overall mission. Dr. Saltiel oversees the departments of Network Administration, Student Information Systems, End-User Support, and Instructional Media services. The Office of Institutional Research, which is responsible for maintaining and forecasting vital statistical data related to the College’s performance and historical trends, is also managed by Dr. Saltiel. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania with a PhD in Education, NYU-Polytechnic with an MS in Information Systems Engineering, and Adelphi University with a BS in Computer Science and Mathematics, Dr. Saltiel brings to LaGuardia over 30 years of experience managing information technology in higher education.

    Suzie Scanlon

    Suzie Scanlon is Co-Founder and Managing Director of Bliss Lawyers, a virtual secondment enterprise providing businesses with legal services and recruitment alternatives. Ms. Scanlon worked as a traditional lawyer at Sullivan & Cromwell and Wachtell, Lipton, Rosen & Katz before joining the virtual law firm of Berger Legal LLC as Senior Counsel for over 10 years. She was also a Press Aide for the National Association of Securities Dealers (predecessor to FINRA) and the New York State Executive Chamber of Governor Mario M. Cuomo. Ms. Scanlon earned her law degree—second in her class—from Fordham Law School, served as the Annual Survey Editor of the Fordham Law Review and received the American Jurisprudence Award for Torts and Criminal Law. She holds a B.A. in medieval studies with honors from Sarah Lawrence College. She is an alumna of LaGuardia Community College’s scholarship-based entrepreneurship program, 10,000 Small Businesses.


    Mr. Suresh L. Sani

    Mr. Sani is Vice President of First Pioneer Properties, Inc., a family-owned company, which manages commercial buildings and land owned by related entities across the United States. A graduate of Harvard College and New York University School of Law, Mr. Sani was formerly an associate in the Real Estate Department at Shea & Gould in New York City and is a current member of the New York Bar. Mr. Sani serves on the Dean’s Strategic Council at New York University School of Law and is also a member of the Compact Committee, an elected committee that oversees the curriculum at the Port Washington Public Schools.

     BOD Jane Schulman


    Jane Schulman 

    Jane E. Schulman is the Vice President of the Division of Adult and Continuing Education (ACE) at LaGuardia Community College, where she leads the Division’s senior leadership team. Last year ACE served over 35,000 adults, children and businesses in a wide variety of programs, courses and workshops. Serving at LaGuardia for over 30 years, Jane has greatly contributed to making LaGuardia Community College a city, state and national model in the field of adult and continuing education. Over the years, Jane has secured grant funding of more than $25 million, and created and promoted numerous entrepreneurial programs that are responsive to the needs of individuals, businesses and the community. She is recognized by the New York State Department of Education as a leader in career development, and has authored training materials that have been implemented throughout the state. Jane has spearheaded many successful initiatives, including the establishment of a Workforce1 Career Center on campus and strengthening the use of educational technology within ACE. Jane's educational background includes an undergraduate degree from SUNY at New Paltz and an MS in Guidance and Counseling from Brooklyn College.
      Lisa Selz

    Ms. Selz graduated from Goucher College with a BA in Latin. She worked at Manufacturers Hanover Trust and Tiffany and Co. before going to work in a small family business, which she eventually ran. Since 1993, Ms. Selz has helped manage the Selz Foundation with a focus on humanitarian, educational, geriatric, homeopathic, animal causes and the arts. She currently serves on the boards of the Allen-Stevenson School, The Ethel Walker School, Goucher College, The Nature Conservancy of New York, The Middle Patent Rural Cemetery Association and the Alumni Board of the Rippowam Cisqua School. She lives in Manhattan with her husband, Bernard, and their two sons.

    Marilyn Skony

    Marilyn Skony Stamm is the Chief Executive Officer of Stamm International Corporation, a 75-year old privately held, mid-sized global manufacturer and distributor of heating, ventilation, air conditioning equipment, chimney and flues. Her career has encompassed global manufacturing operations, corporate restructurings, finance, acquisitions, accounting, tax, treasury management, foreign exchange trading, risk management, new market and product development, sales and marketing. Previous employers include Chase Manhattan Bank, Continental Grain Company, Marine Midland Bank and The First National Bank of Chicago. Marilyn is a member of the Board of Directors of Stamm International and its operating subsidiaries, Powrmatic, Ltd., U.K., SF Ltd., UK, Powrmatic Lte., Canada, and Powrmatic Inc., U.S. She served on the Advisory Council of PNC Bank, N.J. part of the NYSE listed PNC Financial Services Group. She is a member of Northwestern University’s Council of 100 and has served on the Boards of many professional and civic organizations. As a board member of the LaGuardia Community College Foundation, she launched LaGuardia’s annual Spring Into Action Scholarship Campaign in 2010, helping to raise over $700,000 in full tuition scholarships for LaGuardia students. She is the recipient of the 2013 LaGuardia Foundation Innovative Leadership Award. Ms. Stamm holds a B.A. in Political Science from Northwestern University and an M.A. in International Law and Finance from the Fletcher School of Law & Diplomacy where she was a Celia M. Howard Fellow.

    Angie Yu 

    Ms. Yu, and her husband, Michael, were instrumental in the formation of Tommy Bahama, a men’s clothing company, which they sold recently. She is now Executive Vice President of G. Star Apparel, Inc., in New York. Ms. Yu, who is involved philanthropically in China and the United States, has made a generous contribution to the Foundation. She and her husband have established the Yu-Lin Chinese Language Scholarship Fund to provide scholarships for non-Chinese LaGuardia students taking Chinese language and culture classes.
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