David Adicott, Senior consultant, NSCC. David is a school counselor with more than 30 years experience working us public school in the US and international schools around the world. Most of his experience has been at the elementary level and for 10 of the last 12 years he has been working in China. He has consistently looked for ways to weave social emotional education into the fabric of the school and to create safe and supportive climate for learning. While at the International School of Beijing, he initiated and coordinated a school-wide effort to infuse social and emotional learning in the classroom and throughout the culture of the school. During the past year, David has been working with BI-TO EQ Camp, a Chinese institution that delivers social-emotional lessons to children after school in 60 centers around China. His focus with BI-TO has been to help the teachers create a classroom climate that supports the social-emotional lessons being taught and to help parents create a positive climate for social and emotional learning at home. He is currently working on a book for Chinese parents on how to promote social and emotional competencies at home.
Carolyn Kay Bradley is a member of our Center’s consultation staff. She earned a M.S. and Ed. S. in School Counseling from the State University at Albany and has been a school counselor and educator for over thirty-five years in public education. She was the manager of a program called Student Support Services at Capital Region BOCES and trained a team of professionals to provide professional development and technical assistance for schools in need of improvement. Her experience includes work in teacher renewal, supportive learning environment positive school climate, system change models, K-12 school counseling programs, Professional Learning Communities, character education and Positive Behavior and Supports (PBIS).
Steven Brion-Meisels, Ph.D. is a member of our Center’s consultation staff. For the past 35 years Steven worked with schools and communities as a classroom teacher, school administrator, curriculum writer, trainer, coach, evaluator and researcher. The common thread for all of his work has been the intersection among social development, school culture/climate, and social justice. This thread began with graduate study at the University of Utah and the Harvard Graduate School of Education with Lawrence Kohlberg and Robert Selman. Collaboration with Dr. Selman has continued through writing, teaching and field supervision (in the HUGSE Risk and Prevention Program). Steven was a co-founder of the Center for Peaceable Schools and Communities at Lesley University – where he helped initiate a Masters Degree program in Conflict Resolution and Peaceable Schools. His work as Director of the Peace Games Institute provided the opportunity to apply these interests in supporting peace education and civic engagement with young children – through work with children, educators and community partners in four U.S. cities as well as Colombia and the West Bank area of Israel/Palestine. The international partnerships continue to provide opportunities to learn and contribute. Much of this work has been in partnership with his wife, Dr. Linda Brion-Meisels, who is a Professor of Education at Lesley University. Thier work is fueled by a commitment to help create a future worthy of our children and grandchildren.
John Devine, Ph.D.
John is a member of NSCC's faculty and the coordinator of NSCC' comprehensive school safety project. He was the Co-Chair of the Academic Advisory Council for the National Campaign against Youth Violence and is on the New York Academy of Sciences panel for Adolescent Violence Prevention. He is the founder and former director of the New York University School Partnership Program, a collaborative project between NYU and the New York City Board of Education. He is the author of an award-winning ethnography, Maximum Security: The Culture of Violence in Inner City Schools (University of Chicago Press, 1996), co-author of the forthcoming volume Making Our Schools Safe: Physically, Socially and Emotionally and numerous articles and papers dealing with the phenomenon of violence in American schools.
Joan O. Dawson, Ph.D.
Dr. Joan Dawson worked as a special education speech and language consultant, a middle and high school teacher, an assistant principal and then a principal. She was the director of the New York University Equity Assistance Center: one of ten federally funded centers that address equity, school reform and NCLB implementation in the public schools. She has also consulted to the New Jersey State Department of Education. Dr. Dawson is the recipient of many awards including the AASA Shanklin Scholarship Award, the Manhattan Community Board 10 Distinguished Service Award, Phi Beta Kappa Member at New York University, Blacks in Government Excellence in Education Award, New York Governors Award for Excellence in Education, Five Certificate of Appreciation Awards from the USDOE for Improving Americas Schools Conferences, Certificate of Appreciation New York City Department of Education Equal Opportunity Office, Governors African American Community Service Award, and most recently the recipient of the Governor’s Harriet Tubman Award for Women’s History.
Bill Eyman is a member of NSCC's consultation staff. He recently retired from the Rhode Island Department of Education after a forty-four year career in public education and children's mental health. Bill has been a classroom teacher, alternative school director, co-founder and coordinator of a community-based children's mental health program and educational consultant and trainer as well as a member of NSCC's summer institutes. He has helped to create and to implement "Schools As Communities" plans in Rhode Island that address the social and emotional needs of everyone in the school, adults, students, and families. As for credentials, he has the traditional ones, a BA from Ohio University and an MA from Syracuse University, as well as those that come from real experience - years in the classroom, in the homes and in the community-at large.
Susan Fountain is a member of NSCC's consultation faculty. She has worked as a trainer, curriculum developer and evaluator specializing in the areas of conflict resolution, social and emotional education, and global education. She has developed school-wide programs in conflict resolution, peer mediation, and bullying prevention and intervention for pre-school through high school levels. In addition to her work with NSCC, she has consulted with Creative Response to Conflict, the Early Childhood Social and Emotional Learning program, and Educators for Social Responsibility (Metro). She worked for 10 years with UNICEF as focal point for peace education, developing national programs in countries undergoing post-war reconstruction. Her international clients include the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, ERIC Japan, the Landmine Survivors Network, the Middle East Children's Association, the UNESCO Associated Schools Project, UNICEF Belgrade, the UN Secretary-General's Study on Violence Against Children, and the United States Institute for Peace. Susan teaches conflict resolution at the graduate level at the International Center for Cooperation and Conflict Resolution (ICCCR) at Teachers College, Columbia University, where she helped design the introductory course in the ICCCR's certificate program; and at the undergraduate level in the Off-Campus College Program of Cornell University's School of Industrial and Labor Relations. She has developed curriculum materials for the United Nations Global Teaching and Learning Project, the US Fund for UNICEF, and is the author of six books for teachers on conflict resolution, social/emotional learning, and global education. She has an MS in education and is currently enrolled in the Ed. D. program in Adult Learning at Teachers College.
Stephen Haff has taught English and Drama for a dozen years, at high schools and colleges in Brooklyn, the Bronx, Vermont and Canada. At Bushwick High School in Brooklyn, he co-founded Real People Theater (RPT) with his students. The company received great acclaim in the worlds of education and theater, and toured North America and Europe. The VILLAGE VOICE called RPT, “Nothing less than a revolution.” Stephen has spoken at several pedagogical conferences and designed curriculum for the CUNY GearUp program. He used to make his living writing for the VOICE, AMERICAN THEATRE, and other publications, and earned his MFA at the Yale University School of Drama. Right now, Stephen is leading the new Bushwick Writing Project, for people of all ages, in the neighborhood he calls home.
Ann Higgins-D’Alessandro is NSCC’s Senior Research Advisor. Ann is a graduate of the Life Span Human Development Department, Pennsylvania State University (1979). She is now the Director and Professor, Applied Developmental Psychology Graduate Program, Psychology Department, Fordham University, New York. Dr. Higgins-D’Alessandro’s theoretical work examines schools and workplaces as contexts for adolescent, adult, and older adult moral and social development and the formation, continuity, and flexibility of moral identity, especially moral identity development of students and teachers. From 1976-1989 she was Senior Researcher at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, where she conducted research with Lawrence Kohlberg at the Center for Moral Development and Moral Education. Longitudinal research on the effects of an experimental democratic, civic high school intervention resulted in the conceptualization of the dynamics of school moral culture change (Power, Higgins, & Kohlberg; Lawrence Kohlberg’s Approach to Moral Education, 1989). Since coming to Fordham in 1990, Ann has also published in a wide range of areas including adolescent risk-taking, the development of empathy in infancy, spirituality and moral community, and moral reasoning. In 2002, she edited the SRCD New Directions monograph, Science for Society: Informing Policy and Practice through Research in Developmental Psychology. Since 2003, she has been Principal Investigator on research funded by a private foundation and two US Department of Education grants evaluating a national school reform and character education program entitled Community of Caring. These projects focus on identifying processes of school change, teacher attitudes, and student engagement by modeling intervention effects. Chosen in 2004 for the Advisory Council of the US Office of Safe and Drug-Free Schools and the Character Education and Civic Engagement Office she advises the federal government on pro-social education and school climate as well as co-authored (i) Mobilizing for Evidence-Based Character Education (2007); (ii.) co-authored an assessment of pro-social education efforts internationally, and (iii) co-created a teacher resource website.
Fred Jones is a Regional Partnership Leader at NSCC. He is also the Founder and President of Dreambridge Consulting. He holds a Bachelors Degree in Music Education from the University of South Carolina and an Associates Degree in music management from The Art Institute of Atlanta. He is a gifted teacher and facilitator, drawing from his experiences as a member of the U.S. Marine Corps, and as a professional performer. He began his career in education as a teaching artist in NYC public schools. He soon became a supervisor/trainer of teaching artists for The Leadership Program. After 3 short years, he moved on to manage 21st Century Community Learning Centers (CCLC) and violence prevention programs for the borough of Queens for the NYC Department of Education (DOE). During his time in Queens, the borough saw a 30% increase in 21st CCLC after school funding through grants he secured. He also managed a 3-year school climate improvement pilot program in partnership with the National School Climate Center. He has provided technical assistance for schools and community based organizations across the state on topics ranging from sustainability, to capacity building. Fred currently resides in Los Angeles Ca.
William S. Pollock Ph.D.
Senior consultant and visiting faculty member at NSCC. Bill is the Director of the Centers for Men and Young Men and the Director of Continuing Education (Psychology) at McLean Hospital; and is Assistant Clinical Professor (Psychology) in the Department of Psychiatry at Harvard Medical School. He is an internationally recognized authority on boys and men. He has served on the U.S. Presidential initiative, The National Campaign Against Youth Violence and is a consultant to The United States Secret Service, including its collaborative Safe Schools Initiative with the U.S. Department of Education. He is the author of many books including the Real Boys Workbook (Random House/Villard, 2001) and Real Boys Voices (Random House, 2000/paperback, Penguin, 2001)
Sue Ruskin-Mayher, Ph.D.
Sue is the director of the Middle Schools Program at the Bank Street College of Education. She has extensive experience as a Staff Developer in the New York City Public Schools. She has also worked as a curriculum development specialist for the Office of the Manhattan High Schools Superintendent. Dr. Ruskin-Mayher began her career in education as a junior high school English Language Arts and Social Studies teacher at Junior High School 118 in the Bronx.
Kristin Page Stewart
Kristin Page Stuart is a member of NSCC’s consultation staff. She began her work in the New York City public schools ten years ago as a teaching artist in the areas of creative writing and theater. In 2002, she was given the opportunity to meld her experience as a teaching artist with social, emotional and civic learning. Working with the FEMA’s Project Liberty and later the Morningside Center for Teaching Social Responsibility (formerly Educators for Social Responsibility, Metro Area), she has trained staff, administration, parents and teachers in a variety of socially, emotionally and civically informed ways. Kristin has served as a mediator for conflicts between all members of the school community, and implemented numerous peer mediation programs from the training of student mediators, providing support for these mediators, and filing mediation records for administration officials. She is deeply interested in the intersection of creative processes and social and emotional learning and is involved in independent research projects exploring limbic system learning as it applies to both.
James is a member of NSCC's consultation faculty. He is a consultant/training specialist in human resources. He specializes in diversity issues, conflict resolution, collaborative negotiation, and mediation; as well as team building. He has conducted workshops in over forty-eight cities within twenty-seven states and seven foreign countries. James also teaches at Teachers College, Columbia University.
Cecile Wren is a member of NSCC's consultation faculty. She was the principal at Jericho Middle School for eight years and worked collaboratively with her staff to design and implement a resilient middle school that articulates a clear vision, social and emotional literacy strategies, and research-based best practices. As a result, Jericho Middle School has been recognized as a New York State Network Support School, as well as a High-Performing Gap Closing School which now provides support to middle schools throughout New York State. Mrs. Wren and her staff have presented at both local and state conferences and frequently host school visitations. Mrs. Wren was the past-president of the Nassau County Middle School Principal's Association; was a Liaison to the New York State Education Department; Co-chairs the Social and Emotional Literacy Forum (SELF), is a member of the executive committee for the Social and Emotional Wellness (SEW) Forum sponsored by the North Shore/LIJ Mental Health Alliance, and serves on the Love Is Not Abuse Advisory Board for Liz Claiborne Inc.. She has over 30 years experience as an educator and her experiences include: Middle and High School Mathematics Teacher, Technology Coordinator, Dean of Students, as well as, an Elementary Principal.
Marisa Zalabak has been a professional actress and teacher of arts-in-education programs for 30 years. She has worked with Childrenʼs Aid Society, The 52nd Street Project, The Writers Theater, New Dramatists, Circle Repertory, The Public Theater, Fuller Young Peopleʼs Theater, La Fabricca, and Non-Traditional Employment for Women in New York, Minneapolis, and Europe. Marisa holds a degree in Theater and Educational Studies, has studied theater, applied performance, dance, and music, Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, has multiple certifications in exercise and fitness, and has served as a speaker for the Anti-Violence Project in New York City.