Harvey Newman is a retired New York City educator. For 15 years, Harvey was a Senior Fellow at the Center for Educational Innovation (CEI) where he led school improvement and policy reform initiatives. Prior to joining CEI, Harvey was a leader in East Harlem’s Community School District 4 where he oversaw the District’s school choice program, supervised curriculum development, coordinated school resources, and administered all district assessments and evaluations. He began his education career as a language arts teacher and guidance counselor in New York City’s public schools. He brings this depth of experience from classroom to administration to his work with district and charter public schools throughout New York and New Jersey.
Douglas L. Knight, Jr. presently serves as the Director of Alternative Sentencing in the Office of the Queens District Attorney, a position that he has held since September 2001. As Director, his responsibilities include the development and implementation of borough-wide alternative sentencing programing, which includes such initiatives as Queens Treatment Court (QTC), Queens Mental Health Court (QMHC), Drug Treatment Alternative to Prison (DTAP) program and some twenty plus alternative sentencing services.
With over 28 years of alternative sentencing experience, Douglas is committed to the development and continued growth of alternative sentencing options within the field of criminal justice. Douglas has a Master's Degree in Criminal Justice from LIU Post and is a Credentialed Alcoholism and Substance Abuse Counselor (CASAC).
Richard Levine is a Senior Vice President at CBRE, Inc., the world’s largest commercial real estate services provider. Mr. Levine has 30 years of experience in the commercial real estate industry focused predominately on the negotiation of leases for office space. Since joining CBRE in 1988, he has represented New York based clientele throughout the New York region, and coordinated the firm’s resources to serve various groups nationally. Mr. Levine is a senior member of CBRE's Downtown New York office
Lawrence Ng serves as the Chief Executive Officer at Simply Bridal. He also serves as a Founder, Principal and Chief Executive Officer at OnRamp Fund (2015) and KidGuard (2016). Mr. Ng is an entrepreneur and businessman, leading LNG Management. He is an Advisor at Metamorphic Ventures. Mr. Ng co-founded Oversee.net in 2000 and served as its Chief Executive Officer until 2008.
Ronald Tabano is the CEO and Principal of John V. Lindsay Wildcat Academy Charter School. Mr. Tabano has over 40 years experience in education beginning his work as a 6th grade teacher, moving to teaching social studies and ELA at the middle and high school levels, eventually becoming an Assistant Principal. Following this he worked in the community creating job opportunities for struggling adolescents and was a founding member of both Wildcat Academy, which opened in 1992 under the NYC DOE and the first Second Opportunity School (SOS) in the Bronx which opened in 1997. Mr. Tabano also started the first New Beginnings School in 1999 in Queens. He marshaled Wildcat Academy through the charter conversion process in 2000.
Seymour Fliegel is the President and Senior Fellow at the Center for Educational Innovation. Sy has a long and prestigious history in public education. He started his career as a teacher, and then became an assistant principal and principal. In 1975, he became the Director of Alternative Education for New York City’s Community District 4 and began the transformation of New York City public schools described in his book, Miracle in East Harlem. In 1989, having served five years as Deputy Superintendent in District 4, he became the Superintendent of District 28 in Queens.
Sy has been invited to the White House on two occasions in recognition of his achievements in public education. He has written extensively, made numerous television appearances and is quoted frequently by the print media.
Rocco DiSpirito is a James Beard award winning chef, health advocate and author of eleven highly-acclaimed cookbooks, including five New York Times best sellers. Mr. DiSpirito is on a mission to prove that healthy and delicious are not mutually exclusive. As such, DiSpirito developed a fresh food meal delivery service and weight loss coaching program called “The Pound A Day Diet.” With a genuine passion for helping others, DiSpirito makes charity work a priority as he advocates for those who struggle with food security and obesity. He serves on the Entertainment Council for Feeding America and as an Ambassador for Dr. Oz’s HealthCorps. In addition to serving as an advisory board member to Hampton Creek, an innovative food tech startup dedicated to reducing the depletion of natural resources with its eggless Just Mayo and other products, he serves on John V Lindsay Wildcat advisory board.