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Leadership

RICHARD SOUTO, Executive Director, has years of passionate experience serving youth and families in NYC’s most underserved communities with engaging and impactful educational programs.  Prior to joining LeAp, Rich was the Chief Operating Officer of Harlem RBI and DREAM Charter School, a community-based organization and school serving over 2,000 young people from pre-k to college. Rich was previously Executive Director of New Heights Youth in the Bronx and Associate Executive Director of Groundwork in East New York, Brooklyn. Rich also volunteers time to many initiatives important to him both in the city and near his upstate home and he was an Adjunct Professor at the New School University.  Rich spends his free time biking, gardening and hanging out with friends and family. 
  
Richard Souto
Executive Director
(212) 769-4160 ext. 7
rich@leapnyc.org
ALEXANDRA LEFF, Deputy Director, has had over 20 years of experience in the field of arts and education, creating and directing programs, overseeing staff, developing curricula, managing media relations, and coordinating student projects and exhibitions. She came to LEAP in 2006 and oversees much of LEAP’s in-school programming, hires teaching artists, leads professional development workshops for staff, and manages public relations and marketing initiatives. Alexandra is the creator and director of LEAP’s high-profile Public Art Program, a youth and social action program that culminates each year in the largest student exhibition in NYC parks history. This program has gained citywide recognition and support from the NYC artist community, and city dignitaries and agencies, and has been featured by citywide TV, print, and online media outlets. Alexandra received her B.A. Cum Laude in Anthropology from the State University of New York at Albany, and attended CUNY Graduate Center and Hunter College, completing all required coursework towards an M.A. in Anthropology.
Alexandra Leff
Deputy Director
(212) 769-4160 ext. 6
alexandra@leapnyc.org
JIM PUGLIESE, Supervising Director of LEAP Compass/SONYC Afterschool Programs, As an educator Jim Pugliese has worked for LEAP for over 25 years. Jim has worked in hundreds of elementary, junior high and high schools. He has conducted workshops for thousands of students, their parents and teachers. He has taught science, math, cultural studies and language arts through music and percussion and created and designed curriculum, integrating music into the academic subject areas. For many years he worked at Project Concern’s Substance Abuse and Violence Prevention program at P.S. 285 in Brooklyn. In 2005 Jim was given the opportunity to begin his “Dream” After-School Program. Presently he is the brainchild and supervising director for LEAP’s award winning Radical Arts Venue and Education Center (R.A.V.E). at CIS 22 middle school in the Bronx and five other Compass/Sonyc After-School Programs. Jim has also been BMI’s Composer-In Residence at La Guardia high school of Music, Drama and Art in New York City for the ten years. Three of Jim’s music composition students have had their Compositions selected to be performed by the New York Philharmonic on their School Day Concerts.
Jim Pugliese
Supervising Director
of Afterschool Programs
 
jim@leapnyc.org
DIAMOND ST. THOMAS, Director of Evaluation, has worked with a variety of nonprofits in the area of strategic planning, survey design, database management, research and evaluation. Much of her work has been in the realm of education, youth development and in the arts. She is committed to strengthening nonprofits through demonstrating their impact. Currently, at LEAP (Learning through an Expanded Arts Program), Diamond is the Director of Evaluation. Her work includes designing and implementing an evaluation strategy to measure the impact of the organization. LEAP supports participants through the arts from grades K-12 in the New York City area. Prior to joining LEAP Diamond was the Director of Research and Evaluation at Sports and Arts in Schools Foundation. She also consulted for organizations such as Young Audiences New York, Project Bully Free Zone, Youth Bridge and Cool Culture. She completed her M.S. at The New School in Nonprofit Management and a postgraduate certification in Organizational Development. Her B.A. is in Criminal Justice with a focus on Juvenile Justice.
Diamond St. Thomas
Director of Evaluation
diamond@leapnyc.org
SETH GOLDBERG, ​Program Director, has been with LeAp for over 16 years.  As LeAp’s new Program Director, Seth draws on years of experience as a Teaching Artist, Mentor, Manager and Afterschool Site Director.  Seth’s roles and responsibilities include providing leadership, support, design and direction for the Program Department.  Seth has Master’s degrees in both Childhood Education and Jazz Studies.  He has also been involved with the creation and implementation of the ALLL Program (Active Literacy Leads To Learning) and the Summer Quest Programs. In addition to working for LeAp, Seth is an active musician in the NYC community.
    
Seth Goldberg
Program Director
seth@leapnyc.org
SAMUEL DOYON, Manager of Operations, has been with LEAP for over three years and in a variety of roles, most recently in the Programming Department, where he oversaw the August Wilson Monologue Competition and the LEAP OnStage Program. Today, as Manager of Operations, Sam oversees LEAP's Human Resources, IT, and general office logistics to make sure everything "behind the scenes" at the LEAP office is running smoothly. Before coming to LEAP, Sam was a Recruiting Administrator for a high-profile executive recruiting firm. Sam received his B.A. in World Politics and Anthropology from Hamilton College.
Samuel Doyon
Manager of Operations
samuel@leapnyc.org

Our Staff

Christine de Castro

Accounts Payable

(212) 769-4160, ext. 313
christine@leapnyc.org

Alexandra Constas

Executive Assistant

(212) 769-4160
alex@leapnyc.org

Laura Craft

Program Coordinator- Manhattan/SI

(212) 769-4160 ext. 304
laura@leapnyc.org

Cheavanese Diedrick

Site Director MS 228, Bronx

cheavanese@leapnyc.org

Jessica Francisco

Finance Assistant/Accounts Receivable

(212) 769-4160, ext. 302
jessica@leapnyc.org

Tara Daniels

Program Coordinator- Brooklyn

(212) 769-4160, ext. 315
tara@leapnyc.org

Claude Joseph

Site Director MS 88, Brooklyn

claude@leapnyc.org

Tricia Frazier

Site Director MS 125, Bronx

tricia@leapnyc.org

Erica Garber

Program Manager

(212) 769-4160, ext. 303
erica@leapnyc.org

Jeneen Garcia

Site Director MS 51, Brooklyn

jeneen@leapnyc.org

Gabe Gordon

Program Coordinator- Queens

(212) 769-4160 ext. 308
gabe@leapnyc.org

Monique Jarvis

Site Director JHS 22, Bronx

monique@leapnyc.org

Diamond St. Thomas

Director of Data and Evaluation

(212) 769-4160
diamond@leapnyc.org

Suzannah Longval

Program Coordinator​- Bronx

(212) 769-4160, ext. 318
suzannah@leapnyc.org

Naisha Solomon

Operations Assistant

(212) 769-4160, ext. 301
naisha@leapnyc.org

Michael Yates

Site Director MS 129, Bronx

michael@leapnyc.org