Management Team:

Lynette Guastaferro
Executive Director
212.870.3505 ext. 4

Lynette Guastaferro, Executive Director, has more than 20 years of experience in education. She possesses a unique blend of education, non-profit and private-sector experience. Under her leadership and responding to both research and what is happening in real classrooms, Teaching Matters has quadrupled its reach and spearheaded the design of award winning, scalable teacher development models designed to improve teaching in over 700 urban schools. Ms. Guastaferro has worked as both a classroom teacher, a school-network leader, and a senior management consultant for Price Waterhouse Coopers (PWC). At PWC, she led projects to innovate and improve the performance of government and educational agencies. Her work in education led her to Baltimore, where she took a classroom teaching position and designed her school's first technology based learning support lab for literacy and mathematics. Ms. Guastaferro holds an M.B.A. from Columbia University and a B.A. from Williams College.

Jane Condliffe
Deputy Director

One of the authors of the New York City Board of Education’s Technology Plan and founder of the Citizens Coalition for Technology in Schools, Ms. Condliffe has more than 33 years of experience working with non-profits, government, and in education. A founding staff member of Teaching Matters, she develops programs such as Constitution Today that bring the democratic process to life for students while training their teachers in the use of technology in the classroom. She was one of the managers of New York City’s 1996 Technology Summit that brought together more than 200 educators, business executives, and government leaders to develop a technology plan for the NYC school system. She now advises school districts on how to utilize their technology resources to advance student achievement. A life-long resident of New York, Ms. Condliffe holds a B.A. from New York University.

Christa M. Boggio, MBA

With more than 15 years of Fiscal Management experience in working for leading not-for-profit organizations, Ms. .Boggio is responsible for the day to day financial operations and annual audits for Teaching Matters, Inc. She started her financial management career working in hospitals and healthcare organizations including Phelps Memorial Hospital Center and Bon Secours Charity Health Care System and transitioned to social service organizations, including The Doe Fund, Inc. and Safe Space NYC where she served as the Director of Finance and Chief Financial Officer respectively. Christa holds an MBA in Finance from Iona College and a Post Masters Certificate in Management Information Systems.

Naomi Cooperman Ed.D.
Senior Director of New Content and Evaluation
212.870.3505 ext. 2 Early Reading Matters, a new teacher development initiative in the area of early literacy; Teacher Leadership Matters, a program that promotes increased teacher effectiveness and improved student performance through data-driven collaborative inquiry, and Writing Matters, Teaching Matters' highly respected middle school literacy program. She began her career at Teaching Matters as an educational consultant, mentoring New York City classroom teachers to meet the needs of struggling students using tech-rich resources. Dr. Cooperman has more than twenty-five years of experience in the field of education. Prior to joining Teaching Matters, Inc., Dr. Cooperman was the Instructional Design Specialist at the Center for Management and Organization Research, Baruch College, CUNY, where she developed and managed government training projects. Dr. Cooperman earned an Ed.D. from Teachers College, Columbia University, an MS from the University of Wisconsin and a BS from the University of Massachusetts.

Jacqueline M. Dorante
Director of Development
212.870.3505 ext. 4

With more than 15 years of experience in working for leading not-for-profit organizations, Ms. Dorante will be responsible for developing and implementing Teaching Matters overall fundraising strategy as well as building a major gifts program.

Ms. Dorante served most recently as Director of Development for EMpower, an international grantmaking organization focused on youth. Previously, Ms. Dorante built and directed a comprehensive development program for The Twenty-First Century Foundation, a national Black Foundation dedicated to facilitating strategic giving and grantmaking for Black social change.

She has served as Director, Special Projects, and Director, Private Sector Development, for the International AIDS Vaccine Initiative, a public-private partnership focused on AIDS vaccine research and development, and advocacy, where she managed and stewarded key external relationships to increase IAVI's partnership and fundraising base. Ms. Dorante has also held several positions with the US Fund for UNICEF, the premiere international development and children's rights agency. Very early in her career, she managed the annual giving program for the YWCA of the USA, the nation's largest women's membership and advocacy organization. Jacqueline holds a BS from Syracuse University.

Jennifer Murtha
Chief Operating Officer

Jen Murtha leads our team of 30 educational consultants with high expectations to achieve the mission critical goals of over 100 education clients. She started with Teaching Matters as a Senior Educational Consultant, supporting principals and teachers with implementing rigorous instruction and supporting leadership systems essential for school improvement. Jen is currently responsible for the implementation of organizational strategy, including planning, organizing, operating, and staffing all Teaching Matters' services within New York City and nationally. Before joining Teaching Matters, Jen served as a school leader, teacher, trainer, curriculum writer and was co-founder of She received her Masters in Elementary Education from the University of Central Florida and her Bachelors in Computer Science from the University of North Carolina at Wilmington.

Evan O'Donnell
Director of Information and Technology
212.870.3522 (tech department)

Mr. O'Donnell heads the technology department at Teaching Matters providing support to schools and Teaching Matters' staff of educational consultants around four key areas: 1. The use of technology to enable goal setting, planning, knowledge sharing and reflection 2. Demonstration of learning 3. The use of data to inform instruction 4. Communication and collaboration. Evan joined Teaching Matters in 2000 to help design and implement the award winning programs Teaching with the 'Net and The Connected Principal, two of the organization's Distance Learning courses for Teachers and Principals.

Sharon Rubinstein
Communications Director
212.870.3505 ext. 8

Sharon Rubinstein is a lawyer and former journalist with extensive communications and advocacy experience in the non-profit world. For nearly a decade, she was Communications Director at Advocates for Children and Youth in Baltimore, where she was also a lobbyist. She has been a communications consultant for numerous clients, including Medicaid Matters Maryland, Health Care for All, and the Maryland Budget and Tax Policy Institute. In 2012, she was named one of ten "leaders" by the Moving Maryland Forward Network.

Some of Ms. Rubinstein's writing credits include BusinessWeek Magazine; Newsweek International; CNN; CBS News, and the Baltimore Sun. Much of her writing has concerned social issues. She has been active in academia as well, and was a Senior Fellow at the University of Baltimore School of Law's Center for Families, Children and the Courts, which operates a Truancy Court Program that addresses student attendance problems. Ms. Rubinstein taught child advocacy courses at the University of Maryland's College Park Scholars program, and taught law and education policy for the George Washington University Graduate School of Education. Much earlier in her career, she was a federal law clerk. Ms. Rubinstein has a J.D. from the University of Michigan's School of Law, and a B.A. from Cornell University.

Mary Strain
National Partnerships

Mary leads Teaching Matters national expansion by developing innovative approaches to working with urban systems nationwide. Mary brings a passionate commitment to education – rooted in her ten years of teaching experience in NYC middle schools and with adjudicated youth in Philadelphia. As a former Vice President at Classroom, Inc., Mary created and led their highly successful national summer school programs and led the organization’s business development efforts. Mary is an award-winning curriculum developer; a nationally recognized leader in urban education and educational technology, and a successful sales and marketing executive. She has provided consulting services to several educational technology organizations, foundations, and school systems. She serves as an advisor to The Coalition of Schools Educating Boys of Color and The Education Design Studio Incubator at The University of Pennsylvania.

Mary holds a BA in History from Fordham University and an MPA from Baruch College, The City University of New York.

Educational Consultants

Pam Abramson
Senior Educational Consultant

Pamela Abramson is an educational consultant for Teaching Matters. Pamela's interests range from providing an educational climate where students enjoy the learning experience to creating a classroom with opportunities for students to master innovative technology. Prior to joining the Teaching Matters team, Pamela evaluated the instructional practices of tenured teachers for continued service. Previously, she created lessons for One laptop Per child. Earlier in her career, Pam was a second and third grade teacher in a public New York City elementary school for 7 years. Pamela received an M.A. from New York University and a B.A from the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Jacobé Bell
Senior Educational Consultant

Jacobe Bell comes to Teaching Matters with over a decade of experience teaching and leading in urban education at both the school and network level. She is a graduate of Stanford University and holds a Masters in Urban Education from Mercy College. Passionate about closing the achievement gap, Jacobe works directly with teachers, teacher leaders, and principals to improve school effectiveness. Her professional interests lie in curriculum design, instructional strategies, leadership development, and student engagement in urban schools.

Howard Better
Educational Consultant

Mr. Better currently teaches 3-D Computer Animation at New York City College of Technology. For the past nine years, he has been teaching Animation and Video workshops to middle school students, which have culminated in videos focusing on subject matter such as Renaissance Art, Greek Fables, Cubism, and the History of Jackson Heights. He has been a film and video artist for twenty-five years. He has received a Puffin Foundation grant, and has exhibited his work in New York and other cities. He has taught Animation and Filmmaking at Brooklyn College and Bloomfield College in New Jersey.

Fran Corvasce
Senior Educational Consultant

Dr. Fran Corvasce joined Teaching Matters this year after a 36 year career as a New York City educator. Dr. Corvasce was the citywide social studies instructional specialist for social studies 6-12 for the New York City Department of Education where she was one of the team that developed the customized New York City Social Studies scope and sequence and supporting unit guides. Additionally, she developed curriculum and conducted professional development institutes in several instructional initiatives. Prior to her citywide position, Dr. Corvasce served as the Region 7 instructional supervisor for social studies K-12 and the Director of middle school programs and social studies for Community School District 20 in Brooklyn, as well as teaching social studies and humanities for over twenty years.

Jelbin DeLaCruz
Senior Educational Consultant

Jelbin DelaCruz has been in the field of education for over seventeen years, eleven with Teaching Matters. Through his work as an educational coach, he has maintained long-standing relationships with schools at every level throughout the five boroughs. His commitment to enhancing the experiences of students in New York City has always grounded his coaching around instructional methods that lead to high levels of student achievement. From technology integration, to developing rigorous project based learning experiences, and more recently his work around teacher leadership, Mr. DelaCruz continues provide support to schools across a range of educational approaches.

Xiania Foster
Senior Educational Consultant

Xiania began her career as a Kindergarten, 1st, and 3rd grade teacher in Newark Public Schools. Her interest in collaborating with colleagues to help expand literacy expertise in the early grades prompted her to design and lead reading and writing workshops. Ms. Foster left the K-12 world temporarily to serve as the Education Policy Analyst in Newark Mayor Cory A. Booker’s Office. Afterward, she co-founded Newark Educators’ Community Charter School and served as the lead administrator. Before joining Teaching Matters, she worked as the Early Childhood Director for BRICK Academy and a vice-principal at a turnaround school in Newark. Ms. Foster holds a B.A. in English from Mount Holyoke College, an M.A. in Education in Teaching Literacy and General Education from Bank Street College of Education, and an M.A in Building Leadership from Columbia University’s Teachers College. She was recognized for her work when she received a New Jersey Governor’s Teacher Recognition Award in 2008 and a Leaders & Legends Award for Outstanding Achievement in Early Care and Childhood Education in 2014.

Jennifer Gleason
Senior Educational Consultant

Jennifer Gleason is an Educational Consultant and Information Systems Developer at Teaching Matters. In this role, she develops and supports websites, and works with school leaders and teachers, helping them move toward learner-centered pedagogy supported by new technologies. Jennifer began her career as a software engineer at IBM, where she developed and tested enterprise software. In addition, Jennifer worked for the Buck Institute for Education as an Education Pioneer Fellow. Jennifer earned an MA in Communications, Computing and Technology in Education from Columbia University Teachers College and holds a BS from Binghamton University.

William Heller, Ph.D.
Senior Educational Consultant

Dr. Heller brings over 18 years of experience consulting with schools to promote a culture of continuous improvement. Bill received his doctorate from New York University's Steinhardt School of Education, where he currently teaches graduate-level courses in English Education and Educational Leadership. He directed the professional development for the NYC DOE's iTeach/iLearn one-to-one initiative, overseeing the planning, development, publication, and delivery of 136 unique one-hour Train-the-Trainer sessions. He has also led Teaching Matters initiatives in areas as diverse as social studies, school data analysis, arts integration, and Common Core-aligned assessment. Recently, Bill wrote a chapter for the book Literary Education and Digital Learning (published by IGI Global) based on his research using technology and performance to help younger students understand Shakespeare. Dr. Heller holds a BA from Albright College and an MA from New York University.

Nina Chanpreet Kaur
Educational Consultant

Nina Chanpreet Kaur brings over 10 years of experience serving the NYC Department of Education as an educator and professional development coach. She is passionate about bridging the achievement gap and works directly with K-12 teachers to maximize their potential, thereby maximizing student achievement through the use of technology, innovative curriculum and time-tested best practices. Her expertise ranges from ESL and ELA to Social Studies and Math. Nina is a published author and has been featured as an educator in the NY Times and the Harlem Times. She received a Master of Science in Education from Lehman College and holds a Bachelor of Arts in Global History from Barnard College.

Michelle Macchia
Senior Educational Consultant

Michelle Macchia is an early literacy scholar and practitioner with over fifteen years of experience as an elementary school teacher and teacher leader in public and private elementary schools in California, New Jersey, and New York. Her research interests include elementary teachers’ use of discussion during guided reading and the social context surrounding instruction.

Dr. Macchia joined the Astor Early Reading Matters project at Teaching Matters because of her interest in ensuring that primary grade teachers in high-needs, urban schools receive quality professional development around delivering culturally responsive literacy instruction. She has presented at national conferences, including the National Association of Multicultural Education Annual Conference, the National Writing Project Rutgers Midwinter Writing Conference, and the Annual Conference of the American Association of Blacks in Higher Education.

One of Dr. Macchia’s favorite children’s books is Roald Dahl’s Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. She holds a B.A. in French & Linguistics from UCLA, an M.A. in Educational Administration from Teachers College, Columbia University, and an Ed.D. in Teacher Leadership from Rutgers University, New Brunswick.

Margaret Overbagh-Feld
Senior Educational Consultant

Margaret Overbagh-Feld comes to Teaching Matters with ten years of classroom experience in various capacities. She began her career teaching English as a Foreign Language and running teacher trainings as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the former Soviet Republic of Ukraine. She then pursued her M.A. in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages at New York University. In New York City, she has taught at the elementary, middle, and high school levels, with extensive experience in collaborative team teaching. A member of the ninth cohort of the Bilingual/ESL Teacher Leadership Academy at Bank Street College, her focus has been on building English as a Second Language teaching capacity within schools and integrating ESL into everyday curricula. She earned her B.A. in English and Public Policy from The College of William and Mary.

Molly Perez
Educational Consultant

Molly Perez joined Teaching Matters after working as a teacher, teacher leader and assistant principal at two schools in the South Bronx. Molly has taught 6th, 9th and 12th grade Social Studies. She also worked as her schools' testing coordinators and programmers. Prior to joining the NYC Department of Education Molly worked at a school for children with severe autism in Brooklyn and at a school for the Deaf in Philadelphia. Molly graduated Tulane University with a B.A. in Psychology and Sociology and she graduated from Teachers College with an M.Ed. in Teaching of History and Teaching of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing. Molly completed her course work for her School Building Leadership license and School District Leadership license through CITE's program at College of St. Rose.

Reshma Ramkellawan-Arteaga
Educational Consultant

Reshma Ramkellawan-Arteaga comes to Teaching Matters with extensive experience in education, spanning twelve years. Prior to becoming an educational consultant, she worked as an assistant principal for Success Academy as well as fulfilled numerous instructional roles for other charter organizations and the New York City Department of Education. She holds a M.A. in Curriculum and Teaching as well as an Ed.M. in the Teaching of English from Teachers College Columbia University, in addition to a B.S. in English Education from the University of Central Florida and is currently a doctoral candidate. A New Yorker, born and raised, Reshma is also a product of the New York City public school system and attributes her academic success to the committed teachers she met along the way.

Colleen Rodgers
Senior Educational Consultant

Colleen Rodgers comes to Teaching Matters with over a decade of experience teaching and leading in urban education in both Philadelphia and Newark, NJ. She has taught mathematics across all of the middle school grades and worked as an administrator to expand a KIPP charter school in Camden NJ. She has written a Critical Thinking & Reasoning curriculum and is passionate about bringing real-world social contexts into the mathematics classroom. Most recently, Colleen has worked with the New York City Teaching Fellows program as a Teacher Leadership Coach, developing their skills, knowledge base and mindset to be effective teachers in a NYC classroom. Prior to transitioning into the field of education, Colleen was a Chemical Engineer. She has a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Tuskegee University, a M.A. in International Learning & Leadership from Roehampton University in the UK, as well as certifications in K-12 Mathematics and Instructional Supervision. She is fiercely committed to supporting schools in providing an equal and high quality education for all of its students!

Edith Schneider
Senior Educational Consultant

Edith Schneider has been a professional developer for over nine years. Since joining Teaching Matters, she has helped many New York City schools integrate technology into their science and social studies curricula, and has facilitated implementation of New York State Learning Technology Grants. She has ten years experience in the New York City public school system as a teacher of both high school and middle school science. Ms. Schneider is currently investigating ways to use technology so that middle school science students can apply science concepts to real world problems. She has both her Bachelor's Degree in Biology, and her Master's of Science Education from Brooklyn College, City University of New York.

Nick Siewert
Senior Educational Consultant

Nick Siewert comes to Teaching Matters from a 15 year career as an English and social studies teacher in middle and high schools across the country. He has taught in Colorado, California, Florida and New Jersey. In addition to teaching, he has served in schools as an academic dean, a communications director and a major gifts officer . He holds a BA in English from Middlebury College, an MA in English from the Bread Loaf School of English at Middlebury and an EdM in Technology, Innovation and Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.

Linda Wolvek
Senior Educational Consultant

Linda Wolvek joined the Teaching Matters team in 2011 after a thirty-year career teaching high school English and interdisciplinary studies in the Los Angeles Unified School District. Her last five years of work in Los Angeles focused on literacy-based interdisciplinary education for at-risk high school students. In addition to her expertise in secondary level ELA, ESL, and interdisciplinary education, Linda has trained dozens of student teachers and has taught in the graduate education program of California State University. After achieving a long time dream of relocating to New York, Linda feels fortunate to have found a home with like-minded colleagues at TMI. Her work here continues a life-long commitment to helping students, teachers and schools achieve great things.