Board of Directors

Our Board of Trustees governs the organization. The Board is comprised of individuals with experience in education, finance, law, real estate acquisition and development, and fundraising.


Caity Conklin

Caity Conklin is an attorney and a member of her firm’s finance/restructuring and insolvency practice group. Caity focuses on the representation of franchisors, creditors, and financial institutions in insolvency, work-out, and foreclosure proceedings. She also represents franchisors in the collection of unpaid franchise fees, negotiating the assumption or rejection of franchise agreements, protecting intellectual property interests, bankruptcy litigation, and restructuring of debtor/creditor relationships between franchisee and franchisor.

Becca Edil

Becca Edil is an investment professional and a member of her company’s infrastructure debt investment group. Becca is responsible for supporting the origination and execution of investments in North America. She is also responsible for due diligence, credit analysis and ongoing monitoring of investments as well as portfolio construction and management.

Annabel Javier

Annabel Javier has a background in marketing prior to moving to New York in 2009, where her focus changed to social services. She developed a passion for working with children and families and began working as an assistant teacher at an Early Childhood Program in Brooklyn and the Lower East Side. She quickly progressed in her career, becoming an Educational Specialist where she coaches family childcare providers in developing lesson plans and creating enriching environments for children. In her spare time, Annabel volunteers at her local Parish where she aids in event planning and fundraising. Annabel has now been serving the Lower East Side, Brooklyn, and Washington Heights communities for over 12 years. The organization that she works for is committed to enhancing the quality of life of the people through the different programs they serve. collaborating with our communities for more than 135 years to pioneer highly effective programs that fight poverty and systemic inequality.

Megann K. McManus

Megann K. McManus is a Labor and Employment attorney in the New York City office of Jackson Lewis P.C. Her practice focuses on labor law, and she represents employers in labor arbitrations and in proceedings before administrative agencies as well as state and federal courts. She obtained a law degree from Rutgers University Law School in Newark, NJ and a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre from the University of the Ozarks. Prior to becoming an attorney, Megann worked in human resources as the staff development director for Actors’ Equity Association. Originally from Arkansas, Megann moved to New York City with her now wife fifteen years ago, but they still remain loyal fans of Arkansas Razorback football.

Lauren Schwarz

Lauren Schwarz was an Elementary Teaching Specialist from 1997 through 2019. She served as her elementary school’s professional development planner and presenter, reading specialist, testing coordinator, curriculum specialist, instructional coach for teachers, enrichment and intervention instructor, and Response to Intervention team leader. Prior to that position, Lauren was an elementary school teacher, a principal, and a Reading Recovery teacher. Lauren holds teaching certifications in New York, New Jersey and Massachusetts. She also holds Reading Specialist and Reading Recovery Certifications. Ms. Schwarz received her BA in sociology from Queens College in Flushing, New York and her MA in elementary education from New York University’s Graduate School of Education.