Jane Stoddard Williams, Chair
Amy Chan Downer, Vice-Chair
Ned Mandel, Treasurer
Eric Cochran, Secretary
Mary R. Brock
Anthony P. Grassi
Douglas M. Karp
Leslie B. Littlejohn
Lyn F. McNaught
Duncan M. O’Brien, Jr.
Nicholas S. Thacher
J. Ronald Totaro
Ricky Van Veen
Katharine H. Welling
Jane Williams has been involved with Horizons for more than two decades, first as a member (later Chair) of the Board of Directors of Horizons at New Canaan Country School and, since 2000, as a member of the Horizons National Board. She is a member of the Board of Trustees at the NY PBS station WNET and chairs its Education Committee. Jane is also on the Advisory Board of Learning Heroes.
Amy Chan Downer is a graduate of Horizons at New Canaan Country School and a past board chair of Horizons National. She is a former Chair of the board of Horizons at the New Canaan Country School and a former member of the board of New Canaan Country School and the Stamford Health Systems. Additionally, Ms. Downer, former Co-Chair of the Fund for Women and Girls, serves on the Executive Committee for the Fairfield County's Community Foundation, and on its Audit Committee, and chairs its Governance Committee.
Ned Mandel has served on the Horizons National board since 2009. He is the former owner of AKJ Educational Services and former development director and board member of Septima Clark Public Charter School in Washington, DC. Mr. Mandel also served as vice chair of the board of St. Patrick’s Episcopal Day School in Washington, DC. He is currently the board chair of The Literacy Lab, a Washington, DC based non-profit organization.
Eric Cochran is a partner at Skadden Arps Slate Meagher and Flom, LLP in the Mergers & Acquisitions department. He is an enthusiastic supporter of schools and several charitable organizations, including A Better Chance. He has served as a board member and treasurer of Little Red Elisabeth Irwin, the progressive K-12 independent school in Greenwich Village; as a member of the finance committee of Friends Seminary, the oldest continuously co-educational school in New York City; and as a trustee of Williams College. Mr. Cochran is currently a trustee of the Clark Art Institute.
Mary Brock serves on the Boards of Directors of The Manhattan Choral Ensemble Board, NYC, Emory University Winship Cancer Institute and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra. Mary also serves on the Board of Trustees of Spelman College. She and her husband, John, have funded faculty chairs in biomedical engineering at Emory University and the Georgia Institute of Technology, and she has endowed a scholarship for the Georgia Tech women's basketball team. Ms. Brock delivered the commencement address at Georgia Tech in 2016, when she and her husband received honorary doctorates. Mary has been co-owner of the WNBA Atlanta Dream since January, 2011. She is a summa cum laude graduate of Miami University of Ohio, where she also received an M.S. in Education Curriculum Development.
Gary Cohen is currently CEO of Qualitor, Inc., a leading diversified supplier of aftermarket safety and wear parts for the automotive industry. He is formerly President and CEO of Timex Group. A seasoned executive in global consumer products, he was the Global General Manager of Playtex Products and part of a turnaround team that sold the business to Energizer Holdings. He built his career with Procter & Gamble/Gillette as a marketing executive working on Gillette's core product categories in oral care, blades and razors, and deodorants. Gary and his family reside in Westport, Connecticut.
Vicki Craver is currently Co-Founder and Co-President of Impact Fairfield County. She also serves as a trustee on the board of the Greenwich Country Day School where she chairs the Finance Committee. Vicki has worked extensively with non-profits, serving most recently as Chair of the boards of the UNC College of Arts and Sciences Foundation and Fairfield County’s Community Foundation. Previously, she was a Vice-President on the corporate bond trading desk at Goldman Sachs in New York City. A graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth, Vicki lives in Riverside, Connecticut with her husband David and their three daughters.
Fabio Freyre joined Facebook in 2009 and has had a variety of leadership positions that include creating, growing, and managing the US and Global Advertising Businesses at Facebook. In addition to Facebook, Fabio has also held roles as Executive Vice President of North America Media Group, CEO of Latina Media Ventures, and Publisher of Sports Illustrated. A graduate of Hamilton College, he has been inducted into the Media Industry Advertising Hall of Fame, was named one of Crain’s NY Business Top Minority Business Leaders, and has served on the White House Hispanic Business Council. Fabio has six children and lives with his wife, Amy, in New Canaan, CT.
Mary-Jo Gabel is a financial consultant for not-for-profit corporations. Prior to her finance career, she taught secondary mathematics. Ms. Gabel has served as Board Chair of The Harley School, Horizons at The Harley School, Horizons National and Career Development Services of Rochester. She is presently a member of the Dean's Advisory Council of the Warner School of Education at the University of Rochester and a Board member of Greater Rochester Summer Learning Association, a not-for-profit corporation promoting quality summer learning and enrichment programs to children in low-income situations.
Lindsay Galin, Executive Vice President and Co-Head of Talent at global entertainment public relations firm Rogers & Cowan, was acquired by the agency in 2011 after launching her own talent publicity firm, Lantern PR, in 2009. In addition to her work with iconic actors, including Liam Neeson and Richard Gere, she spearheaded recent campaign wins for Academy Award-winning "Best Actress" Brie Larson and Emmy Award-winning "Lead Actor" Riz Ahmed. Best known for her strategic and creative publicity campaigns, her work has helped advance the careers of “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” star John Boyega; Academy Award-nominee Felicity Jones; "Get Out" star Allison Williams, and more. She began her career in the publicity department at Hearst Magazines, working on brands including Harper's Bazaar and Marie Claire. Within that role, she helped launch national charity organization DonateMyDress under the Hearst Teen umbrella.
Tony Grassi’s business career was primarily with CS First Boston, where he served as Chairman of the Management Committee, Head of the Corporate Finance Department, and Chief Financial and Administrative Officer. His volunteer activities have included serving as Chairman of the Board of The Nature Conservancy, The Connecticut Chapter of The Nature Conservancy, American Rivers, the Wilton Land Trust, and the New Canaan Country School. Mr. Grassi is currently Chairman of the Butler Conservation Fund, and a trustee of the Maine Chapter of The Nature Conservancy.
Erick Hong is a member of the Client Service team at Bridgewater Associates, a leading global investment firm. Prior to joining Bridgewater, Erick was a member of the Private Equity practice at Bain & Company and a consultant at Oliver Wyman. In addition, Mr. Hong has worked with a range of social sector organizations including Kiva.org (a global online microfinance platform) and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, where he advised on education technology and innovation. Mr. Hong earned his B.A. from the University of Virginia and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.
Doug Karp is Managing Partner of Pacific Partners LLC. Doug was a partner and member of the Operating Committee of Warburg, Pincus and a founder of Tailwind Capital. He has served on the board of directors of a number of public and private companies including LCI International (telecommunications), Eon Labs (generic pharmaceuticals), Aircast (orthopedic braces), Freedom Innovations (advanced lower leg prosthetics), Trover Solutions (insurance services), and VersaPharm (generic pharmaceuticals). Doug has also served on the boards of the City Parks Foundation, Food by the Ton, and as chairman of the Morningside Nursing Home (Bronx, NY).
Noelle King serves on the board of Horizons at St. Richard’s and has volunteered in the program as a STEM education consultant and science teacher for the past five years. She is a 20-year science educator who has worked extensively in urban public, parochial, and independent private schools focused on creative integration of rigorous science education into broader education goals of literacy, design thinking, and empathy. Before becoming a teacher, Noelle worked in analytical chemistry, manufacturing, and medical research. Currently teaching third and fourth grade science, Noelle is Science Curriculum Coordinator at St. Richard’s. She graduated from Purdue University with a degree in Chemistry, and earned a Master’s degree in Curriculum and Instruction from Indiana University. Noelle resides in Indianapolis, IN with her husband, Bruce, and two teenage sons.
Monica Lamontagne is the Co-Chair of the Governance Committee. A retired publishing executive, her professional career was primarily at Charles Scribner’s Sons where she was a Senior Vice President, Director of the Art and Production Department, and Director of Special Co-Publication Projects. She is on the board of The Cute Syndrome (PCDH19 Epilepsy), a former board member of Horizons at New Canaan Country School, and a former trustee of the New Canaan Country School. Ms. Lamontagne is also involved with New York City Center and The Hole in the Wall Gang Camp.
Scott Lauretti is founder and Chief Executive Officer of SAL Companies, a privately-held firm with holdings in media, agriculture, commercial real estate, and retail. Prior to that, he enjoyed a 26-year finance career at Guggenheim Partners, Morgan Stanley, Lehman Brothers, and Andersen Consulting. He currently serves as a Trustee of Savannah Country Day School, Trustee of the Cathedral of St. John the Baptist, Board Member of the Savannah Philharmonic, and Chairman of the Board for Horizons Savannah. Scott, who holds a B.S. in Industrial Engineering from Lehigh University and an M.B.A with a concentration in Finance from The Wharton School at The University of Pennsylvania, is currently on a fellowship at Harvard’s Advanced Leadership Institute, looking at educational access issues and the power of education to combat systemic poverty. Scott’s two daughters both served as volunteers in the Savannah program during their high school years.
Leslie Littlejohn joined the Horizons National Board in 2008. She has served on the Board of New Canaan Country School, the YMCA, and was a founding Board member and Chair of Stepping Stones Museum for Children in Norwalk, CT. A former board member of the Taft School, where she co-chaired its development committee, she previously worked as a fashion editor with Glamour Magazine and Harper's Bazaar.
Lyn McNaught has been connected with Horizons since 1976 as the founder of Horizons National and its first Executive Director. She is the former Executive Director of Horizons at New Canaan Country School, a position she held for 27 years, during which she saw more than 2,000 students go through the program. Early in her career, Ms. McNaught taught elementary school in Cambridge, Massachusetts, and in New York City. She currently works with other educational non-profits on Cape Cod.
Keith Meacham is Vice President for Communications & Partnerships for Homer, the children's media company behind the digital learn-to-read program for young children. She holds a Master's in Education from Columbia University Teachers College and a B.A. from the University of Virginia, and began a career in education more than 20 years ago as a Fulbright Teaching Fellow. She has taught English in private and public middle and high schools in the Washington, DC area and in New York City. She served as the Director of Placement for the New York City non-profit leadership development program, Prep for Prep; as the Executive Director of Harlem Prep Charter School; as a Portfolio Director at the Fund for Public Schools in the New York City Department of Education; and as a Senior Advisor to Student Achievement Partners, the organization that supported the states in the adoption of the Common Core Standards. Since moving to Nashville with her husband and three children, Keith has been involved in the Nashville Public Library Foundation and in the Valor Collegiate Academies Charter Network.
Duncan O'Brien, Jr.’s business experience spans three decades in corporate mergers, acquisitions, and investments, most recently as Senior Vice President and General Manager of Corporate Strategy and Investments at Cox Enterprises. Before that, he served as Senior Managing Director for M&A Transitions at TIAA-CREF and as General Manager of Global Business Development at General Electric Company. Mr. O'Brien was Vice Chairman and Director of Investment Banking for George K. Baum & Company from 1997-1999, after which he formed his own company, Crescendo Capital Partners, LLC. From 1984-1997, he worked in the Investment Banking Division of Goldman, Sachs & Co. in a number of different areas, and served as Managing Director of Goldman Sachs Australia from 1993-1995. He received both his bachelor’s degree and M.B.A. from Stanford University.
Rebecca Owen is President of CEI Realty, Inc., and serves as Chief Legal Officer of its parent company, Clark Enterprises, Inc., focused on real estate and private equity investments and charitable giving. Before Clark, she was a real estate and corporate attorney in Washington, DC and Burlington, VT. In addition to corporate board experience, Rebecca has served on several non-profit boards, including the Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Washington and the Suburban Hospital Foundation. She graduated from Hamilton College, summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, with honors in economics, and from the University of Chicago Law School. She resides in Bethesda, MD, and has two grown children.
Nick Thacher recently retired after 12 years as Head of Dedham Country Day School, which launched an affiliate Horizons program during his tenure there. For 21 years he led New Canaan Country School, where he was an active Board member of the first Horizons Student Enrichment Program. A former Board President of the Connecticut Association of Independent Schools, the Elementary School Heads Association, and the Dublin (NH) School, he also served for many years on the Executive Council of the National Association of Principals of Schools for Girls as well as on the Blue Ribbon Schools National Review Panel of the U.S. Department of Education.
Ron Totaro joined Pitney Bowes in 2013 as General Manager, Global Financial Services. Recognized by industry leaders for creating scalable, sustainable, and rapid P&L growth and shareholder value, Mr. Totaro consistently achieves market-beating results for both public and private-equity backed companies. Prior, as CEO of Partsearch Technologies, he repositioned company strategy and grew Partstore.com into a leading B2C ecommerce platform. Before that, he served as CEO at ACI Worldwide, the leader in payments software and SaaS solutions for financial institutions, and as General Manager of Global Scoring Solutions at Fair Isaac, the leader in data & analytic risk management solutions. He previously served in leadership roles at American Express, GE Capital, Accenture, and America Online. Mr. Totaro holds an M.B.A. from the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan and a B.S. in Business Administration, magna cum laude, from SUNY Albany.
Lauran Tuck co-founded Tuck’s R.U.S.H. for Literacy with her husband, Justin, in 2008 (R.U.S.H. stands for Read, Understand, Succeed, Hope). A philanthropist and education advocate, Ms. Tuck works as an executive consultant in the nonprofit sector, most recently with the Family Success Institute. She began her career with The Hartford, in Media & Community Relations, and now serves on the board of directors for New Yorkers for Children, Horizons National, and the 50 Fund (the philanthropic partner of the Super Bowl 50 Host Committee). A 2006 graduate of the University of Notre Dame with a degree in Marketing, she earned a Master’s degree in Nonprofit Leadership from the University of Pennsylvania in 2012. She is a member of the University of Notre Dame’s Performing Arts Advisory Council and the Co-Founder of the University of Pennsylvania’s Nonprofit Leadership Alumni Association.
Ricky Van Veen is the Head of Global Creative Strategy at Facebook, where he helps develop the company’s approach to content and works with media partners to develop and create programming for the platform. Prior to joining Facebook, Ricky co-founded leading comedy brand CollegeHumor and the video sharing site Vimeo. He helped grow CollegeHumor into the largest comedy property on the web and the most viewed comedy channel on YouTube, with over ten million subscribers. CollegeHumor and Vimeo were acquired by IAC in 2006, where Ricky spent the next ten years overseeing the TV, film, print, and digital content efforts of Electus Digital (which comprises CollegeHumor, fan culture site Dorkly, and hip hop property WatchLoud). Electus Digital’s TV successes include series such as “Adam Ruins Everything” on TruTV and “Chopped” on the Food Network. Ricky has presented at conferences including SXSW, TEDx, and Recode, and has been featured on Crain’s 40 under 40 and Vanity Fair’s New Establishment lists. He lives in New York with his wife and dog.
Kathy Welling, a graduate of Wells College and Columbia University, has served on the board since 2000 and brings a wealth of experience in fund-raising and strategic planning. Ms. Welling worked for several years as Vice President of Raybin Associates in New York City. She was recently President of the Board of the Wilton Library and chaired its expansion project. She has been Senior Warden at St. Matthew's Church and was chair of its new facilities renovation. She was Vice Chair of the Board of Fairfield County's Community Foundation and sits on the Board of Spence-Chapin Adoption Service in NYC, as well as on the Board of Paul Smith's College in the Adirondacks.
Dennis Williams is Vice President, Corporate Social Responsibility, for Home Box Office, Inc., responsible for HBO’s philanthropic and social impact initiatives. Under his leadership, the group has expanded and realigned corporate giving efforts, enhanced HBO’s presence, and amplified social issues stemming from the network’s programming. Within HBO, Dennis and his team have engaged employees in the company’s community impact endeavors through such programs as the “Youth Enrichment Series,” non-profit volunteer activities, and military support efforts. He is an advocate for equality in education and LGBT rights and serves on the board for The Fund for Public Schools and New York’s LGBTQ Community Center. Dennis holds a B.A. in English from Hamline University.
Horizons Advisory Board
Dr. Margaret Honey
Marie Dalbey Tabah
Edward Zigler, Ph.D.