Thank you to Goldman Sachs and the 10,000 Small Business Program , and Taproot Foundation


Ross Field


Ross is known as a subject matter expert in operations for advertising & marketing agencies, improving process, and helping employees perform at their highest levels of quality and efficiency.  He brings clients 20+ years of experience, several awards and worked on two animated feature films early in his professional career.

He completed improving the relationships with several former agency’s largest clients.  Ross inherited accounts where the agency could not deliver on time, on-budget or quality deliverables, and left with a process in-place that works for both the agency and client.

Ross builds strong & trusting relationships with clients at all levels, and was known as the “Velvet Hammer” for his work style to accomplish change and constant process improvement.

In his free time he coaches ice hockey at Wollman Rink in Central park, plays on hockey and tennis teams and follows the NY Rangers passionately. He loves to cook, travel and brings his smile everywhere. Ross’ greatest joy is seeing his son learn and grow intellectually and emotionally, particularly through music classes and his (truly tiny) baby grand piano.

Justin Frazer


Justin Frazer worked and trained as a musician, Chef and Healthcare executive.  During college,  Mr. Frazer performed as both a pianist and flutist in jazz bands and worked as a house musician for local dance/theater companies.  Immediately, after college, Mr. Frazer moved to Heidelberg and Berlin, Germany where he spent five years as a professional musician playing in various bands and accompanying professional theater and dance performances.

When Mr. Frazer returned to the United States, he started his training to become a chef. For the next three years, he worked and trained as the Chef Tournant at Sandrine’s Restaurant in Cambridge, Massachusetts under the tutelage of French Master Chef, Raymond Ost.  He was also fortunate to be selected to complete a three month apprenticeship at a Michelin Starred restaurant in Strasbourg, France under French Master Chef, Jean Christophe Langs.

Eventually Mr. Frazer enrolled in the University of Connecticut for his Law Degree and MBA. However, after passing the NYS Bar Exam, Mr. Frazer selected to not practice law and once again return to cooking by taking a position  at Patois, one of the pioneer French bistros on Smith Street in Brooklyn.   While cooking at Patois, Mr. Frazer sought ways to use his  law degree and MBA to serve the community as a whole.  He eventually was hired as a Policy Associate at a small trade association that represents NYC community Mental Health clinics. During his tenure at the trade association, Mr. Frazer  published an article on fiscal challenges to Mental Health Clinics in New York State, spoke before the NYS Assembly about issues facing community mental health clinics and served as the youngest member on the on Mental Hygiene Task Force to the NYS Assembly.   As his career in public health developed, he transferred from community mental health to working in Government Sponsored Managed Care (Medicaid and Medicare).  After fourteen (14) years in the industry, he most recently served as the Vice President of Business Solutions for Empire BlueCross BlueShield where his responsibilities include overseeing the entire Medicaid operations for the corporation and assuring that current systems are functioning, compliant and cost effective.

In addition to music, cooking, and public health,  Mr. Frazer currently serves on the Managed Care Committee to the Leake & Watts Board of Directors where he advises the Board of the various changes to NYS Public Health Laws. Mr. Frazer is fluent in German and a fervent ice hockey player who is fortunate to play every week. He has been on skates since he was six years old and played on his college team at Skidmore College.

Michael Giuffre


With the goal of serving a greater purpose, Michael Giuffre has spent his entire career in the health sector.  This includes roles in a top market intelligence company, a Carlyle Group backed cybersecurity firm, and the prolific brand consultancy, InterbrandHealth, where he now serves as Director of Business Development.

He comes from a musical family and has been playing music from a young age – at one point as an artist for the indie rock record label, Burning Records.  In addition to playing in various bands throughout high school and college, Michael taught guitar lessons for several years.

Michael holds a Bachelor of Science in Business from Rider University.  When not working, he enjoys playing music, surfing at the Jersey shore, and spending time with family and friends.

Leslie Gottlieb


Leslie Gottlieb is the 2019 President of the New York Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America.

She is a seasoned professional with more than 25 years of expertise in integrated strategic communications and marketing for many leading nonprofit organizations such as the Red Cross, Lighthouse International and the Ford Foundation.

She is an expert in integrated strategic marketing and communications campaigns that increase brand recognition and impact causes and issues. Her areas of expertise include: high visibility top tier media placement (print, electronic and online), digital strategy, social media, branding and crisis communications

She has taught numerous semesters at NYU and Marymount College. Her classes have ranged from Media and Politics to Crisis Communications and Strategic Communications for Nonprofits. .

She writes a blog on ethics and the media for Commprobiz.

Kenneth Hom

Kenneth Hom is an IT and Information Security professional with over 20 years experience in the financial, legal, IT services, and healthcare industries.  He assists organizations of all sizes and industries with their information security, regulatory compliance, IT strategy development and implementation, and content development.  In his spare time, Kenneth enjoys traveling and learning about emerging trends in technology.

Janine Nipal

Janine Nipal is currently a finance associate supporting the financial governance team within ICG O&T at Citi, providing analytics primarily around targets and headcount. She has been at Citi for the past 4.5 years undertaking numerous roles within fixed income technology in the chief of staff capacity. Prior to her professional career, Janine had completed her undergraduate degree in 2014 from Fordham University’s Gabelli School of Business for business administration finance.
In her free time, Janine thoroughly enjoys hiking, international travel and suspense novels.

Douglas Wood


Dr. Douglas E. Wood is a Senior Fellow at the Aspen Institute Forum for Community Solutions, with a focus on justice, equity, and opportunity. From 2011-2018, he was a program officer at the Ford Foundation on the Youth Opportunity and Learning team and for nearly two years served as Acting Lead of the foundation’s global Higher Education for Social Justice initiative, managing grants in the U.S., Colombia, Peru, Chile, Southern Africa, Egypt and China. Prior to joining Ford, he was Executive Director and Chief Education Officer of the Tennessee State Board of Education, chair of the Basic Education Program Review Committee that oversees Tennessee’s $3.2 billion K-12 budget, a member of the Tennessee Higher Education Commission, an appointed commissioner on the Education Commission of the States, a Fellow at the Elliott School of International Affairs, The George Washington University, executive director and principal investigator of the National Academy for Excellent Teaching, Teachers College, Columbia University, and Associate Dean at Eugene Lang College of Liberal Arts, The New School.

Dr. Wood began his career as a public school teacher and while a graduate student at Harvard, worked as a consultant with the Urban Superintendent’s Program, the World Bank’s Office of East Asian Affairs, and taught at the John F. Kennedy School of Government. Dr. Wood received the 2018 Alumni Council Award for Outstanding Contributions to Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and is a board member of the Partnership for College Completion. Dr. Wood holds a B.A. degree in History from Wofford College, a master’s degree in English from Middlebury College, and a master’s and doctoral degree from Harvard University. He is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and holds the honorary degree of Doctor of Letters from Middlebury College.