Board of Trustees
DREAM's Board of Trustees includes members of the tri-state business community and education sector who dedicate an extraordinary amount of time and energy to our organization.
Richard Berlin, Executive Director at Harlem RBI since 1997, is also a founding member of Harlem RBI's DREAM Charter School. Mr. Berlin began his connection with Harlem RBI as a volunteer baseball coach in 1994. Under his leadership, Harlem RBI has grown from a seasonal recreation program with one staff member to a thriving community-based organization recognized locally and nationally with numerous awards for programmatic and operational excellence.
Mr. Berlin holds a Bachelor's Degree in Political Science from the University of Wisconsin at Madison and attended a Master's Program in Political Theory at the London School of Economics and Political Science in London, England. Additionally, he has completed certificate programs at Columbia University's Institute for Not-for-Profit Management in both Non-Profit Management and Leadership Development. Mr. Berlin has also been a Leadership Fellow at the Citizens' Committee for the Children of New York City.
Mr. Berlin, who frequently speaks on topics related to non-profit management, governance and sustainability, has served as an adjunct faculty member at The New School University's Robert J. Milano Graduate School of Management and Policy and currently serves as the Co-Chair of the Council of Community and College Leaders at the Center for After School Excellence. He also sits on the Boards of Directors of the National Summer Learning Association and Up2Us, a national sports-based youth development advocacy organization.
is an Investment Analyst and founding team member of Soroban Capital Partners, a multi-billion dollar equities-focused hedge fund based in New York. He is a senior member of the investment team, focused primarily on the consumer, energy, and metals and mining sectors. Prior to founding Soroban in 2010, Ashish was an associate at The Blackstone Group and an investment professional in the firm's Private Equity division. During his time at Blackstone, Ashish led diligence efforts and analyzed investments across the capital structure and in a variety of industries. He began his career as a consultant at McKinsey & Company. He graduated summa cum laude from the University of Pennsylvania's Jerome Fisher Program in Management & Technology, obtaining a B.S. in Economics from the Wharton School and a B.A.S. in Operations Research from the School of Engineering & Applied Science. Ashish grew up in central New Jersey and currently resides in Manhattan with his wife Sweta.
was recently the Assistant Director of Teacher Training at Urban Education Exchange where she delivered professional development for a research-based curriculum for at-risk students in charter schools serving low-income neighborhoods. She previously taught and designed curriculum in East Harlem for six years in both the public and Catholic school systems. Michele was also the director of REAL Kids program at Harlem RBI for three years. In addition, Michele was a selector for the NYC Department of Education's Teaching Fellows program for four years. She holds one MA in Elementary Education from Marywood University and a second MA in School Administration and Supervision from Fordham University.
Jonathan E. Schmerin
is a partner at The Georgetown Company, a privately held owner/developer and development manager of real estate throughout the United States. Jonathan focuses the majority of his efforts on Georgetown's Easton development as well as new development and investment projects, including Georgetown's West Chelsea development. Having joined Georgetown in June 2003, Jonathan has been able to work in a number of different capacities within the company, including investment underwriting and analysis, construction oversight, investment sales, leasing, and asset management. Jonathan also devotes a significant amount of time to charitable, not-for-profit activities. He is currently actively involvement with his alma mater, the University of Pennsylvania, and has previously served on the boards of various charitable organizations including the FIDF (Friends of the Israeli Defense Forces), AFTAM (American Friends of the Tel Aviv Museum) and AYUDA (American Youth Understanding Diabetes Abroad). Jonathan also sits on the Board of Governors of the Harmonie Club of New York City. Jonathan graduated from the University of Pennsylvania in 2000 with a Bachelor of Arts in Economics magna cum laude and received a Master of Science degree in Real Estate at New York University's Real Estate Institute. He lives in New York City with his wife, Rachel.
is the Assistant to the Operations Manager at SOS Security LLC. Jacqueline supports the Operations Manager with recruiting and hiring new staff, managing payroll, collaborating with vendors and writing proposals for new contracts. She has been with the company for six years and enjoys her area of work. Jacqueline is fluent in Spanish and enjoys supporting and helping others. Jacqueline is also a parent at DREAM Charter School. Her daughter is in Kindergarten this year.
is the Managing Director of Survival at Robin Hood. Robin Hood targets poverty in New York by finding and funding the best and most effective programs and partnering with them to maximize results. Previously, Eric was the Executive Director of the Mayor’s Office of Comprehensive Neighborhood Economic Development (CNED), a pilot initiative aiming to aggregate city and private sector resources to impact the social service and economic development programming in Bedford Stuyvesant, Brooklyn. Eric was also the Assistant Vice President of FEGS, where he managed the Education and Youth Services division including the management of over 40 school-based programs serving over 8,000 youth annually. Before joining FEGS, Eric worked as a Senior Planner at the Vera Institute where he worked on issues relating to foster care, family court, and juvenile justice. Prior to joining Vera, he served as a special assistant to the Mayor of New York where he focused on issues including public education, welfare reform, and human services. Eric is a former Teach for America corps member, having taught eighth grade English in the South Bronx, and also worked as Executive Director of Teach for America following his school placement. Eric is a graduate of the Kennedy School of Government and the University of Wisconsin, Madison.
Claudia Zeldin brings over 25 years of for-profit and nonprofit marketing, development, partnership and service learning experience to the board. She is a partner at Growth for Good, a nonprofit consulting firm, and has a strong expertise in strategic planning, business development, and communications. Claudia has created integrated marketing and program expansion campaigns, and/or developed strategic alliances for over 100 for-profit, philanthropic and nonprofit organizations. Clients include: Blue School, Center for Architecture, Jewish Family & Children’s Service, Ramapo for Children, Riverside Park Fund, Support Center for Nonprofit Management and TheLEAGUE.org. For 20 years, Claudia has served as a devoted board member of Harlem RBI, our institutional partner, serving on their Strategic Planning Committee since 1991 (awarded Best Board in NYC by Volunteer Consulting Group, 2010). She is now a member of the Harlem RBI and DREAM Charter School Integration Committee. As a trustee of the Zeldin Family Foundation, Claudia is also an active member of Philanthropy New York. Claudia holds a B.A. in Communications from Tulane University and has continued her studies at New York University’s School of Continuing Education in Nonprofit Management.