Michael Brown, Chief Executive Officer & Co-Founder
Michael Brown is Co-Founder and CEO of City Year, a nonprofit organization built on the belief that young people can change the world. City Year is focused on addressing the nation’s high school dropout crisis. In 2009, Mr. Brown announced "In School & On Track: A National Challenge," City Year’s national initiative to significantly increase the urban high school graduation pipeline in America by calling on the nation’s idealistic young adults to help students in high poverty schools succeed.
Mr. Brown was named one of America’s Best Leaders by US News and World Report and an Executive of the Year by NonProfit Times for his leadership role in ServiceNation and the passage of the Edward M. Kennedy Serve America Act. For his work developing City Year, Michael Brown has been awarded several distinctions, including the Reebok Human Rights Award, the National Caring Award, the Samuel S. Beard Jefferson Award of the American Institute for Public Service, the Boston Bar Association's Public Service Award, the Harvard Law School Association Award, and four honorary degrees.
Mr. Brown is a graduate of Harvard College and Harvard Law School, where he served as an editor of the Harvard Law Review. Prior to starting City Year, Mr. Brown served as a legislative assistant to then Congressman Leon Panetta and as a clerk for Federal Judge Stephen Breyer.
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Senior Leadership Team
Jim Balfanz (City Year Boston '94), President
Since 2010, Jim Balfanz has served as President of City Year, steering its continued evolution as a performance-driven organization. Balfanz led City Year’s strategic shift towards addressing the nation’s urban education challenge as a scalable human capital strategy for high-poverty schools and co-authored a 2012 City Year report, “Closing the Implementation Gap,” that highlights the critical role national service can play in helping to improve student achievement in America’s highest need schools. In partnership with Johns Hopkins Talent Development and Communities In Schools, Balfanz has also played a leadership role in the development of Diplomas Now, which was awarded a $36 million Investing in Innovation award by the Department of Education.
Prior to his role as President, Balfanz served as City Year’s Chief Operating Officer for 5 years during which he led the organization through a sustained period of growth that enabled it to grow from 15 to 21 U.S. locations and launch its second international affiliate in London. Balfanz began his work with City Year as a corps member at a Head Start Program in Boston in 1993, after which he joined City Year’s staff and has since assumed various roles in City Year’s National Headquarters, including Deputy Director of National Affairs, and Director of New Site Development, followed by being named the Founding Executive Director of City Year Greater Philadelphia in 1997.
Balfanz received his undergraduate degree from Northeastern University, is a graduate of the Wharton School of Business Executive management Program, and a 2011-2012 Pahara-Aspen Education Fellow. He currently serves on the Mass Insight Education board of directors and the City Year London board of trustees.
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Evelyn Barnes, Executive Vice President & Chief Financial and Administrative Officer
Evelyn Barnes joined City Year as Chief Financial Officer in 2005. She brings to City Year more than 20 years of finance and operations experience. Evelyn came to City Year after serving as CFO for The Community Builders, the largest non-profit, urban housing developer in the U.S. Throughout her career, she has been employed in senior finance positions with several large nonprofit organizations. Evelyn’s leadership experience in nonprofit finance is extensive: she was the CFO at the YWCA in Boston and Midnight Mission in Los Angeles, and Deputy Director of the Los Angeles Community Design Center and the Alcoholism Center for Women. She received her undergraduate degree and master’s degree from Boston University and has a professional designation in financial planning from the University of California – Los Angeles.
AnnMaura Connolly, Executive Vice President & Chief Strategy Officer
AnnMaura Connolly joined City Year as Chief of Staff in 2000 and since then has held progressively senior positions, including Senior Vice President for Global Initiatives and Strategic Partnerships and Chief External Affairs Officer. She currently serves as Chief Strategy Officer and Executive Vice President. As CSO/EVP, AnnMaura directs City Year’s public policy, public affairs, communications, and international work. She also manages relationships with national and international leaders and organizational partners, works closely with the CEO on a wide range of policy and strategic advancement issues, and serves as a member of City Year’s Executive Management Team. In addition, AnnMaura serves as President of Voices for National Service, a coalition of hundreds of service organizations that work together to advance citizen service policy.
AnnMaura has worked to expand opportunities for young people to serve since 1989. After graduating from the College of Holy Cross with a B.A. in Political Science, she served in the Jesuit Volunteer Corps in Southern California. As a Jesuit Volunteer, she helped to create and lead a counseling program for refugees from Southeast Asia, the Middle East and Eastern Europe.
After returning to Washington in 1987, AnnMaura spent two years directing a national grants program and managing special projects at Very Special Arts, an international organization dedicated to increasing opportunities in the visual and performing arts for people with disabilities. In 1989, she joined the staff of Youth Service America, where she held several senior positions, and helped to create a series of new programs, including National Youth Service Day, the New Generation Training Program, the Social Entrepreneurs Program, and the National Service Seminar.
In 1995, she joined the Corporation for National Service, where she served as Deputy Director, Independent Sector in the Office of Public Liaison. After leaving the Corporation in 1998, AnnMaura was an independent consultant to a variety of foundations and nonprofits, including the Grantmaker Forum on Community and National Service, Atlantic Philanthropies, the AmeriCorps Anniversary Committee, and the Corporation for National Service. She joined City Year as Chief of Staff in 2000.
AnnMaura currently serves on the Advisory Board for the Eli J. Segal Citizen Leadership Program at Brandeis University, the Steering Committee for the Civic Mission of Schools, the Board of Directors for the Be the Change Action Fund, the Leadership Council for ServiceNation, and the Federal Advisory Council of the National Center for Service and Innovative Leadership at The Presidio.
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Itai Dinour, Chief Organizational Advancement and Alumni Officer
As the Executive Director of City Year New York, Itai has led the organization’s growth and evolution to partner with New York City schools and support students who are struggling to get back on track to high school graduation. During his tenure, the organization has more than doubled the number of schools it serves and City Year corps members it mobilizes. Prior to being Executive Director, Itai served as the site’s founding Chief of Staff focusing on strategic partnerships and external affairs. In July 2012, Itai assumed a new role within the organization: the Chief Organizational Advancement and Alumni Officer. In this capacity, he will leverage all of his experiences at City Year New York and continued passion for City Year’s work to attract catalytic investments, deepen City Year’s partnerships, and enhance the ways in which City Year stakeholders across the country collaborate to strengthen City Year’s mission. In addition, Itai will have the opportunity to partner with 17,000 alumni as City Year seeks new ways to mobilize their talents, skills, and resources for the benefit of the students City Year serves. Itai discovered his passion for public service, and in particular youth civic action, during his time at Cornell University through his involvement with On Site Volunteer Services and the Cornell Tradition Fellowship. In New York City, Itai’s civic activities include the Coro Leadership New York program, and the American Jewish Committee’s Taskforce on National Service . Itai also serves on the Board of Repair the World. Itai received an MBA from NYU’s Stern School of Business and is a proud father of Orli and husband to Lauren.
Welles C. Hatch, Senior Vice President & Chief Information Officer
Welles Hatch, Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer, has led City Year's IT Services Department, providing planning and analysis, operations and applications and architecture support to City Year's 21 domestic locations since 2010. Welles has a wealth of experience in developing, implementing and managing information systems as a senior member of a number of New England technology and software companies. His previous positions include developing technology platforms and web-based curricula to public K-12 schools across the US. In addition, Welles is an active member of Boston-area civic organizations. He is a member of the Boston Chapter of the Society for Information Management. Welles received his undergraduate degree from University of Massachusetts/Amherst and his master’s in business administration from George Washington University.
Sean Holleran (City Year Boston ’95), Senior Vice President & Chief Operating Officer
Sean Holleran joined City Year when he served as a corps member in 1994-95. After his corps year, Sean served as a team leader and held various jobs including Community and Civic Engagement Manager in Boston and National Convention Director. He joined the staff of City Year Greater Philadelphia as Deputy Director in the site’s second year and was soon promoted to Co-Executive Director, a position he held for three years. Sean then served for one year as the site’s Executive Director before moving back to Boston to serve as Vice President for the Office of Site Leadership, overseeing all U.S. City Year locations. Sean graduated from Northeastern University with a bachelor’s degree in English.
Jeff Jablow, Senior Vice President, Strategy & Operations
As City Year’s Senior Vice President of Strategy & Operations, Jeff leads City Year’s national growth and impact planning. Jeff directs City Year’s school district relations, strategic analysis and Diplomas Now school turnaround collaboration work. Jeff has been with City Year since 2005 when he joined the organization to lead the creation of City Year’s five year strategic plan. Since then, Jeff has played a lead role in evolving City Year’s focus to strategically deploy to low performing schools to address the nation’s dropout crisis. Jeff has lead the growth and development of Diplomas Now since its founding in 2007 and helped to direct the effort to win an Investing in Innovations (i3) grant from the US Department of Education. Prior to joining City Year, Jeff worked as a strategy consultant with Cambridge Strategic Management Group, Ernst and Young Consulting, and The Bridgespan Group. Jeff also worked at Ma Afrika Tikkun, a community and youth development nonprofit in Cape Town, South Africa. Jeff has an MBA from the Fuqua School of Business at Duke University and a Bachelors in Business Administration and Masters in Accounting from the University of Michigan. Jeff serves on the board of City on a Hill Charter School in Roxbury, MA.
Sandra Lopez Burke, Vice President & Executive Director of City Year Boston
Sandra Lopez Burke joined City Year as the Director of Individual Giving in 2001, subsequently served four years as Vice President and Chief of Staff to the CEO, and most recently, was promoted to Vice President and Executive Director of the Founding Site of City Year – Boston. Sandra brought to City Year more than 10 years of management and event planning experience in the nonprofit sector, including working with Boston 2000 and the San Antonio Sports Foundation, and directing the 1998 NCAA Men’s Final Four. She also worked closely to establish the Dreams for Youth program, aimed at introducing San Antonio’s disadvantaged youth to Olympic sports. Sandra is the parent of two City Year alumna.
Christine Morin, Senior Vice President, Site Growth and New Site Development
Christine is Senior Vice President of Site Growth and New Site Development at City Year. In this role she leads City Year’s national growth strategy — scaling impact within existing sites to increase the number of students on track to high school graduation and growing to new strategic markets with the highest concentration of urban dropouts. Christine led City Year's expansion to 7 new markets (Miami, Milwaukee, Denver, London, Sacramento, Orlando and Jacksonville). She also served as the founding Executive Director of City Year Miami. Christine joined City Year in 2005 as the Fireman Public Service Fellow and has held various leadership positions including National Director of the Team Sponsor Program, City Year's premier corporate partnership program, increasing revenue by over 40% and securing two National Leadership Sponsors.
Prior to City Year, Christine served as the founding Director of the International House of Blues Foundation- Orlando, an arts education program for middle and high school students, and she was the Art Administrator for House of Blues. Christine earned her Masters in Public Policy from the Harvard Kennedy School and Bachelors in Sociology from Florida State University.
Mithra Irani Ramaley, Senior Vice President, Regional and Site Operations
Mithra currently serves as Senior Vice President of Regional & Site Operations at City Year, Inc. and is responsible for overseeing operations for all US locations. She joined City Year in 1993 as part of the start-up team for City Year Rhode Island, the organization's first expansion location. Mithra led the site as Team Leader, then Program Director, and then moved to City Year, Inc. where she created the organization's first national convention program and developed the organization's strategic planning capacity. After serving with City Year for four years, she attended New York University’s Stern School of Business, where she majored in finance and founded the school’s first service organization. After graduation, Mithra worked at A.T. Kearney, a management consulting firm in Manhattan. Like many New Yorkers, Mithra was deeply affected by the events of September 11, 2001. Within months, Mithra left her position at A.T. Kearney to found City Year New York. She subsequently served as co-Executive Director and then Regional Director for City Year Philadelphia, New York, Rhode Island and Washington, D.C. Mithra earned her bachelor's degree from Brown University.
Charlie Rose, Senior Vice President & Dean
Charlie Rose has been a youth worker, organizer and entrepreneur in Boston for nearly 30 years. As a founding board member of City Year and then staff member who has played myriad roles, Charlie has helped build the organization into a national model for youth community service organizations. In addition, Charlie has also been a founding board member for seven other organizations including YouthBuild Boston and has served the community through his work with organizations such as Youth Outreach Program, Citizens for Safety, National Toxics Campaign, United Labor Unions Local, Urban Edge and as a VISTA volunteer. Prior to joining City Year’s staff, he was the Director of Youth Services for the City of Boston’s Community Centers.
Nancy Routh, Senior Vice President & Chief People Officer
Nancy Routh joined City Year as the Director of Human Resources in 1994 and then became Director of the National Corps, during which time she helped grow City Year from 4 locations to 11. Subsequently, Nancy became Vice President of Development where she oversaw all fundraising initiatives and built the National Leadership Sponsor program. Nancy recently was promoted to the Vice President of City Year’s Human Resources division with a priority on attracting, retaining and developing staff to meet the organization’s goals. Prior to joining City Year, Nancy worked for The Boston Company, a financial service company, as Vice President and Human Resource Director. Nancy graduated from Fairleigh Dickenson University with a bachelor’s in psychology and sociology, and Cambridge College with a master’s in Education.
Gillian Smith, Chief Marketing Officer
Gillian Smith joined City Year in July of 2011 as Chief Marketing Officer, and is responsible for leading all of the organization’s marketing efforts. Prior to her work at City Year, Gillian was Chief Marketing Officer at Teach For America, where the recruitment marketing work contributed to more than a 150% increase in applications over the course of four years. Before Teach For America, Smith held several marketing roles at Burger King Corporation (BKC). Under her leadership, BKC marketing campaigns received a number of honors, including Cannes Golden Lions and Best Viral Advertising of 2004 (The Wall Street Journal). Smith has been recognized as a Woman to Watch by Advertising Age (May 2006) and an Online All-Star by MediaPost (September 2006). Prior to her work at BKC, Smith was a brand manager for the Coca-Cola Company in Germany. Smith is a graduate of Rollins College in Winter Park, Fla., and was a Fulbright Scholar in Germany.
Stephanie Wu, Senior Vice President & Chief Program Design and Evaluation Officer
Stephanie leads the design of City Year’s youth programs which are delivered by more than 1500 full-time corps members in 20 locations and hundreds of schools across the country. Stephanie came to City Year from the private sector in 1988 as a founding team leader in City Year's summer pilot program. During City Year’s first decade she developed and led projects serving Boston youth in school and out of school programs as well as founded City Year’s Academy, putting in place foundational programs on City Year’s culture, ideals, history, programs and leadership techniques. She has held a number of management positions, including Co-Chief Operating Officer, Senior Vice President of U.S. Site Operations, and Senior Vice President for Human Resources. Stephanie served for one year in England and Wales with the American Field Service. She was also selected to be a national trainer in President Clinton's demonstration national service program, Summer of Service. Stephanie is a graduate of Boston University.