The Board of Trustees
WILLIAM C. THOMPSON, JR., B.A., was appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo on June 15, 2016 as Chairman of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York. His term ends June 2022.
Mr. Thompson is a dedicated advocate for innovation, diversity and progress in the public and private sectors. He champions transformational policy for positive change, demanding accountability, transparency and integrity. Mr. Thompson’s legacy includes driving positive, innovative change in New York City education and economic development, protecting the City’s financial integrity and fighting to protect the interests of millions.
Currently, Mr. Thompson is a Partner at Siebert Brandford Shank & Co., a full service investment firm, serving as Chief Administrative Officer since April 2010. Siebert Brandford Shank has managed over $1 trillion of municipal bonds in more than 4,000 transactions for the funding of education, housing, health services, transportation, utilities, capital facilities, economic development, redevelopment and general infrastructure projects. The firm has ranked as the #1 M/WBE (Minority and Women-Owned Business) firm in public finance from 1998 to 2015 and was the first M/WBE firm to be ranked in the top 10 for public finance senior managed transactions.
Mr. Thompson was elected to two consecutive, four-year terms as Comptroller of the City of New York in 2002. As the NYC Comptroller, he led a team of 720 employees, managed a $66 million annual operating budget, $36.5 million capital budget, and the 5th largest billion-dollar pension fund in the United States, which was rated among the top 20 in the world. Mr. Thompson safeguarded multi-billion dollar portfolios and protected the assets and interests of millions of New Yorkers during one of the most challenging economic periods in history.
Prior to being elected New York City Comptroller, Mr. Thompson was appointed to the New York City Board of Education where he served five terms as President of the nation’s largest school system with more than 130,000 employees and an annual budget of nearly $12 billion. As President, Mr. Thompson led policy development and implementation for a public school system with 1.1 million public school children. In particular, Mr. Thompson worked closely with CUNY officials to expand the University’s College Now program, which enables public high school students to take college courses. College Now, which enrolled 449 students from a few Brooklyn high schools when it started in fall 1984, currently serves more than 20,000 students and partners with 400 high schools.
In January 2015, Governor Cuomo named Mr. Thompson as Chairman of the New York State Housing Finance Agency and Chairman of the State of New York Mortgage Agency. In 2011, Governor Cuomo selected Mr. Thompson to Chair his M/WBE Task Force. In February 2010, Governor David Paterson named Mr. Thompson to serve as Chairman of the Board of The Hugh L. Carey Battery Park City Authority, a position he held until 2012.
A lifelong New York City resident and a product of its public schools, Mr. Thompson graduated from Tufts University with a B.A. in Political Science. He is a Trustee Emeritus of Tufts University.
Born in Brooklyn, Mr. Thompson resides in Harlem with his wife and three children.
Mr. Thompson serves as Chair of the Executive Committee, the Committee on Audit, and is a member of the Subcommittee on Investment.
BARRY F. SCHWARTZ, A.B., J.D., was appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo as Vice Chairperson of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York, effective October 5, 2016. Mr. Schwartz was appointed by Governor Cuomo as a member of the Board on May 6, 2014 to a term that ends June 2020.
Since 2007, Mr. Schwartz has been Executive Vice Chairman of MacAndrews & Forbes Incorporated. From 1993 until 2007, Mr. Schwartz was the firm’s Executive Vice President and General Counsel.
Mr. Schwartz is Trustee Emeritus and former Chairman of the Board of Trustees at Kenyon College and formerly a member of Georgetown University Law Center Board of Visitors. Mr. Schwartz has served as a member of the Board of Directors of the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (“AGB”). Mr. Schwartz is a member of the Board of Directors of the New York City Center, NYU Langone Medical Center, Jazz at Lincoln Center and the Ronald O. Perelman Performing Arts Center At The World Trade Center.
Mr. Schwartz received his A.B., cum laude, from Kenyon College in 1970 and a J.D. from the Georgetown University Law Center in 1974.
Mr. Schwartz serves as Chair of the Board’s Committee on Fiscal Affairs and its Subcommittee on Investment, and serves as a member of the Executive Committee.
MICHAEL ARVANITES, B.A., was appointed a Trustee of The City University of New York by Mayor Bill de Blasio, effective July 1, 2017, for a term that ends in 2024.
Over the past two decades, Mr. Arvanites has served as campaign manager, deputy campaign manager, field and vote coordinator on election campaigns, including those for President, Mayor, Congress, Borough President, State Senate, Assembly, Council and Judgeships. He is a member of the Executive Committee of the Richmond County Democratic Party and serves as the President of the North Shore Democratic Club.
Mr. Arvanites is a member of Community Resources for the Developmentally Disabled Foundation Board, a board member of United Activities Unlimited, which runs 19 after school programs and 12 cost-free summer day camps.
After graduating from all public schools (PS 29, IS 27, Wagner High School and SUNY Cortland) Mr. Arvanites was hired as Staten Island Assemblyman Eric Vitaliano’s Deputy Chief of Staff in February of 1999. In 2002, he began working for Councilman Michael McMahon at City Hall and, in 2006, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn hired him as her Staten Island and South Brooklyn Liaison. He also served as Deputy Chief of Staff for State Senator Diane Savino, who represents the North Shore and South Brooklyn. Mr. Arvanites currently runs the Safety Professional Association INC., a safety advocacy trade association.
HENRY T. BERGER, B.S., J.D., was appointed by Mayor Bill de Blasio as a Trustee of The City University of New York for a term that was effective June 20, 2017 until 2021.
Mr. Berger has been Special Counsel and Advisor to Mayor de Blasio since February, 2014. Previously, as an attorney in private practice, he worked on legal issues related to election law, such as campaign finance compliance and ballot access regulations, and labor relations and civil litigation.
From 1995 to 2000 Mr. Berger was a partner with Fisher, Fisher & Berger, working on commercial litigation, election law and labor relations for clients including health care professional unions, university professors’ associations and major state, county and city political candidates.
In 1977, Mr. Berger served as a Member of the New York City Council, representing the Fourth District of Manhattan. He served on the Transportation, Parks and Economic Development committees.
Mr. Berger received a B.S. from Lehigh University in chemistry in 1967 and his J.D. from the New York University School of Law in 1972.
UNA S. T-CLARKE, B.S., M.S., C.D., was appointed by Mayor Bill de Blasio in June 2015 as a member of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York to a term that ends June 2018.
Trustee Clarke was elected to the New York City Council, as its first foreign-born, as well as the first Caribbean-born woman member. She represented Brooklyn’s 40th Council District for 10 years starting in 1991, sponsoring more than 300 pieces of legislation on issues including child welfare, education, health and mental health, economic development, public safety and transportation. She was an active member of the Council’s Black and Hispanic Caucus. An educator by profession, she directed millions of dollars in funding to upgrade schools in her district, rebuild parks and playgrounds, increase quality childcare programs. Trustee Clarke led many campaigns to reform immigration laws that encouraged citizenship and voter registration. She considers her greatest accomplishment as a member of the City Council the rebuilding of Kings County Hospital.
Trustee Clarke served as a delegate to the National Democratic Convention in 1992. In 1996 she was one of six New Yorkers appointed to the National Platform Committee of the Democratic Party. Trustee Clarke was appointed in 2001 by Governor George Pataki as Director of the Empire State Development Corporation for the Borough of Brooklyn. She is a member of the Diocesan Council for the Episcopal Diocese of Long Island. She was named to the board of trustees for Nazareth Regional High School after her successful efforts to save the school from closure. She was appointed a Trustee of the Brooklyn Children’s Museum by NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer.
Trustee Clarke has received numerous honors and awards for outstanding service. She was the first foreign-born recipient of Columbia University’s prestigious Charles H. Revson Fellowship in 1984, the first time the fellowship was ever presented to someone over age 35. She was the first Caribbean-born woman to receive the Ellis Island Medal of Honor in 2001. In 1999 she received the Commander of the Order of Distinction (C.D.) from the Government of Jamaica for distinguished service to Jamaicans and Caribbean nationals in North America.
Trustee Clarke holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Long Island University, a Master of Education degree from New York University, and has completed additional post-graduate studies at Teachers College and the School of Business at Columbia University. She received the Honorary Doctor of Letters in November 2005 from the University of Technology in Jamaica.
Trustee Clarke serves as Chair of the Board’s Committee on Student Affairs and Special Programs, as a member of the Committee on Fiscal Affairs, and as a member of the Executive Committee.
LORRAINE CORTÉS-VÁZQUEZ, B.A., M.P.A., was appointed by Mayor Bill de Blasio as a member of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York on June 16, 2016 to a term that ends June 2022.
Ms. Cortés-Vázquez was the 65th Secretary of State of New York, serving in the Cabinet of Governor Eliot Spitzer and Governor David Paterson. Ms. Cortés-Vázquez is the first Hispanic/Latino to serve as New York’s Secretary of State, and only the second person of Puerto Rican ancestry to become the Secretary of State in a state of the U.S. Ms. Cortés-Vázquez has over 30 years’ experience in the government, corporate and non-profit sectors. Ms. Cortés-Vázquez currently serves as Senior Advisor to Mayor Bill de Blasio working within the Office of Intergovernmental Affairs. Her corporate experience includes her role as the SVP for Corporate and Government Affairs at EmblemHealth. Previously she served as the Executive Vice President for Multicultural Markets & Engagement at AARP, and also served as Vice President for Government and Public Affairs with Cablevision.
Her extensive government service includes having served on the New York State Board of Regents for eight years; and as the Chief of Staff to former New York Assemblyman Roberto Ramirez. Ms. Cortés-Vázquez started her government service in the NYC Department of Aging during the Koch administration as program officer, and advanced to the position of Bureau Chief for Public/Private Partnerships.
In addition, she oversaw the Puerto Rican Hispanic Task Force and the Somos El Futuro Conference; served on the New York Redistricting Commission; and served on the New York City Civilian Complaint Review Board.
Ms. Cortés-Vázquez is nationally recognized for her service in the non-profit sector as a strong voice for the Latino community. She has served as President of the Hispanic Federation, a non-profit network of over 90 Latino health and human service agencies aiding more than three million Latinos annually. In the early 1990’s, she was the Executive Director of ASPIRA of New York, the oldest and largest non-profit Latino youth leadership development and education advocacy agency in the nation. She also has extensive experience organizing major community awareness and civic participation educational partnership campaigns. She is the co-founder of the CUNY/SUNY Model Senate of Somos el Futuro. Earlier in her career, she held a variety of social impact positions in East Harlem.
A graduate of Hunter College/CUNY, Ms. Cortés-Vázquez earned her master’s degree at New York University’s Graduate School of Public Service, and certificates from Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and Columbia University’s School of Non-Profit Management.
Ms. Cortés-Vázquez holds membership on the Board’s Committee on Audit, the Committee on Facilities Planning and Management, the Committee on Fiscal Affairs, and its Subcommittee on Investment.
KEVIN D. KIM, B.A., M.A., J.D., Governor Andrew Cuomo appointed Kevin D. Kim as a Trustee of The City University of New York to a term from July 1, 2017 through June 30, 2024.
Mr. Kim, a corporate real estate lawyer by training, is an entrepreneur, consultant, and small business owner. He co-founded Tactile Brain LLC, which brought to the United States an innovative Korean mental math program designed by Jeonghee Lee, one of the world’s foremost mental mathematicians. The program aims to improve concentration, confidence, and working memory in people of all ages. He also was the first Asian American to serve as a commissioner of the New York State Liquor Authority (2014-16).
Previously, Mr. Kim was an adjunct professor at Fairleigh Dickinson University and served as Deputy Director of Community Affairs for Congressman Gary L. Ackerman. In 2009, Mr. Kim became the first Korean American to win a NYC primary when he became the Democratic nominee for NYC Council (District 19). Prior to that, he was an associate at the law firm Davis Polk & Wardwell from 2000 to 2003 and a law clerk for then-U.S. District Court Judge Denny Chin from 1999 to 2000.
Among other accomplishments, Mr. Kim was awarded a 2015 Ellis Island Medal of Honor by the National Ethnic Coalition of Organizations for his years of community service and the Korean American Association of Greater New York (KAAGNY) named him its Man of the Year in 2009. As a member of the Black-Korean Mediation Project, Mr. Kim also has been a certified community mediator since 1993.
Mr. Kim received a B.A. in East Asian Studies and an M.A. in Sociology from Stanford University, both in 1993, and a J.D. from Columbia University School of Law in 1999, where he was an editor of the Columbia Law Review. He is a proud product of the NYC public school system, from kindergarten to high school, and an alumnus of the first graduating class of the “new” Townsend Harris High School at Queens College (1988).
FERNANDO FERRER, B.A., M.P.A., was appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo as a member of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York on June 15, 2016 to a term that ends June 2023.
Mr. Ferrer served as the Bronx Borough President for almost 15 years, from 1987 to 2001. During his tenure, he created housing for about 66,000 families. The borough also saw a significant drop in crime, particularly in the South Bronx, and a steady rise in business and real estate investment. As Bronx Borough President, Ferrer also funded numerous improvement projects at CUNY colleges in the borough.
Prior to being elected Bronx Borough President, Mr. Ferrer served in the New York City Council where he represented communities in the Central and Northwest Bronx from 1982 until 1987.
Mr. Ferrer currently serves as Vice-Chairman of the Metropolitan Transit Authority and served as Acting Chairman of the MTA in 2013. He is a Co-Chairman of Mercury Public Affairs, LLC. He also serves as Director of Sterling Bancorp and Sterling National Bank, a Sterling Bancorp subsidiary. He was the President of Drum Major Institute for Public Policy from 2002 to 2004.
He earned a B.A. from the University College of Arts and Sciences of New York University, and an M.P.A. degree from Baruch College/CUNY. Mr. Ferrer has been awarded honorary degrees from Manhattan, Mercy, Herbert H. Lehman and Metropolitan Colleges.
He resides in the Bronx with his wife, Dr. Aramina Vega Ferrer, an alumna of Lehman College and City College.
Mr. Ferrer serves as Chair of the Board’s Committee on Faculty, Staff and Administration, Vice Chair of the Committee on Fiscal Affairs, and as a member of the Executive Committee.
MAYRA LINARES-GARCIA, B.A., was appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo as a member of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York on June 15, 2016 to a term that ends June 2020.
Mayra Linares-Garcia is Director of Public Affairs and Communications for New York and Puerto Rico at The Coca-Cola Company. Prior to that she served as Director of Latino Affairs in the office of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo. From 2011 to 2015 she was Special Assistant for Community Affairs in the Cuomo administration, working on community affairs with a focus on the Latino community throughout New York State, including Latino outreach and building and improving the government’s relationships with New York’s communities.
A prominent member of the Washington Heights, Inwood and Marble Hill political fabric, Ms. Linares-Garcia was a member of the Executive Board of the Concerned Democratic Coalition of Northern Manhattan. She was the recipient of the Coalition’s Community Service Award for Outstanding Leadership in 2007. She served as a Democratic District Leader for the 72nd Assembly District from 2001- 2011, representing the Inwood/Washington Heights area. Her responsibilities included helping select civil court judges for primaries, getting out the vote, and appointing Election Day inspectors. She also served as liaison between the community and elected Democratic Party officials. In 1996 Ms. Linares-Garcia was elected as a member of the Democratic County Committee, where she served for five years.
From 2008-2010 Ms. Linares-Garcia was a member of the Executive Board, and then Chair of the Community Association of Progressive Dominicans (ACDP), which focuses on social services in northern Manhattan and the Bronx including mental health, education/adult education, youth development, immigration, citizenship, housing, economic development, daycare and a food pantry. From 2007-2011 she was President and CEO of The Maylin Group, Inc., a public relations firm specializing in corporate/community partnerships. From 2001 to 2007, she served as Director of Community Relations at World Vision, Inc., an international relief agency, where she was responsible for cultivating partnerships and alliances between World Vision’s New York operations and their targeted constituencies, including community and faith-based organizations in the Bronx and Manhattan. She has coordinated international disaster relief efforts between the city’s immigrant communities and organizations that aid afflicted areas, and has been active in the movement to bring social, political and economic equity to New York City communities.
She received her B.A. in political science from Marymount Manhattan College in 2001.
Ms. Linares-Garcia serves as a member of the Board’s Committee on Academic Policy, Programs and Research, and the Committee on Student Affairs and Special Programs.
ROBERT F. MUJICA, B.A., M.G.A., J.D., was appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo on June 15, 2016 as a member of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York to a term that ends June 2021.
Mr. Mujica is the Budget Director of the State of New York, responsible for the overall development and management of the State’s fiscal policy, including overseeing the preparation of budget recommendations for all State agencies and programs, economic and revenue forecasting, tax policy, fiscal planning, capital financing and management of the State’s debt portfolio.
Prior to his appointment, Mr. Mujica was Chief of Staff to the Temporary President and Majority Leader of the Senate and concurrently served as the Secretary to the Senate Finance Committee. For two decades, Mr. Mujica advised various elected and other government officials in New York on State budget, fiscal and policy issues.
Mr. Mujica received his B.A. degree in Sociology from Brooklyn College at the City University of New York. He received his Master’s degree in Government Administration (M.G.A.) from the University of Pennsylvania and holds a Juris Doctorate (J.D.) from Albany Law School.
Mr. Mujica is Vice Chair of the Board’s Committee on Audit, and serves as a member of the Committee on Fiscal Affairs.
BRIAN D. OBERGFELL, B.S., J.D., is an attorney with extensive background in banking, real estate and commercial finance and a Brooklyn resident, who was nominated by Governor Cuomo and unanimously confirmed by the New York Senate as a member of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York in June 2012 to a term that ends June 2018.
Mr. Obergfell is a senior partner in Emmet, Marvin & Martin LLP, the New York City law firm where he has worked since 1985. He is admitted to practice in New York State and, since 2010, in England and Wales. He graduated from Boston University with a B.S. in Communications in 1979 and from New York Law School with a J.D. in 1985.
Mr. Obergfell has been a permanent trustee of the Heisman Trophy Trust since 2001, is a trustee of the Leake & Watts Children’s House since 2009, and served on the New York State Banking Board from 2007 through 2011. Mr. Obergfell was recently appointed to the new State Charter Advisory Board of the New York State Department of Financial Services in March 2012.
Mr. Obergfell serves as Chair of the Board’s Committee on Facilities Planning and Management, and is a member of the Executive Committee.
JILL O’DONNELL-TORMEY, B.S. Ph.D., was appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo in June 2015 as a member of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York to a term that ends June 2018.
Dr. O’Donnell-Tormey currently is the Chief Executive Officer (since 1993) and Director of Scientific Affairs (since 1987) of the Cancer Research Institute (CRI), a non-profit organization founded in 1953, which is a global leader in supporting and coordinating research aimed at harnessing the immune system’s power to conquer all cancers.
Prior to joining CRI, she served as a research associate in the Department of Medicine at Cornell University Medical College, and as a post-doctoral fellow in the laboratory of cellular physiology and immunology at The Rockefeller University.
Dr. O’Donnell-Tormey serves on the Boards of CT Atlantic AG—a Swiss biotechnology company; Richmond University Medical Center; and, the Staten Island Foundation. In 1998, she was named on of Irish America magazine’s “Top 100: Irish Americans, and in 2002, she received the Fairleigh Dickinson University Pinnacle Award–the highest honor bestowed on its alumni. In 2013, Dr. O’Donnell-Tormey received the Cancer Research Institute’s Frederick W. Alt Award for New Discoveries in Immunology, which the Institute awards to formerly-funded postdoctoral fellows who make significant contributions to immunology research.
Dr. O’Donnell-Tormey holds a Bachelor of Science degree in chemistry, summa cum laude, from Farleigh Dickinson University, and a Doctor of Philosophy in cell biology from the SUNY Downstate Medical Center.
Dr. O’Donnell-Tormey serves as Vice Chair of the Board’s Committee on Academic Policy, Program and Research and as a member of the Committee on Faculty, Staff and Administration.
CHARLES A. SHORTER, B.A., M.A., was appointed by Mayor Michael Bloomberg as a member of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York in 2008. He was reappointed by the Mayor in 2013 to a term that ends June 2020. Mr. Shorter is a Senior Advisor at Davis Brody Bond, LLP, Architects and Planners.
Previously he was a Director in the Public/Private practice for Ernst & Young LLP’s Real Estate Transaction Advisory Services Group, with primary responsibility for real estate project management and business development. Prior to joining Ernst & Young, Mr. Shorter held senior positions with Arthur Andersen LLP and Real Estate Research Corporation.
Mr. Shorter received his B.A. from Princeton University and his M.A. from Columbia University. He was an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Master of Science in Real Estate Development program at Columbia University; he is also a frequent lecturer/speaker on real estate trends and economics.
Mr. Shorter is a board member of the New 42nd Street Corporation, a former board member of The Studio Museum in Harlem, and is a member of the board of the Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges (AGB).
Mr. Shorter serves as a member of the Board’s Committee on Academic Policy, Program and Research, and the Committee on Facilities Planning and Management.
KEN SUNSHINE, B.S., was appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo as a member of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York on June 15, 2016 to a term that ends June 2019.
Mr. Sunshine founded Ken Sunshine Consultants (later to become Sunshine Sachs) in 1991, and over the past three decades the firm has represented clients ranging from leading corporations, nonprofits, and unions to some of the most prominent names in entertainment. Sunshine Sachs has 150 employees with offices in NY, LA and DC., and specializes in corporate image programs, crisis communications, reputation and issues management, consumer and lifestyle marketing, media relations, event promotion, and communications skills training.
Mr. Sunshine has consulted on media and public relations for almost 40 years, and has been a longtime activist in the civil rights movement. Before starting his own firm, he worked in the entertainment business where he headed the public relations department of ASCAP.
Mr. Sunshine’s career in politics began in the early ‘70’s, and he has advised on communications strategies, messaging, and celebrity involvement in local and national campaigns since then. He served as Chief of Staff to the Mayor of New York in 1989-90.
Mr. Sunshine currently serves on the Board of Directors of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Community Service Society, the Mayor’s Fund to Advance NYC and the Foundation for Ethnic Understanding. Sunshine has received awards from the National Action Network, the Amsterdam News and the Bella Abzug Institute among others for his work in human and civil rights.
Mr. Sunshine graduated from the Cornell University School of Industrial and Labor Relations.
Mr. Sunshine serves as Vice Chair of the Board’s Committee on Student Affairs and Special Programs, and as a member of the Committee on Faculty, Staff and Administration.
SANDRA WILKIN, B.S., B.S., was appointed by Governor Andrew Cuomo on June 15, 2016 as a member of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York to a term that ends June 2023.
Ms. Wilkin is Chief Executive Officer of Bradford Construction, the construction management firm she founded in 1989, and has since grown into one of New York’s premier woman-owned business enterprises (WBE), with divisions in technology and diversity consulting and a project base that spans sectors. A minority- and woman-owned small business enterprise (MWSBE) expert, she emphasizes an agile business style, the competitive advantages of life-long learning and high-tech construction tools, and a close examination of the ways the industry can cooperatively advance in the largest economic sector in New York State.
Ms. Wilkin has spent more than two decades providing oversight for adult education and mentoring programs that help emerging MWBEs build credit and capacity.
Ms. Wilkin was the first woman to serve on the Board of Governors of the New York Building Foundation, the first woman to serve on the Executive Board of the Regional Alliance for Small Contractors, and one of the first women to serve on the Executive Board of the New York Building Congress. In 2004, Ms. Wilkin co-founded the Women Builders Council (WBC) where she advanced the role of women in construction by setting the WBC’s campaign “to break the concrete ceiling.” Now WBC president emeritus, she serves on Governor Cuomo’s Minority- and Women-Owned Business Enterprise (M/WBE) Team. In 2013, she helped spearhead the passage of NYC Local Law 1, landmark legislation that increases MWBE participation goals in government contracting.
Ms. Wilkin’s contributions have been recognized with numerous awards and honors, including the Kingsborough Community College’s Wall of Fame; Exemplary Service Citations on Behalf of the State of New York Executive Chamber and the City of New York for eradicating barriers for MWBEs and in recognition of distinguished leadership; and the unique distinction with Golda Meir of being the only women to ever receive the Lubavitch Youth Organization’s Woman of Valor Award for a “commitment and dedication to helping people of all ages, regardless of race, religion, color or creed, find meaning and direction in life.”
A New York City native, Ms. Wilkin is a graduate of Kingsborough Community College/CUNY who went on to earn a B.S. in Business and Public Administration at New York University (NYU), a B.S. in Nursing from Hunter College/CUNY, and is a graduate of the Construction Management Certificate Program from New York University. As an emerging small business owner, she successfully completed the New York City School Construction Authority’s Construction Mentor Program.
Ms. Wilkin is Vice Chair of the Board’s Committee on Facilities Planning and Management.
CHIKA ONYEJIUKWA is the Chairperson for The City University of New York (CUNY) University Student Senate (USS) and the only student member, ex-officio, of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York. She serves as the Vice Chair for Legislative Affairs for the CUNY University Student Senate, which is the leading student governance body of the University, charged with representing the interest of the nearly 500,000 students at CUNY.
Ms. Onyejiukwa is a senior at Hunter College pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree in Community Health Education. Ms. Onyejiukwa is a member of the Jewish Foundation for Education of Women (JFEW) scholarship cohort. Ms. Onyejiukwa proudly served the students Hunter College as Undergraduate Student Government President during the 2015-2016 academic year and as Vice President and President during 2014-2015. Ms. Onyejiukwa also served as a member of the CUNY Board of Trustees Committee on Academic Policy, Program and Research during the 2015-2016 academic year.
In her capacity as USS Vice Chair for Legislative Affairs, Ms. Onyejiukwa fostered effective working relationships between students, faculty, and elected officials. She has testified and organized student leaders to testify before legislative bodies at the city and state level on a myriad of student issues. Ms. Onyejiukwa chaired a student committee aimed at freezing tuition for CUNY students and restoring proposed budget cuts to CUNY. She helped organize multiple press conferences, a Higher Education Action Day in Albany, New York, and a student led March over the Brooklyn Bridge. These efforts led to concrete victories, including the extension of $17 million dollars in funding to the New York City Council Merit Scholarship, the freezing of tuition for the 2016-2017 academic year, and the restoration of $485 million dollars in state aid to the University.
During the summer of 2016, Ms. Onyejiukwa served as a field organizer for Thrive NYC; she provided training to City Hall interns and City Council staff, served as liaison for the Department of Health to CUNY, and worked on strengthening community organizations. Her previous professional experiences include: College Assistant, Hunter College office of Alumni Relations (2016), full-time Physical Therapy Aide, Paspa Physical Therapy (2015); College Assistant, Hunter College SciMon Stem Research (2015); Exploring Health Careers Program Intern, SUNY Downstate Medical Center (2014); Editorial Intern, Womens E-News Newspaper (2013); Management Intern, Millennium Hilton Hotel (2012).
Ms. Onyejiukwa’s parents immigrated to New York City from Nigeria and she is the third of five children. Their tongue of Igbo is spoken at home and within family circles. Ms. Onyejiukwa plans to pursue her doctorate degree after graduating in May of 2017.
KATHERINE M. CONWAY, B.S., M.B.A., Ph.D., is Chairperson of the University Faculty Senate (UFS) and an ex-officio member of the Board of Trustees of The City University of New York. She was elected in 2016 to a two-year term by the UFS. A member of the Business faculty at Borough of Manhattan Community College (BMCC), she is currently a co-Principal Investigator on a multi-year National Science Foundation grant on online education. She has published numerous articles and book chapters on online education, and issues of accessibility and success of community college, minority, non-traditional and STEM students.
Prior to joining CUNY in 1996, Dr. Conway worked in finance for more than a dozen years, leading credit teams in both commercial and private banking.
Dr. Conway received her B.S. in Marketing, her M.B.A. in Finance, and her Ph.D. in Administration, Leadership and Technology all from New York University.
A resident of Manhattan, New York, she is married to Francis Conway and has a daughter.
Dr. Conway serves on the Board of Trustees’ Standing Committee on Audit, the Committee on Fiscal Affairs and its Subcommittee on Investment.