Board Members’ Biographies

GABRIELLE APOLLON HOEKSTRA, Supervising Attorney and Haiti Project Deputy Director, NYU School of Law’s Global Justice Clinic

Gabrielle Apollon Hoekstra joined the St HOPE Board in 2015; and, she is our current Board Vice President. She is the Haiti Project Deputy Director and Supervising Attorney at NYU School of Law’s Global Justice Clinic. Previously, she served as a managing attorney of the Legal Services Center at The Door: A Center for Alternatives, a youth center that provides comprehensive youth development services to over 10,000 young people annually. She graduated from New York University School of Law, where she was an AnBryce scholar and a student advocate in the Global Justice Clinic and Children’s Rights Clinic. She earned a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of International Affairs at Columbia University, where she studied political science and international development. During her studies at Columbia, she worked for the Council on Foreign Relations’ Center for Universal Education and Haiti’s presidential working group on education. Gabrielle is a Harlem resident and cares deeply about the education that children are being given at St HOPE Leadership Academy.

ANKUR DALAL, Director and Tax Counsel, Société Générale    

Ankur Dalal joined the St HOPE Board in 2012; and, he is our current Board President. From 2014-2019, Mr. Dalal served on our Executive Committee as the Board Treasurer. Mr. Dalal has been involved with public schools for over ten years, developing literacy software for students in East Palo Alto, teaching high school mathematics in the Bay Area and New York City for four years, researching state education law and policy with the New Teacher Project and developing human resources software for the New York City Department of Education. Mr. Dalal is currently a tax attorney in the New York office of Société Générale. Mr. Dalal has a bachelor’s in computer science from Stanford University (2004), a master’s in education from Stanford University (2005) and a law degree from Columbia University (2011).

DR. KATIE EMBREE, Vice President for Planning and Strategy, Chief of Staff to the President and Secretary of the College, Teachers College, Columbia University

Dr. Katie Embree became Vice President for Planning and Strategy, Chief of Staff to the President, and Secretary of the College in August 2021. Dr. Embree has amassed extensive administrative experience in academic affairs in progressively responsible roles and leadership positions at TC, starting in 1996 as an Administrative Assistant and then as Associate Director of the Center for Educational Outreach and Innovation. As Assistant Dean, Interim Associate Dean, Associate Vice Provost, and Associate Provost and finally as Vice Provost, Dr. Embree has overseen Student Affairs, the Office of Digital Learning, the Office of Continuing Professional Studies, the Academic Affairs Budget, Academic Affairs Administration and chaired the College’s Psychological Emergency Response Team and the Student Conduct Committee. Dr. Embree earned a doctorate in Higher and Post-Secondary Education from Teachers College, Columbia University and completed an MBA in Finance from Seton Hall. She earned a BA with majors in Economics and Psychology from Drew University.

MAUREEN HIGGINS PIOTROWICZ, Talent Acquisition, Paramount

Maureen Higgins Piotrowicz joined the St HOPE Board in 2013; and, she is our current Board Treasurer.  Ms. Higgins’ involvement with charter schools began in college, when she served as a summer intern at North Star Academy in Newark, NJ. After graduating from Wellesley College, Ms. Higgins taught middle school ESL in the Bronx as a 2006 Teach for America corps member. She continued her career in education as a Manager of Instruction at Revolution Prep, and then as Director of Talent Recruitment for Ascend Charter Schools in Brooklyn. From there, she served as a Recruitment Manager for the Office of Teacher Recruitment and Quality with the NYC Department of Education.  Currently, Ms. Higgins works in Talent Acquisition at Paramount.

MIRLANDE JOACHIM, Immigration Attorney, 1199 SEIU National Benefit and Pension Fund, and founder of Joachim Law Office

Mirlande Joachim joined the St HOPE Board in 2023. She is an immigration attorney who currently works for the 1199 SEIU National Benefit and Pension Fund where she provides a range of comprehensive benefit services to workers in the industry. She also runs her own private practice which provides extensive immigration counsel to her clients. Previously, she worked on class action settlements at Garden City Group. She also served as a staff attorney at Dwa Fanm, which means women’s rights in Haitian Creole. The organization was dedicated to advocacy on behalf of women, particularly victims of domestic violence. Ms. Joachim also volunteered at local food pantries and taught ESL in Chinatown. She graduated from Massachusetts School of Law in 2009 and earned her Bachelor of Arts from Brooklyn College, CUNY. As a Haitian immigrant, her background drives her passion for immigration law.

KRISTOPHER JOHN, Vice President of Product Strategy, New Meridian Corporation

Kristopher John joined the St HOPE Board in 2019. He is the Vice President of Product Strategy for New Meridian Corporation. Kristopher has over 15 years’ experience developing products and services designed to improve the educational outcomes of students. He has developed educational products for Curriculum Associates, Amplify, and the College Board. He has a BA in Economics from Columbia University.

SALONE KAPUR, Reputation Marketing Lead, YouTube

Salone Kapur joined the St HOPE board in 2019. She currently leads reputation marketing at YouTube, focusing on many of the company’s responsibility efforts. Prior to YouTube, she led brand partnerships for Google Cloud and also worked on Google’s Access projects where she was part of the founding team that launched Google Fiber in 2012. Outside of work, she has served as a volunteer middle school teacher through Citizen Schools in East Harlem. She received her BA with honors from Stanford University and a master’s from the University of Oxford, where she studied as a Clarendon Scholar.


Lindsey Moschet joined the St HOPE board in 2022. Ms. Moschet has over a decade of experience working in New York City charter schools. She was the first Director of Special Education at Coney Island Prep, where she developed, maintained, and executed a network-wide vision for providing high-quality services and curriculum to students with Individualized Education Programs, students receiving interventions, and students designated as multilingual learners. Prior to her work at Coney Island Prep, Ms. Moschet held a variety of positions of increasing responsibility at the Success Academy Charter School Network, including as a founding Education Manager at Success Academy High School of the Liberal Arts. In this role, Ms. Moschet acted as a key guide and advisor to the Principal to make fast, data-driven decisions, and led the development of special education in the school design. She also worked in the New York City Department of Education as a Professional Design Associate in the Office of Teacher Evaluation. Ms. Moschet received a BA with a Major in History and a Minor in Education from Cornell University, where she was a member of the varsity women’s ice hockey team, and received a Master of Arts in Sociology and Education from Teachers College, Columbia University.

ELIZABETH PERNICK, Associate, Analysis Group

Elizabeth Pernick joined the St HOPE Board in early 2018; and, she is our current Board Secretary.  Ms. Pernick is an Associate at Analysis Group, where she specializes in economic and quantitative analysis in complex litigation matters, including in the areas of finance and securities, commercial litigation, and intellectual property.  She has also worked in government, including serving as Director of Analytics and Performance Management for the Office of the Nassau County Comptroller.  Ms. Pernick received a Bachelor of Science in Policy Analysis and Management at Cornell University and a Master of Public Policy at the University of Chicago, where she focused her studies on education policy and labor economics.

JENNIFER REYNOSO NG, Birth and Postpartum Doula, Waterlily Birthing Services

Jennifer Reynoso Ng joined the St. Hope board in 2020. She has always been passionate about issues of access, equity, and justice. For the first 10 years of her professional life, this took the form of working in the college access and success field, providing young people with the information, opportunities and support needed for them to make informed decisions about their futures. She started her career working with high school students at the YWCA, facilitating their transition to high school and also providing college application support. She also worked at StreetSquash Harlem for 5 years, where she supported high school seniors with their college applications and supported commuter college students through their studies. Jennifer currently works as a birth and postpartum doula, working with families through the duration of the childbearing year as they adjust to becoming new parents. Through her current work, she has the same desire to expose birthing families to the knowledge and options they have to make informed choices about their birth experience and health care. Jennifer received her BA in Neuroscience from Columbia University and earned her master’s degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Education.