Faculty and Staff

The MPA program draws on a highly credentialed network of public service professionals and social impact leaders who bring experience in leading institutions and organizations, such as the American Civil Liberties Union, the New York Philharmonic, the Open Society Foundation, Planned Parenthood, USAID, the Council on Foreign Relations, and B Lab. Several have founded their own nonprofit organizations and social impact consulting companies, as well. They are dedicated to preparing students to be civically engaged professionals, and the deep experience they bring into the classroom ensures a rich, evolving, and relevant curriculum.

Current Faculty

Fatima Ashraf

Professor Ashraf teaches introduction to public policy. She is co-founder of Green Squash Consulting and has in-depth knowledge of and experience with governments, NGOs, public and private foundations, and academia. She has identified opportunities for new policy initiatives, and developed policy proposals and strategic initiatives for the Office of the Deputy Mayor. She served as the chair of the Youth Violence Prevention Task Force, and as a data analyst at the New York Department of Health and Mental Hygiene. Professor Ashraf previously served as a special advisor to the Open Society Foundation. She holds a B.S. in Biology from University of Wisconsin, Madison, and MPH from University of Michigan-Ann Arbor.

Ofronama Biu

Ofronama Biu teaches quantitative methods. She is a research manager for worker education at the CUNY School of Labor and Urban Studies. She holds a Ph.D. in Public and Urban Policy from the Milano School of International Affairs, Management, and Urban Policy at The New School. Her research interests include labor market and workforce development policies and racial stratification. Professor Biu brings extensive experience in project management, program evaluation, partnership building, employer engagement, and direct service to participants. Previously, as a senior research associate at the Building Movement Project, Professor Biu worked on national projects focused on leadership, including Race to Lead reports, service and social change, and movement building, as well as place-based projects in Detroit and New Mexico. She was also a senior research associate at the NYC Labor Market Information Service at the CUNY Graduate Center, where she directed research projects on trends impacting the social services and middle-skill healthcare workforce. Meanwhile, she has co-founded a nonprofit organization that connects youth to media professionals for skill-building and mentoring opportunities. Professor Biu holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from the NYU College of Arts and Science and a Master in Public Administration (MPA) degree from the NYU Wagner School of Public Service. Professor Biu can be reached at obiu@ccny.cuny.edu

Marissa Davis

Professor Davis teaches social entrepreneurship in the MPA program. She is founder of Tallawah Consulting and host of the #TallawahTalks podcast. She has spent the last decade at the intersections of social entrepreneurship, law, public policy, and business, all in service of building bridges across sectors for the sake of nurturing more sustained social impact in historically disenfranchised communities. She previously served as a program manager on WeWork's Global Policy team in their headquarters and as a special advisor for Harlem Tech Village, an inclusive incubator and education lab for tech entrepreneurs in Harlem. Professor Davis graduated from Swarthmore College with Honors and received her Masters in Public Policy (MPP) from Harvard Kennedy School, with a concentration in social and urban policy.

Caleb Gayle

Professor Gayle teaches communications. He is currently CEO at the National Conference on Citizenship. Gayle completed both his MBA and master’s degree in public policy from Harvard Business School and Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government as a Soros Fellow. He is also a writer and fellow at New America where he writes about the impact of history on race and identity. A former Truman Scholar, Rotary Ambassadorial Scholar, and Demos Emerging Voices Fellow, Gayle previously worked for a social enterprise that creates customized programs to empower women entrepreneurs from marginalized areas in Mexico and as program officer at the George Kaiser Family Foundation. As the child of Jamaican immigrants, Caleb has a unique and powerful sense of both the promise of American opportunity and the still-unfulfilled potential of our imperfect country. Gayle’s writing has been featured in a wide range of leading publications. 

Ryan Hallock

Professor Hallock teaches program evaluation. Since being honorably discharged from the U.S. Army, Hallock has focused on helping nonprofit organizations build their monitoring and evaluation capacity, including at the World Federalist Movement and International Crisis Group. He currently works at Planned Parenthood Federation of America in the Research, Evaluation, and Data Analytics Department. Professor Hallock holds an MPA from the City College of New York and expects to earn an M.A. in program evaluation from Michigan State University in December 2019.

Jeff Holland

Professor Holland teaches Public Budgeting and Finance. He worked in the Projections Unit of the Congressional Budgeting Office for 26 years, overseeing data compilation, writing, and production for a large part of CBO’s most widely read publications. He now serves as the Vice President of Research at the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, a non-partisan organization dedicated to addressing long-term fiscal challenges to ensure a better economic future. Professor Holland received his MS in Public Administration and Policy from Carnegie Mellon University and BA in Economics and Urban Studies from the University of Maryland.

Janet Kyle

Professor Kyle has more than 20 years of experience in the private, public, and non-profit sectors driving organizational change through strategic talent management. She holds a Master of Arts degree from The Johns Hopkins University, School of Advanced International Studies and a Master of Science degree from Pace University's School of Education. She teaches Strategic Human Resources Management.

Gara LaMarche

Gara LaMarche is President of the Democracy Alliance (DA), providing overall leadership, strategic vision and management capacity for the organization. Prior to joining the Alliance, he served as Senior Fellow at New York University’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service and previously, as President and CEO of the Atlantic Philanthropies. At Atlantic, he led the foundation’s efforts to embrace a social justice framework for grantmaking, and spearheaded the largest-ever grant made by a foundation for an advocacy campaign – over $25 million to press for comprehensive health care reform in the U.S. Before joining Atlantic in 2007, he served as Vice President and Director of U.S. Programs for the Open Society Foundations (OSF), launching the organization’s pivotal work on challenges to social justice and democracy in the United States. A longtime advocate for human rights at home and abroad, he has held various positions with Human Rights Watch, PEN American Center, and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU). LaMarche is also a frequent commentator on progressive issues in the news and has taught courses on philanthropy, public policy, and non-profit leadership.

Betsy Maclean

Betsy MacLean has been engaged in groundbreaking community development work nationally and internationally for more than 20 years. She is currently co-executive director at Hester Street. Previously, she developed affordable housing and community facilities throughout NYC at UHAB, the Fifth Avenue Committee and Cypress Hills Local Development Corporation. At Cypress Hills she oversaw well over $100 million of affordable housing development and spearheaded the community-driven design and construction of Brooklyn’s first green public school, P.S. 89. Cypress Hills Verde, a community-wide sustainability initiative she developed, led to energy-efficient retrofits of hundreds of low-income homes, green jobs for local youth, the resident-led design and construction of a community-operated urban farm, an innovative participatory planning process for the large-scale re-development of long vacant land, and expanded fresh food access. Betsy also has experience in community development initiatives in Guatemala, Mexico City, Costa Rica, and Cuba. Betsy holds master’s degrees in Urban Planning and International Development from Columbia University. 

Eric Schnurer

Eric B. Schnurer, President of Public Works LLC, is a problem solver, rethinker of government and champion for fairness and common sense. He has been advising governors, Senators, and other high-level public policy decision-makers since 1993, when he served as chief-of-staff to the acting governor of Pennsylvania. He also has served as a speechwriter, policy advisor, and/or legal counsel to dozens of governors, U.S. senators, and presidential candidates. Eric is a prolific writer and speaker on public policy and a widely recognized expert on government effectiveness, efficiency and reinvention. Eric founded Public Works LLC in 1995 and since then it has become one of the leading public sector management consulting firms in the country, guiding state and local governments to improve services while reducing costs. 


Bobby Derival

Executive Director
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Janet Kyle

Student-Faculty Advisor
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James Suggett

Program Coordinator
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