Staff

Staff

Our staff are highly-qualified professionals who are dedicated to promoting student success. Our staff come from a range of professional backgrounds in the public and private sectors.

Administration

Valeri Thomson
Principal
B.A., Bard College; M.A., Ed.M., M.Ph., Ph.D., Columbia University.
Director of Immediate Science Research Opportunity Program at Bard College, 1998-2007; research scientist at Rockefeller University; visiting faculty in Bard’s Master of Arts in Teaching Program; associate of Bard’s Institute for Thinking and Writing. Articles published in Journal of Bacteriology, Journal of Molecular Biology, and Plasmid. Primary research interests include factors underlying pathogenesis of Mycobacterium tuberculosis; and development expression of the neuronal NMDA receptor in zebrafish.
thomson@bard.edu
718-361-3133 x8002

David Allen
Assistant Principal
BFA, Creative Writing, Brooklyn College; MFA, Creative Writing, The University of Michigan, Advanced Certification in School Leadership, Brooklyn College.
Taught English at Brooklyn Technical High School, The Dalton School, Bushwick Outreach Center, Chapel Hill-Chauncy Hall, Phillips Academy, The University of Michigan and Brooklyn College. Served as Assistant Principal, English at Art and Design High School. At The University of Michigan, he received the Hopwood Award in Major Fiction. His poems and stories have been broadcast and published in several New York City outlets.
dallen@bhsec.bard.edu
718-361-3133 x8000

Laura Hymson
Dean of Academic Affairs
B.A., American Studies, Wesleyan University; M.A., Gender/Cultural Studies, Simmons College; Ph.D., American Culture, The University of Michigan at Ann Arbor.
Taught at Rutgers University-Newark; Hunter College; and University of Hartford. Areas of research include 20th century U.S. cultural history, with a particular focus on the historical constructions of race and gender; branding and advertising; and globalization.
E-mail: lhymson@bhsec.bard.edu
Phone: 718-361-3133 x7706

Staff

Sara Aboobakar
Office & Admissions Liaison
saboobakar@bhsec.bard.edu
718-361-3133 x6713

Jonathan V. Cann
Systems Analyst & Manager
B.A., Asian Studies, Bard College.
Independent author and programmer. Interests include art, photography, and gaming.
jcann@bhsec.bard.edu
718-361-3133 x6813

Elizabeth Dunn Canty
Guidance Counselor
B.A. English & Communications, Boston College; M.A., Education, CUNY Brooklyn College; M.A., School Counseling, New York University. Worked previously as New York City Teaching Fellow & Secondary English teacher at Harry Van Arsdale High School, as Guidance Intern & Health Teacher at BHSEC Manhattan, and as Guidance Counselor & Study Skills Instructor at Bard Early College Academy.  Founding staff at BHSEC Queens.  Special trainings include: Options College Access training, Suicide Prevention, Respect for All with a special focus on anti LGBTQ-bias, Opportunity Gaps for students of color, Adult Basic Literacy, and Project Adventure Ropes Course.
ecanty@bhsec.bard.edu
718-361-3133 x6923

Justin Casale
Guidance Counselor
B.A., Psychology and Education, Muhlenberg College; M.A., School Counseling, Boston College
jcasale@bhsec.bard.edu
718-361-3133 x6723

Jess deCourcy Hinds
Librarian
A.A., Bard College at Simon’s Rock; B.A., English, Smith College; M.F.A., Fiction, Brooklyn College; M.S.L.I.S, Library Science, Pratt Institute. Publications include School Library Journal, Brain, Child; The New York Times; Newsweek; Ms. Magazine; Seventeen; Teachers & Writers. Awarded a Twining Fellowship for research in Italy (2009). Named one of the Pratt Institute’s “40 Under 40 Rising Stars” for library leadership and nonfiction writing (2012). Fiction Fellow at Pen Parentis (2015). Awards include second place in the Stella Kupferberg Memorial Short Story Prize (2017).
jhinds@bhsec.bard.edu
718-361-3133 x6642

Angel Johnson-Telesca
Guidance Counselor
BA, SUNY Stony Brook, Stony Brook, NY; M.Ed. in Counseling and Human Development, St. Lawrence University, Canton, NY.
Angel brings over 18 years of College Counseling and Guidance experience from the New York City school system and private sector.  Professional interest include providing mentoring and counseling to underrepresented students in areas where access to secondary educational opportunities may not be readily available.
atelesca@bhsec.bard.edu
718-361-3133 x6823

Gabriel Mollica
Learning Commons Director
B.A., Music, Comparative Literature minor, Hamilton College.
Served as the George Watson’s Teaching Fellow in Edinburgh, Scotland. Taught lessons in English, Philosophy, and Music, as well as Special Education. Teaching Assistant at the Henry Viscardi School, a K-12 school for children with physical disabilities. Worked five summers at the Double H Ranch, a summer camp for children with chronic and life-threatening illnesses. Interests include storytelling, stand up comedy, essay writing, and disability advocacy.
gmollica@bhsec.bard.edu

Wilfredo Pagan
Payroll Secretary
wpagan@bhsec.bard.edu
718-361-3133 x6613

Renae Plummer
Parent Coordinator
rplummer@bhsec.bard.edu
718-361-3133 x6621

Olga Ramos
Director of Admissions
A.A., Bard High School Early College; B.A. Psychology, Bard College; M.S. candidate, Urban Affairs, Hunter College.
Trustee Leader Scholar at Bard College and founder of the Young Rhinebeck Youth Program: Life, Learning, and Language, 2005. Worked in admissions at BHSEC for more than ten years, first as Admissions Coordinator, then as Smart Scholars Outreach Coordinator. Olga has a long-standing commitment to outreach into the NYC public schools and particularly in recruiting students to BHSEC who come from disadvantaged academic and economic backgrounds. Research/interests include urban public education, program evaluation, early college initiatives and community activism.
oramos@bhsec.bard.edu
718-361-3133 x6913

Adam Rhodes
Technology Coordinator
arhodes@bhsec.bard.edu
718-361-3133 x6625

Olga Russell
Laboratory Technician Biology
B.A., Biology, Bard College; M.A., Social Studies, Russian State Pedagogical University in St. Petersburg, Russia; M.A., Microbiology, Columbia University.
orussell@bhsec.bard.edu
718-361-3133 x7315

Karimah Shabazz
Director of Bard DNA
kshabazz@bec.bard.edu
718-361-3133 x6715

Marion Stack
Special Education Coordinator and Assistant to the Dean of Academic Affairs
mstack@bhsec.bard.edu
718-361-3133

Lenni Yesner
Director of College Transfer Office
Pronouns: They/Them/Theirs
B.A., Religious Studies, Grinnell College; M.A. Applied Theatre, CUNY School of Professional Studies; M.S.Ed. Candidate, School Counseling at Alfred University. A BHSECQ staff member since 2010, Lenni is also a co-facilitator of the TransGeneratational Theatre Project, a multigenerational theatre group for trans and gender non-conforming people. Their interests include college access for undocumented and DACA students, racial justice, supporting trans and gnc students, LGBTQIA issues, music, scuba diving, and mindfulness.
eyesner@bhsec.bard.edu
718-361-3133 x6635