Board of Directors

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Sheila Lambert

Co-President

Sheila is a founding member of Bottomless Closet and served as its first, volunteer Executive Director at its opening January 19th, 1999. She has served in numerous leadership positions including President and Chair as well as chair of several committees.   A retired corporate executive with extensive experience in human resources and general management, Sheila has applied these skills to her volunteer career.

Sheila was with The Dun and Bradstreet Corporation for twenty years. Her responsibilities as Vice President, Human Resources, included all recruitment, compensation and employee relations.   Subsequent to that, Sheila served as Senior Vice President and Publisher at Moody’s Investors Service where she managed production, sales and marketing operations for all of Moody’s published products.

Other current volunteer commitments focus on education, Jewish continuity and education, women’s issues and the economically disadvantaged. Sheila has served as Chair of the Board of Trustees of the Town School, Is former board chair and current executive committee member of Project Kesher, a women’s advocacy group in the Former Soviet Union, former Vice Chair of the Board of Governors of Hebrew Union College, President of the Board of Directors of the Jewish Community Center of Manhattan. She is also a founder and past Board Chair of Breakthrough, an enrichment program for disadvantaged students to help them gain access to more educationally challenging high schools and is a member of the advisory board for the school of communications of Northwestern University.

Sheila is passionate about the issue of women’s empowerment and believes whole-heartedly that Bottomless Closet makes a real difference in the success of our clients. That belief drives her commitment to the organization as a volunteer and as a leader.

RevaWurtzburger

Reva Wurtzburger

Co-President

Reva has a lifetime of volunteer involvement. She is experienced in fund-raising, in creating and sustaining effective organizational structures, and in supporting and nurturing staff at all levels. Reva and a small group of women initiated the idea for Bottomless Closet in November 1996 and she became its subsequent President when the organization opened its doors on January 19th 1999.

Previously served on the Board of Lighthouse for the Blind in the 70’s, she was one of the architects of the “Posh Sale”, which now brings in hundreds of thousands of dollars each year.   As one of the very early members of the New York Philharmonic’s Volunteer Council, Reva served as its President. She has also served on the Board of the Learning Leaders, formerly known as the New York City School Volunteers. In addition Reva has sat on the Boards of the Rehearsal Club and The Chelsea Theater Club.

Today, Reva is proud to be the Chair Emerita of the Board of Directors of Bottomless Closet New York. She believes that one’s life is immeasurably enriched when given the opportunity and the privilege of helping another person – especially one-on-one. Reva is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania.

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Diane Kenney

Chair

Diane began her association with Bottomless Closet in 2002 initially as an evening volunteer working with clients and conducting Workplace Skills workshops.  In 2004, she joined the Board and began working as a daytime volunteer coincident with her “retirement” from the corporate world.  In addition she has been Co-Chair of the Program and Evaluation Committee, Vice President, President and Chair and sat on numerous committees.

Diane’s corporate career began in Human Resources beginning with the Consulting firm of Booz Allen, then Gulf & Western/Paramount Communications where she rose to the top Human Resources position.  She joined Time Warner’s Warner Music Group as Senior Vice President of Human Resources where she had responsibility for over 12,000 employees in 65 countries and traveled extensively.  Subsequently, she was in a similar role at Random House Publishing Group.

Diane also is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Professional Children’s School, an educational institution dedicated to students in the performing arts, sports and entertainment.

Diane received her BA from St. John’s University and Masters in Human Resource Management and Development from the New School in New York.  In addition she has attended numerous Executive Leadership and Development programs at Harvard and IMD in Lausanne Switzerland.

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Arlyn S. Gardner

Senior Vice President

Arlyn became involved with Bottomless Closet as a volunteer shortly after it was founded through her friendship with Reva Wurtzburger.  Arlyn serves on several board committees including the Events Committee with primary responsibility for Bottomless Closet’s annual fundraising luncheon.

Arlyn began her career at CBS where she worked for ten years, which was followed by time off to raise her three children. Because of her learning disabled son she became a volunteer at the National Center for Learning Disabilities and subsequently became its’ Executive Director.  She then served as Executive Director for The National Foundation for Facial Reconstruction, an organization affiliated with the New York University Medical Center, devoted to making a difference in the lives of children and adults with facial differences.

Arlyn is former Chair of the Board of the Learning Leaders, an organization which provides over 15,000 tutors annually to New York City schools.  She is a former member of the board of the National Center for Learning Disabilities and a member of the Rockefeller University Council.

IrisAbrons

Iris Abrons

Vice President

After graduating from NYU, Iris built on her interest in fashion, finding her dream job in the executive training program at Bonwit Teller. She spent 20 years working in the fashion industry running large sportswear companies with responsibility for merchandising, publicity, and the bottom line. Iris retired in 1985, and got involved with several non-profits. During ten years with Planned Parenthood of New York City she served as chair of development and spent two years as Board Co-Chair. In addition Iris has been involved in Planned Parenthood of Suffolk County, serving as co-chair of the East End event. Iris is also involved with The Children’s Aid Society, where she has been on the board since 1996. Iris is involved in every aspect of the 100 million dollar organization, currently serving as senior vice chair and chair elect of the board.

Iris has also mentored a young lady since 1998. She started tutoring her at the East Harlem tutorial Program when she was 10 and tutored her until she was 15. Iris has continued to stay close to her and saw her biggest accomplishment when Samantha graduated high school!!

Iris joined Bottomless Closet in 2000 on the suggestion of Arlyn Gardner, starting as a volunteer twice a week. She joined the board about a year later. Iris has been involved in many committees, including strategic planning, development committee and governance committees.

ChristineChang

Christine Chang

Treasurer

Christine is a Chief Operating Officer and Chief Compliance Officer with over 15 years of experience in the institutional asset management and family office space.  She has served as Chief Compliance Officer at Alternative Investment Management, an independent, privately-held investment management firm focused on hedge funds and private equity. She spearheaded special projects for the firm, including the design and implementation of strategic initiatives in operations, compliance, and marketing. She was also responsible for managing relationships with families, foundations, and endowments. Prior to this, Christine was the Chief Operating Officer of New York Private Bank & Trust, the wealth management division of Emigrant Bank, where she built the infrastructure to support ultra-high net worth clients. Previously, Christine was Business Manager and advised on business development at MPI Professionals, LLC, a subsidiary of CGI Group, Inc., providing consulting to financial services firms. Christine also served at Credit Suisse in New York and London as: European Product Manager of Fixed Income Emerging Markets; Financial Analyst for the Global Head of Fixed Income; and Compensation Analyst in Human Resources. Christine began her career at Charles River Consultants, Inc. as a Project Manager in financial services technology consulting.

Christine is Treasurer and a board member of Bottomless Closet, a member of High Water Women, and a member of the Trust and Estates Committee of SUNY College of Optometry. She is also a member of the Cornell Alumni Admissions Ambassador Network and a mentor in Cornell’s Alumni-Student Mentoring Program. Christine earned her B.A. from Cornell University.

JudithHunt

Judith T. Hunt

Secretary

Judy joined Bottomless Closet as a volunteer and Board Member in 1999, as an opportunity to utilize her previous retail and fundraising experience in a not-for-profit organization. Judy has served as Bottomless Closet’s Treasurer from 1999-2006, chair of the Finance Committee and the Retail Committee, and sat on the Development and Volunteer Committees. Judy serves as Board Secretary, and participates on other Committees including Finance, Program and Evaluation, Spring Luncheon, and Real Women. Judy is a graduate of Manhattanville College, Purchase, NY. Working at Bottomless Closet these has been an exciting, challenging and rewarding experience pooling together years’ worth of volunteer and professional experiences, as Judy moved around the U.S.A.

PriscillaBijur

Priscilla Bijur

Priscilla has been involved with Bottomless Closet since 2002 when Iris Abrons introduced her to the organization and she began volunteering. She joined the Board of Directors in 2003 and has focused her energies primarily on the program evaluation, outcome management through work on the Program Committee. After leaving a 30 year career in the business world at Time Incorporated/Time Warner Inc., she wanted to dedicate her time and efforts on behalf of women and underserved families and children in New York City.

Priscilla’s interest in the welfare of women and children began while at Time Incorporated, in the mid 1970’s, when she became the first Affirmative Action Officer for Women and used her background in business to train and attract women to positions not traditionally held by women. By the early 1990’s, while at Time Warner’s Corporate Headquarters as Vice President of Human Resources, she was instrumental in starting the company’s first Work/Life Department. One of New York City’s first corporate, onsite, day care facilities was constructed and managed under her leadership.

Priscilla also serves on the Board of Directors of Citizens’ Committee for Children, a 64 year old, fact based, advocacy organization dedicated to making sure that all New York City children are healthy, housed, educated and safe. Priscilla received her Bachelor’s Degree in Clinical Psychology from New York University and is the mother of two and lives in New York City with her husband, Gerry Kane.

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Anne Blackman

Anne became involved with Bottomless Closet when she was introduced to the organization and was encouraged to lead a workshop. In 2009 Anne became a regular weekly volunteer, recognizing the opportunity to call upon her previous professional experience in Human Resources at Time Warner Inc. to coach clients to be better prepared for their interviews. She is a member of Bottomless Closet’s Program and Volunteer Committees, and regularly conducts ongoing training sessions and new volunteer orientation. Anne is a leader of Job Club, a multi-session intensive training and mentoring program for clients.

Anne’s over 20 year career with Time Warner Inc. included human resources management roles at Time Inc., the Warner Music Group and Corporate Global Benefits. She is a graduate of Brooklyn College, attended graduate school at New York University and several Human Resources, Management and Leadership certificate programs.

Anne has been inspired by her clients at Bottomless Closet and is happy to be able to apply her professional experience to work with clients to be better prepared for their interviews and the workplace environment.

ConigliaroLaura

Laura Conigliaro

Laura retired as a partner of Goldman Sachs, which she joined in 1996, in 2011.  At Goldman Sachs, Laura was the co-director of the firm’s Americas Equity Research unit. Prior to that, Laura served as the Technology Equity Research business unit leader for Goldman Sachs. She also developed a specialized expertise in the hardware systems sector during her time covering enterprise server and storage companies. While at Goldman Sachs, she served on the Compensation Policy Committee, as well as the Americas Diversity Committee. From 1979 to 1996, Laura was an analyst at Prudential Securities, where she specialized in enterprise computing, servers, workstations, PCs and design automation. Prior to Prudential, Laura worked as an intelligence analyst at the National Security Agency.  Now, Laura sits on the Board of Directors at Infoblox and Genpact.  Laura is also a member of the Museum Advisory Council at the American Museum of Natural History.  Laura earned a BA, summa cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, from Boston University and an MBA in Finance with honors from Fairleigh Dickinson University.

Judy Hong

Judy Hong

Judy is the senior analyst covering the Beverage and Tobacco sectors in the Consumer Products and Retail team within Global Investment Research (GIR). She has been ranked in industry surveys such as Institutional Investor, Starmine and The Wall Street Journal’s “Best on the Street.” She also serves as co-head of the GIR Asian Professionals Network. Judy joined Goldman Sachs in 1998 and was named managing director in 2013.
Prior to joining the firm, Judy worked at an asset management firm as a buy-side analyst.
Judy earned an MBA from New York University’s Stern School of Business and a BS in Communications from Cornell University. She resides in New York City with her husband and two daughters.

CarolynHuggins

Carolyn Huggins

Carolyn is a founder of Bottomless Closet and has been a standing member of the Development Committee.

Carolyn concentrated her career in the nonprofit sector, having served as staff member and consultant to a number of human service and education organizations, including The Court Employment Project, the Vera Institute of Justice, Reality House, Girls Inc., The Family and The Cooperative Program for Educational Opportunity. She served as Director of Development for the New York City Mission Society and as a Senior Development Officer at the Columbia-Presbyterian Medical Center Fund. She joined Jeanne Sigler & Associates in 1995, and served as Vice President and senior consultant on a variety of projects.

She is a founder, selection committee member and administrator of a college scholarship fund at the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven. Carolyn holds a Bachelor of Music degree from Oberlin College.  She also studied at the Universität für Musik und Darstellende Kunst Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria and completed graduate coursework in Human Resources Administration at the University of Utah.

KathleenJordan

Kathleen Jordan

Kathleen Jordan is a leader in the retail design profession, a principal at Gensler, a global architecture design and planning firm, and currently is the Retail studio director for the New York office. With over twenty-five years of specialized retail architectural & interiors experience, her background provides a holistic perspective into the design process, including brand integration, merchandising strategy, and store planning. Kathleen received a Bachelor of Science in Architecture from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.

Active in the design community, Kathleen is a longtime participant in the ACE Mentorship Program Career Directions for Students in Architecture, Construction, and Engineering (ACE) a unique partnership, through which industry professionals volunteer as mentors to high school students in order to introduce them to these professions, and to encourage them to pursue studies and careers in these fields.

Kathleen also donates her time and skills to the food charity CANstruction, a creation of the Society for Design Administration (SDA) as well as PAVE, The Planning and Visual Education Partnership‘s. Kathleen has participated on numerous occasions as a guest critic for undergraduate design studios at New York School of Interior Design and The Fashion Institute of Technology.

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Pam Kaufman

Pam is the Chief Marketing Officer and President of Consumer Products for Nickelodeon. Kaufman is a strong global-branding executive who provides the company with high-level vision, strategy and execution across its media platforms, marketing efforts and consumer products businesses.

Kaufman oversees all global consumer marketing efforts across television, digital, events, music, retail and consumer products, advancing Nickelodeon’s standing as the world’s leading kids’ entertainment brand. She also leads Integrated Marketing efforts, working with blue-chip advertisers like General Mills and Toyota, and spearheads all strategic marketing plans for new content. She helmed the launch strategies for the groundbreaking iCarly, the successful return of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles; the launches of the Emmy Award-winning Nick App and Nick Radio; and live events like the annual Kids’ Choice Awards.

As President of Consumer Products, Kaufman oversees domestically Nickelodeon’s billion-dollar global consumer products business, which encompasses merchandising and licensing for some of the worlds’ most popular and iconic intellectual properties, including SpongeBob SquarePants, Dora the Explorer, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles and Peter Rabbit. She spearheads Nick’s major licensing programs with industry-leading partners like Mattel, Fisher-Price and Playmates and retail partnerships with Walmart, Target and Toys ‘R’ Us among others.

Kaufman holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Public Communications from American University.

 

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Tami Peter

Tami has volunteered her time to Bottomless Closet since 2001, creating and teaching the Financial Management Series as well as starting a financial mentoring program and debt free boot camp.  Her goal is to ensure that each and every woman in the series is empowered to accomplish her financial goals, and through knowledge, action, and self-confidence – ultimately achieves Financial Independence! In addition Tami has served on the Bottomless Closet Board of Directors since 2006.

Tami is Director, Product Specialist of Structured Analytics & Valuations at Moody’s Analytics, where she sells fixed income analytical software, stress testing, and risk management solutions to institutional investors of structured bonds and mortgages. Her clients consist of US and Canadian banks, asset managers, hedge funds, and other institutional firms in the fixed income space. Tami was formerly Director of SG Americas Securities, the investment banking arm of Société Générale, in the Structured Asset Sales & Trading group and has worked for Dresdner Bank in Frankfurt, Germany in Credit Risk Modelling.  She received a Masters of Business Administration in International Management/Finance from Thunderbird – The American Graduate School of International Management, with foreign study in Africa and Europe.  Tami also holds a B.S. in Finance and a minor in German from Villanova University, with foreign studies in Europe.  She is fluent in German and conversant in French.  Furthermore, Tami has traveled to more than 70 countries.

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Saumil Shukla

Saumil is vice president, Steam Operations, at Consolidated Edison Company of New York, a position to which she was appointed in October 2007. She is responsible for operating the largest district energy steam system in the world, including generation and delivery of energy to many of the most prestigious landmark buildings in Manhattan such as the Empire State Building, the Chrysler Building, the United Nations, and the Museum of Natural History.

During her 33-year career at Con Edison, Ms. Shukla has held several prominent positions, including plant manager at the Hudson Avenue Station, general manager of Steam Distribution, and technical manager of the Ravenswood Electric Generating Station. Ms. Shukla leads several initiatives focused on increasing representation of women in non-traditional job within Con Edison. She was recognized in 1999 by NY Crain’s Business as a “40 under 40” business leader and in 2000 was honored by the YWCA-NY Academy of Women Achievers.

Ms. Shukla holds a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from City College of New York and a Master of Science in Industrial Engineering from Polytechnic University of New York.

SaraSlocum

Sara T. Slocum

Sara is a longtime volunteer, who has been involved with all aspects of the organization: from coaching clients to helping lead workshops, and in the planning of many events for Bottomless Closet.

She previously worked in the retail consulting and market research fields.

Sara received a Master’s Degree with Distinction from the London School of Economics and Political Science and graduated with Honors from Haverford College. She also sits on the Advisory Board of the Reading Reform Foundation of New York.

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Barbara Madsen Smith

Barbara Madsen Smith was involved with Bottomless Closet since the beginning. The need became apparent in 1996 with passage of the Welfare Reform Act. A colleague in Chicago had started an organization to help women enter the workforce and Barbara made the first connection – connecting a group of New York City women interested in starting a similar organization to the Chicago group. In 1999 she joined the Board of Directors and since then Barbara has been involved in Bottomless Closet’s communications and strategic planning. Barbara was elected President of the Board of Directors of Bottomless Closet NYC in January of 2007 and served as Board Chair from 2009-11. Barbara has over 20 years of experience in developing communications strategies and ideas for clients around the world. As a member of the Board of Directors and Chief Creative Officer of Burson-Marsteller Worldwide, Barbara lived in Chicago, New York and Paris, working on every continent and with clients in almost every major industry. Barbara received her Bachelor’s Degree from Washington University in St. Louis and her Master’s from Northwestern University.

KatieWatkin

Katherine Elvin Watkin

Katie has been a regular daytime volunteer at Bottomless Closet since 2005 and joined the Board of Directors in 2008 is currently chair of the Program Committee and a member of the Young Leadership Council.  She was previously chair of the Volunteer Committee and part of the development team that created and led a workshop focusing on strategies parents can use to read with their children.  Prior to her volunteer work, Katie was a learning specialist at the Country School in Weston, Massachusetts and The Chapin School in New York. Her career as a teacher showed Katie that children best succeed when their parents are strong and confident. Bottomless Closet helps women gain the self-confidence needed to succeed. Katie received her BA with honors from Washington University in St. Louis and a Master of Education in Special Education from Lesley University in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

EleanorWillets

Eleanor Willets

Eleanor Willets is the Area President of Metropolitan New York for Wells Fargo. She has more than 30 years of experience leading nearly 600 team members in Westchester, Suffolk, Nassau, Bronx Counties, and New York City. She is able to inspire team members through experience gained by working in every position in the Community Bank from a part-time Teller to her current senior-leadership role.

Eleanor builds and sustains a diverse and inclusive culture at Wells Fargo by connecting with multiple communities through her sponsorship of numerous Wells Fargo Team Member Networks, where she can frequently be found engaged in networking and educational events. Eleanor’s leadership helps to ensure that the diversity of team members reflects the rich diversity of our communities. She takes great pride that the Metropolitan New York team promotes an inclusive culture that is not only accepting of differences, but celebrates them.

Through her membership on the Board of Directors for Bottomless Closet, Eleanor has been inspired by the stories of the clients she has met, and enjoys helping others achieve their dreams by sharing her own experiences.