Senior Leadership

Jesse Solomon
Executive Director
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Jesse Solomon founded the Boston Teacher Residency program in 2003, Previously, he taught middle and high school math for 10 years — at the King Open School in Cambridge, Brighton High School, and City on a Hill Public Charter School. He was a founding faculty member, lead teacher, and a member of the board of directors at City on a Hill, where he began and directed the Teachers' Institute, a school-based teacher preparation program. Mr. Solomon has been an instructor at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and is a National Board-certified teacher. He holds a BS in Mathematics from MIT and an MEd from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. The Barr Foundation named Mr. Solomon a Barr Foundation Fellow in 2009 for his leadership, and he is also a Pahara-Aspen Institute Education Fellow. Contact:

Clara Arroyo
Chief Financial Officer
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Clara is the Chief Financial and Administrative Officer, managing the finances of BPE and its two teaching academies, Dudley Street Neighborhood Charter School (DSNCS) and the Dearborn STEM Academy (DSA), including compliance with all internal financial controls and external regulations and reporting requirements. In addition, she oversees operations for the organization, including human resources, information technology, and office management. Before joining BPE, she led the finance team at Nurtury, Inc., a nonprofit early education organization. Clara holds a BA in Economics from the College of the Holy Cross, a graduate certificate in nonprofit finance and administration from Suffolk University, Sawyer School of Business, and an MBA in nonprofit management from Springfield College.

Tasheena Burnett
Director, Boston Teacher Residency
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Dr. Tasheena Burnett is a lead learner in her work as Director of Boston Teacher Residency (BTR). She leads the BTR program and holds Boston families and their students learning at the center of all decisions she makes. Since graduating BTR in 2011, Tasheena spent a combined ten years in Boston Public Schools teaching English Language Arts and serving as a Data Inquiry Facilitator. She earned a B.S in English from Suffolk University, MS in Human Resource Management from Emmanuel College, M.Ed from UMASS Boston, and Ed.D from Regis College. Her research focus is on black male success in higher education. Her inspiration comes from her family, her students and their families, and her mentors. She is committed to developing teachers who bring joy, curiosity, and rich content knowledge to their classrooms.

Christy Connolly
Instructional Systems Director
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Christy Connolly joined BPE as Instructional Systems Director in the Fall of 2021. Prior to this, she spent 19 years serving Boston Public Schools in many roles, including transformational turnaround School Leader at the Grew Elementary School, Director of Network E Academics at the District Level, Math and Literacy Instructional Coach, and teacher leader. In these roles, Ms. Connolly developed and honed her expertise in teaching pedagogy, math and literacy content, school-based and district-wide teacher and principal leadership development, and adult learning. Her leadership philosophy is one of building a collaborative, trusting, reflective culture through shared leadership to improve adult and student learning, collective efficacy, and organizational systems success.

Emily Harris
Director of Talent
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Emily is the Director of Talent, providing strategic direction in the areas of recruitment and selection for the talent pipelines across BPE—the teacher residency, Promise Corps, teaching academy schools, and central staff. Prior to joining BPE, she worked for Young Voices, a RI non-profit organization working to transform youth into powerful advocates who partner with major state leaders to create systemic reform and policy change. Emily holds a BA in English from Juniata College and a MA in Humanities and Social Thought from New York University. When not working, Emily enjoys spending time with family and friends (including a growing number of nieces and nephews!), reading, running while listening to podcasts, learning and unlearning.

Elijah Heckstall
Principal, Dudley Street Neighborhood Charter School
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A lifelong learner, Mr. Heckstall hails from Middletown, Conn. and attended Trinity College in Hartford, where he earned a Bachelor of Science in Education with a concentration in Neuroscience. While completing his Master of Education from Lesley University, Mr. Heckstall became a Teach For America corps member and worked as a science and special education teacher at what is now the Dearborn STEM Academy. Mr. Heckstall remained working in schools as a teacher, a Dean of Students and finally his most recent school-based role as Co-Principal of the 9th Grade Academy of Lawrence High School in Lawrence, Mass.

Edward Liu
Chief Improvement Officer
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As Chief Improvement Officer, Ed Liu oversees research and data across BPE's programs and schools. Before joining BPE, Dr. Liu was Assistant Professor of Educational Administration at Rutgers University, and he began his career as a high school history teacher and as founding co-director of Summerbridge Portland (a Breakthrough program). Dr. Liu holds an EdD from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, where he was an original member of the Project on the Next Generation of Teachers and co-authored "Finders and Keepers: Helping New Teachers Survive and Thrive in Our Schools" (AACTE Outstanding Book of 2005). He also holds an MBA and AM in Education from Stanford University, and a BA in History from Yale.

Darlene Marcano
Principal, Dearborn STEM Academy
Melanie Winklosky
Chief Advancement Officer
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Melanie Winklosky joined BPE in 2012 as the Chief Advancement Officer, leading BPE's team responsible for public and private fundraising and communications. Melanie has been working in public education for nearly 30 years and has raised more than $50 million to support students, educators, and programs. Before joining BPE, she was the Vice President of Development and Operations at Mass Insight Education, and spent 13 years at the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education. She holds a BA in Psychology from Saint Vincent College and an MA in Human Development from Boston College. Melanie is the proud mother of a high school student and a college student, and writes fiction in her spare time.

BPE Team

Nazar Alexander
Data & Improvement Manager
Corey Allen
Director of Industry Partnerships
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Corey J. Allen is a Boston native and a graduate from Boston based institutions, beginning with the Charles H. Taylor Elementary School in Mattapan and ending with the University of Massachusetts at Boston in Dorchester. With experiences in education, nonprofits, and corporate, Allen brings his cross sector knowledge and network to BPE as our inaugural Director of Industry Partnerships, bridging the gap between where students are and where they envision themselves in the future through interactive and experiential learning, networking, as well as internship and career opportunities. In his spare time, Allen enjoys volunteering, DIY projects and playing chess.

Kristen Almquist-Cevallos
Director of Early College and Career Pathways
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Kristen has been an urban educator in the Boston area for over 15 years. Kristen has built 6 different career themed pathways and 2 designated Early College programs. Kristen’s ultimate goal is to prepare under-represented students for college AND career and most importantly to be able to earn a family sustaining wage in the Boston area upon graduation.

Matthew Andrade
Math Instructional Coach, Boston Teacher Residency
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Mr. Andrade received both his Bachelors degree in Biochemistry and Masters in Education from the University of Massachusetts, Boston (UMASS Boston). Mr. Andrade has a strong passion to empower and prepare our young scholars to be future leaders. He believes Black Lives Matter and is truly committed to addressing social justice issues while improving the urban education system. “I’m not saying I’m gonna change the world, but I guarantee that I will spark the brain that will.”

Tania Baez
Pathways Work-Based Learning Manager
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Tania Baez, Dearborn STEM Academy's new Work Based Learning Manager brings 7 years of experience working with youth in student support roles. As the Work Based Learning Manager, Tania brings to the role a wealth of knowledge and experience cultivating internship partnerships and laying the foundation not only for schools but also businesses to create internship programs designed for high school students. Tania holds a Bachelors Degree in World Languages and Culture and is currently pursuing a Masters Degree in Higher Education in Student Affairs.

Monique Davis
Monique Davis
Director of Alumni Relations & Placement
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Monique Davis served as a recruiter for the Boston Teacher Residency (BTR) since the organization’s inception in 2003, recruiting talent on a local and national level and building relationships and cultivating partnerships. She currently oversees placement of BTR graduates in Boston schools and coordinates a network of over 250 alumni. Previously, Ms. Davis worked as an employment manager at the Home for Little Wanderers, a Boston-based non-profit human services organization. She has also worked for the Vinfen Corporation and the Boston Stock Exchange. Ms. Davis earned a BA in Finance and Accounting from Northeastern University and an Executive MBA from Dartmouth College in Minority Business.

Rhea Elcock
Academic Support Manager, Dudley Promise Corps
Mardi Fuller
Director of External Relations
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Mardi is a marketing professional with 17 (ish) years of experience scaling programs and products, and telling an organization's story. She has worked in the sports industry as well as in technology, and holds a BA from Amherst College. Find her in the backcountry on the weekends, especially in New Hampshire's White Mountains. She also writes about racial equity and access in outdoor culture. Media inquiries, contact

Connie Jacquays
Director of Induction Programming, Boston Teacher Residency
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Ms. Jacquays has worked in the field of education for 20 years, having spent many years as an elementary teacher and reading specialist/consultant. For the past ten years, she worked with the Boston Public Schools as a district-wide literacy coach, Vice Principal/Director of Instruction at the Ohrenberger Elementary School, and as a Response to Intervention (RTI) Curriculum Specialist at the Haley Pilot School. She has taught graduate classes at the University of Massachusetts and has worked as a literacy consultant for Tufts University.

Felicia Kazer
Science Coach, Boston Teacher Residency
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As a graduate of the BTR program and former employee of BPE, Felicia is pleased to be returning as a science coach this year. For the past fifteen years, Felicia has worked as a middle school science teacher and induction coach in Boston and Cambridge. Felicia lives in Jamaica Plain with her two young children and her husband, David (who she met in cohort 4). In her free time, Felicia enjoys cooking, biking, and listening to audiobooks on long walks.

Sheri Kivekas
Office Manager
Helene Mitchell-Levy
Advancement Manager
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Helene joined BPE in Spring 2020 as the Advancement Associate. Prior to BPE, Helene worked for several years at Year Up where she held positions in operations and events. A Dorchester/Roxbury native, Helene is excited to be a part of an organization that serves youth in these communities. In her spare time, Helene is an avid concertgoer and enjoys recording music.

Narges Mohammad Mahdi
Development Manager
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As Development Manager, Narges will manage all public grants, conduct research and analysis related to BPE revenues, and collaborate with other departments to advance BPE’s fundraising and communications work. Before joining BPE, Narges was Manager of Institutional Partnerships at World Food Program USA where she managed a portfolio of faith-based organizations, non-governmental and civil society organizations. She led on institutional research, prospect, and cultivation of partnerships to diversify and strengthen revenue channels.

Narges holds a BA in International Studies from Muhlenberg College and a MA in International Human Security Studies from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy at Tufts University. When not working, Narges enjoys reading, hiking with her two dogs, exploring different cuisines, and painting.

Marcie Osinsky
Director of Professional Learning and Elementary Residency
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Marcie Osinsky has overseen BTR’s teacher preparation curriculum since 2003. With her BTR colleagues, she continues to innovate and improve the residency experience, blurring the boundaries between course and field work, keeping BPS students’ achievement at the center of residents’ teaching, and building collaborative communities to engage teachers in ongoing learning and development. Marcie began her education career teaching the first and second grades in the Cambridge Public Schools. Her experiences there led her to explore how partnerships with community and educational institutions can support teacher preparation, student achievement and the role of teacher leadership in urban schools. She then became a liaison between Wheelock College and the Young Achievers Science and Math Pilot School in the Boston Public Schools, working with college faculty and public school educators to design a year-long internship program focusing on mathematics and equity. Ms. Osinsky holds a BA from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst and a Masters in Education from Lesley University.

Yaochen Pan
Staff Accountant
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I grew up in China and came to the States to pursue masters' degrees. I joined BPE in fall 2018 as an intern and turned into full-time when graduated from Suffolk University with MSA & MST. I like watching soccer games, reading and travelling in my spare time.

Jay Pedrero
Early College Associate
Chris Plummer
Human Resources Manager
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Chris joined BPE as Human Resources Manager in 2021. Prior to that he worked at City Year Boston for 18 years where he had a number of roles including his last nine years building and overseeing HR at the site. Chris is passionate about the education and non-profit space and is excited to be a part of a mission-driven organization. He holds a B.A. in Psychology and Philosophy from the University of New Hampshire and an M.S. in Human Resources and Leadership from Northeastern University.

Andrea Reynolds
Talent Manager
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Andrea is a talent professional with experience managing recruitment and selection processes for various organizations. She has worked in the finance, pharmaceutical research and legal fields previously, and holds a bachelor's degree from Connecticut College. In her spare time she enjoys spending time with her Corgi, Fred.

Glen Sherman
Director of Math, Elementary, Boston Teacher Residency
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As director of mathematics at Dudley Street Neighborhood Charter school, I oversee the school’s math program and provide instructional coaching/support and professional development for DSNCS teachers and Boston Teacher Residency teaching residents. I also teach the BTR Elementary Math Methods course. My work -- firmly rooted in the belief that all children are capable of powerful mathematical thinking and problem solving -- is focused on building teachers’ capacity to: 1) help students develop positive math identities and believe in the inherent value of their mathematical ideas; 2) promote equity through intentional disruption of practices that perpetuate marginalization, exclusion, and unjust outcomes.

Grace Shi
Grace Shi
Senior Accountant
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Grace joined the financial department in August 2016. She graduated from Wuhan University of Technology with a bachelors in accounting, and worked five years as an accountant in China. Grace also holds an associate degree in accounting in the US and is pursuing a degree in taxation. She is so glad to be part of BPE. In her free time she enjoys watching movies, traveling, and hanging out with friends.

Kai Smith
Post-Secondary Advisor
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Kai has served two years at Dearborn with College Advising Corps - BU, working with students to develop their post-secondary plans. As a post-secondary adviser, he supports Dearborn graduates navigate college and their post-high school lives. Kai graduated from Davidson College in 2020 with a degree in philosophy. In his free time, he enjoys camping/hiking, cooking, following sports, looking at trees, and is a passionate player of kendama, a traditional Japanese wooden skill toy

Chelsea Voake
Director of Strategic Initiatives
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Chelsea has served in a number of roles at BPE. Currently, she facilitates strategic projects for BPE and our schools, including developing the Dearborn Next program and supporting Dearborn’s Innovation Pathways. Chelsea has been an instructional coach for teachers and residents, the facilitator of Dearborn’s school design process, the Director of Curriculum and Instruction for our Innovation Pathways, and the AmeriCorps Program Director. Chelsea earned her BA in Geography and Environmental Studies from Dartmouth College, her MAT in secondary history from Brown University, and her EdM in School Leadership from Harvard Graduate School of Education.

Jennifer Yaeger
Elementary Literacy Coach, Boston Teacher Residency
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Jennifer Arenson Yaeger believes in the power of literacy to transform society and to transform lives. For nearly three decades she has worked to support children, educators and schools through her work as an elementary teacher, literacy coach, graduate school instructor, and coordinator of school reform initiatives. A graduate of the Harvard Graduate School of Education in Administration, Planning and Social Policy, Jen brings together a background in education policy and school change with her practical experience in classrooms from urban to suburban districts. She currently works part-time as the Director of Elementary School Partnerships at the Teaching and Learning Alliance, where she helps to lead a team of staff developers who provide school-based coaching and professional development in literacy for teachers across the region. Since 2003, she has also offered workshops to prepare teachers for the Foundations of Reading MTEL.