The IAAS Board is committed to introducing new and diverse literatures and multicultural literary resources into the public discourse by providing programs that educate and inform all aspects of the population from varying and diverse backgrounds – from the poor and underprivileged, to the privileged yet undereducated.
Board Member, Chair
Gabrielle David is a poet, writer, photographer, artist and musician. She has worked as a desktop publisher and word processing specialist for the past twenty years, both at Fortune 500 firms in the NY/NJ area, and through her former company, Chimeara Communications, Inc. She was a partner of hotshots unlimited photography, a photo studio specializing in portraiture, fashion photography, publicity photos and special events, which led to a successful photography exhibit sponsored and held at the Langston Hughes Community Library & Cultural Center in 1986. Gabrielle has published several essays on multicultural literature and published the poetry collections: this is me, a collection of poems & things (CCI Books, 1994); and spring has returned & i am renewed (CCI Books, 1995). Her work was published in Paterson Literary Review, Journal of New Jersey Poets, AIM Magazine, and phati’tude Literary Magazine. She has appeared at numerous venues, including St. Mark’s Church, Oded Halahmy Foundation for the Arts, Barnes & Noble (Edgewater, NJ), Asian American Writers’ Workshop, Fordham University and Rutgers University. As editor of phati’tude Literary Magazine, Gabrielle has produced and/or performed in numerous “phati’tude” readings and has served as literature coordinator for Langston Hughes Community Library’s successful literature series, “New American Writers of The 90′s.” She is also Executive Producer and Co-Host of phati’tude Literary TV Show (formally known as “phatLiterature”) and is currently working on her Masters in Communications at New School University in New York. Gabrielle leads the IAAS Board in Board matters and assure that Board Members fulfill their responsibilities in governing the IAAS. Gabrielle can be found on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and MySpace.
Board Member, Secretary
Angela Sternreich brings to the IAAS an extensive business background. She has worked as Office Manager and Operations Manager at several internationally known companies in New York and Los Angeles, and has worked at major law firms in New York City as Word Processing Supervisor and a paralegal. The total sum of her work experience includes managing and training support staff, fielding technical inquiries, providing administrative and computer support, and the development and implementation of departmental policies and procedures. Angela was a contributing book reviewer and copy editor for phati’tude Literary Magazine, previously served as Production Manager for the IAAS and was a producer, scriptwriter and narrator for phati’tude Literary TV Show (formerly known as “phatLiterature”), Episode No. 10: “Behind the Scenes @ phatLiterature.” She is a producer for Queens Public Television (QPTV) and is currently developing an office services business, which she plans to launch in 2010. As Secretary, Angela’s wide ranging responsibilities includes playing a critical role in fostering communication and diligence through proper management and utilization of important legal records. Angela can be found on Facebook and Twitter.
Board Member, Treasurer
Lynn Korsman is a Senior Consultant who is responsible for analyzing bankrupt and distressed companies at FTI Consulting, Inc., one of the leading providers of forensic accounting and litigation support services in the US. Prior to joining FTI, Lynn worked at Houlihan Lokey, an investment bank, where she performed valuation and advisory services to various clients. A native Minnesotan, Lynn received her B.S. in Finance from the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. She obtained a University of Wisconsin Foundation grant to travel to Belize for a one-month internship at the marine reserve, where she worked with local educators to develop an awareness campaign to encourage sustainable use and conversation of Belize’s marine and coastal resources. Lynn currently volunteers with Minds Matter of New York City, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to transform the lives of accomplished high school students from low-income families by broadening their dreams and preparing them for college success. Lynn oversees IRS reporting requirements and NPO accounting standards, evaluating organizational and managerial performance, determining/forecasting the IAAS’s cash flow and developing fundraising presentations. Lynn can be found on Facebook and LinkedIn.
Shirley Bradley LeFlore
Shirley Bradley LeFlore is a published and oral poet/performing artist, with an extensive background in administration and instruction in higher education. Having taught at various colleges and universities throughout the country, formerly an adjunct professor of women and ethnic literature at the University of Missouri, St. Louis, Shirley is currently an adjunct professor at Lindenwood University, teaching a creative writing cluster. A woman of many “firsts,” Shirley is one of few poets willing to collaborate with musicians, dancers, film producers and visual artists; and is one of the first artist/writers in the Missouri school districts to conduct writing labs and creative writing workshops for grades K-12. She has read and performed her work on stage, television and radio; and has published in numerous anthologies and magazines. As a spoken word artist, Shirley blends the vocal texture of her poetry with the music giants of jazz, blues, gospel/spirituals and classical music, and is featured prominently on “J.D. Parran and Spirit Stage” and “Hamiet Bluiet’s BBQ Band” recordings. She was commissioned to write “Songs Of River Magic,” which was produced and performed at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., and created and performed a spoken word composition at historical Weil Hall at Carnegie Hall. Shirley holds a BA in Language Arts and Behavioral Science from Webster University in St. Louis, Missouri, and an MA in Psychology from Washington University in St. Louis, Missouri. She was a National Institute in Minority Mental Health Fellow (NIMH), and is the recipient of Missouri Arts Council and CDCA grants. Currently, her poetry is featured in the Random House/Broadway Books novel, Wildflowers: A Novel, and she has two monumental literary works in progress: Brassbones and Rainbows and Rituals. Shirley served as co-producer of phati’tude Literary TV Show (formerly known as “phatLiterature”) for Episode No. 1: “Real Cool: Tribute to Gwendolyn Brooks” (2002) and Episode No. 7: “Rivers of Women: Tribute to Margaret Walker” (2004).
Stephanie Agosto, poet/activist, is a dynamic force in the ongoing struggle for civil rights, cultural awareness and community activism. She received her A.A. from Queensborough Community College, attended Hunter College and Film & Video Arts in New York City to study Film Production; and went on to produce and host the poetry series, “Universal Beats,” a weekly series on Manhattan Neighborhood Network (MNN). As a poet, her poetry has published in the US as well as abroad in poetry compilations, anthologies, art books and periodicals; and she has performed at numerous venues throughout New York City. Stephanie has worked in the health field for a number of years in New York, notably for Dr. Louis Parrish, who ran one of the city’s first prominent HIV/AIDS practices. She also worked closely with politicians to help pass legislation bill HR 1709, which recognized the important role of dietary supplements in America’s health care system. When Stephanie relocated to Florida, she became a licensed Realtor and is currently working for the Bill Ucci Team of Keller Williams in Central Florida. She continues her volunteer work by helping the Hispanic Health Initiative located in Central Florida (which provides free mammograms for women without medical insurance); and to Hogar Crea, a rehab treatment center. She will publish this year in an anthology of Puerto Rican Women Poets with Boricua College and hopes to finish her spoken word album later on this year. Stephanie initially appeared as a guest on the premiere season of phati’tude Literary TV Show (formerly known as “phatLiterature”) and co-wrote, produced and performed with Michael Bynum, “phatLiterature’s theme song.” As a Board Member, she was instrumental in helping to finalize and distribute phati’tude Literary TV Show to public access and college television stations across the country. Stephanie can be found on FaceBook.
Michelle Aragón is a senior management professional with over 25 years experience in advertising. Fully bilingual and with expertise in the U.S. Hispanic Market, Michelle has extensive experience developing brand-building, award-winning advertising and promotional campaigns. Michelle’s ability to combine creative thinking with consumer-driven strategies has resulted in securing market leadership positions for many products and services. Her work has garnered awards including the Clio, the Telly and the International Radio & TV Awards. During her tenure at Conill Advertising, one of the first Hispanic ad agencies in the U.S., she spearheaded campaigns for blue chip clients such as McDonald’s, Pfizer, P&G, Helene Curtis, Pepsi, Toyota, Metropolitan Life Insurance, Western Union, Banco de Ponce and Citibank and Miles Corporation. She was a driving force in getting companies such as McDonald’s to add English-language Hispanic creative to the marketing mix. Michelle also co-wrote and produced the first Spanish-language TV spot to run on a General Market network for McDonald’s, which won the first “Se Habla Español Award” for best TV commercial. She left Conill Advertising as Vice-Chairman, Chief Creative Officer and in 1995, founded Aragón Advertising, a consulting business that grew into a full service advertising agency. Michelle, a fine arts painter (http://aragonfineart.com) and graphic artist recently created Art Scene Today, a website that gives emerging artists exposure through themed online juried competitions and exhibitions. As Director, Marketing Communications, Michelle is responsible for the development of an effective, comprehensive and branded marketing communications program that will advance IAAS’s successful programming efforts in the New York (Tri-State) area into a national and international market.
Andrew P. Jackson (Sekou Molefi Baako)
Advisor for the IAAS
Andrew Jackson has been Executive Director of Queens Library’s Langston Hughes Community Library & Cultural Center for 29 years. He is responsible for the overall budgeting and administration of the library as well as proposal writing for and coordinating its cultural arts program. He earned a B.S. in Business Administration from York College, CUNY and a Master of Library Science from Queens College, Graduate School of Library and Information Studies (GSLIS). Andrew recently worked as a Training, Development, and Operations Consultant (2005-2008) to Roosevelt Public Library, and is currently an Adjunct Lecturer at CUNY’s York College and Queens College-GSLIS. A published author, essayist and lecturer, he has dedicated his life to community building and empowering youth. Known as an “activist librarian,” Andrew has received recognition for his community service and has won numerous awards. He regularly participates in career days and speaks to students on Africana history and culture, encouraging young people to read, use libraries for empowerment and consider librarianship as a fulfilling career. He is an executive board member and past president of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA) and a member of the American Library Association (ALA). Andrew also serves on a number of boards, including Chair, Board of Trustees, The Renaissance Charter School; and Co-Chair, Queens Borough President’s African American Heritage Planning Committee. The IAAS has had a long history with the Langston Hughes Library in that its phati’tude programming was developed under the Library’s program, “New American Writers of the 90s.” As an Advisor for the IAAS Board, Andrew brings his unique knowledge and skills in the nonprofit arena to help the IAAS’s board members effectively govern the organization.
Previous Board Members
Kenneth Campbell, Treasurer
Joan Ashman Edwards
José Angel Figueroa
Murray R. Markowitz, Treasurer
Richard L. Russell
Salvatore J. Vitiello, Secretary