Our students achieve at such high levels, in large part, because of their teachers, counselors, and advisors. We recruit, train, and retain the best-of-the-best because our students require and deserve the country’s hardest working and highest achieving professionals.

Teachers and staff at People’s Prep are fierce supporters of our students, our community, and each other. We know that often times things are not our faults, but they are still our responsibility. Our work is serious, but we don’t take ourselves too seriously.

Our core values guide our actions, motivate our decisions, and push us towards our mission. We are working to prove to our students, to our community, and to the country that a child’s zip code does not have to dictate their future.

The Wolfpack

Robert Ragozzino

Coverage Teacher

Paryss Dowling

Teaching Assistant

Michael Agyei

Health & PE Teacher

Marline Dorcinvil

Math Teacher

Maricruz Azcona

Teaching Assistant

Kyra Dezjot

English Teacher

Chellamar Bernard

Health & PE Teacher

Carolina Restrepo

Teaching Assistant

Brittany D'Alessio

Arts Teacher

Ariordys Vasquez

Teaching Assistant

Hillary Amoah

Teaching Assistant

Merissa Matheson

Reading Coordinator

Marcus Wing

College Advisor

Daniel Navarro

English Teacher

Nyasia DiBona

History Teacher

Brian Barbosa

English Teacher

Antony Morales

Special Education Math Teacher

Earline Bresil

Science Teacher

Aziel Rosado

Math Teacher

Milijah Foster

Math Teacher

Dimitri Serrano

ELL Teacher

Natalie Reeves

Social Worker

Taira Nails

Operations Coordinator

Steven Messina

English Teacher

Marie Charles

Assistant Director of College Readiness and Persistence

Cameron Stewart

Social Worker

Amanda Belden

Director of Curriculum and Instruction

Alissa Savilla

English Teacher

Alexa Jacobsen

History Teacher

Tahirah Crawford

Special Advisor- College Access and Success Team

Jinnie Cornelius

Math Teacher

Meghan Wood

Director of Development

Michael Purefoy

Technology Manager

Nicolette Rittenhouse-Young

Director of Student Support & Education of Homeless Children Liaison

Stephanie Weymouth

Performing Arts Teacher

Sophia Ewart

Operations Coordinator

Darrell Williams

Day Custodian

Ashley Nieves

Special Education Humanities Teacher

Allison Addona

English Teacher

Philip Materio

Data Analyst

Amy Eberly

Community Programs Manager

Ana Lopez

Operations Manager

Andrew Hollander

Dean of School Culture

Brent Weber

Director of External Engagement

Charae Baulkman

College Advisor

Courtney Epps

Math Teacher

Janae Bailey

Biology Teacher

Keith Robinson

Executive Director

Kelsey Smith

English Teacher

Manoushka Adam

Community Programs Assistant

Samantha Laycock

Director of Operations

Amanda Simpson

Social Worker

Tonya Bewley

Operations Manager

Tula Richards-Gift


Alison Laycock Ruiz

Chief Programs Officer

Board Of Directors

Marie-Jouvelle Aubourg

Marie-Jouvelle Aubourg is director of teacher recognition at the NYC Department of Education, where she has worked in various roles over the past 11 years. She currently oversees a portfolio of programs to recognize and retain quality teachers in NYC public schools. She is devoted to reversing social inequalities. In order to do so effectively, she has benefited from Princeton University’s AlumniCorp Emerging Leaders Public Policy Fellowship and is currently continuing her leadership development through Leadership Newark’s Public Policy Fellowship. Marie-Jouvelle holds an MPA from Rutgers University–Newark and a BA in biology and society from Cornell University.

DeTravius A. Bethea, School Culture Committee Chair

DeTravius Bethea is the founder and CEO of Social Media Rainmakers, LLC. Previously, he was an adjunct professor at Rutgers University–New Brunswick, and a law clerk for the Community Defender Division (CDD) at The Public Defender Service for The District of Columbia, where, he received the CDD Champions of Liberty Award for Outstanding Advocacy. DeTravius holds a JD from Howard University School of Law and a BA in Africana studies from Rutgers University.

Karen Haynes Blake

I am an accomplished CPA and Project finance leader with a passion for helping our society’s underserved communities. My “duty to care” has been a driving force behind my successful management of multi-million dollar global public service and media budgets aligned with programs to support and advance children, whose socio economic circumstances may not readily afford them access to education, an understanding of mutual respect, and or basic health and hygiene knowledge.

Matthew Frankel

For more than twenty years, Matthew Frankel has worked as a media and crisis management strategist. Before launching MDF Strategies, Matthew led a series of divisions as a c-suite executive, directing strategy for some of the most high profile entertainment and technology companies in the country.

As head of corporate communications for AMC Networks, he directed the promotion and reputation for the company’s slate of entertainment brands and served on the senior team that launched television content such as Mad Men and Breaking Bad, and films such as Fahrenheit 911 and My Big Fat Greek Wedding. In addition, he led communications for strategic initiatives, such as the launch and rebrand of various televisions networks, the transformation of New York City’s historic Waverly Theater into the IFC Center, and the development of the company’s groundbreaking “day and date” content distribution service.

Iraisa Jones

Dynamic, resilient and solutions-driven Human Resources business leader with expertise across Transportation, Gaming, Telecommunications, Technology and Health industries. Forward thinking, strategic partner focused on building sustainable relationships within organizations and aligning people-centric agenda with business goals. As a champion of people success, I thrive in delivering impactful results in high growth environments, building high performing teams, driving forward-thinking initiatives and enabling continuous development, collaboration, proactivity and flexibility.

Leonard Jones

Jodi Nussbaum

For over 25 years, Jodi Nussbaum has been focused on creating educational content for children and those who care for them with the goal of helping young people use media to reach their highest potential. Currently, Jodi serves as vice-president of special project production at Sesame Workshop. Her work spans a variety of media platforms both domestically and internationally. Using a model that encourages content producers, educators, and researchers to seamlessly work together has allowed Jodi and her colleagues to make a meaningful difference in the lives of millions of children. Jodi is also an adjunct professor at Montclair State University where she teaches the next generation of producers about the power of media to positively affect the lives of children. Jodi attended Binghamton University where she earned a BA in English.

Rose Chan Siow

Rose Chan Siow is a a founder, collaborator, designer, thinker, and doer who finds no initiative too small or too large in the pursuit of growing thriving teams that will build impactful organizations.

Cameron Welch, Vice Chair, Talent Committee Chair

Cameron Welch is a member of the litigation and construction services practice groups at the law firm Cole Schotz P.C. He has represented a range of clients, from multinational corporations to small business owners and individuals, in a broad array of disputes, including complex commercial litigation, foreclosure, lender liability, shareholder disputes, and personal injury matters. Cameron holds a JD from Seton Hall University School of Law and a BA in political science from Johns Hopkins University.

Start your career at People’s Prep

People’s Prep was built on the premise that every Newark student deserves both a great teacher and the opportunity to attend college. As the only independent public charter high school in Newark, we are uniquely empowered to recruit and train the best teachers in the country.