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RD2B - Spring 2019

Residential Education Retreat

Corporate Compass Members

Elections 2018
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2018 Elections

See Candidate Statements Below

PositionS Available:

President-Elect (3 Year Term)
Treasurer-Elect (2 Year Term)
Massachusetts District Coordinator (2 Year Term)
Eastern New York/Vermont District Coordinator (2 Year Term)
Metro New York District Coordinator (2 Year Term)

Specific Expectations for the Position:

The President-Elect shall:

a. Assume the responsibility of the President in the President’s absence.

b. Recommend one Appointed Board Member, subject to Executive Board approval, for each Committee as well as any task forces or project teams that are deemed necessary.

c. Coordinate the selection of subsequent annual conference site(s) by chairing a Time and Place Committee that includes a past Annual Conference Committee chair, the Program Committee chair, and the Corporate
Relations Committee chair.

d. Meet with all new Executive Board members prior to the first Executive Board meeting to set clear expectations, goals, and special charges.

e. Provide direct liaison contact to Committees.

f. Accept delegated responsibilities the President may assign.

The Treasurer-Elect shall:

a. Assume the responsibility of the Treasurer in the Treasurer’s absence.

b. Assist the Treasurer with the receipt and distribution of all funds utilizing established financial procedures.

c. Serve as the Vice-Chair of the Finance Committee made up of the Treasurer, one other elected officer, and one appointed board member as well as three additional members. Ideally the seven person committee is representative of each of the six districts.

d. Assume the responsibility of Chair of the Finance Committee in the Treasurer’s absence.

e. Assist the Treasurer with providing a written financial report at the annual business meeting and Executive Board meetings.

f. Assist the Treasurer with coordinating an external audit process annually in accordance with Article IX, Section 2 of the Constitution and By-Laws and report results to the membership.

g. Accept delegated responsibilities the President and/or Treasurer may assign.

h. Report to the Treasurer.

The District Coordinators shall:

a. Serve as the primary liaison of the designated district for all NEACUHO business to the Executive Board.

b. Coordinate with the Membership Coordinator in the area of membership and recruitment, and as such serve as the primary membership coordinator for the district. Communication should occur at least twice per semester to each member institution.

c. Coordinate with the appropriate Committee all new participant functions at the annual conference including orientation and support services.

d. Assist in determining and securing sites for future NEACUHO events as requested.

e. Accept delegated responsibilities the President may assign.


Additional information about NEACUHO is available in the Constitution and Bylaws found on the organization’s website at (under “About Us”).


The nomination period for this election is Monday May 7 to Monday May 25 at 5 pm.

Nominees will be contacted to accept or decline the nomination on a rolling basis.  To be included on the ballot, nominees must submit a candidate statement and photo on or before June 1 at 5 pm, which will be posted on the organization’s website.


The election period will begin Monday June 4, and conclude Friday June 8 at 2:59 pm.  If the need arises, run-off elections will be held the following week.


All voting will be done electronically.  Each institutional contact will receive a ballot and is asked to confer with staff members prior to submitting an institutional vote. 


Contact Shelly Keniston at  

Candidate Statements




David Grimes - Northeastern University
Assistant Director of Residential Life

MS – University at Albany, SUNY
BA – University at Albany, SUNY

Work Experience:
Residence Director - Syracuse University
Residence Director - St. John Fisher College

NEACUHO Involvement:
Massachusetts District Coordinator (June 2016 – Present)
New Professionals Institute Presenter/Mentor (2018)
2016 NEACUHO Outstanding Service Award
Secretary (June 2014 – June 2016)
Mentor for the fall 2014, spring 2015 and Fall 2017 RD2B Conferences
Presenter at 2013, 2016, 2017 Annual Conferences
Media and Publications Committee (2014-2015)
Professional Development Committee (2013-2016)
NEACUHO Program Committee (2011-Present)
Strategic Plan Task Force Working Group 2 (2013-2014)
Presenter at 2012 and 2014 Fall Drive-In Conferences 
Regional Entry Level Institute (RELI) 2012 participant
New Professionals Committee (2010-2017)

Candidate Statement: 


I am honored to have been nominated for the position of President-Elect of an organization that I have been proud to call my professional home for the past 7 years.  I was taught early on in my career the importance of networking, professional development and giving back to the field. NEACUHO has provided all of that to me and so much more.  It would be a privilege to work to lead the organization to provide the same opportunities to professionals across our region and build upon the work that each of our Past Presidents have done to further our mission.

During my time in the organization, I have been involved in a variety of ways that have contributed to my understanding of the operations of NEACUHO. My experience working on committees has provided me with insight on how these opportunities can assist our members in developing skills that will benefit them in their own positions at their home institutions as well as truly serve as the backbone of our organization. My four years on the Executive Board has provided me the opportunity to represent the variety of needs of our members and advocate on their behalf in board meetings.  All of these experiences are going to be valuable as President in supporting the appointed and elected members of the board in their work as well as in making decisions that will be in the best interest of our members all across the Northeast.

My experience working at different types of institutions within the Northeast has also provided me an opportunity to learn and understand the varying needs of our members.  From my experience working in both small and large institutions, I have been able to see how this organization can contribute to the needs of different types of schools and in what ways our organization can continue to develop and evolve to meet the ever changing needs of our students and institutions especially as resources change and budgets become tighter. 

If elected, I would look forward to building upon the work that the incoming President Trish Godino-Loring will do during her tenure. As we approach a new self-study and strategic plan in the coming years, I look forward to working with the executive board and our members to examine where we currently are as an organization and where we can go.  In addition, while our membership numbers have been consistent over the past few years, I would like to work to increase our numbers by re-establishing relationships with schools that may have formerly been members or develop relationships with new institutions in the Northeast.   I would also like to explore ways that our organization can work with other regional organizations including NASPA Regions I and II, BACHA, CSPA-NY, and NECPA to find ways that we can collaborate together to provide more opportunities and resources for our members to best support our students. 

Thank you for your time and for your consideration.

Ryan Young - UMass Amherst
Assistant Director of Residential Education

MA, Educational Leadership: Student Personnel Administration - University of Central Florida
BS, Biology/Chemistry Secondary Education - Florida Southern College

Work Experience
Assistant Director of Residence Education, UMass Amherst, 2013-present
Associate Director of Residential Life, Pace University Pleasantville, 2011-2013
Assistant Director of Student Development & Campus Activities, Pace University Pleasantville, 2010-2011
Residence Director, UMass Amherst, 2006-2010

NEACUHO Involvement
Treasurer: November 2017 – present
Executive Board Ethical Standards Working Group: Chair, January 2018 - February 2018
Regional Entry Level Institute (RELI): Host Site Coordinator, 2015 and 2017; Faculty, 2014
Residential Operations Committee: Chair, June 2014 – June 2015; June 2012 – June 2015
Strategic Plan Assessment Task Force: April 2015 – June 2015
NEACUHO Best of the Northeast Recipient: May 2014
Metro New York District Coordinator: June 2012 – July 2013
Strategic Plan Finance Task Force: November 2012 – June 2013
National Housing Training Institute (NHTI) participant & NEACUHO Scholarship recipient: June 2012
Social Issues Committee: GLBTQA & Allies Retreat Co-Chair, June 2011 – June 2012
Professional Development Committee: June 2011 – June 2012
New Professional Development Committee: Chair, June 2009 – June 2011; RD2B Subcommittee, June 2007 – June 2009
Program Committee: (June 2007 – June 2011; Case Study Co-Coordinator, June 2007 – June 2009
Web Site Review Sub-Task Force: February 2009 – May 2009
RELI Participant & NEACUHO Scholarship Recipient: June 2007
Annual Conference Case Study Competition Winner: June 2007

NEACUHO Navigator Articles:
Just Do It…Getting Involved with NEACUHO, August 2010
Staying Involved When You May Not Feel Supported, June 2010

Attended and presented at numerous NEACUHO events, including drive-ins, retreats and annual conferences. 

Candidate Statement: 

Hello colleagues!  I am very excited to be nominated for President-Elect.  I was introduced to NEACUHO when I attended the Annual Conference in 2007 as the only person from my institution.  Within a few hours of my arrival, a group from another institution had “adopted me” and made me feel welcomed to my first NEACUHO event.  I was encouraged to participate in the Case Study Competition and had a great experience.  Before the end of the conference, I decided I wanted to stay involved.  At that time, I definitely did not realize the positive impact my decision to become active would have on my career path.  Over a decade later, I am still grateful for the connections and learning NEACUHO has afforded me.  I have had the opportunity to serve NEACUHO in a variety of ways and want to continue giving back to the organization that has done so much for me. 

The possibility of entering the presidential cycle during what is a pivotal time for NEACUHO is energizing.  The completion of the 2011-2017 Strategic Plan requires NEACUHO’s leadership to once again look at the current status and future of the organization.   I am highly motivated to engage and connect with others to assess where we have been, where we are, and where we should go.   I understand it will be important to involve the membership (and those who may not yet be members!), enhance our corporate partnerships and strengthen our professional association relationships, including ACUHO-I and the other regional affiliates.  This process will take time and dedication from a variety of folks, and I am confident I have the ability to assist the organization in doing what is needed to ensure success moving forward. 

In serving the organization, I will work to further NEACUHO’s mission of “providing opportunities for colleague support, professional development, sharing of information, communication, research and recognition of outstanding contributions to the field.”  The diversity found within the identities of our members and in the types of institutions we serve present NEACUHO a wealth of experiences to draw upon to accomplish this mission.  I am committed to fostering the diversity of our organization and believe this will help NEACUHO continue to provide a variety of quality development offerings within the region.  Additionally, I would support Trish Loring’s goal of engaging our senior housing officers/department leaders.  I also believe the organization needs to look at how we are serving, educating, and recognizing our mid-level managers.  NEACUHO continues to do great work and want to enhance our reach to better serve our entire membership. 

Finally, I would like to express thanks for taking the time to review all of the candidate statements.  Helping to select the leadership of our organization is important.  My time with NEACUHO has been a very rewarding experience, and I am humbled by the prospect of leading this amazing organization.   I appreciate your consideration of my candidacy.  



Sonya Alexander - Fairfield University
Assistant Director for Community Engagement

MS, Organizational Psychology - University of Hartford
BA, Music Performance - Central Connecticut State University
BS, Music Education - Central Connecticut State University

Work Experience:

SUNY Purchase, Assistant Director, Office of Community Engagement June 2018 - Present
Fairfield University, Area Coordinator, Residence Life September 2013 - June 2018
Central Connecticut State University, Residence Hall Director, Residence Life August 2010 - September 2013
University of Hartford, Resident Director July 2007 - August 2010

NEACUHO Involvement
Current Secretary
Past and Current Committee Work:
        Program Committee
        Social Issues (now E.D.I)
        Residential Operations
        Self-Study Task Force Member
        Organizational Communication Task Force Chair

Candidate Statement:

I have been involved with NEACUHO since 2007 when I became a professional in Student Affairs.  This organization has been instrumental to my growth and I would like to continue to serve NEACUHO and its members in the Treasurer-elect role.  I have been dedicated to each role that I have served in. Currently I am finishing my term as secretary where I am responsible for minutes and serving as a voting member on the board.  Having an understanding of NEACUHO history as well as looking to serve the interest of its members is important to me.  

Michael Cherry - Northeastern University
Assistant Director of Residential Life

B.S. in Communications - University of Tennessee
M.S. in Higher Education - Florida State University

Work Experience:
Assistant Director at Northeastern University 2017- Present
Area Coordinator at University of Mississippi 2014-2017
Community Director at UNC-Chapel Hill 2011-2014 

NEACUHO Involvement:
I’ve volunteered with programming committee at the 2017 annual conference, volunteered with the programming committee and professional development committee throughout the 2017-2018 academic year. 

Candidate Statement:

I’m excited to be considered for the Treasurer-Elect position within NEACUHO. While I know that I’m new to the Northeast region, I have had a long commitment to professional service in my former region of SEAHO. I started my involvement as a graduate student and have been involved in committee work (including chairing) and attended every annual conference in both regions since that very first year. In the SEAHO Region I served four years as a member of the Graduate Issues and involvement Committee including one year as the chair and a member of the SEAHO general council.  I also served 3 years on the programming committee leading different initiatives for development opportunities both at the annual conference and during the year.  These experiences helped me develop a mindset of thinking about the needs of others and best the organization could meet them. In NEACUHO, I jumped in right away, volunteering with the program committee with the Annual conference last fall and this year with the professional development committee. I’ve also attended the Fall RD2B conference and volunteered to be a mentor there. My time in NEACUHO has already been rewarding personally and I have seen the great work of my new professional home.  I have a strong belief that service to one’s profession is a responsibility we all have and my way of doing that has been regional housing involvement.

Specifically, I see the Treasurer-Elect position as an opportunity to ensure the necessary resources the organization needs to host the development opportunities and achieve strategic priorities of the organization are available. One experience that I think will help me in this position was my time serving as the Advisor for the North Carolina Association of Residence Halls (NCARH). This student led organization operated its own budget, expenses and was supported primarily by membership fees and conference revenue. During my time as Advisor I helped the organization create and operate on an annual budget and solidify with the bank what type of account best served the needs of the organization. This organization served 15-member institutions and annual conference with about 200 participants. I recognize that the organizations are different, but I believe this has set me up for an understanding of non-profit organizational finances.   I also have had increased budget responsibilities in all of my professional positions and bring a dedication to creating and following processes to all the work that I do.

As Treasurer-elect, I would look forward to working with the Treasurer and the leadership of NEACUHO in solidifying the financial success of the organization and learning the specifics of how our organization uses its funds.  I have strong sense for responsible use of resources, but will bring an excitement for ensuring that all resources of the organization are used to best support the membership. I also believe in a transparent management of the organizations finances and would work to provide regular and clear reporting of how all of our organizations finances are being used. 

Chermele Christy - Hofstra University
Associate Director of Residence Life

BA Elementary Education - St. Peter’s University
MS Special Education - Wagner College

Work Experience:
Associate Director of Residence Life - Hofstra University (Current)
Assistant Director of Residence Life - Notre Dame of Maryland
Resident Director - Southern Connecticut State University

NEACUHO Involvement:
Active Member, Presented “Ronald’s Journey” at 2016 NEACUHO conference.

Candidate Statement:

I am running for the treasurer elect position due to the experience I have with being the treasurer for LICSPA which is the Long Island Council of Student Personnel Administrators.  My primary focus was on distribution of funds, financial report writings and assist the President in finances when needed.


Shereen Hassanein – New York University
Residence Hall Director

MS - Indiana State University
BA - Rutgers University

Work Experience:
Residence Hall Director, New York University (Nov 2016- Present)
Community Director, Georgetown University (July 203-Nov 2016)

NEACUHO Involvement:
I currently serve on the conference planning committee and the Professional Development Committee for NEACUHO

Candidate Statement:

The role of Treasurer Elect requires collaborative work with the Treasurer, the Financial Committee, and the Executive Board as well, as the willingness to take on additional tasks, as needed. I believe I possess the skills to fulfill this position. As a colleague and committee member, at my home institution, I am accustomed to collaborating with other colleagues to achieve a shared vision for our work.  

Matthew McGrath - Suffolk University
Associate Director of Residence Life and Housing

MEd. in Psychology with a Concentration in Student Personnel Administration

Work Experience:
Currently the Associate Director of Operations at Suffolk University. Previously a Residence Director at Suffolk University for one year and prior to that the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth for two years. I also served as an RD while at graduate school for two years at Springfield College.

NEACUHO Involvement:
I attended my first ACUHO-I Conference in July of 2017 and immediately felt welcome and at home. I wanted to find a way to get involved and decided to attend NEACUHO in October of 2017. I knew I wanted to get involved and immediately joined the ResOps committee and helped put together the program for ResOps Conference. I am currently on the Annual Conference Committee and that has been a great experience thus far.

Candidate Statement:

As a fairly new active member of NEACUHO, I am honored to have been nominated for the Treasurer Elect position. It is my hope in the following paragraphs to tell you a little about myself, my experience, skills, and why I am qualified to be elected Treasurer Elect.

In my current role as the Associate Director of Operations at Suffolk University, I use numbers and logistics to successfully “put butts in beds” one of the most competitive housing markets in the country. I work with our admission team to ensure we have enough students living in the residence halls to successfully sustain our housing and residence life budget. As a tuition driven institution, my role is integral in the success and financial stability of the institution. In addition to being sure there are students to fill our residence halls, I am also responsible for providing budget numbers to our finance team, approve meal plan invoices and work with our facilities department on damage/accident repair costs.

The skills necessary to be a successful Associate Director of Housing Operations go hand in hand with the skills needed to be a successful Treasurer or Treasurer Elect for NEACUHO. Attention to detail and timely communication are two of my strengths that I would need to rely on for both positions. When dealing with financials, it is important to make sure that every dollar is accounted for and those who need to know where the organization stands financially know those details in a timely manner.

In addition to having the skills and experience needed to successfully be the Treasurer Elect for NEACHO, I think it’s equally important for you to know that I will make positive impact on the overall Executive Board team. My sense of humor, ability to work in a team, and passion for our field are each vital to my day to day work. I’m efficient in my approach to solving problems and work to find solutions that are innovative and collaborative.

Thank you again for your time and consideration of me as your Treasurer Elect. 

Lee Seguin – College of Mount Saint Vincent
Associate Director of Housing & Residence Life

M.S. in Mental Health Counseling (In Progress) – Manhattan College
B.S. in Business Management (2011) – Thomas College

Work Experience:
Associate Director of Housing & Residence Life (2016 – Present), College of Mount Saint Vincent
Area Coordinator (2014 – 2016), College of Mount Saint Vincent
Research Associate in Business (2015 – 2016), Columbia Business School
Coordinator of Student Activities & Residence Life (2011 – 2014), Bates College

NEACUHO Involvement:
Active Member since 2011

Candidate Statement:

Greetings!  I am excited to have been nominated for the Treasurer-Elect position.  Ten years ago, I began my journey in residence life; like many of you, I became an RA and never looked back.  As a student leader, I coupled my studies in business with my on-campus involvement in residence life, programming boards, and student government to understand how institutions of higher education operate from a business perspective and how our practices influence the student experience.  In my two years as the treasurer of our student government association, I worked closely with the institution’s leadership, accounting office and bank to develop a new and efficient way to administer the accounts, funds and transactions of all student-run organizations, which I was responsible for tracking and along with issuing checks.  During this time, I established a new process for budget requests, and chaired a subcommittee that produced a major revision of the SGA constitution.   

At Bates College I held a joint position in both the student activities and residence life offices.  In this capacity I coordinated both large- and small- scale events; developing close working relationships with venues, agents and vendors to help make our programs and trainings successful within our budget.  Additionally, I worked very closely with our Dining, Conferences and Campus Events office to host external groups and conferences.  For the past two years, I have had the pleasure of leading the housing and residence life department at the College of Mount Saint Vincent.

Mentorship has played a significant role in my success and experiences over the years.  NEACUHO’s network and proud members that make up our community have been at the center of my professional development since joining back in 2011; it’s where I often turn to for guidance, support, and benchmarking and I hope to contribute to the organization’s success long-term.

This truly is an exciting time to be a part of NEACUHO.  With the next strategic plan on the horizon, it’s imperative that the treasurer-elect work closely with the treasurer and the rest of the Board members to continue the forward momentum in our financial strategies that the past and current leadership has worked so hard to achieve, while aiding in the development and implementation of our next phase.  If elected, I will rely on my background in budget and financial management to better understand the intricacies of the day-to-day work currently underway, while keeping both the long-term and short-term goals in mind for the organization.  It’s the precision in the details which make the big picture complete, and this is an area I excel in. 

I’m excited about the possibility of bringing my background and skillset to the Board, and working closely with our Treasurer to actively carry out NEACUHO’s mission through the organization’s financial initiatives.  

Scott Sheehan – University of Rochester

Residence Director

MS Student Affairs and Higher Education SUNY Plattsburgh
BA in History and Political Science SUNY Plattsburgh

Work Experience:

Resident Director University of Rochester (Current)
Resident Hall Director SUNY Oswego
Graduate Resident Director SUNY Plattsburgh

NEACUHO Involvement:
Attended the 2014 Annual Conference at Bridgewater State. Finished in 8th place at the 5k fun run at the Annual Conference that year.

Candidate Statement:

Thank you for the opportunity to run for the Treasurer of NEACUHO.  My first ever professional conference was the Annual in 2014 at Bridgewater State.  The conference was informative, exciting, and had a friendly atmosphere.  This set me up with high expectations for conferences from there on out.  Over the next few years I attended several national conferences, but never had that same close-knit feel as I did with NEACUHO.  Now that I am back working at a member school, I am determined to jump right into NEACUHO, and this opportunity.  Housing and residence life is a passion of mine, and region-specific groups like NEACUHO I believe are a great way to share valuable information among schools with similar student populations with similar needs.  As for my relevant experience with the position of Treasurer; I was the first Treasurer for my Fraternity, Pi Kappa Phi, during my Junior year of college.  In this position I was tasked with developing our first budget, hold finance committee meetings, and allocate funds accordingly.  In addition to being our first Treasurer, I was also our first philanthropy chair, and in this role I had to undertake how to register our group as a non-profit organization.  In my professional role as an RD I have had to manage large budgets with different spending accounts and different methods of tracking these expenses.  I have led various meetings as well as my time as a professional, and would feel comfortable stepping up if I were to act in place of the current Treasurer.  I am ready to commit to this position fully if elected and to assist my fellow board members to the best of my ability.  During my time in college, and as a professional anything I have decided to put my efforts toward I have given 100%, I am ready to do that for this organization.  Thank you for taking the time to read my statement.  Go Pats!


Thomas Peckenpaugh – Umass Amherst

Residence Director

Master of Science in CSPA from University of Central Missouri

Work Experience:
Residence Director - UMass Amherst 3 years (Current)
Residence Hall Coordinator - Illinois State University 3 years

NEACUHO Involvement:
I have attended several of the drive-in conferences throughout the last three years.

Candidate Statement:

My name is Thomas Peckenpaugh, and I am currently a Residence Director at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst.  Over the last 8 years, I have been developing my knowledge and support for conferences and organizations that are beneficial to our field.  Through my experience, drive and passion, I am thrilled about the nomination and possibility to be more involved with NEACUHO. From being on an executive board, to presenting and advising, but as well, I had the opportunity to provide logistical support for an institute.  While in grad school, I held an executive board position that was responsible for sending out communication to current and alumni of our program.  Assisting with the organization of our annual CSPA Conference, which was a promotion of student affairs and bringing in alumni to speak to both undergraduate and graduate students about the field.  Most recently, I had the opportunity to work with RELI 2017 that was hosted by UMass-Amherst.  This opportunity allowed me to use my knowledge and expertise working with various stakeholders, to help provide the necessary support and logistical planning as a host institution.

As an individual that values professional growth and opportunities, I also value the importance of communication and relationship building.  It was those values that I possess, that allowed for me to provide the successful support for RELI 2017.  Given the tasks shortly before RELI 2017 began, I was able to successful work alongside another coordinator to effectively and efficiently plan and organize spaces, coordinating meals, working with both off- and on-campus partners to ensure that the participants and faculty were able to focus on the needs of the institute.  Communication was very key component in assisting to make this a success.  I utilized various skills, such as time management, listening, logistical planning, event planning, and interpersonal, to assist in playing the necessary role in making it a successful experience for all stakeholders.

I would take the same skills, abilities and mindset to be successful in the role of a District Coordinator for NEACUHO.  As I continue my career within the field, I find the value and importance of giving back to our regional organization.  As an individual who has been involved and attendee of various drive-in conferences through NEACUHO, I am looking to now give back.  NEACUHO has given me the opportunity to learn and develop through critical engagement.  Therefore, I want to give back and provide countless others the same opportunity to learn and grow within their field.  By nominating me for the Massachusetts District Coordinator, I would continue to promote membership and recruitment to the organization, as well as give back to an amazing organization that has continued to play a vital role in my career path and development.

Antonio Willis-Berry – Bentley University

Assistant Director of Housing Operations

Master’s Degree from the University of Pennsylvania (2014)
Bachelor’s Degree from the College of the Holy Cross (2013)

Work Experience:
Assistant Director of Housing Operations at Bentley University (2016 – Present)
Residence Director at Bentley University (2014 – 2016)

NEACUHO Involvement:
NEACUHO Residential Operations Chair (2017-2018)

Candidate Statement:

Earlier in the Spring semester, I had an opportunity to attend a roundtable discussion hosted at Brandeis University for all MA members of NEACUHO. I knew by the end of the conversation that I would someday want to run for Massachusetts District Coordinator, because it was a great opportunity to sit down, learn from, and connect, face-to-face, with staff from other institutions within our state about issues related to students, staff, facilities, and changes/updates to the law. I am even more excited today about this chance to continue making connections across Massachusetts for NEACUHO, along with bringing the region together for smaller events and conversations with others who might be much closer to you. Currently, I am serving as the Residential Operations Chair for NEACUHO, I have appreciated holding this my role, because I’ve learned so much about NEACUHO through this position. I’ve also networked with professionals working in Residential Operations throughout the region, along with representing those interests to the E-Board. Through that position, I’ve spent time watching the current MA District Coordinator interact and be a liaison of the region, and I’ve had the chance to connect with the current group of District Coordinators. I’ve chatted with them about what has worked, what wouldn’t work, and how I might be able to impact our district. Massachusetts is a relatively large state and it takes time to travel from MCLA to UMass Amherst to Bentley University to Emmanuel College. Therefore, I would like to divide the region into subgroups for smaller events, socials, and learning opportunities, then bring the district together for large scale initiatives. There are so great programs currently being sponsored in our district by MA-NASPA, BACHA, MCPA, etc. My plan is to connect our organization with these organizations to create more opportunities for learning, networking, and engagement. We have the ability to learn a great deal from one another and I’m hoping to offer the spaces and opportunities to for this to occur.

Eastern New York/Vermont District Coordinator

Zachary VanGelder – Skidmore College

Area Coordinator

MS in Management - Elmira College
BS in Political Science and International Studies - The College at Brockport

Work Experience:
Area Coordinator at Skidmore College 2017 – present
Residence Hall Director at SUNY Cortland 2016-2017
Area Coordinator at Elmira College 2015-2016
Residence Life Coordinator at Elmira College 2012-2015

NEACUHO Involvement:
Member since October 2017. Attended first NEACUHO EDI Conference in February 2018.

Candidate Statement:

This is my sixth year in the field of Residence Life and Housing and with that experience I have gained knowledge and skills that I believe well suit me for the District Coordinator position for Eastern NY and Vermont. I have worked in the capacity of a Residence Hall Director and Area Coordinator position at three vastly different institutions which I believe has provided me with new perspectives on different ways a Residence Life department functions. Also, all three institutions I have worked for have been in the NEACUHO region so I believe that gives me a great sense of familiarity with the NEACUHO region overall but as well as the district I would be representing. I am an upstate New York native so I am very familiar with the area and the schools in the region I would be representing.

I am also looking to gain this position to increase my own professional development in an external capacity. I have been afforded many professional development opportunities from within my institutions but I see this new opportunity as a whole new experience to further my knowledge in the field of Residence Life and Housing. Through this positon I hope to broaden my horizons even further with how different schools run their Residence Life and Housing departments. I also want to become more involved with NEACUHO and use my knowledge and skills to help its overall mission. This will be an excellent opportunity for me to network with other schools and colleagues who I am not familiar with while also increasing our membership recruitment efforts.

I have excellent organizational and communication skills which will be essential for this positon. The positon will need someone who can be reliable and offer quick response times to member institutions for any questions they may have and I believe I can offer that service. I also have prior experience in digital communications and social media management and would be excited to bring that experience to this positon. I believe using digital means for outreach is instrumental in engaging member schools in the Eastern NY and Vermont region. In addition, I have several years of experience with professional and student recruitment where I have integrated new technologies to improve the effectiveness and efficiency of those recruitment processes. I would bring that prior experience to this positon and make sure we are making our best effort to recruit new members in my district to the NEACUHO organization. NEACUHO is an excellent organization to be a part of for anyone who wants to further their career in the field so I believe it is important that we are engaging all members within the region so everyone has access to the benefits of NEACUHO.

Metro New York District Coordinator

Samantha Bassford – Adelphi University

Residence Hall Director

Master of Arts Media and Communications - Pace University- Pleasantville
Bachelor of Arts Communication Studies - Pace University- NYC 

Work Experience:
Residence Hall Director at Adelphi University 2016- current
Residence Hall Director at Pace University- Pleasantville 2012-2016

NEACUHO Involvement:
Attended NEACUHO Annual in 2016 and 2017
Presented RD2B Fall 2017.
Organized my current institution to attended the first Toolkit Series in 2017.
Hosted and planned at current institution the Metro-NY District Roundtable discussion March 2017.
Currently serving on the New Professionals and Professional Development Committee.

Candidate Statement:

Greetings NEACUHO! My name is Samantha Bassford and it is an honor to submit my Candidate Statement for the Metro-NY District Coordinator position.  I have been in the field for 5 years including being a full time Graduate and Full-Time Residence Director.  Currently, I am a Residence Hall Director at Adelphi University. In my roles, I have worked on multiple committees to help achieve the goals of each institution’s strategic plan. I hope to translate my work as a professional to the regional level.  While in my graduate position, the department’s leadership promoted professional development through NEACUHO. I took advantage of this opportunity to get involved.  Since them, I have presented at RD2B, currently serve on the New Professional and Professional Development Committee, attended the Annual Conference in 2016 and 2017, and planned the Metro-NY District roundtable discussion hosted at Adelphi in March 2017.

When I first went to a National Conference I was overwhelmed as a new professional. That same year I went to the NEACUHO Annual Conference and felt opposite. I felt recharged, inspired, learned a lot, and made great connections. The experience changed my outlook on conferences and started my journey to be more involved in NEACUHO. If elected as the Metro-NY District Coordinator, I want to make sure all members of are district feel engaged and are communicated to. Every few months I want to continue to organize roundtable discussions and socials to grow our network and enhance the community of support and resources. I would like to empower institutions to organize roundtable discussions so it provides professional development in planning itself. As training and sessions can be expensive, I want to coordinate a list of professionals in our district and start connecting with professionals who are willing to present pro-bono to other institutions.  This will be a valuable resource as institutions continue to face budget cuts and still want to provide quality professional development to staff, which will ultimately influence the greater good of serving our students. I also want to recruit more institutions within my own network and beyond to grow our district. As a member of the Long Island Student Affairs Professional organization, I can connect with more Residential Life professionals and collaborate to better support both organizations. At Executive Board meetings, I will represent the Metro-NY member and do my best to advocate for needs of each of these diverse institutions. My goal for communication with the district is to connect before every executive board meeting, asking the membership for feedback I can bring forward. I am a professional who is open to suggestions, feedback, and collaboration and will model this as the Metro-NY DC.

Thank you for your time in reading my Candidate Statement. Regardless of this outcome, I truly look forward to continue to grow together as professionals in NEACUHO!

Vinnie Birkenmeyer – Pace University - Pleasantville

Assistant Director – Community Development

Master’s of Public Administration – Pace University
Bachelor’s of Arts – Pace University

Work Experience:

I have worked in progressively larger roles at Pace University since graduating in 2011. These positions included Graduate Assistant Residence Director (2 years); Residence Director- Full Time (1 Year); Assistant Director (4 years). I have had the chance to work in our department during a period of great transition which has given me the opportunity to oversee projects in many aspects of our field including community development, training, recruitment, selection, living-learning communities, faculty-in-residence, first-year placements, assessment, budgeting and summer conferences.

NEACUHO Involvement:
Chair/Member- Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee (2016-current)
Member- Residential Education Committee (current)
Member- Operations Manual Task Force (current)
Member- Ethical Standards Document Task Force (January 2018)
Member- New Professional Committee (2014-2015)
Member- Professional Development committee (2014-2015)
Attendee and Presenter- Annual Conferences; RD2B; Metro New York Roundtables; Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Retreat

Candidate Statement:

It is my honor to be nominated for Metro-New York District Governor! Since attending my first NEACUHO Annual conference at Northeastern 5 years ago, I knew that I had caught the NEACUHO bug. I met folks from all over the region who were excited to share ideas, learn together, and network all in the hopes of bettering the student experience on our campuses. NEACUHO has been a vital part of my professional development as it has (or can be) for many of you! My professional experience has been at one institution and NEACUHO has given me the chance to learn from a vast network of professionals, campuses and departments across our region. I cannot count the number of ideas, policies, programs, or initiatives that I have brought to my department which have sparked from a meeting, conversation, or offering of NEACUHO. That is why I think it is my duty to give back to this organization in a way that best serves our region. For the last year I have served on the Executive Board as the Chair of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion which has been an amazing experience in so many ways. Working together with a committee of members from multiple institutions, bringing an equity-minded lens to multiple NEACUHO initiatives, and serving as a resource in this specific area for many of you has been an amazing experience.

Serving as the Metro New York District Coordinator will allow me to continue to give back to the region in a way that uses my strengths and abilities in networking, training, and connecting others to valuable resources. In this role, I hope to continue the success of our round-table conversations and bring more colleagues to the table to discuss important topics that the region is looking to learn more about. I plan on implementing a comprehensive plan to recruit new institutions in our area. Metro New York is uniquely positioned to be a robust region within NEACUHO due to our vast amount of diversity in institutions and our relatively close proximity to each other. By spending ample time recruiting institutions into NEACUHO from our region, we will make our district offerings that I would plan to host (roundtable discussions, online conversations, networking socials, etc.) more robust and fruitful. These offerings will give us the chance to share ideas around critical topics and create relationships amongst our staffs that help us all.

NEACUHO has truly become my professional home and I am very grateful to be given the potential opportunity to serve this great organization. I look forward to difficult conversations around important topics, advocating for the Metro-NY institutions, and helping to continue to build on the successes of the past. 

Ange Concepcion – Wagner University

Director of Residential Education

Fordham University, In Progress - Ph.D in Educational Leadership
Northwestern University, 2010 - M.S.Ed Higher Education Administration and Policy
Loyola University Chicago, 2008 - B.S. Physics

Work Experience:
Wagner College - 2016 - Present: Director of Residential Education
Iona College - 2013-2015: Assistant Director of Residential Life

Fairfield University - 2010-2013:  Area Coordinator, Senior Area Coordinator - Residence Life

NEACUHO Involvement:

Risk Management and Legal Issues Committee - 2016 - Committee Member

Residential Education Committee - 2017 - Present - Committee Member

Candidate Statement:

Over the last academic year, I’ve had the opportunity to learn more about NEACUHO through my involvement in the Residential Education committee and helping plan the first Res Ed drive-in retreat this June, attending NEACUHO annual and Residential Operations conferences, and participating in Metro NY roundtable. I formally submit my candidacy in consideration of the Metro NY District Coordinator.

I’ve had the pleasure of continuously learning over the last eight years of working in residential life and housing.  Although my involvement in NEACUHO has been recent, there are opportunities that I would like to undertake as a Metro NY District Coordinator to further support NEACUHO: facilitate career mentorship opportunities among new, mid-level, and senior-level professionals; encourage NEACUHO membership at new institutions in Metro NY area; and work closely with member institutions to offer semesterly networking and professional development opportunities.

My content areas of strength include organizational change management, budgeting, staff development, recruitment, Title IX, and social justice and diversity. Within the realm of professional development, I’ve presented at various local, regional, and national conferences. These topics have included sexual assault and misconduct prevention strategies at Catholic institutions, challenges in organizational change, utilizing leadership practices to empower college students, developing a social justice residential college experience, and how to develop paraprofessional staff to engage in social justice education and conversations in the residence halls.

Thank you for your consideration and hope to see you soon at a NEACUHO conference!

Kevin Conn – New York University

Assistant Director - Residence Life

Kevin is currently working on his Doctorate in Higher Education at NYU Steinhardt.  He has a MS in HR from Stony Brook University; a MS in Higher Education, from SIU-Carbondale; and a BBA from Grand Valley State University.

Work Experience:

Kevin has over ten years of progressive full-time experience after obtaining his master’s degree in Higher Education Administration.  Kevin worked 7 years full-time at Stony Brook University (3 years as a Residence Hall Director and 4 years as an Assistant Director for College Housing).  After leaving Stony Brook, Kevin joined the staff at New York University and currently works as an Assistant Director of Residential Life overseeing all of the upperclass Residence Halls owned by NYU.  In this role Kevin directly and indirectly oversees 15 Full-time professional staff in residence halls located in both Manhattan and Brooklyn.

NEACUHO Involvement:

Kevin attended the 2016 and 2017 NEACUHO Annual Conference and has been an active conference presenter while attending these conferences.  Kevin brought a team of professional staff from NYU to the 2017 NEACUHO Annual Conference and works to encourage active participation within his Department and colleagues.  He also served on a bid team to try to bring NEACUHO to Stony Brook during his working at SBU.  

Candidate Statement:

In the role of the Metro NY District Coordinator, I would serve as the primary liaison to the NEACUHO Executive Board representing the Metro NY District.  I would maintain an open line of communication to the Board expressing any updates from the Metro NY District or areas for development that could be further enhanced and refined on within my position.  I would also work directly with the membership to further understand their needs through direct outreach and communication that would help better understand that population that I would serve in this position.

Another key component to this position is working with the membership coordinator on recruitment and retention of membership within my district.  Throughout my time at NYU I have learned both the importance and value of outreach and constant communication within my role.  I work with staff, students, and teams in both our Manhattan, Brooklyn, and Washington DC Campus.  Much of this communication has to occur electronically or via phone as the locations are spread out from one another.  Through these experiences, I have learned the importance of not only the flow of communication, but the quality, how often, and that what is communicated is clear and helpful to those I’m working with on a daily basis.  I would work to ensure that I provide those in my district information and resources that are relevant to them, as well as provide opportunities for involvement and connections across member institutions within the district. 

Providing support for new participants with appropriate committees at conference is also an important facet of this role.  Within my role at NYU I work with two of our committees, professional staff training and development as well as recruitment.  Through my work in both of these groups I have aided in the full process from staff recruiting and on-boarding into their on-going professional development while at NYU.  I would use this same mindset when thinking about orientation for new members within NEACUHO.  Providing opportunities for connections for new members to the organization as well as resources that could aid in their transition into their membership within NEACUHO is critical. 

Finally, I would help with securing and determining sites for future NEACUHO events as requested within the guidelines of this position.  Within my committee work at NYU within the Residence Life and Housing Services and Serving on our Pride @ Work Steering Committee I work to select locations of trainings and networking opportunities.  Through these experiences I have formed connections and learned ways to best approach building a rapport with local businesses and stakeholders to help secure these locations.   I would use this knowledge in my role if selected for this position.

It would be my pleasure to serve in this role.  If selected, I would fulfill all responsibilities as outline by the position description and work collaboratively with all members of the NEACUHO Executive Board to help the organization reach its goals and objectives.

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