Ballman to head Cultural Affairs
Phil Ballman was appointed as the director of Cultural Affairs and Tourism by Borough President Melinda Katz.
Ballman is an internationally recognized cultural event producer with two decades of comprehensive experience presenting and producing world-class programming for major institutions and independent cultural organizations and artists.
“I look forward to helping the borough president implement her vision for maximizing the impact and reach of our borough’s great cultural institutions and its other fabulous attractions, which have made Queens a go-to destination for so many visitors and residents,” said Ballman.
From 2015 to 2018, Ballman was manager of Community Engagement and Partnerships for the College of Performing Arts at The New School.
In that position, he created ongoing partnerships and programming with external organizations that included the City Parks Foundation, Make Music New York, the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival, the World Music Institute, the Lincoln Center Atrium, the Union Square Partnership, The Morgan Library, and others.
During the previous five years, Ballman was coordinator of Special Programs for The New School for Jazz and Contemporary Music, where he curated, produced and coordinated all aspects of public programming, event scheduling and student professional development.
He is also the founder, producer and artistic director of the Otherground Music Festival, a free outdoor summer concert series that served the diverse Queens neighborhoods of Jackson Heights and Elmhurst with first-class, internationally themed music performances in the summer of 2010.
He was the manager and drummer for the band Antibalas from 1999 to 2003.
Ballman has a Bachelor of Arts degree from The New School, and lives in Jackson Heights with his wife, visual artist Deborah Wasserman.
Perlin first female COO at Met
Met Council announced this week that Melissa Perlin, formerly vice president of Finance at the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, has joined Met Council as the first-ever female Chief Operating Officer (COO) in the organization’s 45-year history.
Perlin will oversee the day-to-day operations of Met Council’s ten different departments serving over 225,000 clients each year. She will work to maximize the productivity of those programs and ensure that Met Council is providing top quality services to all of their clients.
Perlin will also work in coordination with the finance department to manage spending and ensure resources are used in the most efficient and effective ways.
“I look forward to helping them improve and expand services to help the neediest New Yorkers.” Perlin said, “I’ve observed Met Council’s leadership in the non-profit sector for many years and have marveled at their ability to help over 225,000 people each year.”
Some of those Met Council programs include America’s largest free kosher food distribution system, New York’s largest Jewish provider of domestic violence services, support for thousands of Holocaust survivors, and 21 affordable housing buildings across New York City with rents ranging from $200 to $800 per month.
Perlin joins Met Council with two decades of experience in non-profit management in accounting, budgeting, and operational planning, most recently as vice president of Finance at National MS Society.
Her prior roles included overseeing financial and administrative operations and strategic planning for the organization’s 40 chapters across the United States.
Perlin also has significant experience in the private sector, spending five years as a manager at PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC). There she managed a team focused on financial system selection, implementation, and training.
Her clients included some of the country’s largest nonprofits, including UJA-Federation, Salvation Army, and National Multiple Sclerosis Society, as well as public utilities including the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA).
STJ prof honored by Ecuador
Dr. Marie-Lise Gazarian, St. John’s University professor of Spanish, was recognized by the government of Ecuador and the Foundation for the Integration and Development of Latin America (FIDAL) with the “Life Path to Educational Excellence Recognition.”
The award is given each year to exceptional teachers and professionals from Latin America, Spain and the United States. The award also shows the importance of literary work in the promotion of Hispanic literature and Ibero-American culture.
FIDAL was created 20 years ago in Ecuador, and its main objective is to improve the quality of education and self-esteem of teachers in Latin America.
On October 2,Gazarian was named Honorary Professor by The Private Technical University of Loja (UTPL) due to her contribution in the dissemination of Hispanic culture, her outstanding career in the literary field, as well as her contributions to the figure of Fernando Rielo Pardal, founder of the Institute of Christ the Redeemer Id of Missionaries and Idente Missionaries.
This recognition was issued by the Superior Council of the UTPL and is the highest level appointment that the institution offers to outstanding figures of the science, culture, and education.
Dr. Gazarian has had a long-standing experience in the promotion of Hispanic culture in the United States, for which she received the Cultural Merit award from the Government of Spain in 1981.
In April 2004, she received the Order of Merit “Gabriela Mistral” from the Government of Chile.
LaManna to head QC security
Dr. Beth A. LaManna has been named the new campus security director at Queens College.
LaManna, the first woman ever to serve as campus security director at a senior college of the City University of New York, joins Queens College after 22 years of meritorious service as a special agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
“I am both excited and honored to be a part of the Queens College community,” said LaManna. “I look forward to the opportunity to interact and work with the faculty, staff, students and guests, and to ensure that Queens College remains a safe and secure environment for all.”
LaManna attended Wayne State University in Detroit, where she earned a master’s degree in School and Community Psychology and a doctorate in Educational and Clinical Psychology.
For almost 10 years she provided clinical counseling and school psychological services in the Detroit public schools, in addition to maintaining a private clinical practice in Bloomfield Hills, Michigan.
As an adjunct professor at Wayne State University, LaManna taught graduate psychology courses. She earned her Bachelor of Science from Cornell University.
Throughout her career with the FBI, LaManna was assigned to the Criminal Division in the New York Field Office and conducted investigations involving organized crime and racketeering, complex financial fraud, money laundering, the 9/11 attacks, and civil rights violations.
LaManna held the position of crisis negotiation coordinator for the New York Office FBI’s crisis negotiation program, in which she participated for over 11 years.
Additionally, as coordinator for the National Center for the Analysis of Violent Crime, she served as the liaison between local and state law enforcement agencies requesting assistance from the FBI’s Behavioral Analysis Unit in Virginia.
She coordinated and orchestrated training focused on active school shooters, threat assessment mitigation and management, and violence in the workplace. In this capacity, LaManna had extensive opportunities to train and liaise with local, state, and federal law enforcement authorities, in particular the New York City Police Department.