Board of Directors
Director/Event Coordinator Chair
Ms. Dobies is a veteran educator in the field of special education. She brings her experience as teacher, school administrator and college professor to this committee. She has received the Award of Distinction from the Long Island Association of Special Educators. Ms. Dobies is a well-respected advocate for children. She is committed to excellence and equity for the students she serves.
MARCELLA PIZZO, PH.D. ABD, LMHC
Director/Community Liaison Chair
Recently Published Peer-Reviewed Article:
Political Discourse and Aging in a Neoliberal Singapore: Models of Citizenship, Older Adults and Policy Initiatives, Journal of Aging & Social Policy (2020)
Marcella is a Doctoral Candidate at Adelphi University’s School of Social Work. Her research interests are focused on institutionalized forms of oppression, organizational barriers to promoting social justice, and economic disparities at the intersection of race, gender, and sexuality. Marcella founded a behavioral health practice in East Meadow where she works as New York State Licensed Mental Health Counselor that provides therapeutic interventions to adults. Her post graduate training includes certification in Cognitive Behavioral Therapy that is utilized as a primary method of treatment interventions. As an active member of her community, she is on the executive board of the East Meadow Chamber of Commerce, and a founding board member of Equity4LIYouth.org. Some of her awards and recognitions include: Hometown Hero, for Community Service, East Meadow Herald (July 2020), Town of Hempstead Citation for Community work with Chamber of Commerce (January 2020) and A State Senator Proclamation for Community work with Chamber of Commerce (January 2020).
In her spare time, Marcella loves physical activities, traveling and experiencing new cultures, cooking, and cultivating her garden. Marcella resides in Nassau county with her family.
Mr. Callan has over 31 years experience as a school custodian, including 30 years as a supervisor. He has also served as a CSEA union delegate for 16 years in the capacity of treasurer, Vice President and President. In his district he is an active member of the Sustainability Committee, the Strategic Leadership and Planning Committee and served on the Bond Committee. He is also involved with the interviews pertaining to cleaning, custodial, maintenance and grounds positions. Mr. Callan holds 9 green cleaning certifications from NYOGS, is a certified class "A" Underground Storage Tank Operator and certified in Bloodborne pathogens.
Mrs. Garcia is a Principal in the East Meadow School district and has 16 years of experience in education in different capacities. Mrs. Garcia started her career with the New York City Department of Education as a teacher, staff developer, and administrator. Prior to becoming an educator, Mrs. Garcia worked in higher education as a Residence Hall Director and then as an Assistant Director of Residential Life. Mrs. Garcia is a lifelong learner and leads by example as she obtained three master’s degrees and is currently working towards her doctoral degree in Educational & Policy Leadership. She believes in working together for the greater good. Mrs. Garcia is an advocate for youth and thinks everyone deserves a fair chance.
“Alone we can do so little; TOGETHER we can do so much.” – Helen Keller
DR. JACCI HARRIS
Dr. Jacqueline Harris serves as Executive Director for Access 7 Services, Inc. where she is an integral part of the branding, coordination of services, recruitment, and daily operations of this agency that provides special education supports and services across Long Island. She also uses her leadership skills to serve as the Program Director for the Cedarmore Corporation’s Youth Empowerment Series, coordinating the culturally relevant Girlz Talk and BoyzN2Men programs for underserved youth. Her notable work on disproportionality, access, and equity has been recognized locally, regionally, and nationally.
ALAN HODISH, ESQ.
I am currently the Assistant Director of Special Education and Pupil Personnel Services for the Freeport Union Free School District and have been in this position for the past eight years. In my capacity, I supervise the Special Education and Pupil Personnel Staff, evaluate student growth, and conduct Committee on Special Education Meetings, BOCES Meetings, and Manifestation Determination Meetings in both English and Spanish. I also resolve State Education Department issues and complete mandated reports. I am proficient in the New York State Part 200 Regulations and am able to apply them on any level.
Prior to this position, I served in the capacity of the 6-12 Special Education Department Coordinator for the Garden City Union Free School District. I also worked for the Central Islip Union Free School District in the capacity of Administrator for Special Education and Director of Special Education and Pupil Personnel Services. My administrative experience began at the South Country Central School District as the CPSE Chairman/District Psychologist. I also worked at the New York City Board of Education as a Bilingual (Spanish) School Psychologist as well as a Monolingual School Psychologist. I am extremely passionate about education and started off my educational journey as a middle school mathematics and science teacher straight out of college.
Alan B. Hodish, Esq. maintains a law practice in Garden City, New York. Prior to attending law school at St. John’s University, Mr. Hodish taught for more than twenty years in the Hempstead School District. He coached both football and lacrosse while at Hempstead.
His community service includes the East Meadow Chamber of Commerce: Past President 2003, Man of the Year 2014, Business Person of the Year 2008, and Chair of the Chamber’s Annual Mock Interview Program held for East Meadow School District students.
Mr. Hodish also developed and currently chairs the Nassau County Bar Association’s Mentor Program, which will be entering its twenty-fifth year, that brings judges and lawyers together with “at risk” students in ten communities throughout Nassau County including both Clarke and Woodland Middle schools in the East Meadow School District