The Academy was founded in 2011 to honor and support teachers as valued professionals in need of the latest knowledge and inspiration.
Our premise: by respecting teachers and giving them the support they need, we will keep them where they belong—in the classroom inspiring our children for years to come.
Our mission is to honor and support teachers through world-class learning experiences that inspire them to continue changing lives, in the classroom and beyond.
Sam Swope is on the faculty of the Bread Loaf School of English at Middlebury College. He was founding dean of the Teacher Institute at the Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers at The New York Public Library. His books include Gotta Go! Gotta Go!, The Araboolies of Liberty Street (which has been made into an opera and a musical), and I Am a Pencil: A Teacher, His Kids, and Their World of Stories.
Patricia Abitabile has been working in nonprofit development since 2014, managing over fifty fundraising and stewardship events for developmental-disabilities and early-literacy organizations. Born and raised on Staten Island, she cares deeply about her local community and began volunteering with civic groups, volunteer clubs, and scholarship programs from a young age. She is currently an active member of the Staten Island Developmental Disabilities Council and serves on their community outreach committee. Patricia has a deep love of spreadsheets, sets excessive New Year’s resolutions every year, and enjoys going out to dinner with her husband and spoiling their nieces and nephews.
Before joining the team, Paige Boncher taught at the high school level for thirteen years in New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Andalucía, Spain. She has a BA in English and Spanish from Wellesley College and an MA in English from the Bread Loaf School of English. Her interests include writing, language learning, piano, and Latin dance, and some of her poems and essays on teaching have been published in McSweeney's and a handful of other anthologies.
Paul Musial, a graduate of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the Pacific Northwest College of Art, brings a decade of design and event production to his work. His interest lies in the community-building aspects of events, merging artistic vision with practical execution in a way that creates immersive and impactful experiences. Outside of work, he enjoys cycling, playing volleyball, and salsa dancing.
Rachel Papert has been with the Academy since 2019. They graduated from Bard College with a BA in American Studies. Previously a lifelong New Yorker, Rachel is now based out of Wichita, KS where they live with their partner and their dog Bernie. She enjoys needlecrafts, listening to podcasts, and baking.
Gwenith Williams graduated from Kenyon College with a BA in English Literature. Her parents, both teachers, have inspired her to think creatively throughout her life. Her interests include illustration and creative writing.
Jeff Wills has a BFA from Virgina Commonwealth University, is a member of Leadership Fellows New York, and has worked in office administration for over twenty-five years and arts administration for over a decade, most recently for the Rubin Museum of Art. Jeff is a father, has also been a stage actor and a teaching artist, and enjoys creative writing and origami.
Barbara G Raho is the managing director of Golden Seeds, an investment firm with a focus on early-stage companies founded and/or led by women. In addition to being The Academy's board co-chair, Barbara sits on the boards of My Sisters’ Place and POTS (Part of the Solution), and served on the board of the Rye YMCA. Barbara holds a BA in religion from the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from the Wharton School of Business.
Diana Revson is a founding board member of The Academy for Teachers. She has served on the boards of the ERA Coalition and The Gordon Parks Foundation, where she was the director of external affairs for twelve years. Her father was a professor of history.
Steven Aresty directs a private foundation which focuses on improving education opportunities for disenfranchised youth. He is a member of the Donor's Education Collaborative and the Early Education Partners and serves on the board of Symphony Space and the Westside Campaign Against Hunger. He is the Dean of the College's Advisory Council at Brown University and Chairman of the Family Leadership Council at Bard College. Steven has a BA from Brown and an MBA from the Wharton School.
Michael Glazebrook is a founding board member of The Academy for Teachers, and cofounder and chairman of the board of The Point, a center in the South Bronx dedicated to youth development and the cultural and economic revitalization of Hunts Point. He taught middle-school creative writing.
Dr. Aisha Haynes earned a BA in English from Villanova University, her MS in Teaching from Fordham University, and her Doctorate in Educational Leadership and Policy from NYU. Aisha is Brooklyn-born and raised, and a proud product of the New York City public school system. She served as an English teacher at the Academy of Urban Planning and Engineering for over a decade and now serves as a director at the Bank Street Education Center.
Patricia Hayot, PhD, most recently served for seventeen years as head of school of The Chapin School in New York City. She has taught in the United States; Geneva, Switzerland; and Paris, France. She served as head at the International School of Paris, a K–12 school offering the International Baccalaureate, for eighteen years, and at the Columbus School for Girls, a K–12 school, for ten years.
Joy Hurd is a founding board member of The Academy for Teachers and was its first board chair. He serves as head of school at St. Bernard's School in New York City and has taught at several other leading independent schools. He is a graduate of Harvard College, the Klingenstein Center of Teachers College (Columbia University), and Middlebury College's Bread Loaf School of English.
Peter Marrs is a managing director for Ernst & Young in international tax services. He teaches and develops content for Ernst & Young’s continuing education program, and is also an adjunct professor at the NYU Stern School of Business. A graduate of Union College and Yale Law School, Peter previously worked as a senior tax director for GE, and served in the Office of Tax Policy at the US Department of Treasury.
Caroline S. McBride, now retired, was cofounder and CIO of Forum Partners Investment Management. She is a trustee of Middlebury College. Her daughter teaches science in a public school in Chicago.
Mallory is a mom of two small children and a former middle school English teacher. At home and in the classroom, she is passionate about using literature to celebrate difference, build empathy, and empower young people to advocate for themselves and others. Mallory has an M.A. from Teachers College at Columbia University and a B.A. from Brown University.
Dan Quiat, a director for Aksia LLC, specializes in investment consulting for institutional investors. He teaches industry seminars and leads Aksia's charitable relationship with MS 582, a school in Brooklyn. Dan has a BS from Indiana University and an MBA from the University of Chicago. He has previously worked in asset management with Monroe Capital LLC.
Sam Swope is the founder and president of The Academy for Teachers.
Wayne Tobias is an award-winning educator of advanced mathematics and computer science at Williamsburg Preparatory High School in Brooklyn. He is a school leader who has been recognized for his advocacy of educators’ rights. Wayne has a bachelor's degree in computer science, and MSEd in both secondary math education and educational leadership.
Tracy Garrison-Feinberg is a career educator. She taught US history and social studies to high school and community college students in Austin, Texas, in the 1990s; worked for Facing History & Ourselves from 1995 to 2013; directed school programs at the Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center of Nassau County from 2013 to 2017; and returned to her first love, classroom teaching, in 2017. She is the humanities department head and seventh-grade humanities teacher at Clinton Hill Middle School, a charter school in Brooklyn, NY. Tracy lives in Brooklyn with her husband Kevin Feinberg, senior program director of the New York office of Facing History. They are the proud parents of the amazing Samantha, a second-year student at the University of Chicago.
- Alan Cheng
- Christian Clarke
- Elizabeth B. Dater
- Peter J. DiFiore
- Irena Goldstein
- Amber Joseph
- Margery Mayer
- Roy Moskowitz
- Chloe Pinkerton
- Jane Pollock
- Karen Russell
- Danny Schott
- Mary Singh
- Will Thompson
- Wilson Tong
- Felipe Vasconcelos
- Elly Wong
Explore the latest news on our programs, Fellows, faculty, and more.
Calling all teachers! Join The Academy’s softball team, The Detentions. We'll go to bat—and cheerfully demolish—teams from BAM, Carnegie Hall, MoMA, NYPL, and other New York institutions. (No experience needed, the goal is fun!) Play ball! Sign up!
Teachers explored artist Julian Schnabel's exhibition Self-Portraits of Others at the Brant Foundation.
Our English cohort of Early Career Fellows explored gratitude, grace, love, and letting go in the day-long writing workshop, “Love, Above All Things,” led by the brilliant Jennifer Falú. We’re grateful for the wonderful fellows, mentors, and faculty who make up this program.
Help us keep great teachers in the classroom
Teachers, our most valuable resource, are struggling. Overwhelmed and under-supported, too many teachers leave the profession too soon. The Academy’s enriching experiences and supportive community have been proven to improve those odds.