Hugh Babowal began serving as Trail Blazer’s Co-Chairman of our Board of Trustees in January 2015 and has been a Trail Blazers Trustee since August 2011. Mr. Babowal heads Wells Fargo Securities’ Healthcare M&A practice and serves on Wells Fargo Securities’ Investment Banking Opinion Committee. He received an MBA from the Western Business School at the University of Western Ontario and a BA in Economics from the University of Alberta.
COMMITTEE Governance (Chair), Executive.
Grace Kurdian began serving as a Trail Blazers Trustee in May of 2013 and has served as Secretary of the Board since 2017. Grace is the Deputy General Counsel of Kindle Energy LLC, a portfolio company of Blackstone, Inc. Grace was drawn to Trail Blazers while living in the city. She was particularly drawn to Trail Blazers’ mission of introducing urban children and youth to the outdoors to learn in and from nature as a welcome respite from city life. One of Grace’s favorite quotes underscores that Trail Blazers’ mission and work is just as critical today as it was in 1887: “Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.”
Governance, Alumni Engagement Committee
Louis is a CPA who also holds the AICPA’s Certified Information Technology Professional credential (CITP). Since 1994, as president of DeGraw Tompkins Solutions and informed by his background in public accounting and private industry, Louis has been advising clients and helping to implement custom ERP solutions.
A life long Trailblazer, Louis was a camper at for three years and an active alumnus since. He joined the Board in 1998, has served on various committees and is currently Treasurer.
A Brooklyn native, Louis has lived in Bergen County New Jersey since 1984.
Alia is a strategy and operations executive with extensive global digital transformation experience supporting Fortune 500 companies, across various sectors and geographies helping organizations overcome and embrace disruption. Her expertise in strategic planning, operational excellence, and digital transformation, coupled with her strong-cross-functional background, informs the way she advises leaders and organizations on how to best adjust to business change, thus ensuring they are well prepared to effectively compete in an ever-shifting world. Alia is a graduate of Cornell University’s Johnson Graduate School of Management and holds a Masters in Information Systems from Stevens Institute of Technology and a Bachelors in Computer Science from Drexel University.
Marc Hyman has been a member of the Trail Blazers Board of Trustees since 2001, serving as Co-Chair from 2006 until 2020. He learned of Trail Blazers while participating in the New York City Junior League’s Not-For-Profit Board Governance training program. Having been a camper himself, the unique benefits of Trail Blazers’ mission of guiding youth development through experiential outdoor education and adventure resonated with him immediately. His Board service to Trail Blazers has continued ever since. Mr. Hyman is an attorney in the defense litigation firm of Heidell, Pittoni, Murphy & Bach LLP in New York. He joined the firm in 1989 and became a Partner in 1996. He is a graduate of the Boston University School of Law and Tufts University.
Helen is Principal at Bago Consulting, a Customer Service consulting firm located in New York and specializing in customer service program diagnostics, training and communications. Prior to founding Bago, she spent 16 years in the hospitality industry with Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide. Her career spans several industries including Consumer Packaged Good, Direct Sales, and Publishing. Throughout her career, she has focused on understanding the customer, delivering exceptional service through fully empowered employees, and optimizing customer feedback to drive continuous improvement and process change. She has served as a Director and Chair of SOCAP, a dynamic and collaborative community of Customer Care professionals. Her desire to make a difference in the lives of young people led her to Trail Blazers, where she hopes to leverage her background and passion to understand the needs of clients and support the goals of the organization.
Erez has spent over a decade working in the online advertising industry in various sales & business development positions. In his current role at Google, he is focused on the advertising technology space and helping Fortune 500 advertisers & national web/TV publishers leverage data, technology, and partnerships to grow their businesses. He holds a B.S. in Marketing from Rutgers University and currently lives in Brooklyn with his wife, Arielle. In his free time, Erez loves to travel to far-flung parts of the world (backpacker-style), listen to audiobooks while running (two birds, one stone!), and play tennis (preferably alongside and not against his wife).
Ryan Goodman is the CEO of Scale Microgrid Solutions, a new microgrid and distributed energy company that is revolutionizing the energy infrastructure in the US. Ryan has over a decade of experience in the energy industry, with prior stints at GE Energy, the Boston Consulting Group, and ENER-G Rudox, a company he helped grow and sell in 2016. Today, Ryan lives in northern NJ with his wife, Anne, and three daughters. Ryan earned his bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering from Bucknell University and received his MBA from Harvard Business School. Outside of work, Ryan enjoys spending time with his family and friends, travel, NY Giants football, and any activities that gets him outside. He has always valued outdoor education, dating back to his days in the Boy Scouts, and is a true supporter of Trail Blazer’s mission and vision.
Chris is a Partner in the New York City office of Reed Smith LLP, an international law firm with offices around the world. Chris is a member of the firm’s Global Corporate Group concentrating his practice on mergers and acquisitions, private equity transactions, securities law compliance, corporate governance issues, and general corporate law. Chris was named a “Rising Star” by Super Lawyers Magazine from 2013-2017 and is an active member of the Association for Corporate Growth where he serves on the membership committee. Chris is engaged in numerous charitable endeavors and, in addition to his work with Trail Blazers, serves on the Legal Committee of Global Potential, a New York based non-profit focused on empowering youth through international travel and social awareness. In his free time, Chris enjoys traveling as much as possible, running, and other outdoor activities.
Chris is a member of Houlihan Lokey’s Financial Sponsors Group. He is responsible for managing relationships with private equity firms ranging in fund size from $200 million to more than $15 billion. Specific areas of focus include sellside advisory, debt, and equity capital markets across a variety of sectors. Before joining Houlihan Lokey, Mr. Macios worked for eight years at Wells Fargo Securities in its Financial Sponsors Group, where he executed numerous transactions across leveraged finance, equity capital markets, and advisory. He began his career at NewStar Financial as an Associate. Chris holds a B.A. in Economics from Boston College.
Before joining Houlihan Lokey, Mr. Macios worked for eight years at Wells Fargo Securities in its Financial Sponsors Group, where he executed numerous transactions across leveraged finance, equity capital markets, and advisory.
He began his career at NewStar Financial as an Associate
Mr. Macios holds a B.A. in Economics from Boston College.
Colleen is a Partner at Ernst and Young LLP (EY). She focuses on Tax Technology and Transformation, leveraging her cross-industry experience to identify and implement operational process improvements, data analytics, visualization, and automation. She specializes in automating State income tax reporting processes and is passionate about saving people time so they can focus their energy on value-driving functions and personal priorities. Colleen graduated from the University of Georgia with a Masters in Accountancy and from the University of South Carolina Honors College with a double degree in International Business and Accounting. Colleen lives in Chatham, New Jersey with her husband, Mike, their two children, and dog, Bailey.
Frank is an attorney in the New York City office of Eversheds Sutherland (US) LLP, where he is a member of the firm’s global litigation group. Frank defends class action lawsuits and complex business litigation matters in federal and state courts throughout the country and advises financial services and insurance clients on issues affecting their core business practices. Frank also serves on the Board of the non-profit organization City Cottage, which facilitates educational programs between high school students in the United States and Malawi. In his free time, Frank enjoys outdoor activities, especially fishing and hunting. He lives in New York City with his wife, Lizzie, and their dog, Marbles.
Eamonn is a digital transformation and IT strategy leader. His areas of focus are digital strategy delivery and customer experience excellence, organizational transformation and optimization, and program and portfolio management. Eamonn lives in New York City with his wife, Alyson, daughter, Hannah, and Simon the Cockapoo. In his spare time Eamonn enjoys running and cycling and anything that involves adventures outdoors
Eric J. Smith is Managing Director and Deputy General Counsel of PineBridge Investments. Prior to joining the PineBridge, Mr. Smith served as General Counsel to IREO Management, an India-focused real estate private equity fund manager. Between graduation from university and beginning law school, Mr. Smith spent two years teaching English at the junior high level in Ichikawa, Japan as a member of the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program. Mr. Smith received a B.A. from the University of Michigan and a J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School.
Janell Wise is an assistant general counsel for ViacomCBS Inc., where she focuses on contracts and rights and pre-publication and pre-broadcast clearance for the CBS Television Network, including CBS News and CBS Sports, and CBS owned and operated television stations in the Atlanta, Baltimore, Denver Detroit, Minneapolis markets. Before joining CBS, she worked was an associate in the Technology and Intellectual Transactions practice at Weil, Gotshal and Manges LLP, an international law firm. She holds a B.A. and J.D. from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Janell lives in Brooklyn, NY. In her free time, she loves to travel the world, surf and sail.
Jon is a Financial Advisor with Merrill Lynch Global Wealth Management. He has 22 years of Capital Markets and Wealth Management Experience. Jon graduated from Cornell University with a Bachelor’s degree in Economics. Today, he lives in Mountainside, New Jersey with his wife, Sari, their three children and a new pup. Jon has proudly served for years as a mentor and on the Board of Trail Blazers.He is also on the board of the Animal Cancer Foundation. An advocate of protecting people’s health and wealth, Jon encourages people to leave time for personal fitness and fulfillment. Away from work, Jon enjoys spending time with family and friends, fitness, music, travel, getting outside in nature, and the personal rewards of supporting various philanthropies.
Lee Simonson is the President of Simonson Associates, an advisory firm in New York that assists media companies and their executives in strategic planning. Lee spent 30 years of his career in the radio broadcasting industry culminating in positions as Vice President and General Manager of KISS-FM and WOR-AM in New York City and ownership of over 50-plus radio stations across the U.S. Lee earned his bachelor’s degree from the University of Maryland, College Park. He is a Certified Business Mentor for SCORE, a non-profit partner of the SBA, a Walking Guide in Central Park for the Central Park Conservancy, and a volunteer for Big Apple Greeters. He has been married to Nancy for 44 years with 2 adult children, Michael and Laura, and a grandson, Jonah.
Nihad Rahman is the head of Planning & Analysis for the Corporate Sector, leading the team responsible for the forecasting and financial analytics of the $10B of NIE in J.P.Morgan’s Corporate Sector. He joined the firm in May 2015 after 11 years at GE, where he, most recently, led financial planning and analysis for the Commercial Lending & Leasing business within GE Capital. Nihad has a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemistry from Haverford College and an MBA from Columbia University. He lives in New York City with his wife and children.
Retired. Anna’s involvement with Trail Blazers spans six decades, starting with her time as a camper. Wanting to give other children the same opportunities she had as a camper, she became an active alumna, working as a Group Leader and then serving as a Board Member as well as volunteering in the office
Riel was appointed as Trail Blazers’ Executive Director in 2008. Prior, Riel worked as the Camp and Associate Director at Trade Winds Lake Camp, and worked for over 10 years in New York City high schools, teaching science and counseling students as a social worker and a guidance counselor. Riel holds a BA in Biology Secondary Education from The Teacher’s College of Utrecht, the Netherlands, a MSW from Fordham University, specializing in Children and Families, as well as a Certificate in Non Profit Management from Columbia University.
Molly fell in love with camp when she was 7 years old. After graduating with a BA from Mount Holyoke College, Molly spent two years as a Peace Corps volunteer in Burkina Faso promoting girls’ education. She worked in elementary education upon her return, and realized quickly that she wanted a career in the camp world where kids have the best opportunities to learn and grow. She joined Trail Blazers in 2014 as the overnight camp director, a position she held for 5 years. Since 2018 she has been building out the infrastructure to support Trail Blazers’ expanding portfolio, first as the Program Director and now as the Director of Operations. In total, she’s worked in the camp industry for 13 years.
Tiffany joined Trail Blazers in 2011, transitioning to the nonprofit realm after 5 years of experience in experiential marketing. Tiffany holds a B.S. in Marketing from New York University’s Stern School of Business and a Certificate in Fundraising from New York University’s School of Continuing Professional Studies.
Josh has over 20 years of camping and youth development experience. He taught Education courses at the City College of New York, worked as a Youth Organizer in Chicago, and led large-scale cross-cultural youth delegations to Cape Town, South Africa and Barcelona, Spain. From 2010 to 2021 he served as Co-Founder and Executive Director of Steve’s Camp at Horizon Farms. Josh holds a doctorate in Education from Teachers College, Columbia University and a BA from Clark University.
Eboni brings 10 years of outdoor education and program management experience to her role with Trail Blazers. For the last 6+ years, she worked for the Appalachian Mountain Club focused on outdoor leadership training for teachers and youth development professionals working with youth from marginalized and under-resourced communities. Her own childhood family outings, her grandma’s backyard in the Bronx, and summer sleep-away camp experiences fostered her love of nature and outdoor adventure. After completing her M.Ed in Curriculum and Instruction with a focus on informal, outdoor science education at Islandwood and the University of Washington on the west coast, she returned to her native New York City. Eboni is excited to collaborate with this team to elevate program quality, consistency and added value to all Trail Blazers program participants.
Alyx Maglio has been working in alternative education for over ten years within institutions such as the Brooklyn Museum of Art, the Wyckoff House Museum, and the Brooklyn Historical Society among others. She received dual Masters degrees from NYU in museum education and Ancient Egyptian linguistics. Alyx has a lifelong love of her home city of New York, hoping that through her work in education she can help make it a better place. She is very excited to work with Trail Blazers going forward
Maggie joined Trail Blazers in the summer of 2020 to help launch a successful COVID-friendly Day Camp at Prospect Park. She is so excited to continue on as a Program Specialist into the new year. Maggie brings experience largely in Environmental education and Wilderness emergency response. Raised in the Southwest, Maggie is most passionate about accessibility to outdoor exploration, multilingual education, and rock formations! With a B.A. in Sociology from Lewis and Clark College, Maggie is excited to join the Trail Blazers team as they grow into 2021 and continue to pursue equity and belonging in outdoor play!
Callie joined Trail Blazers as the Director of Day Camps in 2019, bringing along more than 7 years of summer camp experience. Callie first started in the camp world in 2012, spending her summers working at camp while attending university. She became a part of the head staff at Camp Huntington, a program for children and adults with developmental disabilities, before spending three years as the Associate Director for Shane Camps. While at Shane, she played a critical role in their expansion, growing the program to more than 7 camp locations. Callie holds a BS in Kinesiology from James Madison University.
Callie is currently working to expand our Day Camp programs and is looking forward to making camp accessible to a wider audience in 2021.
Steve joined Trail Blazers in 2000 with a wealth of camping and property management experience. He worked as a counselor and instructor in CSB (scouting) programs. He managed the Milford Bible Church complex for 10 years, worked as Operations Manager at the Tuscarora Resource Center property in Mt. Bethel, PA, and owned/operated Marshalls Creek Painting for 13 years. He served 6 years in the US Army as a medical lab technician. Steve lives at Trail Blazers with his wife, Sue. He graduated from Philadelphia College of Bible with a Bachelor of Science in Youth Ministry and has extensive trade skills training at Monroe Vo-Tech.
Originating in the UK, Jay has been a member of the Trail Blazers family since 2014 and has spent time with each of our programs. Drawing from his experience as director for Day Camp and program director for Overnight, Jay now supports all of our families as part of the administrative team.