The GGE Community

Our Founder - HerStory

Joanne N. Smith, Founder and Executive Director, moves Girls for Gender Equity (GGE) closer to its mission through strategic advocacy, development, and leadership cultivation. Ms. Smith is a Haitian-American social worker born in NY. A staunch human rights advocate, Joanne co-chaired the nation’s first Young Women’s Initiative for girls of color in NYC, is a steering committee member of Black Girl Movement, and a Movement Maker with Move to End Violence-a 10-year initiative designed to strengthen the collective capacity to end gender based violence in the United States.  Joanne is an alumna of Hunter Graduate School of Social Work and Columbia Institute for Nonprofit Management. She has co-authored Hey Shorty: A Guide to Combating Sexual Harassment and Violence in Public Schools and on the Streets. Girls for Gender Equity’s work to combat sexual harassment in schools is featured in the 2014 documentary Anita: Speak Truth to Power. Joanne has received many awards including the Ms. Foundation 2018 Gloria Award as a Woman of Vision, a Commendation from NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer and Federation of Protestant Welfare Agencies - Local Women Leading Change award. Joanne resides in Brooklyn, NY.

Joanne N. Smith- Founder

“We must cause strategic disruption that changes society’s moral compass around trafficking, sexual assault, violence against girls, women and gender nonconforming people of color. This commitment to ending gender based violence and the devaluing of human rights is life long and I’m honored to fight with survivors, allies, and friends as we say NO MORE.”

Our Board

Dr. Pei Desrosiers and Rovika Rajkishun,

Board Co-Chairs


Naomi Abraham, Board Secretary



Mary Ferry, Board Treasurer

Fund Manager of Benefits Fund of Wardrobe 764


Afua Addo, MHC

Center for Court Innovation


Monica Dennis

Epifani Enterprises, Inc

Dr. Pei Desrosiers

NYC Administration for Children’s Services/

Division of Financial Service, NY


Rovika Rajkishun

Senior Nonprofit Strategist


Cynthia Steele



Joanne N. Smith

Girls for Gender Equity (GGE)

Our staff

Executive Team

Joanne N. Smith, President & Chief Executive Officer | | 718-857-1393 ext. 106

Sabrina Philson, Chief of Staff |

Doreen Odom, Chief Operating Officer |

Dani Murphy, Deputy Director of Strategic Initiatives |

Luciana Lozada, Executive Liaison |


Peggy Hupcey, Director of Development | | 718-857-1393 ext. 103

Ayanna DaCosta, Grant Writer |

Jasmine Lewin-Holmes | Development & Evaluation Liaison |

Marketing & Storytelling

Toni Wilson, Director of Culture and Narrative Shift |

Naomi Lilly, Director of Marketing & Storytelling |

Diana Walker, Director of Brand Strategy, Communications |

Tess Weiner, Manager of Storytelling and Youth Engagement |


Elizabeth Bishop, Ph.D., Senior Director of Evaluation |

Ayanna De’Vante Maddox, PhD, Senior Director of Impact |

Dominique Waters, Director of Curriculum |

Programs and Social Work

Krystal Folk-Nagua, Senior Director of Programs |

Shaé Smith, Director of Healing Justice |

Hollisha Liverpool-Brown, Director of Programs & Impact |

Maya Guttman-Slater, Deputy Director of Programs Operations |

Erika Chambers, Deputy Director of Healing Justice |

Aaliyah Thomas, Healing Justice Program Manager |

Baylor Andrews, SIS Program Manager |

Kretel Krah, YWAC Program Manager |

Nia Oden-McCann, Social Work Manager |

Damala Denny, Youth & Alumni Organizing Manager |

Sue Suilla Daley, GGE Youth Fellow |

Isabelle Chow, SIS Intern |

Adela Jansen, YWAC Intern |

Neillah Petitfrere, SIS Youth Fellow |

Heaven Peoples, Community Engagement Youth Fellow |

Khianna Deseide, Community Engagement Youth Fellow |

Shakeema Koonce, M&S Youth Fellow |

Policy & Advocacy

Kimberly Blair, Senior Director of Policy & Advocacy | | 718-857-1393 ext.153

Quadira Coles, Director of Policy  | | 718-857-1393 ext.119

Monaye Johnson, Deputy Director of Organizing |

Ella Grace Downs, Policy & Government Affairs Manager |

Eman Gad, Policy Liaison |

Operations & Finance, People

Onika Williams, Director of Operations | | (718) 857-1393, ext. 118

Danielle Richardson, Deputy Director of Operations |

Gaelle Win Robin, Director of People Operations | | (718) 857-1393, ext. 123

Tiffany Mathias, People Operations Manager |

Anisha Jessop, Accountant |

Katie Healy, Finance and Development Manager |

Our Partners, Fundraisers, And Donors