Our Approach


  • A trusted, non-partisan voice called on by state leaders, elected officials, the Federal Reserve, and Congress to communicate the needs and value of the workforce system
  • Advocacy and direct lobbying on Federal and State workforce issues with elected officials and the business community
  • Federal & State E-Alerts that take complex legislative or budget issues, and digest them for easy analysis
  • Policy calls and webinars to keep members up-to-date on political and budgetary issues
  • National policy coordination with fellow State Associations, National Skills Coalition and leading think tanks


  • The latest news via the bi-weekly Workforce Buzz, reaching thousands of subscribers
  • Captivating conversations with experts and workforce influencers on The Future Works podcast
  • Building the technical skills and competencies of workforce providers through Level Up NY
    training initiatives, which provide low-cost, high quality competency building
  • Member networking and learning through annual statewide conferences and regional happy hours
  • Greg Newton Leadership Fellowship to grow emerging leaders
  • Customized training, Federal WIOA technical assistance and consulting services


  • Annually produce training for 30 professionals to be effective advocates influencing the Federal, State and New York City policymakers. Over 200 alumni of the NYATEP Workforce Policy and Advocacy Academy.
  • Provide Annual State of Workforce Report, bringing together cutting-edge labor market analysis and workforce intelligence to inform the direction of workforce development across New York State.
  • Annual investment in pilot projects to produce an evidence base for the field. Past projects have included apprenticeship, economic and workforce development alignment and place-based workforce collaboratives.
  • Produce state of the art reports 

Our Members 

NYATEP’s primary audience are dues-paying members and their partners, which include the State’s 33 local workforce development boards who oversee and coordinate over $300M of federal workforce funding, the State and City community college systems, literacy providers, community-based organizations, local governments, labor unions, economic development agencies, and career and technical education providers, among others. Collectively, our membership through their educational, employment training and social supportive services impact the lives of over one million New Yorkers who are predominantly Black, Indigenous, and People of Color.

Board of Directors 2021-2022

Brian Williams

Commissioner, Rensselaer County Employment and Training  (Troy)

Sylvie Nelson

Executive Vice President
Executive Director, North Country Workforce Development Board (Saranac Lake)

Denise Zieske

Second Executive Vice President
Director of Workforce Development, the State University of New York (Statewide)

Lois Johnson

Director of Workforce Strategies, Workforce Development Institute (Statewide)

Karen Springmeier

Past President
Former Executive Director, Finger Lakes Workforce Development Board (Geneva)

Jessica Centeno

At-Large Member
New York State Executive Deputy Director, Center for Employment Opportunities (Statewide)

Alice Savino

At-Large Member
Executive Director, Herkimer, Madison and Oneida Workforce Board and Chenango, Delaware, Otsego Workforce Board (Utica)

Joe Dragone

Capital Region Representative
Senior Executive Officer at Capital Region BOCES

Katie Geise

Western NY Regional Representative
Executive Director, Chautauqua Workforce Board (Jamestown)

Louise McLoughlin

Hudson Valley Regional Representative
Executive Director, Dutchess County Workforce Board (Poughkeepsie)

Paula Bailey

New York City Regional Representative
Executive Vice President, Grant Associates (NYC)

Patricia Malone

Long Island Regional Representative
SUNY Stonybrook, Associate Vice President for Professional Education and Assistant Provost for Engaged Learning, School of Professional Development (Stonybrook)

Franca Armstrong

Mid-state Regional Representative
Associate Vice President of Workforce Development and Dean of the Rome Campus, Mohawk Valley Community College (Rome)

Michele Armani

North Country Regional Representative
Ready4Real Education Outreach Consultant at ETS, Inc.

Michael De Vito, Jr.

Partner Representative
Executive Director of External Affairs, NYCID

Aimee E. Durfee

Partner Representative
Director of Workforce Innovation at CenterState Corporation for Economic Opportunity

Dr. Simone Rodriguez

Partner Representative

Vice President for Workforce Development, Continuing Education and Strategic Partnerships at Kingsborough Community College

Karen Kwandrans

Partner Representative
Executive Director of the Levesque Institute for Civic Engagement at Niagara University

What does it take to be a NYATEP Board Member?


Melinda Mack

Executive Director

Evelyn Ortiz

Deputy Director

Megan Farry

Director of Strategic Partnerships

Molly Tocin

Operations and Corporate Engagement Manager

Jenine Loche

Events and 
Training Coordinator

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