Executive Team

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Joe English

Founder and President

Joe is the founder of Hope in a Box. He has worked as a Global Fellow for Generation, the global education nonprofit that empowers unemployed young people to build thriving, sustainable careers. He has also worked at McKinsey & Company, the management consultancy, focusing primarily in the Public and Social Sector Practices. He is a graduate of Yale University, where he was elected student body president, conducted research on mental health among LGBTQ undergraduates, and worked for the Clinton Foundation. Joe has written on education policy for Politico, The Advocate, and Education Week. He is the recipient of the President’s Volunteer Service Award and the Coca-Cola Scholarship.

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Daniel Tartakovsky

Chief Operating Officer

Daniel graduated from Harvard College in 2017, summa cum laude, with a degree in Economics. His senior thesis on gender disparities in competitive labor markets was awarded the Captain Jonathan Fay Prize for best thesis in the Social Sciences and the Allyn A. Young Prize for best thesis in Economics. He is now a consultant at McKinsey & Company in the New York Office, where he primarily works with state and local governments, nonprofit organizations, and healthcare companies to develop and support their strategic initiatives. In his free time, Daniel enjoys reading, playing squash, running, and hiking.

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Joel Bervell

Director of Development

Joel graduated from Yale University in 2017, where he studied Molecular Cellular Developmental Biology. As an undergrad, he served as Vice President of the Yale Leadership Institute and worked at the Urban Institute, Howard University Hospital in orthopedic surgery, and ASDAN China as a Director for the World Youth Economic Forum. He received a Masters in Medical Science from Boston University and entered medical school in 2019 as an MD/MBA candidate at the Washington State University. He is passionate about civic leadership, volunteering, and healthcare policy and justice.

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Molly Wood

Director of Outreach

Molly is a rising junior at Wheaton College in Massachusetts pursuing a double major in Women's and Gender Studies and Psychology. On campus, she is a leader in the college LGBTQ organization and the spoken word poetry club. Molly has served as an intern at the Philadelphia Mayor's Office of LGBT Affairs. After graduation, she plans to pursue psychological research or political advocacy surrounding the LGBTQ community.

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Adam Michalowski

Co-Director of Content Development

Adam is a senior at Yale University where he studies Political Science and Education. At Yale, Adam was the Executive Director of the Yale International Relations Association and conducts research on engendering positive attitudes toward refugees. He also works in the Undergraduate Admissions Office as a Recruitment Coordinator. After graduating, Adam will relocate to Denver, where he will teach high school English and later pursue a graduate degree in education policy. He enjoys hiking, skiing, and exploring new restaurants and coffee shops.


Sara Harris

Co-Director of Content Development

Sara is a senior at Yale University studying Sociology and Education. At Yale, Sara was an Advising Fellow for the non-profit Matriculate, which trains college students to advise high-achieving, low-income high school students on the college application process. After graduation, Sara plans on teaching in a k-8 school in Oakland, California. She hope to attend law school and focus on advocacy for LGBTQ students.


Christopher Rim

Director, Strategic Advisory Board

Christopher is the President and CEO of Command Education. He has been recognized by Forbes 30 Under 30, PEOPLE Magazine's "Heroes Among Us,” and President Obama’s Lifetime Achievement Award. He previously worked at Facebook on their education team to help build inspirED in partnership with the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence. Christopher has served on multiple advisory boards including Lady Gaga's Born This Way Foundation and on panels such as the Emotion Revolution and the World Internet Conference in Shanghai. He earned a BA from Yale University in psychology, focusing on emotional intelligence.


Larry Milstein

Director, Strategic Advisory Board

Larry Milstein a social entrepreneur, consulting for Fortune 100 companies and non-profits across the country. He is the founder of the LGBTQ Millennial Leaders Dinner series, as well as co-founder of the annual Millennial Pink Party, raising over $20,000 last summer for the Human Rights Campaign, for which he serves on the Major Donors Committee. He is passionate about travel, having lived in China and previously worked abroad at the Alibaba Group. He currently lives in Tribeca where he chronicles his life of avocado toast and SoulCycle on his Instagram, @laurence_ross

Faculty Advisory Board

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Paula Moya

Stanford University

Director of Graduate Studies in English and Danily C. and Laura Louise Bell Professor of the Humanities

Paula Moya’s teaching and research focus on twentieth-century and early twenty-first century literary studies, feminist theory, critical theory, narrative theory, American cultural studies, interdisciplinary approaches to race and ethnicity, and Chicanx and U.S. Latinx studies. She is the author of The Social Imperative: Race, Close Reading, and Contemporary Literary Criticism (Stanford UP 2016) and Learning From Experience: Minority Identities, Multicultural Struggles (UC Press 2002). She was recently named the Burton J. and Deedee McMurtry University Fellow in Undergraduate Education and currently serves as the Director of the Research Institute of Comparative Studies in Race and Ethnicity.

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Heather Love

University of Pennsylvania

Associate Professor of English

Heather Love received her A.B. from Harvard and her Ph.D. from the University of Virginia. Her research interests include gender and sexuality studies, twentieth-century literature and culture, affect studies, sociology and literature, disability studies, film and visual culture, and critical theory. She is the author of Feeling Backward: Loss and the Politics of Queer History (Harvard) and the editor of a special issue of GLQ on Gayle Rubin (“Rethinking Sex”) and the co-editor of a special issue of Representations ("Description Across Disciplines"). She has written on topics including comparative social stigma, compulsory happiness, transgender fiction, spinster aesthetics, reading methods in literary studies, and the history of deviance studies.

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Birgit Brander Rasmussen

SUNY - Binghamton

Assistant Professor of English, General Literature & Rhetoric

Birgit Brander Rasmussen specializes in early American literature with an emphasis on indigenous American literacies. Her scholarship focuses on race, writing, and coloniality in American literature. She received her Ph.D. from UC Berkeley’s Ethnic Studies department. An Assistant Professor at SUNY-Binghamton in the department of English, she is author of the award-winning book Queequeg’s Coffin: Indigenous Literacies and Early American Literature (Duke UP, 2012). Her work has appeared in anthologies and scholarly journals like PMLA and American Literature, Early American Literature, Journal of Transnational American Studies, Modern Language Quarterly, Journal of American Studies, and Interventions: International Journal of Postcolonial Studies.

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Aubry Threlkeld

Harvard University

Lecturer in Studies of Women, Gender, and Sexuality

Aubry Threlkeld is an educator who specializes in sexuality and disability studies as it relates to education and technology. His scholarly projects take a critical look at individual narratives to discover how people manage their relationship to disability and sexuality as identity and cultural force. His ongoing research includes archival work on dance and disability; intersectional approaches to teacher education; connecting families to health and education resources; and a guide to common myths about disability. Aubry has given over 140 conference presentations nationally and internationally and authored reports for governments, consultancies and corporations. He holds a doctorate in Human Development and Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, a MS in Elementary Education with a focus on Special Education from Mercy College.


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