Emblaze Academy Board 

Meetings, Members, & Policy


Board Meetings & Minutes

The first Wednesday of every month from 6:30pm-8:00pm at
1744 Williamsbridge Road, 2nd Fl, Bronx, NY 10461
Unless Stated otherwise.


Materials for board meetings are available to the public upon request prior to or at the meetings. For information about how to join our Board of Trustees, please contact Geraldo Vasquez at gvasquez@emblazeacademy.org


2019 . . .






June - Special Meeting








 Our Board Members


Tameka Beckford-Young . . .

Founding Board Member and Board Secretary, Tameka Beckford-Young is Legal Counsel at Kawasaki Rail Car, Inc. In that role, she oversees all legal issues affecting the company; drafts, reviews and negotiates a variety of commercial agreements; and provides risk management strategies to the executive team. Prior to Kawasaki Rail Car, Ms. Beckford-Young was an associate at Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP where her law firm practice focused on complex commercial litigation. Outside the office, Ms. Beckford-Young serves as a member of NYC Bar Association’s newly formed In-House Counsel Committee. A Bronx native and former New York City public school student, Ms. Beckford-Young earned her BA in Government from Georgetown University and JD from Northwestern Pritzker School of Law. While at Northwestern, she was a student advocate representing refugees seeking asylum in the United States, served as community service chair for the Black Law Students Association, and was one of two student representatives selected by the administration to assist the admissions office with initiatives to increase enrollment of diverse students.


Marlin Jenkins . . .

Founding Board Member, Marlin Jenkins is the Founder, CEO and President of Neture, Inc., social venture founded to provide free, sustainable high speed internet access to underserved markets, beginning in the South Bronx. Neture leverages its network to connect low income families to local resources, services and service providers and works with local organizations to ensure that the families are provided every opportunity to increase access to educational and economic opportunities in their communities. Mr. Jenkins has been a Bronx resident since attending Fordham University in 1992. After surviving the World Trade Center tragedy, Mr. Jenkins opened his first business, QuadInfinity, an entertainment company. It was QuadInfinity that first connected him to committing to serving others, through the donation of space and time, to help low income families cope by enjoying themselves. After the closing of QuadInfinity, he joined MidBronx Senior Citizens Council as Vice President/Special Assistant to the Executive Director, and shortly after, founded Neture. Mr. Jenkins’ goal is to have a positive impact on as many people as possible.


Matthew Kirby-Smith . . .

Founding Board Member, Matthew Kirby-Smith is a Vice President and General Manager in Jones Lang LaSalle’s Property Management practice in New York City. In his current role, Mr. Kirby-Smith is responsible for managing operations and construction activities at 140 Broadway, a 1.2 Million Square Foot Landmarked office tower in the financial district. A native of Brooklyn, NY, Mr. Kirby-Smith serves on the board of The enCourage Kids Foundation and previously mentored with the Hoop Dreams Scholarship Fund in Washington DC. Mr. Kirby-Smith holds a BS in Business Management and Sports Management from Guilford College in Greensboro, NC.


Harini Mittal . . .

Founding Board Member and Board Treasurer, Harini Mittal is an Assistant Professor of Finance, Economics, and Entrepreneurship at Bronx Community College. Ms. Mittal is the founder of the BCC Entrepreneurship Club and is an entrepreneur herself, having previously co-founded an IT company dedicated to the education sector. Ms. Mittal has expertise in corporate finance, especially mergers and acquisitions, valuation of M&A, valuation of start-ups and mid-sized companies for VC/PE deals; structuring and documentation of VC/PE deals; hire, purchase, and lease financing; resource mobilization, including term loans and IPOs; and project finance including infrastructure finance, carbon finance, and insurance. Through her work with her students at BCC, Ms. Mittal is committed to creating strong educational options for the students of the Bronx. Ms. Mittal holds a B.A. from the University of Madras, an MBA from the BK School of Business Management, and a Ph.D. in Management and Finance from Nirma University.


Rosann Santos . . .

Founding Board Member and Board Vice-Chair, Rosann Santos is the Director of Strategic Initiatives at John Jay College and Founder of Latinas in Higher Education, a nonprofit that provides affordable professional development opportunities for women who want to move up in their chosen careers. In her role at John Jay College, Ms. Santos supervises the Office of Student Transition Programs and the Office of Communications, Marketing, and Social Media, and plays an integral role in strategic policy decision making integral to the future of the college. In addition to her professional commitments, Ms. Santos serves on the board of the NASPA Latino/a Knowledge Community and is the Chairwoman of Sigma Lambda Upsilon Sorority. A Bronx native, Ms. Santos is passionate creating quality school options for the future leaders of the Bronx. Ms. Santos holds a B.A. in History and Math from Syracuse University, an M.A. in History from the State University of New York at Albany, and is currently pursuing a Ph.D. in Latin American and Caribbean Studies.


Geraldo Vasquez . . .

Founding Board Member and Board Chair, Geraldo (Gerry) Vasquez is an Associate Professor of Accounting in the Department of Accounting and Finance of the School of Business and Information Systems of the City University of New York-York College. Prior to joining the faculty at the City University of New York, Dr. Vasquez spent over 15 years in the private and public sectors. He has considerable financial and administrative management, technology project management and auditing experience. Dr. Vasquez served as the Chief Financial Officer of Sustainable South Bronx, Inc., the Founding Director of Finance and Administration of the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism and a Senior Auditor for the Office of the New York State Comptroller in the public sector. In the private sector, Dr. Vasquez was responsible for various finance, budgeting, accounting and technology project management functions as a Vice President of Merrill Lynch and Co., Inc. Dr. Vasquez holds a D.B.A. from the Fox School of Business and Management (AACSB accredited) of Temple University. He also holds a M.Sc. and B.A., cum laude in Accounting from the City University of New York-Queens College. Dr. Vasquez is also a member of the Beta Gamma Sigma Honor Society.