PLACE NYC Announces New Executive Board

NEW YORK, NY – PLACE NYC (Parent Leaders for Accelerated Curriculum and Education) announces the election on Wednesday, March 27, 2024 of a new executive board. Two new Executive Board members will join four returning members to comprise an incoming team of dedicated parent leaders. PLACE NYC also extends our deep gratitude to outgoing President Chien Kwok for his steadfast dedication to accelerated education and invaluable contributions as cofounder since our inception.

“Our mission of preserving and expanding access to high-quality, academically rigorous curriculum in all NYC public schools is more important now than ever. I am thrilled to return and co-lead the largest and most active parent-volunteer education advocacy group in NYC.”, said Yiatin Chu, Co-President and Co-founder of PLACE NYC. 

“As a parent raising three children in NYC public schools and as a former DOE teacher, I am deeply invested in making sure all students’ learning needs are met with an appropriately challenging curriculum,” says Lisa Marks, newly elected Co-President of PLACE NYC. “As a native New Yorker who attended public schools K-12 and graduated from Bronx Science, I was raised by a DOE teacher who opened pathways to success for her students, regardless of background, through high educational standards. I am grateful I can contribute to PLACE’s mission of upholding robust public school education for all in NYC.”

Debbie Kross, parent of three public school students and president of the Citywide Council on High Schools (CCHS), joins PLACE as Co-Secretary. “I am excited to join the PLACE NYC Executive Board and to amplify the voice of families across the 5 boroughs. We all strive for excellent public schools that can serve our children by meeting them where they are, and I am committed to assist families as they navigate the complex public school system.”

PLACE congratulates our new executive board members who will serve for a one-year term, April 2024 to March 2025.

Yiatin Chu (Co-President) is a parent-elected SLT member of IS239 Mark Twain School for the Gifted and Talented. Chu’s parent leader experience also includes serving on CEC1 for the 2019-21 term, and on the SLT of PS184M Shuang Wen School for two terms. Chu was awarded the Unsung Shero Award in 2020 for her education advocacy by a State Assemblymember. In October 2023, she was named as one of 49 “Most Powerful New Yorkers You’ve Never Heard Of” by New York Magazine.

Lisa Marks (Co-President) is a parent-elected PTA Co-VP of External Affairs and former SLT member at P.S. 77 Lower Lab. She is a former DOE teacher who was voted “Teacher of the Year” in 2012 at the Title 1 school she taught at in the Bronx. She is the proud parent of 3 children in NYC public schools, and alumni of NYC public schools herself. 

Jean Hahn (Vice-President) is a parent-elected SLT member and former PA Co-President and Vice President. 

Craig Slutzkin (Treasurer) is both a proud parent of a son enrolled in the NYC school system and a product of the very same educational system himself. He is an elected member and Recording Secretary of CEC2 in Manhattan. He is also Co-President of the PS 340 PTA and member of its SLT, as well as the Second Vice Chair of Manhattan Community Board 5, leading its Parks & Public Spaces Committee.

Deborah Alexander (Co-Secretary) is the proud parent of two children in NYC public schools. She is a member of the Citywide Council on High Schools, having served for ten years as a member of the District 30 CEC. In 2018 she received a New York City Proclamation for Work as a Community Leader and previously served as Secretary for PLACE NYC.

Debbie Kross (Co-Secretary) is the parent of three children – one who just graduated from and two currently in NYC public schools. She is serving her second term on the Citywide Council on High Schools, currently as President. She is also an officer on the PTA of the High School of American Studies. Beyond education advocacy, she is passionate about sustainable energy and building a cleaner future.