Our Young Professional Board

Our Young Professional Board is made up of passionate, dedicated individuals, who are committed to advocating for social justice, improving our city, and growing connections & community while they do it. Check out our annual event!

YPB Leadership           

Cara Hall (she/they), Co-Chair
Senior Privacy Program Manager, Etsy
Fun Fact: I don’t have a sense of smell – not COVID-related!
My Why: My favorite part of YPB is getting more folks aware of this incredible organization! Support my annual goal! 

Jack Lancaster (he/him), Co-Chair
Consultant, Bain & Company
Fun Fact: I ran a team of 15 Bain volunteers to support the next frontier of UJC’s marketing strategy as they keep up the fight for social justice!
My Why: I joined YPB to feel connected to my community in NYC and to support the work that UJC does to uplift and support communities in NYC that are marginalized and their legacy of fighting for justice everyday. Support my annual goal!

Lina Dagnew (she/her), Co-Chair of Engagement Committee
Senior Associate, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP
Fun Fact: Loves Aaron Sorkin shows. 
My Why: I joined YPB because I believe in its mission and want to help elevate our communities. My favorite part about YPB is the warm and purpose-driven atmosphere that this unique group of young people foster. My favorite memory is being inspired by the founders who lead the various social justice accelerator programs. Support my annual goal!

 Manuel Pereira-Arias (he/him), Co-Chair of Engagement Committee
Investment Anaylst, World Bank Group
Fun Fact: My first job was as an actor on a Spanish film set at the age of 8. 
My Why:
I joined YPB because I wanted to advocate for a more fair and just society. As the son of a Queens-native, I have always felt a strong bond to the diverse and vibrant communities that make up New York, and through YPB I have the incredible opportunity to give back and tackle critical causes that affect the everyday lives of thousands of people across the city.
Support my annual goal!

Matthew Thornburg (he/him), Chair of Fundraising & Partnerships Committee 
Associate, Schulte Roth & Zabel LLC
Fun Fact: Before starting work I through-hiked the Superior Hiking Trail, a 300 mile path along the coast of Lake Superior.
My Why: I joined YPB because I wanted to involve myself more in different communities throughout New York City and especially one that is aimed at serving New Yorkers. At the same time, I wanted to leverage my career to make a difference in ways that I would not normally have the opportunity to. Support my annual goal!

Princess Sutherland (she/her), Chair of Events Committee
Account Executive, LifeSci Communications
Fun Fact: I’ve traveled to 20+ countries!
My Why: I joined the young professional board at the Urban Justice Center because I want to make a difference in the lives of the young men and women in the city who have been affected by the justice system, especially underserved youth who are disproportionately affected. I felt this would be a great opportunity to take action in an area that I am passionate about and learn more about the initiatives that could result in better outcomes for all those affected within the community. Support my annual goal!

YPB Members

Anna Sargeantson (she/her)
Paralegal, Paul, Weiss, Rifkind, Wharton & Garrison LLP
Fun Fact: I maintain a spreadsheet ranking the best New York City pizza joints. However, New Haven-style still reigns supreme in my book.
My Why: I joined the Urban Justice Center’s YPB because it allows me to support a wonderful organization doing important work to alleviate systemic discrimination and inequality. As a member, I am able to contribute to the community while learning about pressing social justice issues. I share the organization’s values and plan to devote my career in law to advocating for the historically underserved. Support my annual goal!

Anushka Kumar (she/her)
CEO, The Promise We Share
Fun Fact: I try to watch the sunset at least once a week.
My Why: I joined the YPB as a means to learn more about the awesome approaches that UJC takes to comprehensively fight the poverty cycle. As a younger member, I am excited to grow my network, provide support to the team as I can, and connect UJC to student populations. Support my annual goal!

April Cardena (she/her)
Founding Partner, Premier Strategies Inc
Fun Fact: I have national titles in Tae Kwon Do.
My Why: I joined YPB because A lot of us that grow up in poor urban areas don’t “make it out”. The institutions we grow up in limit our social mobility, prevent us from obtaining social equity, and force many into welfare programs or the criminal justice system. As a person of color, I know that institutions are stigmatized and biased – I also know how hard it is to find adequate help within our communities. It is my personal mission to work with institutions such as the Urban Justice Center, to fight for individuals who have been unjustly treated by our system and to ensure that equitable resources are distributed among all our people. Support my annual goal!

Claire Sayers (she/her)
Social Security Disability Attorney, Ugalde & Rzonca LLP
Fun Fact: When I took and passed my black belt test at the age of eighteen, I and the other girl I tested with had 20 years of karate experience between us and neither of us were 20 years old yet.
My Why:
My favorite part of the Young Professional Board is that it exposes me to people I might not have otherwise met. Further, it exposes me to skills I might not have otherwise had the chance to learn or exercise. But most importantly, it lets me do so in service of helping vulnerable populations. Support my annual goal!

Elsa Ramesh (she/her)
Product Marketing Manager, Microsoft
Fun Fact: I recently published a Queer South Asian anthology, I Hope You’ll Still Love Me, that was featured in an international Pride campaign, compiling the stories of 20 Queer South Asians from around the world!
My Why: I joined YPB to create tangible, institutional change that empowers intersectional communities across New York City. My favorite part of YPB is growing my community of thought leaders who are passionate about co-creating and fighting for an equitable future for marginalized communities in New York City. Support my annual goal!

Haley Weinreich (she/her)
Fun Fact: I love camping, fishing, birding and foraging.
My Why: I joined YPB because I love living in New York City and want to help those who make the city as great as it is. Support my annual goal!

Kevin O’Brien (he/him)
Vice President, Alliance Bernstein
Fun Fact: I was born and raised in Atlanta, but my mom, dad, sister and brother are all from New York. Ironically I am now the only one living here.
My Why: My family and I have always been a big supporter of UJC and I can think of no greater privilege then to work with the amazing individuals of the YPB and do what I can to grow the cause. Support my annual goal!

LaShelle Lane MSW (she/her)
Law Student, CUNY School of Law
Fun Fact: I danced professionally in the genres of contemporary jazz, tap, and ballet for several years.
My Why:
I joined the Young Professional Board to work with like-minded individuals to advocate against systemic and institutional oppression, dismantle the effects of historical trauma, and empower marginalized communities. Support my annual goal!

Lia Newman (she/her)
Office Manager & Paralegal, Brafman & Associates, P.C.
Fun Fact: I slept in a tent at Mount Everest base camp!
My Why:
I joined the Urban Justice Center’s Young Professionals Board to collaborate with like-minded young professionals in furthering social justice initiatives both within my community and beyond. While it is difficult to select just one favorite part of YPB, I value the amount of responsibility that we are awarded in effecting meaningful change. Support my annual goal!

Michael Ogoszewski (he/him)
Senior Manager State & Local Tax, Ernst & Young
Fun Fact: I am a six time NYCOED Soccer champion (surpassing Brazil’s record for World Cups).
My Why:
I joined YPB to both learn about and contribute to the ways that UJC makes a difference in New York City communities. Being part of the YPB will also help me make an indirect impact on the work the UJC does in my community. Support my annual goal!

Morgan Rubin (she/her)
Director of DEI Communications, NFL
Fun Fact:When I was a consultant at an agency right out of college, UJC was my client (and one of my favorites)!
My Why:
I joined YPB because I wanted to find new ways to support UJC’s incredible work. UJC’s multi-faceted approach to fighting for vulnerable and marginalized communities is something I’ve long admired, and I look forward to helping in any way I can. Support my annual goal!

Nati Yemane (she/her)
Senior Solutions Architect, MongoDB
Fun Fact: I am originally from Addis Abeba, Ethiopia; I moved to the United States at the age of 4.
My Why:
The pandemic magnified the various degrees inequality, particularly in how laws effect minorities and those in underprivileged communities. I joined YPB because of the work of UJC and its commitment to making legal representation accessible to underserved communities while fighting for social justice reform.
Support my annual goal!

Tyler Charles (he/him)
Program Director, Bowery Residents Committee 
Fun Fact: Although I am musically inclined (drummer), I have no rhythm.
My Why:
I joined the YPB because the work they do in our communities is fantastic. As a social worker, I wanted to be a part of an organization that fights for social justice and change.
 Support my annual goal!

Yasmin Teymourian (she/her)
Associate Director, Healthcare at APCO Worldwide
Fun Fact: I just learned how to drive stick shift in Jan. 2022
My Why:
Since joining YPB, I have had incredible opportunities to leverage my professional skills and contribute to the UJC mission. I cherish the connections I have formed in a network of like minded, passionate individuals who are committed to amplifying our great work benefitting marginalized communities. I am continuously inspired by the amazing people who make up the UJC family. This has been a truly rewarding experience and I look forward to continuing this important work!! Support my annual goal!

Check out the YPB’s Night Out!

Not on the board yourself, but want to support? Donate below to help the YPB reach their goals!


The Social Justice Accelerator awards chosen applicants the opportunity and resources to develop groundbreaking social justice initiatives.

Learn More