Commission Member Biographies

Commission Chair
Michael S. Cashman

Michael S. Cashman grew up in Massachusetts and immediately fell in love with the North Country after moving to Plattsburgh for school. He attended SUNY Plattsburgh where he first received his B.S. in Speech Communications and then his M.S. in College and Agency Counseling. Though a transplant, Michael proudly calls the Town of Plattsburgh his home along with his wife, Olivia, a veterinarian, and their dogs. 

During his college years, Michael served in a variety roles including being the only two-term Student Association President and he was tapped to be a member of the United Way’s Allocation Committee. He credits these experiences with providing him a deeper understanding of servant leadership and challenges facing rural communities. While an undergraduate, he devoted over 1,000 hours to community service. He was recognized for excellence in service with a number of distinctions including the President's Volunteer Service Award.

After graduation, he was hired by his alma mater and worked there for a decade. As the Assistant Director for the Center for Student Involvement. His portfolio included leading Project HELP - SUNY Plattsburgh’s Community Service Clearinghouse. Each academic year over 1,200 students engaged in regional volunteer opportunities. Consistently generating over 12,000 hours of service in the Greater Plattsburgh region. He also organized and led numerous Alternative Spring Break service trips around the country and established relationships in Canada. Michael worked closely with the United Way of the Adirondacks to establish a model partnership with SUNY Plattsburgh’s Project HELP. His efforts have lead to SUNY Plattsburgh’s sustained support of the Day of Caring as the region’s largest one-day volunteer program. He was recognized for community and professional service with the SUNY Chancellor’s Award for Excellence. 

On November 3, 2015 Michael was elected with 61% of the vote as Plattsburgh newest town supervisor. His election makes him the youngest elected Plattsburgh Town Supervisor in the history of the town and it also believed Clinton County. Currently he chair’s the Clinton County Supervisor’s Association, is a member of the Clinton Community College Foundation, and member of the CV-Tec Advisory Council. Previous leadership roles included serving as the President/Chair for the founding Board of Directors to the Adirondack Young Professionals 501 c3 group and National Board member of Omicron Delta Kappa Leadership Honor Society. 

Suzanne Gaba Aisenberg

Suzanne Aisenberg is a consultant to nonprofit organizations and provides guidance to her clients on a range of organizational issues. Prior to launching her independent practice in 2003, Ms. Aisenberg was a program officer with The Atlantic Philanthropies where she was responsible for grants primarily in the areas of philanthropy, volunteering, civic engagement and nonprofit sector infrastructure. She was a founding board member of the Grantmaker Forum for National and Community Service, now called PACE, and was a national board member of the Hands on Network.

Gary Bagley

Gary Bagley is the Executive Director of New York Cares based in New York City. After joining that organization in 2004, Gary served as Senior Director of Programs and Associate Executive Director before being appointed to his current position Executive Director in 2008. He is responsible for more than tripling annual volunteer service delivery, filling more than 200,000 volunteer positions on 20,000 projects and serving over 1,400 nonprofit organizations and schools last year. Since Hurricane Sandy, Gary has overseen the launch of programs serving homeowners, nonprofits, and schools in the impacted areas that have resulted in the filling of over 25,000 volunteer positions.

Gary led New York Cares in garnering the 2009 New York Times Company Nonprofit Excellence Award for Overall Management Excellence and the 2010 Peter F. Drucker Award for Nonprofit Innovation. In addition to the New York State Commission on National and Community Service, he currently serves on the Board of Directors of Points of Light. Gary is a lecturer at Columbia University School of International and Public Affairs and Baruch College of The City University of New York, from which he holds an M.P.A. Before joining New York Cares, Gary served in leadership positions at Young Audiences New York and TADA! Youth Theater.

Melvin Campos

Mel Campos serves as Chief Professional Officer of the Boys & Girls Club of Mount Vernon. He took over the task of running the Club in February of 2013. He is a lifetime Boys & Girls Club Advocate. Under his leadership, average daily attendance has increased from 80 to 105, the budget has increased from $550,000 to more than $700,000, and the board has added nine new members. Mel has also developed new partnerships and collaborations with community stakeholders, and brought in several new programs including the nationally recognized STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering & Math) Program.

Mel first attended the Pathways for Youth Boys Club in the Bronx in 1968. In 1974, he attended the Kips Bay Boys Club also in the Bronx. He credits his Club experience with teaching him about responsibility, respect, winning, and most importantly, losing.

Mel began his professional career with the Boys & Girls Club Movement as Associate Executive Director of the Crime Prevention Association Boys & Girls Club in Philadelphia. He then became Executive Director of the Boys & Girls Club of Albany where he helped increase the budget from $462,000 to $1.2 million. After five years, Mel was asked to lead the Variety Boys & Girls Club of Queens - one of the most diverse Clubs in the country. Under his leadership, membership increased by 30%. In 2004, the Boys & Girls Clubs of America asked Mel to join the National Staff as a Regional Service Director serving more than 30 Clubs in New York and New Jersey.

Prior to his work with Boys & Girls Clubs, Mel held leadership positions with the Bank of New York, the City Volunteer Corps, the Albany Service Corps, the New York National Guard Challenge Program, Public Private Ventures, and the 1996 Olympic Games in Atlanta.

A graduate of Manhattanville College, Mel is married to Barbara Allen Campos and has three children, Adam, Lorin, and Brian.

Dr. Elizabeth Cappella

Dr. Cappella is a Distinguished Service Professor of the Department of Educational Foundations at Buffalo State College as well as Co-Director of Project FLIGHT a family Literacy Program. She has pioneered literacy programs and research in this area through Project FLIGHT locally, statewide and nationally. Former President Clinton, Governor Pataki and former Governor Cuomo have honored her for her work on the behalf of children and their families, Project FLIGHT has generated over $35,000,000 in money and in-kind donations. Dr Cappella teaches courses in Research, Statistics, Family Literacy, Parenting, Family Violence, and counseling.

Sharon Cates-Williams

Sharon Cates-Williams has made a significant and longstanding contribution to New York State government in the fields of information technology and education. Cates-Williams currently serves as Executive Deputy Commissioner at the New York State Education Department, an affiliate of the University of the State of New York comprised of public and independent elementary and secondary schools; public, independent, and proprietary colleges and universities; libraries; museums; public broadcasting facilities; historical repositories; proprietary schools; and more than 50 professions. A graduate of Baruch College, Cates-Williams left the private sector after serving 17 years as Vice President in the Global Technology division at Lehman Brothers, Inc. In 2003, Cates-Williams became the first African American Commissioner of the Department of Information Technology for the Town of North Hempstead, NY, and in 2005 she was selected as Commissioner and Chief Information Officer for Suffolk County, NY distinguishing her as the first CIO in county history. Cates-Williams served as a senior technology advisor to the New York State Governor’s office in 2008 and was soon elevated to the post of Chief Technology Officer for the Office for Technology in 2009. Cates-Williams is the recipient of several prestigious honors including her 2019 YWCA Resourceful Women in Management Award and 2017 induction into the New York State IT Leadership Hall of Fame, in recognition of her years of experience and service in the technology sector. She serves on several boards and is an active volunteer with several community-based organizations.  Cates-Williams is a frequent keynote speaker whose sole purpose is to empower young people and encourage creative thought and action.  

Betty Cotton

Betty Cotton serves on the boards of The Westchester Community College Foundation, the American Jewish Committee Board of Governors, Project Interchange and the Jewish Council of Public Affairs. She is a member of the Steering Committee of the Westchester Not-For-Profit Leadership Summit and is a former chairperson of the Greyston Foundation Wisdom Council. Betty is a former President of the Westchester American Jewish Committee and is currently Vice President of the New York Region AJC. She was honored by the Women’s Campaign Board in 2005. Professionally, Betty has worked as a consultant to not-for-profit organizations for many years. She received a Bachelor of Arts degree from George Washington University and an Master of Science degree in Urban Affairs from Hunter College.

Mallory DeLanoy

Mallory DeLanoy graduated from the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry (SUNY ESF) with a Bachelor of Science degree in environmental resources engineering. As a student, Mallory participated in Governor Cuomo’s New York Stands with Puerto Rico Recovery and Rebuilding Initiative. She volunteered on two post hurricane service trips to recover and rebuild a sustainable, resilient, and vibrant Puerto Rico. Mallory led the ESF NYWEA (New York Water Environment Association) Student Chapter as President and the natural disaster relief club on campus, Acorns to Action, as Co-President to support creative water resources management, and local, statewide, and national humanitarian efforts. Mallory currently works as a Water Engineer at Arcadis, in White Plains, New York.

Luz Lizotte

Luz Lizotte has been advocating for the needs of New York’s most vulnerable, as a member of the executive leadership team at Catholic Charities, since June 2007. Luz spent five years in the New York State Legislature, focusing on local aid and education funding, and three years in the New York State Governor’s Office overseeing the State’s outreach to immigrant populations. She now serves as Director for Government, Community & External Relations at the Catholic Charities of the Archdiocese of New York, where she is responsible for advancing the agency’s policy, budgetary and external priorities.

Luz is the daughter of Dominican immigrants. Born and raised in the East Harlem neighborhood of New York City, she holds degrees in Government from John Jay College of Criminal Justice and Urban Planning from NYU’s Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service.

Ms. Lizotte serves on the Executive Committee of the Association of Catholic Homes, the Board of Woodstock Manor, and was recently appointed by Governor Kathy Hochul to serve on the New York State Commission on National and Community Service.


Hillarie Logan-Dechene

Hillarie Logan-Dechene’s career has been about building the capacity of non-for-profit organizations. As The Wild Center’s Director of Philanthropy she is responsible for all membership and development activities. After studying at The American University in Paris and earning her BA from the State University of New York at Albany, she worked in for-profit marketing and public relations and then joined the Development Department at the Adirondack Museum in Blue Mountain Lake where she worked for more than sixteen years. She progressed from Development Assistant to the Director of Institutional Advancement. Upon leaving the Adirondack Museum in 2006, Logan-Dechene became the Vice President for Institutional Advancement at Paul Smith’s College, a private college in the Adirondacks. After nearly four years, Logan-Dechene left the college in 2010 to accept her current position at the Wild Center and led the Center through a successful $20 million fundraising campaign. She has been a guest lecturer in Marketing, Fundraising and Non-Profit Management for Skidmore College, Adirondack Community College, and New York University.

Logan-Dechene was chosen as Chair of the New York State Commission on National and Community Service in 2015. She is an active board member of the Adirondack Health Foundation, and the Museum Association of New York. She has a Bachelor of Arts from the State University of New York at Albany and a Masters of Arts in Non-profit Leadership and Community Sustainability from Skidmore College.

Andrea Louie

Andrea Louie is Secretary to the Commissioner at the Nassau County Department of Health. She was executive director of the Asian American Arts Alliance, leading arts advocacy and cultural equity for New York City’s diverse, pan-Asian, multidisciplinary cultural community. She is the author of a novel, Moon Cakes (Ballantine Books) and co-editor of an anthology, Topography of War: Asian American Essays (The Asian American Writers’ Workshop). Andrea is a recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts fellowship, the Hannah S. and Samuel A. Cohn Memorial Foundation Fellowship, a Ludwig Volgelstein Foundation grant and was short-listed for the Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers’ Award. She has served as a review panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts, the New York State Council on the Arts, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, the Joyce Foundation, EmcArts, and the Brooklyn Arts Council. She was a writer-in-residence for the National Book Foundation and has been awarded artist residencies at Yaddo, MacDowell Colony, Djerassi, Hedgebrook, and the Fundacíon Valparáiso in Spain. She has been appointed by Gov. Cuomo to the NYS Commission on National and Community Service and serves on the boards of SMU DataArts and New Yorkers for Culture & Arts. She is a member of the Asian American Writers’ Workshop as well as the Asian American Journalists Association. She was 2016 honoree of Leadership for Asian Pacifics (LEAP) in Los Angeles, and was a 2017 arts and community advocate honoree of the Pan Asian Repertory Theatre.


Gay B. Molnar

Gay, along with fellow Commission member, Dr. William Murabito, has served as a member of the Commission on National & Community Service since its inception in 1994. During these years she has served as the Vice Chair and Secretary. Gay sits on several regional boards, where she brings expertise about not-for-profits and development. Gay is a former President of the National Rural Education Association, which is the leading national organization that maintains the vitality of rural schools across the country. She remains active with the NREA. In 1991, Gay was selected by then First Lady Matilda Cuomo to be the first Western Region Coordinator for the New York State Mentoring Program. Gay takes great pride in knowing that she made a difference with at-risk children during this time with the mentoring program. Gay is also a former Executive Director of the Aquarium of Niagara in Niagara Falls, New York, and she is currently President of the Calamar Foundation.

Dr. William Murabito

Dr. William Murabito has served as a member of the New York State Commission on National Community Service since its establishment in 1994. His volunteer service has spanned over forty years with membership on numerous agencies, including the chair of Albany’s Promise, for which he received the Albany Volunteer of the Year Award. He has long been involved in the field of higher education, in which he has held positions at several SUNY schools.

Susan Stern

Named as one of the 2012 “Women to Watch” by Jewish Women’s International, Susan Stern has been unflinchingly dedicated to Jewish communities across the globe for much of her life. Her work has taken her to countries such as Ethiopia, Cuba, Argentina, Turkey, Russia, Poland, Uzbekistan, and Bulgaria.

In 2011, President Barack Obama nominated Susan to chair his Advisory Council on Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships; her primary issue on the council was human trafficking. In 2013 she was named one of New York’s “New Abolitionists.”

She served as chair for the Board of Directors of UJA – Federation and currently serves as chair of Live With a Purpose initiative promoting service and volunteerism in the Jewish Community. Previously she served as General Campaign chair. She also serves on the Advisory Committee of Repair the World.

Susan is currently the Vice Chair of Jewish Federations of North America JFNA), where she was the first female national campaign chair. She served as national chair and president of National Women’s Philanthropy of United Jewish Communities and was the creator of the International Lion of Judah Conference. As chair of the National Young Leadership Cabinet, she was asked to serve as an eyewitness to Operation Solomon, the Israeli rescue of 14,000 Ethiopian Jews in 23 hours. She was named a Wexner Heritage Fellow in 1993. Presently, she is chair of the New York State Commission on the National and Community Service and chair of Global Programs for the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee.

She and her husband Jeffrey, have two sons, Michael (Janna) and Peter (Amanda) and two grandchildren, Zachary and Alexandra.