Staff & Leadership Board

Leadership Board 2015-2016 (elected September 2015)












Top row: Osama Khatlan, Dondi McKellar, Lai Bai, Luis Perez, Felix Guzman, Dhondup Sangpo, Pauli Cortes, Mohamed Attia
Bottom Row: Doaa Abdalla, Fatma Shaalan, Mohammed Omar, Mohamed Saad Ali, Heleadora Vivar, Hulya Sevindik
Not pictured: Mohamed Megahed


Sean Basinski, SVP’s Director, graduated from the University of Pennsylvania and Georgetown Law Center. Prior to law school, he built a pushcart and sold delicious burritos from the corner of 52nd Street and Park Avenue. He founded SVP in 2001 with a $15,000 grant from Yale Law School. Sean lives in a tenement walkup apartment in Manhattan, with a bathtub in the kitchen.
Maggie Russell-Ciardi is our Development Manager. Prior to joining SVP, Maggie served as the Executive Director of Tenants & Neighbors, a grassroots economic justice organization in New York. She earned her MA in Latin American Studies from NYU, focusing on democracy-building and human rights education. She plays the flute and practices ashtanga yoga every morning.
Lindsay Dula is a fundraising and communications consultant with several years of experience in the non-profit sector. Previously, she has worked in Development and Fundraising with the James Beard Foundation, Brooklyn Botanic Garden, City Lore, Slow Food USA and others. Lindsay grew up in rural western North Carolina and graduated from Appalachian State University with a B.S. in Industrial Technology and a Minor in Sustainable Development. A resident of Brooklyn for six years, Lindsay is passionate about food, social justice and public spaces.
Matthew Shapiro, our Senior Attorney, grew up in Miami, where as a boy he was once ticketed by the police for selling mangoes by the side of the road without a license. He joined SVP on a fellowship in 2009, after graduating from Cardozo School of Law and the University of Florida. Matt recently spent a year in SE Asia on a street food sabbatical with his wife, Shari.

Cesar Boc, our Community Organizer, was born in Guatemala, and used to sell seasonal merchandise with his family as a child in Guatemala City. He grew up in Long Island, NY, and went to graduate school in Boston, MA to study Human Rights, Theology, and how best to organize communities for just change. Cesar loves to spend time in the outdoors, long distance running, and is an avid Barcelona soccer fan.
Bakary (Abou) Sanogo is our Americorp VISTA volunteer (generously provided through the New York Immigration Coalition) focusing on building SVP’s capacity to provide small business trainings. Born in Cote d’Ivoire, he has BS in Political Science from Lehman College and formerly served as an intern at African Communities Together, the Harlem-based non-profit. He loves working out, cooking, and playing soccer.

Jason Clarke is a fellow from the New York Union Semester program at the City University of New York. Jason is from Australia. He speaks French, Spanish, Indonesian and Portuguese.