NJPSA/FEA Board of Directors
2020-21 NJPSA Board of Directors
Michael Vinella, Ph.D. - President
Principal, East Brunswick High School
Term: 2017 - 2020
Dr. Michael Vinella has worked in East Brunswick Public Schools for 23 years and is entering his seventh year as EBHS principal. Dr. Vinella holds a B.A. in Economics from Rutgers University, a M.Ed. in Administration and Supervision from Kean University, and a Ph.D. in K-12 Educational Leadership from Walden University. He holds certificates as Teacher of Social Studies, Supervisor, Principal and Chief School Administrator. During his time in East Brunswick he has held positions as Social Studies teacher, Assistant Principal at EBHS, Supervisor of Staff Development/Grants/Testing and Supervisor of Social Studies. Dr. Vinella has also served on several local, county, state and national committees with the most recent being the NASSP Student Leadership Advisory Committee, NJPSA/NJASA Joint Committee on Educator Evaluation and Graduation Requirements, and the NJDOE Principals Practice Pilot.
Arlene Rogo, Ed.D. - President-Elect
Principal, Neptune Middle School
Term: 2019 - 2022
Dr. Arlene M. Rogo is beginning her 37th year as a New Jersey Educator. She is currently Principal of Neptune Middle School. During her 25 years in Neptune, she also served as principal of Summerfield Elementary School for 16 years and Principal of Midtown Community Elementary School for 6 years. In 2012, MCES, a Platinum LEED School became one of the first Green Ribbon Schools designated by the U.S. Department of Education. Dr. Rogo began her career in Bergen County as a teacher in middle school and high school, and then gained administrative experience as a high school grade administrator, a middle school department chairperson and K-8 curriculum supervisor, and as a K-8 vice principal. Dr. Rogo is also a coordinator of the Monmouth County Elementary/Middle School Administrators Association.
Thomas Macagnano - Vice President
Principal, Dr. Ronald E. McNair Academic High School, Jersey City
Term: 2018 - 2021
Thomas Macagnano is beginning his 25th year as an educator for the Jersey City Public Schools District. He has served as an ELA teacher, assistant principal, elementary principal, director, and is currently the proud principal of Dr. Ronald E. McNair Academic High School (his alma mater). Thomas is also the President of the Administrators and Supervisors Association of Jersey City, the coordinator of the Hudson County association, and a field representative for NJPSA.
Robin L. Moore, Ed.D. - Immediate Past President
Principal, Roland Rogers Elementary School
Term: 2010 - 2021
Dr. Robin Moore has been an educator for over 20 years. She has elementary and secondary educational experience as a teacher, supervisor, assistant principal and principal. Currently, she serves the principal of Roland Rogers Elementary School in Galloway Township. Dr. Moore has served as the president of The Atlantic-Cape Principals' & Supervisors’ Association since 2013. She is an active council member of the NJ Principals’ & Supervisors’ Association and has memberships with ASCD and NAESP. Dr. Moore holds a BA in Business Administration from Stockton College, and Masters and Doctorate degrees in Educational Administration & Educational Leadership from Rowan University. She holds New Jersey Education certifications in Teacher of the Handicapped and Principal / Supervisor. She also holds Certificates of Eligibility in School Business Administration and School Administration. In recent years, she has received numerous awards which includes; 2003 NAACP Service Award; 2003 Military Order of the Purple Heart Distinguished Service Award, Stockton’s Black Faculty & Staff’s 2005 Distinguished Alumni Award; 2006 Zeta Phi Beta Sorority Purpose Driven Life Award, and 2010 Educational Leadership Hope Image Award, 2013 New Mt. Calvary Women of the Year Award and she was a recipient of the Atlantic County Church School & BTU 2014 Dedication Award .
Patrick McCabe, Ed.D. - Treasurer
Principal, South Amboy Middle/High School
Term: 2017 - 2020
Patrick McCabe has served as Principal of South Amboy Middle/High School - a sixth grade through 12th grade school - since 2005. Prior to that he was a principal of a Middle school in Colts Neck, NJ. Before becoming an administrator, Patrick served as a school psychologist and taught English at Marist High School. He earned a Bachelor of Science from Saint Peter's University, a Masters in Counseling from Seton Hall University, a Masters in Administration from New Jersey City University and a Masters and a Doctorate in School Psychology from Rutgers University. Patrick spent four years as a Trustee on the Bayonne Board of Education, has served as a Leaders to Leaders mentor since 2013 and is presently the President of the Middlesex County Secondary Principals Association.
NJPSA Board Members
Ralph Aiello - NASSP State Representative
Principal, Cumberland Regional High School
Ralph Aiello is the New Jersey State representative to the National Association of Secondary School Principals and the principal of Cumberland Regional High School in Cumberland County, New Jersey, a position he has held for going on seven years after previously serving as Assistant Principal for eight years. As principal, Aiello puts a strong emphasis on preparing his young assistant principals to lead their own building one day. During his time in administration, Aiello has served as president of his local association, as a council member of the New Jersey Principal and Supervisor Association (NJPSA), NJPSA treasurer, NJPSA VP, and in 2017-2018 as NJPSA president. Aiello also was the New Jersey Assistant Principal of the Year in 2013. Aiello holds two bachelor’s degrees in elementary education and historical studies from Stockton University and his master’s in leadership from Wilmington University.
Karen Beckford-Bennett, Ed.D.
Principal, Lovell J. Honiss School
Term: 2018 - 2021
Dr. Karen Beckford-Bennett has been an accomplished New Jersey Educator for 28 years, and has spent the last 16 years as Principal of Lovell J. Honiss School in Dumont, New Jersey. She joined the Dumont School District in 2002 serving as the vice-principal of Honiss School before moving into the principalship. Her prior administrative experience was in the Englewood School district where she served as a school facilitator / vice-principal. Prior to becoming an administrator, Karen’s teaching career began in the Teaneck Public Schools where she taught for 10 years at both the elementary (grades 3 and 4) and the middle school level (math and science - grade 6). She is currently the co-chair of the Dumont Administrators and Supervisors Association. Dr. Bennett earned her BA in Elementary Education from the University of Pennsylvania, her MA in Administration and Supervision from Bank Street College of Education, and an Ed.D. in Educational Leadership and Organizational Management from the University of Pennsylvania. She is a recent recipient of the Bergen County Excellence in Education Award. Dr. Bennett is passionate about curriculum and instruction, issues of equity and closing the achievement gaps.
Kimberly Clark, Ed.D.
Assistant Principal, Pinelands Regional Jr. High School
Term: 2019 - 2022
Kimberly Lynn Clark, Ed.D. is a practitioner-researcher, who currently works at Pinelands Regional, a 7-12 public school district in New Jersey, as an assistant principal. In addition to her building-level responsibilities, she is the district supervisor of several departments including English-as-a-second-language, special education, and gifted and talented education. As a researcher, Dr. Clark focuses on the topics of educational leadership, leadership development, feminist theory, gender performance, and nontraditional administrative preparation.
Aaron Eyler, NASSP State Coordinator
Principal, Matawan Regional High School
Aaron S. Eyler has been the Principal of Matawan Regional High School, located in Monmouth County, since July 2018. Prior to his current position, he was an Assistant Principal at Piscataway High School (August 2012-October 2015) and Principal of Matawan-Aberdeen Middle School (October 2015-June 2018). In addition to his regular duties, he serves as the President of the Matawan Regional Administrators Association and the district's "School Safety Specialist." An active member of NJPSA, he sits on the Legislative Committee, Special Education Committee, and Council. For more information about Mr. Eyler, please visit his biography page.
Brian C. Gismondi, Ed.D.
Principal, West Deptford High School
Term: 2019 - 2022
Brian C. Gismondi has worked in public education for 24 years. He served as a teacher of music in New Jersey and Delaware. For the past 19 years, Dr. Gismondi has served as an assistant principal, as well as, a principal of elementary, middle and high schools. He currently and proudly serves as the West Deptford High School Principal. He is the President of his Local School Association and has served NJPSA as a Council Member and a member of the Nominating Committee. Dr. Gismondi currently resides in West Deptford with his wife and twin teenage daughters.
Tracey L. Knerr
K-12 Supervisor of Mathematics, Hillsborough Public Schools
Term: 2020 - 2024
Tracey L. Knerr is a career educator who has worked at every level of education from kindergarten through higher education. She is passionate about creating an educational system and World in which everyone understands and enjoys mathematics. She is currently the K-12 supervisor of mathematics for the HIllsborough Township Public Schools. She is the co-author of a pre-k through 5 mathematics program called Math Shapes: Go Figure Helping you Help Your Child. Tracey enjoys providing professional development opportunities for educators around the state. She is the treasurer of NJASCD and also holds membership in these organizations: ASCD, Learning Forward, ISTE, NCTM, NCSM.
Nicole Moore - NAESP State Representative
Principal, Indian Mills School
Term: 2018 - 2021
Nicole Moore is an accomplished New Jersey educator for nearly 25 years. Ms. Moore has spent the last 16 years as Principal of Indian Mills School in Shamong, New Jersey, a pre-K through fourth grade school, where she serves as the building’s sole school leader. Ms. Moore previously served as the Assistant Principal of Blackwood Elementary School in the Gloucester Township School district where she was responsible for student discipline, teacher evaluation, business operations and community relations. Ms. Moore holds a Master's in Administration Planning and Social Policy from Harvard Graduate School of Education.
Principal, Nicolaus Copernicus School
Term: 2019 - 2022
Diane Pistilli is the Principal of Nicolaus Copernicus School in Jersey City. She has 41 years of educational experience. Her professional experiences include teacher, guidance counselor, Asst. Principal and Principal. Diane Pistilli served as the Past President of the Administrators Supervisors Association of Jersey City and was on the Executive Board of ASA JC for over 10 years.
Supervisor of Instruction, Vineland Public Schools
Term: 2020 - 2024
Ross Stanger graduated from the Hill School, in Pottstown, PA, before matriculating to Kenyon College in Gambier, OH. While an undergraduate, Mr. Stanger was a three sport athlete and 10 varsity letter winner in cross country and track and field and two time captain of cross country. Mr. Stanger was a history major, admissions tour guide, and coordinated overnight stays for visiting students. He also studied abroad in Kenya and Uganda. After graduating, Mr. Stanger worked as a kindergarten and 1st Grade Assistant and as the 6th Grade Dean's Assistant at Saint Ann's School, in Brooklyn, NY. He later earned a M.A. in American History from Rutgers University-Camden, and a M. Ed. from Wilmington University. Mr. Stanger taught social studies for 10 years at Vineland High School North. Mr. Stanger has served as Vineland Public Schools' Supervisor of Social Studies, Art, and Library/Media Specialists, and has coordinated the A.P. and Gifted & Talented Programs, since 2008. He is a two-time elected school board member in Hopewell Township (Cumberland County) and was elected Vineland Administrator of the Year in Vineland in 2018. Mr. Stanger is actively involved in Holocaust and Genocide Education, serves as the Program Chair of the South Jersey Holocaust & Genocide Coalition, and was awarded the Miles Lerman Holocaust Education Award in 2020. Mr. Stanger also previously served as the President of the Vineland Principals and Supervisors' Association for three years. He is currently a doctoral student at Drexel University in the Education Administration focusing on the impact of character education on public schools.
2020-2021 FEA Board of Directors
Executive Director of NJPSA
A lifelong educator, Patricia Wright is currently the Executive Director of the New Jersey Principals and Supervisors Association. She has held the positions of teacher, reading specialist, assistant principal, principal, and superintendent. Mrs. Wright serves as a member of the New Jersey Professional Development Advisory Committee. She also served as the chair of the New Jersey Anti-Bullying Task Force and co-authored the New Jersey Bar Foundation's Anti-Bullying Curriculum. She is the developer of the Connected Action Roadmap (CAR), a comprehensive and coherent model of school improvement, which has been endorsed by the Partnership on Collaborative Professional Learning. Most recently, she spearheaded the development of the New Jersey Leadership Academy with the NJASA, in which cohorts of superintendents, assistant superintendents, principals, assistant principals, supervisors, and directors collaborate for a yearlong experience of quality, sustained professional learning.
FEA Board Members
Donna McInerney, Ed.D.
CEO of FEA
Donna McInerney is the Chief Executive Officer of FEA, having previously served for nearly six years as FEA's Director of Program Development and Design. A former high school Social Studies teacher and supervisor, she earned her doctorate from the Graduate School of Education at Rutgers University, specializing in curriculum theory and development. Over the last 15 years she has been an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Graduate Education, Leadership and Counseling at Rider University and in the Educational Administration and Secondary Education Program at The College of New Jersey. She currently teaches in the NJ EXCEL program. Throughout the course of her career, Dr. McInerney has provided professional learning experiences on a wide variety of topics including tools for professional learning communities, the Connected Action Roadmap (CAR), research-based instructional strategies, classroom management techniques, project-based learning, differentiated instruction, curriculum integration, and cooperative learning strategies. Her most recent work has focused on the instructional leadership skills and coherent frameworks needed to improve teacher practice, drive student achievement and ensure systemic, sustained, school improvement.
CFO of FEA
Denise Hecht is presently the Assistant Executive Director for the New Jersey Principals and Supervisors Association (NJPSA) and Chief Financial Officer for the Foundation for Educational Administration, Inc. (FEA). Prior to this, she was the Founder and President of DenTel Practice Management. Her firm offered professional and staff development in the fields of education, health care, and business. She received her MBA from Wagner College in New York where she has served as an adjunct member of the graduate school business administration faculty. She has also served as an adjunct professor at Farleigh Dickinson University. Ms. Hecht is a published writer, the author of the CLICK Profile for Educators, and is a certified NLP practitioner. Ms. Hecht has served as the President of the New Jersey Association of Partners in Education and has been a board member of the David Sarnoff Library and Museum. In partnership with the NJDOE and the New Jersey Association of School Administrators, she has assisted in writing and successfully implemented a $5.1 million grant for training Superintendents and Principals in leadership and technology in the state of New Jersey. She has also presented at several national conferences on leadership in the health, education, and business-related fields. Ms. Hecht was past Director of the Institute for Education and Cognitive Psychology, an organization devoted to the personal and professional improvement of teachers and administrators.
Dr. Angela Bender
Superintendent, Ridgefield Park Dr. Angela Pucci Bender is currently the Superintendent of Ridgefield Park and previously served in the Ridgefield Park District as Principal of Grant School. She began her career in education with the Fair Lawn Public School District where she was a Business Education teacher in grades 6- 12. Dr. Bender served her last several years at Fair Lawn as the District Technology Specialist providing teacher professional development and in-class technology support. She joined Ridgefield Park in 2005 as a Supervisor of the Fine, Performing and Practical Arts. Angela has been the Grant School Principal since 2006. She held both teaching, and administrative positions and responsibilities on the elementary, middle, high school, and district levels. She is a proud NJ EXCEL graduate and a former NJPSA Board Member. She is an NJ EXCEL instructor and serves in various mentor positions throughout the program since 2005. Angela is also an Adjunct Professor at Ramapo College of New Jersey in the Master of Science in Educational Technology program. She has written curriculum for children and adult learners. Angela completed her undergraduate work at Montclair State, her graduate work at Ramapo College, her post-masters at NJ EXCEL, two post-masters and her Doctorate at Capella University.
Director of Curriculum, Instruction, and Technology, North Brunswick
Janet Ciarrocca is the Director of Curriculum, Instruction, and Technology, North Brunswick and was formerly the principal at Livingston Park Elementary School. Throughout a 30 year career in education, she has moved from classroom teacher, to library media specialist to principal. She has worked in both urban and suburban districts. A lifelong learner, she is a proud graduate of the NJ EXCEL program. Janet is currently participating in the Learning Forward Academy program, a 2 ½ year cohort focused on a specific job embedded problem of practice, in this case, the CAR process. She is passionate about professional learning and figuring out ways to reach every learner.
Principal, Brookside Elementary School
Tom Conroy is currently the of Brookside Elementary School in the Westwood Regional School District. He has been in Westwood for the past five years. Prior to serving in his current position, Tom held both teaching, and administrative positions on the elementary, middle, high school, and district levels. He is entering his fourth year on the NJPSA/FEA Leadership Academy Development and Presentation Teams. Tom completed both his undergraduate and graduate work, at Montclair State University.
Assistant Principal, Halsted Middle School, Newton
Angela D. Dunbar is the Assistant Principal of Halsted Middle School and Director of Curriculum & Professional Development for Newton Public Schools in Newton, New Jersey. Angela has over seventeen years of experience in education. Prior to becoming a school leader, Angela was a high school special education teacher for eight years in Newton and five years in the Bronx, New York. Angela believes in providing educators with individualized support in order to build their capacity and increase student achievement. Angela is the founder and leader of the Curriculum Consortium of Sussex County and organizes professional development opportunities for educators in Northwest, New Jersey. Angela’s administration prowess was recognized when she received the 2017 Dale Reinhardt Excellence in Education Award for her work as a leader in the area of curriculum development and her ability to provide professional development opportunities for educators. Additionally, Angela was a recipient of the Newton High School Teacher of the Year Award in 2014. She holds a Master's in School Building Leadership from Columbia University.
Assistant Principal, Cumberland Regional High School
Terence Johnson is the assistant principal at Cumberland Regional High School. He instituted and runs the Freshman Transition into High School program, in which seniors help incoming freshman learn how to adjust to life in high school. An alumnus and former football player at The Citadel, Terence was named the 2019 NJPSA Visionary Assistant Principal of the Year, as well as the New Jersey NASSP Assistant Principal of the Year .
Director of Curriculum and Instruction for Hamilton Township (Mercer County) School District
Mr. Scotto currently serves as the Director of Curriculum and Instruction for the Hamilton Township School District. Previously, he served as the K-12 Director of Curriculum and Instruction for the Barnegat Township Public School District. Prior to working in Barnegat, Mr. Scotto was the Director of Curriculum and Instruction for the Tri-District of Atlantic Highlands/Highlands/Henry Hudson Regional. Before Mr. Scotto became an administrator 12 years ago, he was a classroom teacher for 10 years. He earned his MA in Administration/Curriculum Planning/Supervision from Georgian Court University and his BA in Elementary Education/American Studies from St. Peter's College (University). He and his wife (Heather) currently reside in Monmouth County and have a son.
District Supervisor of Testing, Roselle Public Schools
Ms. Karen Tanner-Oliphant began her career as a Family and Consumer Science teacher at East Side High School in Paterson, New Jersey. There she served in many roles as a student advocate, mentor, and class advisor. Currently, Ms. Tanner-Oliphant serves as the District Supervisor of Testing for Roselle Public Schools and has been recognized for her leadership in service to the district and the educational community through her participation in various special projects, leading to improved student outcomes such as: High Schools that Work, School Improvement Grants (SIG Program), NJDOE Assessment Panel (next generation statewide assessment), Connected Action Roadmap (CAR-District-wide Implementation), and a developer of the Broad Field Family and Consumer Sciences Assessment for AAFCS-CTSO Certification. She also served as the State President of the American Association of Family and Consumer Sciences. Karen earned her B.S. from Hampton University, an M.A. from Kean University – School Administration and MA in Secondary Reading and Curriculum from Grand Canyon University. Through her leadership as President of the Morris County (NJ) Chapter of the Links, Incorporated, her focus is to provide transformational programs and services to the community that are designed to lead to improved outcomes for children and families.