Janet Altman

Janet Altman

Janet Altman has more than 20 years of business experience in the corporate and non-profit sectors. Shortly after receiving her B.S. in marketing from the University of Maryland, she returned to the Boston area. Her experience in the software and non-profit sectors has included building partnerships with corporate entities and community organizations. Her previous full-time position was Director of Adult Education at Hebrew College. During her decade-plus living in Boston, Janet was actively involved with the Sportsmen’s Tennis Club in Dorchester, inspired by its people and dedication to education. These days, Janet is busy raising her family and volunteering at non-profit organizations. She serves as Program Director and can be reached at jaltman@alray.org.

Corey Allen

Corey Allen

Corey J. Allen has been a teacher, a coach, a journalist, and an ardent supporter of community-based initiatives. He has seen the rewards and opportunities available through a strong educational foundation and is looking to see those opportunities extended to more of his neighbors and their children with a strong kindergarten to college initiative plan. Corey is a 2001 graduate of Boston Latin Academy who continued his education at Bentley College from 2001-2003. He received his B.A. and M. Ed. from UMass Boston in 2007 and 2008, respectively. Active in his neighborhood throughout his college and post-college career, he began coaching youth for the Mattapan Patriots at Almont Park, and joined the board as the educational coordinator, initiating a year-round tutoring program. Through the City of Boston Mattapan liaison Freda Brasfield, Corey helped coordinate the first Boston Shines cleanup at Almont Park. He is executive director of the Franklin Park Coalition and also board member of the Mattahunt Wheelock Community Center Advisory Board and TechBoston Academy. Corey is also a mentor for Alray Scholars.

Lee Bertram

Lee Bertram

Lee Bertram earned his bachelor’s degree in finance at The State University of New York at New Paltz while serving as 2-year captain of the men’s basketball team. He moved to Boston to begin a career at State Street and then The Bank of New York Mellon. He’s now an Investment Operations Specialist at Eaton Vance Investment Managers. He has his master’s in business administration from Suffolk University. Lee is a mentor for Alray Scholars and serves on our Administration Committee.

Frank Brayer

Frank Brayer

Frank Brayer is a seasoned financial executive and certified public accountant who serves as regional vice president of the entertainment powerhouse Live Nation. He has varied and extensive experience across all aspects of financial management, including administration, auditing, accounting and system implementation, and he is putting those talents to work in leading the effort to enhance the Alray financial operation. Frank earned his bachelor’s degree from Wesleyan University and his master’s in accounting from the University of Hartford. He lives outside Boston with his wife and two children. Frank serves as our treasurer.

Anne Comber

Anne Comber

Anne Comber has worked in public relations and non-profit management for over 25 years. Currently, she is the Associate Director of the Friends of Blue Hills. She is the founder of Perfect Pitch Communications, a successful firm providing marketing and public relations expertise to small businesses and non-profit organizations. She is a graduate of Duke University and has a master’s degree in public administration from the John F. Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University. Anne is chair of our Advisory Committee.

Sue Cuyler

Sue Cuyler

Sue Cuyler is a marketing consultant with over 25 years of experience developing cost-effective solutions to clients’ marketing and strategic planning needs. After developing her skills for 9 years at Deloitte Consulting, Sue spent 11 years with NK&A collaborating with small and mid-sized organizations, in both the corporate and nonprofit world, to develop marketing plans that helped them meet their business goals. Sue is currently Strategic Marketing Manager for KnowledgeLink, a global education organization dedicated to increasing access to education for students around the world. Sue is a graduate of Colby College and Clark University’s Graduate School of Management. She lives in Newton with her husband and two boys. Sue is co-chair of our Communications Committee.

Kevin Fudge

Kevin Fudge

Kevin Fudge is the director of consumer advocacy and ombudsman at American Student Assistance. He works with policy makers, state agencies and non-profit organizations to increase college access, college completion and successful education debt management. He works with members of state government to provide effective solutions to complex student loan situations faced by their constituents or from their own education loans. In the national conversation about student loan debt and higher education policy, Kevin provides research and analysis of student loans to national and local media, secondary school administrators, higher education professionals, and think tanks. Kevin has been dedicated to helping Boston area students achieve their social, academic and economic potential since 2001, when he was the Assistant Director of Admissions/College Access Coordinator at College of the Holy Cross. Kevin is a graduate of the University of Virginia and received his master’s degree in Education Policy and Management from Harvard University. Kevin serves on our Administration Committee and our Applications Committee, and he serves as our in-house guru on matters of aid and debt.

Heidi Guarino

Heidi Guarino

Heidi has spent her professional career in and around public education, first as an education reporter for local and national media outlets, later as a senior leader in the development and communication of education policy in Massachusetts, and currently as an education consultant working with clients around the country. She is currently a senior consultant at Education First, a national education consulting firm, where she manages and works on a range of education policy issues for clients ranging from the U.S. Department of Education to the Salem Public Schools to the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. Prior to joining Education First, Heidi served as chief of staff for the Massachusetts Department of Elementary and Secondary Education; earlier in her career Heidi spent a decade as an education reporter, covering national and state education news for The Associated Press in Boston and for several regional newspapers in eastern Massachusetts. Heidi earned her bachelor’s degree in professional writing from Emerson College in Boston. She lives with her husband and two school-aged sons in Salem, Massachusetts. Heidi is co-chair of our Communications Committee and serves on our Applications Committee.

Jack O’Brien

Jack O’Brien

Jack O’Brien is a longtime teacher, coach and mentor. In a decade of coaching basketball at Charlestown High School, he led his teams to a record-breaking five state championships in six years. More important, during his tenure, nearly every one of his players who stayed with the Charletown program through his senior year went on to college. A graduate of Salem State College, Jack previously coached in Salem and his hometown of Medford. Irish America Magazine named him one of its Top 100 Irish-Americans. Jack is chair of our Mentoring Committee.

Nicolas Souffrant

Nicolas Souffrant

Nicolas Souffrant, a graduate of Charlestown High School and Bentley College, is a financial representative for Citizens Securities. He is also a mentor for Diamond Educators and a volunteer basketball coach in Boston. A member of the Alray organization from the start, Nick is chair of our Outreach Committee and also serves on our Applications Committee.

Neil Swidey

Neil Swidey

Neil Swidey is a staff writer for the Boston Globe Magazine and a bestselling author, most recently of Trapped Under the Sea, which was named one of the best books of the year by Amazon and Booklist. His first book, The Assist, about the transformative power of high school basketball and the narrow margins faced by young men growing up in Boston, was named one of the best books of the year by the Washington Post. It was also the inspiration for the Alray Scholars Program. Neil was a co-author of The Last Lion: The Fall and Rise of Ted Kennedy, and his writing has been featured in The Best American Science Writing, The Best American Crime Writing, and The Best American Political Writing. He grew up in a big family in Somerset, Mass., and graduated from Tufts University, where he met his wife, Denise Drower Swidey. They have three daughters. Neil serves as president of our organization.
Altia Taylor (emerita)

Altia Taylor (emerita)

Altia Taylor is studying to become a licensed social worker. A native of Roxbury and a GED recipient, she is the sister of Alray Taylor, after whom the scholarship fund is named. She lives with her spouse and two children, and she enjoys working with students to help them overcome obstacles and get ahead. A founding member of the organization, Altia is now a Board member emerita.

Ian Urquhart

Ian Urquhart

Ian Urquhart is a 1997 graduate of Charlestown High School and also served as an assistant coach for the basketball team during Alray’s senior year. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Skidmore College and his law degree from New England School of Law. He currently works as an attorney for the law firm Prince Lobel in the areas of real estate, land use, and development. Ian is chair of our Administration Committee, serves as Clerk of the organization, and brings his expertise in the law and other regulatory matters to the Board. In addition to the Alray Scholars Program, Ian also serves on the Advisory Board for the Charlestown Boys and Girls Club.

Ed Walker

Ed Walker

Ed Walker is a Boston Public Schools graduate who went on to earn his degree from Bates College and serve as an Assistant Dean of Admissions there and then at Wheaton College before returning to Boston. Ed is a guidance counselor at Cambridge Rindge and Latin School. He is also the founder and president of Independent Consultants of Education (I.C.E.), a consortium of dedicated educators who provide a myriad of educational services to nonprofit community-based organizations, such as churches, YMCAs, Boys and Girls Clubs, and similar programs. Ed is chair of our Applications Committee.