The Rotary Club of East Yonkers and the Yonkers Public Schools
proudly present the 2011 Leadership in Education Award to two deserving recipients:
Sheryl Chasin, Executive Director of Human Resources/Personnel
and Edwin Quezada, Principal of Lincoln High School
Throughout her career, Sheryl Chasin was synonymous with fairness,
equity and the belief that every child and employee, regardless of
circumstance, had the potential for greatness. Her development of
cadres of teacher trainers and facilitators, promotion of programs
for existing and aspiring administrators, and training for noncertificated
personnel and student leaders were all designed to
increase the leadership capacity within the District.
Sheryl Chasin began her career in the Yonkers Public Schools in
1986 as a Human Relations Facilitator. In 2000, she was appointed
the Director of Professional Development and in 2010, she became
Executive Director of Human Resources and Personnel, which
included the responsibilities of Organization Development.
Referred to often as the conscience of the District, Ms. Chasin was
steadfastly motivated by a singular belief in the principle, “what’s
right, not who’s right.” She consistently modeled a servant leadership
style by mentoring, coaching and empowering others to develop
their own leadership potential.
Ms. Chasin led by example, instilling
within her coworkers that every stakeholder played a significant
role in, and made a valuable contribution to, our students’ success.
Sheryl Chasin graduated from Herbert H. Lehman College, receiving
a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology with a minor in Education and
later a Master’s degree in Guidance & Counseling. She was certified
in School Counseling, School Administration and Supervision, and
School District Administration. She received advanced training in
clinical biofeedback from the Institute of Psychosomatic Research
and worked as a biofeedback therapist.
Ms. Chasin taught
graduate courses in group and individual counseling at Lehman
College for ten years and was a consultant to organizations and
other school districts. Ms. Chasin completed an internship in the
University Associates Advanced Program in Organization and
Human Resources Development, a three-phase program that
focused on improving organizational impact as well as training
Sheryl Chasin was a member of the national education honor
society, Kappa Delta Pi, held positions in the community such as PTA
President of Gorton High School, and received numerous awards for
her outstanding work in education including the Jenkins Memorial
award, the first Lehman Urban Teacher Educator award (LUTE) and
the Jewish Council of Yonkers’ Administrator of the Year Award.
The loss of Sheryl Chasin is profoundly felt throughout the District by
all who had the pleasure of knowing her. Sheryl's legacy, however,
endures within her daughter Stephanie, a teacher at Montessori
School 27, and her character motivates the question often posed by
coworkers: “What would Sheryl do?” Superintendent of Yonkers Public
Schools Bernard Pierorazio explained, “Sheryl is our angel now, as she
has been in the past. And the radiance, the light and the sunshine
with which she filled a room is now reignited by her spirit and the
pieces of us that would not be, had we never known her.”
The process of change arrived at Lincoln High School with Principal
Edwin Quezada. His leadership abilities have been felt since his arrival,
and the school has realized a transformation of incremental progress.
Student achievement is on the rise, and professional development occurs
daily as colleagues are encouraged to share best practices. Parental
involvement has improved and community based organizations are
eager to join the process of educating Lincoln’s young scholars.
Prior to coming to the Yonkers Public Schools, Mr. Quezada worked
as a high school counselor at Columbus High School in the Bronx. He
then joined the District in 1998 as a Human Relations Facilitator. In
2002, he became an Assistant Principal at Gorton High School and
in 2003, was appointed Principal of Emerson Middle School. In 2004,
he accepted his current position as Principal of Lincoln High School.
As the Principal of Lincoln, Mr. Quezada has worked collaboratively
with all stakeholders to create a school in which students are valued,
respected, and encouraged to pursue their dreams. Mr. Quezada
is actively involved in the PTSA, facilitates parent workshops,
conducts focus group meetings with non-English speaking parents
and organizes events that involve parents, teachers, and students.
To improve community relations, he has also implemented, “Be
the Change Agent,” an initiative that invites families from the
surrounding neighborhood to Lincoln High School events.
Edwin Quezada uses a reflective approach to leadership, insisting
that all stakeholders have a voice that must be heard. He is pro-active
and uses a data-driven approach to decision making.
He excels at
training his constituents and assisting them in developing their own
leadership skills. “Mr. Quezada builds capacity within others and
makes everyone around him starve for excellence,” said Lincoln
High School Assistant Principal Ian Sherman. “He truly embodies
our school’s mission: We care. We learn. We lead.”
Edwin Quezada graduated from Herbert H. Lehman College,
receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in Accounting and Business
Practice with a minor in Secondary Education and a Master of
Science degree in Counseling Education. Mr. Quezada earned a
second Master of Science degree in School Administration and
Supervision from Fordham University.
Edwin Quezada has received numerous honors in recognition of
his accomplishments in the field of education: the 2003-2004
Fulbright Award; 2003 Dominican/American Club Recognition
Award; 2004 Dominican Cultural Association Education Award;
2004 Lehman College Urban Teacher Education LUTE Award; 2006
Theater Association of New York State Administrator of the Year
Award; 2008 Association of Hispanic Professionals Outstanding
Educator Award; 2009 ADASA (Association of Dominican-American
Supervisors and Administrators) Award.
Mr. Quezada lives in New City, New York, with wife Gladys, a
teacher at Westchester Hills School 29. The couple has two children,
Edwin Joseph and Alyssa.