Staff

Lisa Brandes, Assistant Dean for Student Affairs and Director of Graduate Student Life

A Graduate School alumna, Lisa Brandes now serves as Director of the McDougal Center and Assistant Dean of the Graduate School of Arts and Sciences. She received her B.A. in political science from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge and earned her M.A., M.Phil and Ph.D. in Political Science from Yale, specializing in international relations.

Since 1996, Lisa has worked with graduate student fellows, student leaders, administrators, and staff to develop a wide range of social and cultural events that enhance graduate student life. She provides recruitment assistance to departments and programs, oversees New Student Information and Orientation Week, plans school-wide dean’s events, and helps coordinate Commencement activities. Lisa also serves on working groups and projects to enhance student services and coordinates the graduate affiliate program with the residential colleges.

Lisa has served as an officer within regional and national political science associations and women’s groups. More recently, she has been active in graduate education issues and graduate student services networks within NASPA & NODA, writing articles, conducting research, and making conference presentations on graduate student life, especially student services, mental health, parenting, and orientation.

Lisa lives in the Westville neighborhood of New Haven with husband Scott McLean, son Charlie, and one elderly cat. She is active in local political, church, and community groups and enjoys gardening, baking, arts and scifi. Read more

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Barbara Botti, Assistant to the University Secretary

Barbara Botti came to Yale in 2006 and joined the Office of the Secretary in 2014 as Assistant to the Secretary. She provides oversight for the diploma process and diploma-related inquiries. In addition, she coordinates inaugurations and provides support for the Associate Secretary and Director of Corporation Affairs. She worked previously for the Yale School of Medicine in the Department of Internal Medicine. Prior to joining Yale, Barbara was employed as an Administrative Assistant to the Director of a Pharmacology Research Institute at Bayer Pharmaceuticals.

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Heather Samson Calabrese, Director of Communications and Director of University Events

Heather Samson Calabrese joined the Office of the Secretary in October 2013. She oversees communications initiatives within the Office of the Secretary; major university events including Commencement; and university lectures including the Grand and Terry lectures. Prior to joining Yale, Heather was an independent nonprofit consultant and the chief operating officer of United Way of Greater New Haven. She is active in Greater New Haven civic efforts and serves on several community boards, including Elm Shakespeare, New Haven Reads and The Community Foundation for Greater New Haven’s Fund for Women and Girls.

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Ryan Croteau, Program Coordinator

Ryan joined the Office of the Secretary and Vice President for Student Life in March 2017. In her role she supports various communications initiatives, including website development and social media; major University events, and manages the Baccalaureate Ceremonies. Ryan has been at the University since 2011, and previously served in various administrative and communications roles at the Office of the Vice President for West Campus and Human Resources.

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Anthony Dini, Assistant Secretary for Corporation Affairs

 Under the direction of the Deputy Secretary and Senior Director of Corporation Affairs, Tony supports the trustees of the Yale Corporation and members of the University Council through the planning and execution of all logistical aspects related to their volunteer work for the university. He joined Yale in 2013 with the Yale School of Management and assumed various administrative roles in areas of research and business operations. Tony earned a B.A in American Studies from the University of Connecticut, and a M.A. from Trinity College, where his studies focused on the civic relationship between academic institutions and their host communities.

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Andrew Forsyth, Assistant Secretary for Student Life

Andrew Forsyth joined the Office of the Secretary in August 2017, and supports Kimberly Goff-Crews in her work as Vice President for Student Life. In 2017–18 this work includes: resources for students to address discrimination and harassment concerns, Yale Well, Yale Connect, and the Schwarzman Center. Andrew’s ongoing duties include support for the Woodbridge Fellowship, Terry Lectures, Porter & Field Prizes, university calendar committee, and Board of Trustees’ engagement with students.

A 2017 Yale PhD graduate, Andrew previously studied in his native Scotland, at Harvard as a Fulbright scholar, and at Trinity Hall, Cambridge. In spring 2016, he taught “Law, Morality, and Religion” (RLST 370, EP&E 401, HUMS 325) in Yale College, and in fall 2017 will lecture at the Divinity School. He is a fellow of Saybrook College. 

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Kimberly M. Goff-Crews, Secretary & Vice President for Student Life

Kimberly M. Goff-Crews reports directly to the president and provides vision and management for three facets of the Yale experience – institutional governance, university traditions and events, and student life.  She was appointed to her position in August 2012. Read more

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Burgwell Howard, Senior Associate Dean of Yale College, Associate Vice President of Student Life

Dean Burgwell “Burgie” Howard joined the Yale College Deans Office in August 2015, and serves as the Dean of Student Engagement within Yale College and Associate Vice President of Student Life at the University.

Dean Howard has made a career supporting students at colleges and universities, including those at Bowdoin College, Colgate University, Santa Clara University, Dartmouth College and, most recently, Northwestern University where he served as Asst. Vice President and Dean of Students.

He is a graduate of Dartmouth College and Stanford University. He loves dogs, lacrosse, tennis, skiing and meeting, and helping students. He never ceases to be amazed at the creativity and capacity of students. He is enjoys exploring and contributing to the Yale community.

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Sharon Kugler, University Chaplain

Sharon M.K. Kugler became the seventh University Chaplain to Yale in July of 2007. She came to New Haven from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore where she had served as the University Chaplain since 1993.  Sharon has over two decades of experience in ministry in higher education, interfaith collaboration, pastoral and social ministry. Her main focus at Yale is to further cultivate a chaplaincy for students, faculty and staff which defines itself by serving the needs of the richly diverse religious and spiritual traditions on campus allowing for deeper dialogue, increased accessibility, personal growth, creative educational opportunities and pastoral leadership.  Sharon holds the appointment of Lecturer of Inter-Religious Engagement and Chaplaincy at the Yale Divinity School and is a contributing author to the recently published College & University Chaplaincy in the 21st Century: A Multifaith Look at the Practice of Ministry on Campuses across America.  She is the first woman, first lay-person and first Roman Catholic to hold this position at Yale.

Sharon is the past president of both the National Association of College and University Chaplains (NACUC) and the Association of College and University Religious Affairs (ACURA).  She currently serves on the Executive Committee of the International Association of Chaplains in Higher Education (IACHE).  In June of 2012 she hosted the Global Conference of Chaplains in Higher Education at Yale University welcoming over 450 participants from 25 countries and 11 religious traditions.  Sharon received her Masters degree from Georgetown University and is a member of the Theta Alpha Kappa National Honor Society for Religious Studies and Theology. Her masters thesis, “The Limits and Possibilities of Building a Religiously Plural Community” was used by the United States Department of Defense Office of the Chief of Chaplains as a training tool for new chaplains in the military. Sharon has received honorary doctorates from St. Joseph University in West Hartford, CT, Santa Clara University in Santa Clara, CA and Fairfield University in Fairfield, CT. She is married to Duane Isabella, has two daughters and four grandchildren.

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Elizabeth Quercia, Assistant Secretary for Governance

Liz Quercia joined the Office of the Secretary in June 2013. In her current role, which she assumed in December 2016, she supports the work of the Yale Corporation and the University Council. Previously she served as Communications Associate, speech writing and developing student-centered websites  in addition to supporting other communications activities of the office and division. In this role, she also helped manage various university events in support of the Director of University Events and staffed student life initiatives, including pilot programs of The Wellness Project. Prior to working at Yale, Liz was a writing tutor at Ithaca College, served as a mentor to high school students, and worked in various capacities at several non-profit arts organizations. She received a B.A. in English from Ithaca College in 2012.

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Steven Roets, Woodbridge Fellow

Steven supports the many activities of the Office of the Secretary and Vice President for Student Life, ranging from governance to student life to university events. He specifically works with Yale Well, Yale student leadership, and the Dwight H. Terry Lectures. As an undergraduate, Steven ran the European Student Conference, which brought together students and policy makers from around the world to discuss the European Union and the Transatlantic Alliance.  He also ran the Pierson-Davenport Letterpress, was president of the undergraduate Lutheran ministry, played the tuba, and served as a Pierson Freshman Counselor.  His lifelong involvement in 4-H also continued while at Yale, having most recently served as a facilitator for National 4-H conference in 2017.  Steven graduated from Yale in 2017 with a B.A. in Ethics, Politics, and Economics, and in Art.

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Shannon Romanos, Executive Assistant to the Secretary & Vice President for Student Life

Shannon joined the Office of the Secretary and Vice President for Student Life in January 2017. In her role as executive assistant, she reports directly to Kimberly Goff-Crews, supporting student life initiatives as well as the work of the Yale Corporation.  Shannon began her career at the University in 2011 at the School of Nursing and has over 20 years administrative experience. Shannon lives on the Connecticut shoreline, has two adult children and is an avid pickleball enthusiast.

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Kristine Rubano, Senior Administrative Assistant

Kristine joined the Office of the Secretary and Vice President for Student Life in March 2016.

Photo and bio coming soon. 

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Martha Schall, Deputy Secretary and Senior Director of Corporation Affairs

Martha Schall joined the Office of the Secretary in February 2015. In her role, she supports the Secretary and Vice President for Student Life in the areas of institutional governance, and university traditions and events. Martha leads the teams that support the work of the Yale Corporation, the University Council and University-wide events. 

Prior to joining the Office of the Secretary, Martha was President of the Connecticut Children’s Medical Center Foundation. Previously, Martha served in a variety of roles in the Yale Office of Development, including as an Associate Vice President for Development and as the Managing Director of the Yale Alumni Fund. She earned a B.A. in History from Yale University, and an M.B.A. in Finance and Management from New York University’s Stern School of Business.

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Maria Trumpler, Director, Office of LGBTQ Resources

Maria Trumpler is the founding Director of the Office of LGBTQ Resources which has recently moved into new space in Founders Hall at 135 Prospect St. The Office of LGBTQ Resources provides education, outreach, and advocacy around issues of gender identity and sexual orientation.  Maria came to Yale in 1983 as a graduate student, and after receiving her PhD in 1992 in History of Medicine and Life Science, was an assistant professor in the History of Medicine.  After a few years making artisanal cheese in Vermont, she returned to Yale  in 2005 and also serves as Senior Lecturer in Women’s, Gender and Sexuality Studies, teaching the courses “Women, Food and Culture” and “History of Sexuality.”

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Judy York, Director of the Resource Office on Disabilities

Judy York joined Yale in 2000 working as the Director of the Resource Office on Disabilities. In her capacity, she manages an office that is responsible for coordinating services for all students with disabilities at Yale. The Office partners with others throughout the University to ensure that guests with disabilities have the accommodations needed for a safe and robust experience while visiting on campus. Previous to Yale, Judy had worked for over 25 years as a consultant with Bio/Nexus and as a Vice-President of the New England Association of Business, Industry and Rehabilitation. Her work typically involved program management and consultation with and for students and adults with disabilities. She specialized in researching and applying special support technology persons would need to use in school or employment.

Judy has a MS in Industrial Relations and a BS in Education and Special Education.  She is a member of state and national chapters of the Association of Higher Education and Disability (AHEAD). She has been a Board Member of the National Rehabilitation Association and the NorthEast Rehabilitation Association and served as the President of the Connecticut Rehabilitation Association. She is an active member of the University’s Provost Committee on Resources for Employees and Students with Disabilities; the Emergency Management Planning Committee; the University Wellness Committee and the University Classroom Committee.

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