Position: Co-Executive Director

Laura Shmishkiss, MPA, has committed her life to working for equity, youth empowerment and social justice. She brings over 20 years experience as an educator, trainer, organizer and organizational leader in both non-profit organizations and schools.

Laura’s past roles include School Director at Bronx Community High School, a transfer school in New York City, where she infused structures and policies that supported youth voice, restorative justice and social emotional learning for students. She also founded Coro New York’s “Exploring Leadership,” a youth activism program that trained New York City teens to organize for change in public education. A seasoned educator and trainer who brings an equity lens to all of her work, Laura has provided training, coaching and consulting to hundreds of youth and adults to cultivate purpose-driven, participatory, community-based leadership development in schools and organizations.

Laura is an active White anti-racist trainer and organizer, and is deeply committed to and passionate about racial justice work in her community. She also serves on the Board of Directors at Camp Kinderland, a 90 year old summer camp that promotes social and racial justice education.

Laura earned a Master’s Degree in Public Administration from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs, a Bachelor’s Degree in Sociology from Colby College, and a teaching certification from San Francisco State University. She was featured in The Limited’s “Leading Looks Like” campaign which highlighted the unique ways in which women redefine and inspire leadership. Laura loves to spend time cultivating her small garden in Brooklyn, and nurtures her own vitality through dancing, running and practicing yoga. She is committed to collectively building liberatory spaces where all humanity can thrive.