Meet Our Team

TWR Team

Judith C. Hochman, Ed.D.
Founder and Chief Academic Officer

Dr. Judith C. Hochman is the creator of the Hochman Method and founder of The Writing Revolution, a nonprofit organization dedicated to training and supporting teachers and school leaders in implementing this explicit set of evidence-based strategies for teaching writing. Dr. Hochman served as the Head of The Windward School in White Plains, New York, a nationally renowned independent school focused on teaching students with learning disabilities.  Read More

She is the founder of the Windward Teacher Training Institute and a former Superintendent of the Greenburgh Graham Union Free School District in Hastings-on-Hudson, New York. In addition, Dr. Hochman lectures, presents workshops, and gives courses for educational organizations, colleges, and universities, as well as public and independent schools throughout the United States. She is on the Advisory Board of Everyone Reads, a national advocacy organization for dyslexia and related learning disabilities. She received the New York Branch Award from the International Dyslexia Association. The Reading Reform Foundation presented Dr. Hochman with the Leona D. and Phillip J. Spector Leadership Award. Dr. Hochman is the author of The Writing Revolution: A Guide to Advancing Thinking Through Writing In All Subjects and Grades (along with co-author Natalie Wexler), Teaching Basic Writing Skills, a chapter entitled “Composition: Expressive Language and Writing” in the publication Multisensory Teaching of Basic Language Skills, and numerous articles.

Jacqueline M. Kelly
Executive Director

Jacki Kelly has spent the past 20 years working to ensure that non-profit educational organizations achieve ambitious goals on behalf of low-income students. Immediately prior to becoming the Founding Executive Director of The Writing Revolution, she was the Chief Development Officer and a member of the executive leadership team at Harlem Educational Activities Fund.  Read More

Before that, she served as Director of Development at Young Women’s Leadership Network (YWLN) where she increased the annual budget from $3 million to $6 million enabling the organization to double the number of low-income students served by its co-ed college success program, College Bound Initiative. Ms. Kelly was a founding staff member at READ Alliance, a literacy and youth development organization which grew to become a thriving non-profit serving thousands of New York City students in partnership with dozens of elementary, middle, and high schools. She has classroom experience teaching English to adult immigrants as well as teaching in New York City elementary schools. She is on the boards of College and Community Fellowship and The Petey Greene Program and serves as Development Chair at Petey Greene. Jacki holds an M.A. in Elementary Inclusive Education from Teachers College and a B.S. in Journalism from Northeastern University.

Adrienne Dammacco
Executive Assistant

Adrienne was previously a Business Education teacher at Rye Neck High School for 27 years and was responsible for implementing and overseeing the Rye Neck Senior Intern Program, in which the entire senior class was placed in internships, as well as the Rye Neck Community Service Program.  Read More

Along with these duties, she has taught a multitude of business classes at Rye Neck High School including a SUNY 4 credit accounting class and Managing Your Future in which she worked with eleventh grade students helping them with career/college searches and resumes. Adrienne has served on many boards, including the SUNY Purchase Teacher’s Center Board and the NYS School-to-Career Board.

Kelly Downing
Faculty

Kelly is a dynamic educator with over twelve years of experience teaching in the New York City Department of Education. During his tenure, he served as TWR Coordinator at A. Philip Randolph Campus High School where he oversaw the program’s successful school-wide implementation.  Read More

Kelly’s previous experience as the Coordinator of Student Activities at Harlem Children’s Zone-Promise Academy High School included developing school culture and implementing several male mentoring initiatives. His understanding of the challenges faced by socio-economically disadvantaged students in grades 7-12 and adult learners was shaped by his experience as the Co-Director of the Letters Department at The College of New Rochelle, School of New Resources. Kelly graduated from New York University. He holds a Master of Music degree in Jazz Voice from Manhattan School of Music and a Master of Science in Teaching from Fordham University. Additionally, Kelly has earned a Master of Education degree from the College of Saint Rose and is currently pursuing a Ph.D in Literacy at St. John’s University.

Diane Foley
Faculty

Diane served the New York City Department of Education for 31 years as a Network Leader, Executive Officer for Instruction, Community Superintendent, Local Instructional Superintendent, and a teacher and supervisor in K-8 classrooms. She has experience in K-8 literacy, as well as in instructional practice and supervision.  Read More

She helps principals establish a collegial professional learning community through designing and delivering differentiated professional development resulting in continuous school improvement. Diane has presented at numerous national conferences including Association of Supervisors and Curriculum Development, International Reading Association, National Council of Teachers of English, and the National Center on Education and the Economy on topics related to Standards Based Literacy Instruction. She was a contributor to the New York City Edition of the Language Arts Performance Standards.

Tania Haselwander
Faculty

Tania held a variety of roles in public, charter, and private schools throughout New York City. She spent many years teaching students with disabilities at the middle school level and has served as a special education coordinator, which involved advocating for students and families and managing IEP documents.  Read More

During her teaching career she served as a lead teacher and developed curriculum in math, science, and English language arts. She continues to teach English to low-income students through the Liberty LEADS program at Bank Street College. Tania completed a double major in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies and Sociology at Stony Brook University, became a New York City Teaching Fellow, and holds a Master’s in Education from The City College of New York.

Leo Johansson-Lebrón
Program Associate

Leo first became interested in education and writing instruction while working as an English Consultant to foreign graduate students. Leo is a graduate of Brown University, where he majored in Literature and Creative Writing. He spent a year after graduation teaching at a bilingual primary school in Madrid, Spain.

Jana Lee
Faculty

Jana was previously a Special Education ELA and Global History teacher at The Young Women’s Leadership School of the Bronx. A graduate of American University with a B.A. in Law and Society, she received her M.A. in Special Education at City College and her M.S. in Educational Leadership at Hunter College.  Read More

During her teaching career, Jana served as a Peer Instructional Coach, Writing Development Coordinator, and Special Education Department Chair. She received the YWLN Blue Ribbon Teaching Award in November 2015 and was an NYC Big Apple Award Finalist in March 2017.

Sherry Lewkowicz
Director of Certification / Faculty

Sherry previously taught eleventh grade English and Advanced Placement Literature to low-income students at an international school where English Language Learners and mainstream students learned side by side in integrated classrooms. Additionally, she taught playwriting and coordinated her school’s arts programming.  Read More

During her teaching career, she was a lead teacher, co-led professional development for faculty, mentored new teachers, and worked in partnership with teachers and administration at other schools to improve school quality. Sherry first discovered her passion for helping students improve their writing as an undergraduate Writing Fellow at Brown University, where she later studied again for a Masters in Teaching. She has a background in journalism, having written for the education website Chalkbeat.org and The Star-Ledger.

Kathleen Maloney
Curriculum and Data Coordinator

Kathleen was previously a Literacy Assessment Specialist at the New York City Department of Education. Prior to that, she was the founding Literacy Coach, Title I Coordinator, and 6th grade ELA teacher at New World Preparatory Charter School.  Read More

While there, Kathleen supported all teachers to be literacy instructors by leading the school-wide implementation of The Hochman Method and developing a school-wide literacy program, for which she received the 2014 Outstanding Teacher of Literacy Award from the Staten Island Reading Association. Kathleen holds an M.A. in Literacy from New York University and a B.A. in Childhood Education from the Macaulay Honors College at the College of Staten Island.

Destiny McLurkin
Faculty

Destiny previously taught in New York City schools for eleven years. She has served as a general education teacher, a literacy teacher, and an ELL Program Manager in elementary and middle schools.  Read More

Destiny provided professional development for staff, coached teachers, and advocated for the needs of multilingual students and families. Additionally, she served on her school’s Cultural Competency Committee, leading workshops and staff conversations around race and culturally responsive teaching. She received a B.A. from Wesleyan University and a Master’s in Childhood Education from Hunter College.

Scott VandeVoort
Director of Operations / Faculty

Scott held a variety of roles in accounting and finance during his early career. He spent thirteen years with American Express, reaching the position of Senior Vice President and Lead Financial Officer, before returning to St. John’s University to earn his Master’s in Adolescent Education.  Read More

Most recently, Scott spent five years as a classroom teacher where he supported the implementation of The Hochman Method at his school. He also continues to teach undergraduate cost accounting at Baruch College in New York. He holds a Master’s in Accountancy from the University of Iowa and his CPA license.

Toni-Ann Vroom
Co-Director of Academics

Toni-Ann was previously a lead social studies teacher and school-wide writing coordinator at New Dorp High School in Staten Island, New York. At New Dorp, she was responsible for supporting the implementation of the Hochman Method across multiple content areas.  Read More

A seasoned Hochman Method Faculty member, she has developed content for textbooks and materials for The Writing Revolution and she has presented at The Aspen Institute, South by Southwest and The College Board Foundation, as well as many other venues, on the topic of writing.

Dina Zoleo
Co-Director of Academics

Dina was previously the Assistant Principal of Social Studies at New Dorp High School in Staten Island, NY where she co-led the effort to bring the Hochman Writing Method to New Dorp by seeding and developing it in her department, and then supporting its adoption school-wide.  Read More

A seasoned Hochman Method Faculty Member, she has developed content for textbooks and materials for The Writing Revolution and she has presented at The Aspen Institute, South by Southwest and The College Board Foundation, as well as many other venues, on the topic of writing.