Staff bios

mmcMary-Mitchell Campbell, Founder and Executive Director
Mary-Mitchell has had an extensive career as a musician and humanitarian. In 2005, she founded ASTEP and is the Executive Director, overseeing the management and strategic direction of the organization. She has taught AIDS education in rural India, healthy hygiene in South Africa, and promoted the values of dreaming big to children in the United States. She has conducted on Broadway, performed at the White House, and won awards for orchestrating on Broadway. She was featured in the television show “Giving” for her work with arts education for children in need. In 2006, she was chosen as the New Yorker of the week. Recently, she has been the Music Director and Conductor of The Addams Family on Broadway and is currently supervising the national tour and many international productions. She is from North Carolina and lives on the upper west side of Manhattan with her amazing dog, Coleman.


yazmanyYazmany Arboleda, Associate Director of Communications
Yazmany studied architecture and design in Washington D.C., London and Milan. In 2008, he founded The Glassless Glasses Studio, an art activation collaborative based in Brooklyn. His work has been discussed in the New York Times, the Washington Post, and the Guardian, and he was recently named one of Good Magazine’s 100 People Making Our World Better. Yazmany is also currently serving as the Associate Director of Communications for ASTEP, leading our overall marketing and communication efforts.




untitledKatherine Nolan Brown, Director of Development
Katherine comes to ASTEP from Environmental Defense Fund, with ten years in non-profit fundraising, and a lifetime in the arts. Prior to EDF she worked at the Public Theater, the 52nd Street Project and as a volunteer with many other organizations working towards social change through proliferation of the arts in all communities. Originally from Atlanta, New Orleans, and college in Boston, she has always been focused on the ways that theater and the performing arts can bring new and differing voices to the forefront – and is excited to continue that work with the community at ASTEP.




emilyEmily Cavanagh, Volunteer Coordinator
Emily is a singer/songwriter and social worker, who has spent nearly ten years combining two passions: music and service. Writing and playing music, while working to help homeless young adults and individuals living with HIV/AIDS find their voice through the arts, Emily has committed herself to the work of bringing the arts to people who do not readily have access to them. A graduate of NYU’s Steinhardt Masters program, and Webster University’s Bachelors of Music program, Emily spent the past three years developing and running a creative arts program in the South Bronx in a non-profit servicing formerly homeless young adults. A regular performer at venues such as The Living Room, Rockwood Music Hall, Manhattan’s Red Room, Chicago’s Schubas, Emily remains active in performing locally and abroad. She has been featured in a handful of performances at The United Nations,where her song “Dark was the Night” has been highlighted as a song honoring Rwandan Genocide survivors. This summer, Emily signed a publishing deal with the boutique company, Danger Village Music in LA. She has begun writing a new record. All her music is available on on Itunes, Spotify, and Pandora. As ASTEP’s Volunteer Coordinator, Emily is the first point of contact for potential volunteers, guiding them through the application process and their placement in ASTEP’s programs. She is delighted to join the ASTEP team and work amongst artists passionate about using their voice to help others find their own.


lizzyLizzy Rainer, Director of Programs and Evaluation
Lizzy is a dancer, yoga teacher, and aerialist and the Director of Programs and Evaluation at ASTEP. Lizzy studied Activism Through Artistry at the Gallatin School of New York University. She has brought dance and movement to students in Ghana, Colombia, Indonesia, and India, as well as throughout the US. As a dancer, Lizzy toured with Cirque Le Masque both nationally and internationally, worked with LiNK! the Movement dance company, and was on faculty at Broadway Dance Center. In her role at ASTEP, Lizzy builds and develops relationships with partner organizations and helps to develop curricula for each of our programs. Lizzy works closely with ASTEP Program Facilitators, partners, and volunteers to bring the transformative power of the arts to ASTEP students around the globe. Lizzy loves being onsite, and is happiest when she is working (and playing) with the youth ASTEP serves!


aleAlejandro Rodriguez, Director of Artist as Citizen Conference
Alejandro is an actor, writer and activist. At ASTEP, he helps emerging and established artists harness their talents to empower youth around the world. He’s the resident poet for Shook Ones, a multimedia dance company he co-founded with choreographer Cindy Salgado. New York performance credits include the world premiere of Ghetto Babylon (National Latino Playwrights Award) at 59E59, the premiere of Jorge Ignacio Cortiñas’ Bird in the Hand at Theater for the New City, King Lear opposite Billy Porter, the title role in Romeo and Juliet for The Acting Company, etc. Regionally, he’s worked at The Kennedy Center, the Guthrie Theatre, Denver Center Theater and The Chekhov Project at Lake Lucille, among several others. Film and television credits include Nurse Jackie (Showtime), Dates from Hell (Discovery ID), and the feature film Emoticon. A graduate of Juilliard.


aaronAaron Rossini, Associate Director of Volunteer Outreach
Aaron is an actor, director, teacher and Co-Founder & Co-Artistic Director of Fault Line Theatre. At ASTEP, Aaron leads volunteer recruitment and training and travels around the country presenting ASTEP workshops. He received a BFA in Theatre Performance from Miami University and a Masters of Fine Art in Acting at the Brown University/Trinity Rep MFA Program. Fault Line Theatre Credits: The Wedge Horse, At the Table, Breathing Time, The Faire, Doctor Faustus, Frogs, From the Same Cloth, From White Plains, Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. New York Credits: Guerrilla Shakespeare Project, Funny Sheesh Productions, Sanguine Theater Company, Hip to Hip Theatre, Target Margin Theatre, Fringe NYC, Planet Connections, Emerging Artists Theater, Young Playwrights Inc., Shakespeare at the Manor Regional Credits: Trinity Rep, White Heron Theatre, Kitchen Theatre Company, The Gamm Theatre, Purple Rose Theatre Company, Michigan Shakespeare Festival, The Boar’s Head Theatre, The Mosh Pit Theatre


daviniaDavinia Troughton, Director of Operations
Davinia has worked in the nonprofit sector for over twelve years and currently leads ASTEP’s fundraising, board development, and operations. She came to ASTEP from the NoVo Foundation, where she worked on grants management, strategic planning, and in the Women and Girls Initiative, focusing on funding efforts to end violence against girls and women around the world. Davinia is also a New York State certified sexual and domestic violence crisis counselor at St. Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital in New York City where she trains and mentors new crisis counselors. She is dedicated to social justice and supporting the voices of women and children worldwide.

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