New York program to expand reach with new staff member


NLP is pleased to announce the hiring of Tamara Johnson as the project’s new full-time program coordinator in New York, NLP’s third hire since the spring.

Tamara started on Aug. 25, just ahead of the new school year, which officially kicks off on Sept. 4. She will work with Darragh Worland, New York program manager, to expand the program’s reach in New York City. Tamara was selected from an impressive and diverse field of more than 160 applicants based on her broad experience in education, journalism and program coordination.

Prior to joining NLP, Tamara ran a public education and outreach program at the New York Academy of Sciences, along with a STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) mentoring program for undergraduate women. Her varied background also includes stints as an assistant editor at Dance Magazine, a crew member on a scientific charter vessel traveling from the Galapagos Islands to New Zealand, and a researcher collaborating with Chinese and Indian students under a Ford Foundation fellowship to explore the relationship between news media and the formation of political identities.

“I’ve always been a news junkie,” Tamara said. “As the world produces the first digital natives, I believe news literacy education is more important than ever.”

Tamara holds a bachelor’s degree, with honors, from SUNY Binghamton, where she majored in philosophy and neuroscience. In December, she will complete her master’s degree at The New School’s Graduate Program in International Affairs. Her position at NLP is funded with support from the Ford Foundation and the David and Katherine Moore Family Foundation.

Connie Lesch also joined NLP this summer as a part-time executive assistant to the president. She has more than 25 years of experience in nonprofit marketing and public outreach, and has also served as a volunteer on community and school boards. Connie has a master’s degree in business administration from Rice University.

As reported in the April newsletter, Nell Lennon, a seasoned and highly successful sales executive, joined NLP this spring as our first vice president of sales and marketing. After receiving her sales training with Xerox, Nell spent a decade at The Washington Post, where she “fell in love with the industry” and worked her way up to become the first female assistant director for display advertising. She has since held senior sales positions in the for-profit and nonprofit sectors selling educational programs to schools.

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