Dr. Mark Gonzalez has over 25 years of experience in education, and community and youth development, as well as organizational management in the private, public and non-profit sectors. His career has included progressive roles at El Puente, the Kingsbridge Heights Community Center, the NYC Department of Education and Bank Street College.
Dr. Gonzalez is an experienced youth development executive with a track record for developing aspiring Latino youth into college students and leaders. He is in charge of developing and implementing a new three-year strategic education initiative at Operation Exodus that will expand opportunities for inner city youth in Northern Manhattan.
Formerly the CEO at Aspira New York, Gonzalez grew that organization from a $2.7 million agency, to a $10 million budget, eventually serving over 6000 youth annually. Under his direction, targeted programming led to a 97% high school graduation and 93 % college enrollment rates.
“For many Latino youth, the achievement gap is simply a lack of opportunity. Exodus closes that gap through after-school education, mentoring and enrichment-the three things a student needs to succeed
Dr. Gonzalez has a deeply held belief that college is an opportunity intended for all kids, not just those who come from privileged backgrounds. A former “Aspirante,” (graduate of Aspira), Gonzalez understands the potential NYC city kids possess and the challenges they face. He is eager to bring new opportunities for education, enrichment and the benefit of mentoring, to hundreds more students uptown.
Gonzalez brings with him a deep skill set in strategic planning and implementation, program development, financial management, and fundraising. At Operation Exodus he is responsible for executive oversight of all administration, finances, programs, evaluations, communications and systems. He also has a passion for leadership development for staff and students.
Despite his many degrees and years of experience designing and implementing successful programs, his personal commitment is based on a humble belief: All kids have potential, and it deserves to be realized.
Dr. Gonzalez is a 25-year non-profit veteran who got his Ph.D from the Fordham University School of Education. He also holds a Masters degree in Educational Psychology, a Masters in Educational Supervision and Administration, and a Bachelors degree in Public Administration.