Board Members 2018-2019
CRYSTAL OSNER, PRESIDENT
Crystal grew up in rural Kansas. She joined the McPherson College Rotaract Club in 2014. After graduation, she moved to New York City in the fall of 2016 to pursue costume technology. She was inducted into the UN club in December of 2016.
Crystal currently works at Timberlake Studios constructing costumes for Broadway/ regional theater, opera, dance and fashion. Her everyday work entails, cutting, sewing and shopping for the costumes in the garment district. She is also learning different methods to make patterns for the costumes so she can gain more responsibilities in the costume shop.
During Crystal’s time in Rotaract, she has traveled twice with the club. First with the McPherson Rotary Club in Kansas, District 5670 to Panama, District 4240. Then to Mexico, District 4195, as a representative of the UN Club. The purpose of both trips was to broaden the Rotaract network by making connections with the visiting clubs. Then bring back our new knowledge and share it with our local clubs and see if we can provide fundraising assistance to our new international friends.
Anna Folz, Vice President
Anna moved to the Big Apple last fall when she began working with Community Care of Brooklyn (CCB) at Maimonides Hospital. Working with CCB, Anna is involved in both the management and development of health care programming for Medicare and Medicaid populations living throughout Brooklyn. Following college graduation and armed with a degree in Public Health from Franklin and Marshall College, Anna was hired by MEDLIFE, a medical NGO in Lima, Peru. This position enabled Anna to work directly with medical staff in addressing the health needs and concerns of individuals both in Lima and the outlying villages. While in college, Anna founded Impulso, an organization focused on the construction and distribution of fuel-efficient stoves as well as health education programs, which she initiated and implemented in both Guatemala and Peru. Anna first became involved with Rotary while in college, where she worked with a Rotary Club that was sponsoring the distribution of solar ovens in Nicaragua. She is well aware of all the positive and sustainable project development work done by Rotary.
Upon moving to NYC, she was introduced to the Rotaract Club at the United Nations by a friend. Since then, Rotaract has become an important part of her life. Rotaract has enabled her to meet and work with people who are making positive changes in NY communities and abroad. If you can’t find Anna at a Rotary event, you might find her sprinting down the rugby pitch, enjoying any water sport/activity, or eating ice cream quickly before it melts.
Jennifer Lapper, Secretary
Jennifer Lapper grew up in Upstate New York and has lived in New York City since 2008. She attended New York University, where her education focused on literary and cultural analysis, Italian language, and studio art.
Jennifer works for the international tax law firm Ruchelman P.L.L.C. as Director of Marketing and Special Events. She was drawn to the company's international practice and now oversees the development and implementation of the firm's marketing strategy and programming and serves as managing editor of several legal publications. Jennifer also volunteers with the Legal Marketing Association and is Co-Chair of the NY Marketing Technology Shared Interest Group, which focuses on digital tools and their real-world application for marketing and business development.
Jennifer is the daughter of a Rotarian and past president, and Rotary service has been a part of her life from a young age. She was introduced to Rotaract in 2016 after attending Rotary Day at the UN. She became a member of the club in 2017 and is excited to lend her professional skills to the group as Secretary of the Board.
Jennifer is passionate about art, the environment, and community. Before joining Rotaract, she volunteered as an art educator in a women's shelter. In her spare time, Jennifer also teaches yoga to her local Brooklyn community.
Atiya Sharmin, TREASURER
After her family won a visa lottery, she immigrated from Bangladesh at the young age of four. She knew she had the opportunity of a lifetime and quickly dedicated herself to education. While at the Horace Mann school, she realized she had an inclination towards social entrepreneurship and started her first venture funded by the school focused on providing students, of all socioeconomic backgrounds, low-cost SAT prep. Simultaneously, she was leading diversity workshops within the Diversity Awareness Initiative for Students organization throughout high school.
Babson College noticed her passion and granted her a Diversity Leadership Scholarship. While at Babson, she traveled to more than 15 countries and worked in 2 others. These experiences include consulting for a large venture capital firm, studying the effects of microfinance and teaching entrepreneurship to 40+ Ghanaian students and 30+ adults to prepare them for a business plan competition, and performing business management/ marketing for an engineering social venture in the Rajasthan Province in India testing affordably engineered rickshaw ratchets to improve livelihoods of impoverished rickshaw pullers. In the interim, she has also lived in Spain as a part of a study-abroad program for 5 months.
Throughout all of her experiences, she had a keen interest in finance, particularly valuation, socially responsible investing and microfinance. She now works at Credit Suisse in Prime Brokerage services. She recently got involved in Rotaract at the UN and is now the acting Treasurer. She hopes to use her past experiences to improve management processes. In her off-time, she enjoys learning choreography and running.
Kelly Chaze, Director of Events
Kelly is a proud graduate of Coastal Carolina University, which is where she first became involved with Rotaract. She represented South Carolina in Rotary’s RYLA North America Conference in Washington, D.C. in both 2013 and 2014. Kelly has also served as a board member at the Annapolis Rotaract Club in Maryland.
Kelly is a teacher here in NYC, and believes in the power that education has on individuals, a community, and the world. Kelly has roots in Louisiana, which is where you will usually find her on holidays, soaking up the sun and some flavorful Cajun food. She loves brownies, snowboarding, and nature.
Sylvester Weise, Director of Public Relations
Sylvester was born and raised in the south of Germany and moved to New York City in early 2015. He currently works for a German software company named Plunet. They recently opened an office in NYC for the supporting the Americas. Plunet produces a software solution project - and business management for the translation industry. He is responsible for the technical side and provides support services and technical project engineering for north- and south American to translation agencies and departments in the industry. He sets his focus on it-security related consultation and services.
He got involved in Rotaract at the age of 18 with the Rotaract Club at his hometown Landshut/ Bavaria. Inspired by an atmosphere of responsibility, humanity and active serviceship he discovered the fascinating world of Rotaract and Rotary. As moving to New York he started immediately attending the meetings of Rotaract at the UN until he became a member in June 2015.
Beside his enthusiasm for IT - services and consultation, Sylvester is interested in politics and economics, loves playing golf and meeting interesting people from all different cultures and countries. One thing that he is really passionate about is Tanzania. Sylvester visits Tanazania at least once a year to learn about the culture, its people and also to support a school for orphans in the northwest part of the country.
Nicholas Casanova, Club Ambassador
Nicholas was born and raised in Boca Raton, FL. He moved to New York City in 2012 to attend Pace University and graduated in 2016 with a bachelors degree in Global Marketing Management.
Nicholas currently works at the law firm of Barry, McTiernan & Moore as a paralegal within the corporate litigation arm of the practice. He plans on attending law school in the fall of 2019 with hopes of one day using his legal education to advance international humanitarian rights law.
Nicholas first learned about Rotaract through a former club President and became a member in the fall of 2016. While in school Nicholas volunteered for numerous political campaigns, humanitarian organization, and community initiatives throughout the five boroughs. When the opportunity came to join an organization that holds the same commitments to the global community as he does he did not hesitate.
Nicholas is excited to represent the Rotaract Club at the United Nations as it's Club Ambassador and looks forward to what the 2018-2019 year will bring!