Board & Staff

Original Library Designed by Jacques Marchais in 1948 Where the Board Still Meets

Original Library Designed by Jacques Marchais in 1948 Where the Board Still Meets

Board of Trustees

  • Helaine Dandrea, President of JMMTA

Helaine also serves as Vice President of Sales for Rx Alliance, has 20+ years of experience in pharmaceutical sales, business development, Long Term Care pharmacy management and pharmacy contract management. In addition to her current position with HIG – Rx Alliance, Helaine acts as a consultant for LTC pharmacies, healthcare law firms and pharmaceutical manufacturers. Prior to joining HIG – Rx Alliance, Helaine was the founder and Vice President of Blue Pax Pharma, a wholesale generic drug company in New Jersey. Helaine holds a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from NYU and an M.S. in art conservation from Hofstra University, where she studies the conservation of oil paintings in Rome and Florence Italy. Helaine is a member of the Board of Trustees of the Staten Island Museum, a member of the Staten Island Boy Scout Good Scout Committee, The Development Board of the Eger Lutheran Healthcare Foundation, and was the past Vice President of the Alzheimer’s Foundation.

  • Margaret “Peg” Harrington, Secretary to the JMMTA
    Peg graduated with a BA in History from St Joseph’s College, Brooklyn, an MA from Brooklyn College in Asian Studies, a Professional Diploma (MA) in Educational Administration & Supervision, Richmond College, and an EdD from Fordham University in Supervision & Administration. Peg served as a teacher and Principal of Port Richmond High School in Staten Island, Superintendent of the Queens High Schools, Superintendent of all NYC High Schools, and Chief Executive for School Programs & Student Support Services at the NYCDOE before retiring to become the COO/CEO of Victory Schools, a privately owned educational management company. After retirement Peg has served on a number of Not for Profit Boards including the National Principal’s Leadership Institute, Boys & Girls Harbor (both in Manhattan), and the Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art where she also volunteers. She enjoys world travel and leading the travel groups for the JMMTA.
  • Jeffrey Gaal, Treasurer of the JMMTA
    Jeff has a lifetime of not-for profit accounting experience. He has held various comptroller-ships, internal and external audit positions and consulted for multinational corporations over his 30 plus years of working in this field. He is a Certified Tax Professional and is well versed in governmental regulatory audits. His accounting experience has bought him to over 53 countries auditing healthcare, micro-finance and woman’s rights organizations. Jeff’s work also includes service on many not-for-profit, Staten Island-based organizations. He has a BBA in accounting from Pace University.
  • Beverly Garcia-Anderson, Immediate Past President
    Beverly has served on the museum board since early in 2001 and became board president in 2003.She served as the President of the board until December 1, 2014. She has also served as President of three other Boards of Trustees: Project Hospitality, The Greenbelt Conservancy and the Friends of the College of Staten Island. She has been a member of the Board of Skylight and has served as an Elder of Olivet Presbyterian Church. In addition to her volunteer work, she retired from the Department of Education in 2002 achieving positions as Founding Principal of East New York Family Academy, Principal of McKee Vocational and Technical High School and Deputy Superintendent of District 15. After her retirement, she worked as a consultant mentoring new Principals and is currently the CEO of New World Preparatory Charter School on Staten Island.
  • Charles DeStefano
    Charles was fascinated with the Tibetan Museum from his first visit at the age of sixteen and he has come full circle by becoming a Member of our Board in 2008. He lives with his family on Lighthouse Hill and loves being a neighbor of the museum. He graduated Fordham University (BA) and Pace Law School (JD) and worked at the United Nations Department of Disarmament Affairs as an intern for two years. He is an attorney with offices in Sunnyside and also currently serves as President of the Staten Island Trial Lawyers Association. Charles also serves as a Board Member of the NYS Trial Lawyers Association, the Workers Center of Port Richmond, and the Pro Bono Scholars Committee. For the past 2 years, he has been acting as an informal “ambassador” for the museum by distributing invitations to interested persons throughout the globe.
  • Leela Fiorino
    Lee has over 30 years experience serving in senior positions within NYC government, academia and the private sector. Prior to retiring as Director of Business and Community Outreach for the NYC Department of Finance in December 2012, she received a proclamation from the New York City Council as “Unsung Heroine” for advocacy of the poor and elderly living in NYC. Other positions held include President of a real estate investment and development firm (Arcon, NY), and Director of the New York University’s Real Estate Institute in the late 80’s. For ten years, from 1992-2002, she served as Director of Operations for the American Committee on Asian Economic Studies as well as a board member of the Gowanus Canal Community Development Corporation. In this latter capacity, raised awareness and funds to revitalize a polluted waterway and, in 2002, received a Community Activist Award for “producing unprecedented local improvements and investments in a culturally diverse community in Brooklyn, NY.” Lee currently serves on Queens Community Board 11 as co-chair of the Parks Committee.
  • Nancy Myers
    Nancy is a retired teacher with over forty years of experience in special education, having worked most recently for the New York City Department of Education at the Manhattan School for Career Development. She has been active as a member of the boards of trustees of a number of local organizations, including the Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art, the Staten Island Museum, the Alice Austen House Museum, and Staten Island Mental Health Society. She is also a past board member of the Seamen’s Society for Children and Families. Ms. Myers received her Bachelor of Science degree from Wagner College (in Education), her Master of Science Degree from Richmond College (in Special Education, and a Certificate in (Educational) Supervision and Administration from Brooklyn College. Together with her husband, Christopher Benbow, she is the co-author of “Cabins, Cottages and Mansions: Homes of the Presidents of the United States” and a children’s book, “The ABC’s of Staten Island.”
  • George Sieghardt, Esq.
    George is a partner at the Staten Island based law firm Jacobi, Sieghardt, Bousanti, Piazza and Fitzpatrick, PC. He has been a member of the Jacques Marchais Museum’s Board of Trustees since 1996. He has also served as the Treasurer to the Museum. Mr. Sieghardt holds an A.B. from the College of the Holy Cross and a J.D. from Fordham Law School.
  • Barbara Tallon-Reilly
    Barbara is a senior executive, with over twenty five years’ experience in the delivery of health care in diverse settings that include: Skilled Nursing Facilities, Academic Medical Centers, Community Hospitals, Ambulatory Care Centers, and Private Practice. Ms. Reilly has held several positions over the years including Chief Nursing Officer/Senior Vice President Clinical Operations for one of the largest skilled nursing facilities in New York State. She is currently employed as Administrator for a clinic with over 130 offsite locations. Ms. Reilly has worked as a consultant for a national firm throughout the years. She is a graduate of St. Vincent’s Nursing School and holds a bachelor’s degree in Nursing she graduated from the State University New York: Health & Science Center Brooklyn as a Nurse Practitioner. She holds a master’s degree in Healthcare Management from the New School, NYC. She belongs to several professional organizations. She has lived on Staten Island for over 25 years and has an interest in civic affairs.
  • Kathleen Xi
    Kathleen is a graduate of the Monterey Institute of International Studies (1976) and the Graduate School of Information and Library Science, Queens College, CUNY (2007). From 1976-1980, she edited an ESL magazine, taught English at the Taipei Language Institute, and taught and studied Chinese traditional music in Taiwan. From 1981-2004, she worked as operations manager, customer service manager and trainer, and presenter and trainer for cultural programs and tour narrations in the China-Orient tourism industry. Currently Kathleen works at the New York Public Library. Since 1976, she has enjoyed frequent travel and extended stays in Asia.

Advisory Board and Pro-Bono Specialists

  • Tenzing Chadotsang, Restoration Architect
  • Michael DiMauro, P.C.
  • Chetra Kotzas, Buildings and Grounds Committee
  • Leonard Merola, Buildings and Grounds Committee
  • Tsering Phuntsok, Exhibits and Restoration
  • Abe Segarra, Exhibits and Restoration
  • Matthew Walby, Events and Fundraising Committee
  • Dan Globus, Online Marketing & User Interface Advisor: Dan is an online marketing specialist who also sells wedding rings & bands online.

The Staff

  • Allison Baldassano, Museum Assistant
    Alison is an art historian focusing on the art of Himalayan Asia. She is a Masters candidate at the City College of New York and has a degree in Anthropology from Stony Brook University. At the Jacques Marchais Museum, Alison primarily works with the museum’s collection.
  • Jayne Catalfo, Bookkeeper
    Jayne has been the Museum’s bookkeeper since 2001. She started working at the Museum part-time when her daughter Jilian first started school. Jayne manages all of the Museum’s bookkeeping and office duties. She says of the Museum, “the beautiful, peaceful atmosphere makes it a happy place to work.”
  • Meg Ventrudo, Executive Director
    Meg has been the Museum’s Executive Director since 2004. Prior to joining the Tibetan Museum, Meg was the Director of Exhibits and Education at the Museum of American Finance so as far as subject matter, Meg has gone from “the Bull to the Buddha.” Meg holds a BA in History from Loyola University Maryland and an MA in History from George Mason University, Fairfax, Virginia, and a Certificate in Not for Profit Management from Columbia University. Click here to contact Meg.

Docents and Interns

  • Christina Borovilas
  • Sean Britton
  • Joseph DeCillis
  • Mary Eberhardt
  • Sarah Hatoum

Should you wish to volunteer or be considered for an internship, please click here.

In Memorium

Lana Capuozzo

Lana Capuozzo at a Museum Cocktail Party 1988. Pictured in this Photo (Museum guest, Pema Wangyal, Donna Narducci, Barbara Lipton, Lana Capuozzo.

The Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan of Tibetan Art extends its condolences to the Van Duzer and Capuozzo Families on the loss of their daughter, wife, mother and grandmother, Lana Capuozzo. For close to 20 years, Lana was a Board Member and dedicated volunteer of the Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art where she dedicated her efforts to the beautification of the Museum’s gardens. As the Chairwoman of the gardens and grounds committee, Lana worked tirelessly to enhance the serenity and beauty of the site. Her mark on the Museum is timeless. She will be missed.