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What I Do

Christina Gavin

What I do: Christina Gavin, School librarian

Christina Gavin is the librarian at the Herbert H. Lehman HS Campus in the Bronx, where she serves 3,200 students and more than 300 staff members in the seven schools that share the building.

Desiree Mark

What I do: Desiree Mark, teacher’s aide, ADAPT

Desiree Mark has worked for nearly 30 years at the Lawrence Avenue school of ADAPT Community Network, formerly United Cerebral Palsy of NYC, working with children whose medical, cognitive, emotional and/or physical needs require a more restrictive setting than a public school. Since 2003, the UFT has represented ADAPT employees, who now number more than 900 at schools and residences citywide.

Melissa Toribio

What I Do: Melissa Toribio, speech therapist

Melissa Toribio, a bilingual speech language therapist at PS 531, PS 536 and PS 691 in the Bronx, works to ensure that all her students are able to express themselves and understand others in the classroom and in their daily lives.

Kathy Zeltmann

What I do: Kathy Zeltmann, occupational therapist

Kathy Zeltmann works at PS 71 and Grover Cleveland HS, both in Ridgewood, Queens, helping students to discover the skills they have and develop them so they have the best possible chance to learn and to achieve their best possible life.

Janet Caba

What I do: Janet Caba, college counselor

Janet Caba is a college counselor at West Bronx Academy for the Future, a small Grade 6–12 school where each year she helps the graduating class of about 50 students make decisions about their higher education.

Gloria Weiss

What I do: Gloria Weiss, Consortium for Worker Education teacher

Gloria Weiss has worked for 20 years at the Consortium for Worker Education (CWE), the workforce development arm of the New York City Central Labor Council.

Jennifer Brenon

What I do: Jennifer Brenon, preschool teacher

Jennifer Brenon recently finished her second year at the Stanley S. Lamm Preschool for students with special needs in Windsor, Brooklyn. The school’s 40 staff members joined the UFT in 2008.

Dinah McCam

What I do: Dinah McCann, adaptive physical education teacher

Adaptive physical education teachers help improve students’ locomotor skills, object control skills, perceptual motor function and physical fitness in a setting that focuses on differentiating instruction so it is developmentally and socially appropriate. Adaptive phys ed must be on a student’s IEP.

Hannah Brancato

What I do: Hannah Brancato, teacher team leader

Brancato, a member of the UFT’s Teacher Assigned Chapter, supports 24 teacher leaders — new positions created in the 2014 UFT-DOE contract — in 11 schools in Brooklyn’s District 14.

Michele Singer

What I do: Michele Singer, director of alcohol and substance abuse

With 42 years in the school system, first as a teacher and now as the senior member of the team of drug directors represented by the UFT, Michele Singer works to ensure students stay safe in the midst of the opioid crisis.