(New York, N.Y.) — New York City education nonprofit Breakthrough New York (BTNY) has appointed Gautam Ranji as chair of its board of directors. Mr. Ranji, who has served on the board since 2017, is Executive Vice President, Strategic Planning and Development at CBS Corporation. Mr. Ranji will succeed Bonnie Litt, General Counsel at Success Academy Charter Schools, who has served as BTNY board chair since 2016. Ms. Litt will remain on the board.
BTNY transforms the lives of talented kids from low-income backgrounds by providing comprehensive support from middle school through college and into careers.
At CBS, Mr. Ranji oversees strategic planning and business development across all of the corporation’s businesses, in a role he has held since 2016. Previously, he served in strategic and operational leadership roles at The Hearst Corporation and Viacom. A graduate of Dartmouth College and the University of Chicago, Booth School of Business, he lives in Chatham, NJ with his wife and two children.
“I’m honored to be taking over as board chair for Breakthrough New York,” said Mr. Ranji. “Now more than ever, Breakthrough’s work to level the educational playing field for students from low-income backgrounds is critically important. I look forward to continuing to help this fantastic organization transform the lives of children and families through expanding access to educational opportunities.”
“Gautam will be a fantastic leader for Breakthrough New York,” said Beth Onofry, Executive Director of BTNY. “He cares deeply about our students and has done so much on behalf of this organization throughout his first two years on the board.”
“My term as board chair has been exceptionally gratifying,” said Ms. Litt, who joined the board in 2010. “I am proud of Breakthrough New York’s growth over the last three years, expanding and enhancing our services to create more educational opportunities for more students in need. I’m delighted to pass the torch to Gautam, who will do a terrific job, and I look forward to continuing to serve on the board.”
“Bonnie’s knowledge, passion for education, and dedication to our students have been indispensable,” added Ms. Onofry, who became executive director in March 2018. “She has been a tremendous leader for this organization during a time of change, helping me to transition into my role. I am thrilled that she will continue to be a part of our board.”
BTNY was founded as Summerbridge at The Town School in Manhattan in 1999 and has since expanded in size and scope, now serving more than 550 students and providing a full 10 years of support for every student. Services include rigorous summer academic programming, after-school tutoring, test prep, high school and college admissions guidance, financial advisement, internship placements, and more.
The organization boasts a stellar track record of preparing students for college. In 2018, all of the program’s rising 9th grade students matriculated to college prep high schools and 100% of its graduating seniors matriculated to four-year colleges. In 2015, BTNY expanded services beyond high school, to help students all the way through college graduation. This spring, its second class to have gone through all ten years of the program is graduating from college.
With three program sites in Manhattan, Brooklyn, and the Bronx, BTNY draws students from across New York City. The organization strives to create leaders who break the cycle of poverty in their families and effect positive change in their communities. It also inspires talented young people to enter careers in education through its unique students-teaching-students model.
Demand is steep for the organization’s services. A record 476 sixth graders applied for spots in BTNY’s next incoming class, which will start its 10-year journey to college graduation with summer classes in July.
For the full list of BTNY’s board of directors, visit www.btny.org/our-board.
About Breakthrough New York
Breakthrough New York (BTNY) transforms the lives of talented kids from low-income backgrounds by providing educational support from middle school through college and into careers. BTNY also inspires talented young people to enter careers in education through its students-teaching-students model. The organization’s goal is to create leaders who break the cycle of poverty in their families and effect positive change in their communities. Learn more at www.btny.org. Follow BTNY on social media: Facebook – Instagram – Twitter @BreakthroughNY
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