Director Sheri Gordon is an attorney, a community activist, and a mother to a teenage daughter with autism. Sheri began her career as an attorney in New York City, working for a large international law firm focusing on intellectual property. When her daughter was diagnosed on the spectrum, Sheri focused her time and energy on finding the right mix of therapists, schools, and environments for her daughter. This focus took her family out of New York into Connecticut, where Sheri became involved with local government, serving on the Westport Zoning Board of Appeals and the Westport Board of Finance for over a decade. In addition to her role on the Yes She Can Board, Sheri serves on other boards in Westport, CT, and recently became a member of the Connecticut Bar. Sheri holds a Juris Doctorate from the New York University School of Law and a Bachelor of Arts from Cornell University. Sheri joined the board in 2021.
Jessica Markowitz, MPA
Interim Board Secretary
Jessica Markowitz is Senior Director of Finance, Data, and Administration at Footsteps. This nonprofit organization assists individuals contemplating leaving ultra-Orthodox Jewish communities to lead self-determined lives. Previously, Jessica was the Director of Finance and Administration at Pro Bono Partnership and is a
Westchester-based nonprofit organization that provides accessible business and transactional legal services to nonprofit organizations in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut. Jessica holds a Bachelor of Arts from Purchase College and a Master of Public Administration from Baruch College. Jessica joined the board in 2017.
Cynthia Saxman Margulies
Cynthia Saxman is the Director of Business Development at GuardHill Financial Corp., a privately held mortgage banking company in New York City since 2008 and in the residential mortgage business since 1994. Having had her firm for 15 years before GuardHill, she understands how to navigate the intricacies of running a company. While doing that, she mentored young women to help them find a career path they could be enthusiastic about. As a step-parent of a son on the spectrum, she became involved with many different programs that helped him transition from graduating college to finishing a culinary arts program. He is now successfully working in this field. Cynthia is passionate about supporting social causes and has volunteered with several non-profit organizations; she is deeply committed to serving as a member and secretary of the Board of Directors at Yes She Can. Cynthia joined the board in 2023.
Amy Gravino, M.A.
Director Amy Gravino is an autism sexuality advocate and Relationship Coach in the Center for Adult Autism Services at Rutgers University. She is also the President of A.S.C.O.T Consulting, which offers autism consulting, college coaching, and mentoring services for organizations, schools, individuals on the autism spectrum, and their families. Amy is an international speaker who has given TED talks, spoken twice at the United Nations for World Autism Awareness Day and presented worldwide to audiences on a variety of topics related to autism, with a dedicated particular focus and research on the subject of autism and sexuality. Ms. Gravino obtained her Master’s degree in Applied Behavior Analysis from Caldwell University in 2010 and currently serves on the Boards of Directors of Yes She Can, Inc. and the Golden Door International Film Festival of Jersey City, as well as the Scientific Advisory Board of Simons Foundation Powering Autism Research (SPARK). She is an award-winning writer who has co-authored a chapter on autism and sexuality in the Handbook of Quality of Life for Individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder, and her work has been featured in Spectrum, the leading online news source for autism research, and other outlets. Visit www.amygravino.com to learn more. Amy joined the board in 2017.
Debra K. Solomon
Director Debra K. Solomon is a New York University-certified Life and career Coach working with young adults with Autism and other learning differences. She advocates for these individuals and wants to raise awareness of their abilities and challenges and educate employers and other professionals. She started her company, Spectrum Strategies, to help create a level playing field for these individuals. As a parent of a young adult with Asperger’s who is successful in his personal and professional life, Debra now shares what she learned on her journey with her son with others facing similar challenges. At Spectrum Strategies, Debra works with the individual and the family to facilitate the transition from high school to the vocational world, college, or the workplace. Debra earned a Bachelor of Science in Business and Marketing from Syracuse University and has extensive experience in retail marketing, commercial real estate, and sales. She was chosen as one of the 2017 Long Island Business News Top 50 Most Influential Women in Business, recognizing Long Island’s top women for their business savvy, influential work, mentoring, and community involvement. Debra joined the board in 2018.
Janine B. Napierkowski, BFA and MA
Director Janine is currently the Project Coordinator of Cultural Assets for Girl Scouts of the USA, where she manages the archives. She has a BFA in Art Education and an MA in Leadership in Museum Education from Bank Street College and is a graduate of Leadership Westchester (2014). She has recently served on the board of Hudson River Clearwater Sloop and the Rockland County Youth Bureau, and some of her favorite past projects include designing costumes for Nanuet High School theater, sailing historic tall ships out of South Street Seaport Museum, and selling her artwork at Lunar Faire. Janine is an American Girl hobbyist, collecting a few dolls and currently researching the connections between American Girl dolls and Girl Scouts for an upcoming publication, An American Girl Anthology, to be published in the fall of 2024. Janine joined the board in 2023
Dr. Gwen Lopez-Cohen
Director Gwen Lopez-Cohen trained at the NYU School of Medicine and graduated with honors in physiology and neuroscience. She completed her psychiatry and child psychiatry residencies at NYU/Bellevue Hospital Center. Dr. Gwen then completed an advanced residency in community psychiatry at the Yale Child Study Center and the CT Mental Health Center. She is trained in all aspects of psychiatry, including psychotherapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, parent-child interaction training, and psychopharmacology. Dr. Gwen worked at the Yale Child Study Center as a clinician on a clinical trial of medications for children with autism and as the medical director at the Bridgeport Juvenile Detention Center. She served as a consultant to young adults with Asperger’s syndrome at the Chapel Haven residential program. In 2012, Dr. Gwen opened her private practice in Westport, CT. Dr. Gwen has a background in elementary education, including a Master’s Degree from the Bank Street College of Education in New York and six years of experience teaching. Dr. Gwen wrote a curriculum on India for New York City schoolchildren and was an avid student of Sanskrit and Bharatanatyam dance. Outside of the office, Dr. Gwen remains and advocates for patients and the profession of psychiatry as an American Psychiatric Association assembly member. Dr. Gwen resides in Westport, CT, and enjoys the Fairfield County community. Dr Gwen Lope-Cohen joined the board in 2023.
- Marjorie Madfis, Founder
- Patricia Salner
- Charles Biener
- Randi Rios-Castro
- Sheri Baron
- Allan Friedman