Upstate Institute Personnel - Consultants - Board Members Skip Navigation

Upstate Institute Personnel

The governance of the Upstate Institute includes an Executive Board of Colgate faculty, staff and administrators, and a Community Board of community and government leaders, local businesspeople, and school administrators.


Chris Henke

Chris is Associate Professor of Sociology at Colgate, and a member of the Environmental Studies Program. He has been a member of the Upstate Institute Executive Board since 2011, and teaches about science, agriculture, work, the environment and research methods. He has conducted research with students about access to local foods by low-income residents of Madison County. Chris has a BA from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, and an MA and PhD from the University of California, San Diego.

Project Director

Julie Dudrick

Julie oversees our Field School and facilitates research by faculty and students on community-related projects. She also handles the institute's communications and online presence. She has a BA from Depauw University, an MFA in creative writing from the University of Notre Dame, and has previously worked for the Partnership for Community Development.

Upstate Institute Project Consultants

Rachel Amann-Burns
Rachel works with students who are engaged in semester-long field school projects and oversees the Foreign Language Program. She also administers Colgate's Lifelong Learning Program. She has a B.S. degree in Natural Resource Management from Cornell University, and has worked as an AmeriCorps VISTA member in Anchorage, Alaska.
Susan M. Conn '79
Susan M. Conn, Esq. is a project consultant with the Upstate Law Project. She supervises the Consumer Bankruptcy Law Project and teaches SOSC 405: Social Security Benefits for Disabled Children. A member of the Colgate class of 1979, she joined the Upstate Institute in 2005 after 22 years as a staff and managing attorney at the Utica office of the Legal Aid Society of Mid-New York, Inc.

Colleen Nassimos
Colleen Nassimos is Office Manager for the Upstate Institute. She is also Office Manager for the Center for Outreach, Volunteerism and Education (COVE) at Colgate.
Casey Frazee
Casey Frazee administers Colgate's Volunteer Income Tax Assistance Program.

Executive Board

The twenty-three member Executive Board includes representation from each division of the university. Board members work as community ambassadors to the Upstate Institute and participate in the institute's long-term strategic planning efforts.

  • April Baptiste, Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies
  • Joanne Borfitz, Associate Vice President for Community Affairs and Auxiliary Services
  • Jennifer Brice, Associate Professor of English
  • Barbara Brooks, Director of Public Relations and Marketing
  • Randy Fuller, Professor of Biology
  • John A. Gallucci, Associate Professor of Romance Languages and Literatures
  • Doug Johnson, Associate Professor of Psychology
  • Melissa Kagle, Assistant Professor of Educational Studies
  • Ellen Percy Kraly, William R. Kenan, Jr. Professor of Geography
  • Meika Loe, Associate Professor of Sociology and Women's Studies
  • Tim Mansfield, Associate Vice President, Institutional Advancement; Director of Alumni Relations
  • Tim McCay, Associate Professor of Biology and Environmental Studies
  • Bruce Moseley, Associate Director of Corporation, Foundation and Government Relations
  • John Pumilio, Sustainability Coordinator
  • Peter Rogers, Associate Professor and Information Literacy and Social Sciences Librarian
  • Abby Rowe, Director, Outdoor Education
  • Krista Saleet, Director, Center for Outreach, Volunteerism and Education (COVE)
  • Lynn Schwarzer, Professor of Art and Art History; Director of Film and Media Studies
  • Mark Shiner, University Chaplain
  • Nicole Simpson, Assistant Professor of Economics
  • April Sweeney, Assistant Professor of English in the University Theater
  • Dai Yamamoto, Assistant Professor of Geography and Asian Studies

Community Board

The twenty five members of the Community Board are from area non-profit organizations, local government, economic development organizations, and school districts. Community Board members offer input into new project development and help bring about community conversations that can be facilitated and supported by the Upstate Institute.


Marie Anselm, Agricultural Economic Development Program for Madison County

Barb Bartlett, Cultural Resource Manager, Cazenovia

Joanne Borfitz, Associate Vice President for Community Affairs and Auxiliary Services,

Colgate University

Jennifer Bowden, Morrisville Auxiliary Corporation

Suzanne Collins, Hamilton Food Cupboard

Julie Dale, Executive Director, Community Action Partnership for Madison County

Martin Dietrich, NBT Bank

Michael Drahos, Morrisville-Eaton School District

Eric Faisst, Madison County Department of Health

Michael Fitzgerald, Madison County Department of Social Services

Wyatt Galusky, Morrisville State College

Jamie Hart, Madison County Planning Department

Kipp Hicks, Madison County Industrial Development Agency

Harvey Kliman, Southern Madison Heritage Trust

Shannon Mantaro, Hamilton Initiative

Jeffrey McArn, Hamilton College

Margaret Miller, Village of Hamilton

Chris Rossi, Town of Hamilton

John Salka, Community Memorial Hospital

Geoff Snyder, Madison County Department of Environmental Health

Simon Solomon, Friends of Rogers Environmental Center

Tammy VanEpps, Liberty Resources

Wayne Viera, Opportunities for Chenango

Dot Willsey, National Abolition Hall of Fame and Museum

Lorna Wilson, Lifelong Learning Program