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Jumpstart in the Tri-State Area

New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut

Jumpstart brings together Corps members and preschool children in low-income neighborhoods to help these children develop the language and literacy skills they need to be successful in school, setting them on a path to close the achievement gap before it is too late. This school year, 816 college students from fifteen university partners will work with over 2,000 preschool children in New York City, New Jersey, and Connecticut.

We are proud to be part of City's First Readers - a New York City Council funded initiative of 9 terrific organizations dedicated to providing New York City families with more access to literacy programs and services.  

To learn more about how you can get involved with Jumpstart in New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut, contact Site Support Manager, Chelsea Alterman, at 212.868.2526 ext. 635 or



Basic Info

Number of Children Served: 2,000
Number of University Partners: 17
Number of Corps members: 816

Local Advisory Board

Lorie Almon Co-Managing Partner, Seyfarth Shaw LLP  
Brad Coleman, Co-Chair Global Head-Alternative Assets Group, Citigroup Global Markets
Allison Devore Philanthrophic Advisor/Social Entrepreneur/Investor
Laura Ensler Early Childhood Consultant, Laura Ensler Consulting LLC
Kellie Lerner Partner, Robins, Kaplan, Miller & Ciresi LLP
Jennifer K. Marrus Fundraising and Board Development Consultant 
Dylan McDermott Actor
Cynthia Mitchell Partner, Seyfarth Shaw
Kim Mitchell Organizational Development and Philanthropy Executive
Alan Riffkin Managing Director, Lazard Freres & Co. LLC
Brian Rivel President, Rivel Research Group
Meridith Sopher Director of Child Welfare Training, The Legal Aid Society
Betty Weintraub Associate Director for Community Initiatives, Liberty Bank Foundation
Molly Wythes, Co-Chair Marketing Consultant
Young Professionals Board

The Jumpstart Tri-State Young Professionals Board (YPB) is a forum for young people from all sectors to network with one another while utilizing their skills, connections and ideas to work towards a worthy cause. YPB members work directly with the Development team to advance the Jumpstart mission by assisting with local opportunities for fundraising and strengthening organizational visibility.

Alena Aguilar Social Worker, Good Shepherd Services
Marco Blasetti Associate, Corporate Risk Solutions LLC
Andrew Guidice Investor Associate, JP Morgan
Eli Goldman, Fundraising Chair Donor Communications & Stewardship Coordinator, Safe Horizon
Heather Karpas Coordinator, ICM Partners
Jane Krause Knowledge Associate, Russell Reynolds Associates
Kelsey Nason Managing Director, Baretz+Brunelle
Christina Owusu Senior Accountant, Perry Capital LLC
Kinga Szilagyi Career Advancement Coach, Urban Upbound at Jobs Plus
Torrean Slaughter Assistant Analyst, Omnicom Media Group
Brittany Tuosto Vice President of Firm Operations & Communications, Fundamental Advisors LLP

How to Join
We are currently seeking motivated young professionals to participate in the planning and coordination of fundraising, donation, volunteer and social events to benefit Jumpstart Tri-State. For next steps on how to get involved, please contact Liz Trout, Associate Director of Development at or 212-868.2526 X616. We look forward to hearing from you.

Sponsors and Supporters

Jumpstart Tri-State is excited to announce their grant awarded from The Pinkerton Foundation. As part of the Neighborhood Literacy Initiative in Jamaica Queens, 250 children and family members will be served through community-based literacy events including session and family events.


Jumpstart Tri-State thanks its sponsors for their generous support. The following is a list from 2009-2014.

Alliance Bernstein
American Express
Ares Operations, LLC
The Lily Auchincloss Foundation
Bank of America
BC Partners
Bloomberg L.P.
Blue Ocean
Florence V. Burden Foundation
Cerberus Capital Management
Credit Suisse
Crestview Partners
CVC Capital Partners
Ernst & Young
FAO Schwarz
Gibson, Dunn, & Crutcher, LLP
Goldman Sachs
The Heckscher Foundation for Children
Katz Media Group
The Ezra Jack Keats Foundation
The Marion E. Kenworthy - Sarah H. Swift Foundation
Kirkland & Ellis
Lazard Ltd.
Leonard Green & Partners LP
The Marks Family Foundation  
Marrus Family Foundation  
Maslow 6  
MAT Charitable Trust
Miller Buckfire and Co.  
Moelis and Company Holdings  
Morgan Stanley  
Katherine John Murphy Foundation
The New York Community Trust  
Peeq Media  
Pershing Square  
Random House  
Royal Bank of Canada  
Saks Fifth Avenue  
Gary Saltz Family Foundation
The Charles and Mildred Schnurmacher Foundation
Select Equity Group, Inc.  
Simpson Thacher & Bartlett LLP
Solar Capital
Source Media
Starbucks Foundation
Stringer Foundation  
Sullivan and Cromwell
Tiger Foundation  
Trian Fund Management  
UBS Financial  
US Trust  
Weil, Gotshal, and Manges LLC  
Wells Fargo
White and Case  

Special thanks to New York Wedding Photography for its support!




In the News

Recent News:

2nd Annual NYC Fall Luncheon at Upper Story by Charlie Palmer

On November 5, over 100 Jumpstart friends "bookmarked" their lunch hour by attending the second annual Jumpstart Fall Luncheon. Held at Upper Story by Charlie Palmer, a premier event space in Manhattan's iconic D&D building, guests enjoyed wine, hors d'oeuvres, and a three-course lunch all while taking in the breathtaking city views.

The luncheon recognized the special books - or bookmarks- that define the moments and places in our lives. This year's Writer's Panel featured authors Emma McLaughlinNicola Kraus, Maggie Kneip, and Pamela Erens, and was moderated by fellow writer and Glamour Book Editor, Elisabeth Egan

Jumpstart Book Club - Hamptons Edition

On August 19, Jumpstart friends and supporters spent a wonderful evening with special guests, Emma McLaughlin and Nicola Kraus, authors of How to Be A Grownup: A Novel, at our first ever Jumpstart Book Club held in the Hamptons. The event highlighted the importance of reading early and often with children to prepare them for kindergarten success.

Hosted by Topping Rose House, a luxury hotel and restaurant in Bridgehampton, guests enjoyed fine wine and hors d'oeuvres, and while engaging in conversations with Emma and Nicola all within an intimate, summery setting.  

Jumpstart Dinner at the Whelk

The 2nd annual Jumpstart in Connecticut event was hosted at The Whelk in Westport, CT on Thursday, July 16th. Guests enjoyed appetizers, refreshing cocktails, music from a local band, and both a silent and live auction. It was a great time had by all as we raised money to support children in the Connecticut area.

Jumpstart Holds First New Jersey Corps Member Roundtable!

On June 30, 2015, Jumpstart held its first New Jersey Corps Member Roundtable at Montclair State University (MSU). A dedicated partner site since 2012, MSU was the perfect setting for this breakfast discussion. The panel, made up of five Corps members and alumni, described their Jumpstart experiences to facilitator Connie Edouard, Tri-State Program Director and an audience of about a dozen individuals. 

Over 1,000 Children at Newark's Preschool Family Night at the Museum

June 12th marked Newark's 3rd Annual Preschool Family Night at the Newark Museum in New Jersey and of course, Jumpstart was there to enhance learning, promote literacy, and spread joy! Children and parents in the Jumpstart section read Dog's Colorful Day and participated in two related activities. Other vendors ranged from face painting and balloon animals to small scale experiments and pasta jewelry, so there were lots of engaging activities for children.

This year, attendance clocked in at 1,374 children and Jumpstart gave away over 300 books! This was by far the largest Night at the Museum that has ever occurred, with hopes for even more growth in the future. The response from both other vendors and families was wonderfully overwhelming.

American Academy of Pediatrics Endorses Jumpstart and Other Partners of City’s First Readers Initiative

City’s First Readers, an initiative of the New York City Council, is a collaboration of eight nonprofit organizations, including Jumpstart, fostering the literacy development of NYC children, ages 0-5. The initiative provides parents, early childcare providers, and teachers with the resources and services needed to ensure children enter school ready to read and achieve educational success.

This afternoon, New York City Council members, City's First Readers Partners, and representatives from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) gathered at the steps of New York City Hall for a press conference to announce American Academy of Pediatrics support for the New York City Council City's First Readers early literacy initiative. The AAP's endorsement of City's First Readers follows its recommendation that early literacy promotion be routinely integrated into pediatric primary care for all children.

Representatives from all eight nonprofit partners and New York City Council members Stephen Levin and Antonio Reynoso were in attendance. This momentous endorsement shows the ever-growing support for early childhood education and recognizes all of the inspiring work of Jumpstart!

More information about City's First Reader's can be found here. The official press release about the press conference can be found here.

South Jamaica Cornerstone Community Center Completely Transformed

On Saturday, June 6th, South Jamaica Cornerstone Community Center had their grand re-opening event and Jumpstart, in typical fun-loving fashion, was there to celebrate!

Three weeks prior, on May 15th, under the lead of Region II FAO Schwarz fellow Shaina Spann, 40 6th graders from the Village Community School in Manhattan spent the day in South Jamaica for an extraordinary day of service. After creating literacy kits for the 60 preschoolers at PS 48, the 6th graders spent the morning reading Corduroy and helping them to make Corduroy puppets. Finally, the 6th graders then spent the afternoon at The South Jamaica Cornerstone cleaning out, installing, and freshly stocking 2 brand new, toddler and teen friendly, library spaces. The Community Center Staff was completely blown away and touched by their work and have been working to "redesign" their image since. The grand reopening this weekend was a given success and we're so lucky to be a part of their transformation! 


January 27, 2016
Teaching Parenting Skills at Doctor Visits Helps Children's Behavior. Read more 

June 2, 2012

Why Tina Fey Loves Books. Read more

Huffington Post
October 10, 2011

Jumpstart Reads for a Record...and a Purpose. Read more

Huffington Post
September 30, 2011

America's Early Childhood Education Crisis and Jumpstart's work to combat the crisis. Read more

Jumpstart is featured on AOL Impact
September 27, 2011

Jumpstart is now a part of the AOL Impact program, AOL's corporate commitment to shine a spotlight on nonprofits making an impact and allow their users to learn more and take action. Read more

Jumpstart Corps member shares her story with NBC's Education Nation
July 14, 2011

Jumpstart Corps member and Columbia University student Ashley Williams blogs about her experience serving in the classroom. Read more

University/College Partners

Barnard College
Brooklyn College
Central Connecticut State University
Eastern Connecticut State University 
Fordham University
Kean University
Lehman College
Long Island University
Monroe College
Montclair State University
New York University
Pace University
Rutgers - Newark
Rutgers University - Camden
Southern Connecticut State University
St. Johns University
University of Connecticut
York College

Contact Info

General inquiries or volunteer opportunities

Chelsea Alterman 
Site Support Manager
212.868.2526 ext. 635

Program development and expansion opportunities

Kerri Osborne
Executive Director
212.868.2526 ext. 619

Media and fundraising opportunities

Deana Murtha
Development Director
212.868.2526 ext. 613


Jumpstart in Hunts Point, Bronx

Jumpstart is excited to provide our programming at five classrooms in La Peninsula Head Start and P.S. 48 in Hunts Point. In addition to our work at these centers, we have also collaborated with the Hunts Point Alliance for Children (HPAC) to open The Children’s Community Classroom (CCC), an early education space. This community classroom was made available by support from Goldman Sachs Gives and Bright Horizon’s Inc. Unlike our typical session model in which we partner with pre-existing early childhood education centers to provide our services, the CCC is operated by Jumpstart and HPAC. The CCC recruits child participants from caregivers in the community, allowing us to reach even more children with our programming. Jumpstart also hosts monthly early learning events in Hunt’s Point to support family’s engagement with their children’s learning. Contact Greg Fields at or 212-868-2526 ext. 611 for more info.