Board Member and Co-Founder Dina Bakst is also Co-President of A Better Balance. Dina features regularly in local and national news coverage of work-family issues. Her 2012 New York Times op-ed, Pregnant & Pushed Out of A Job, inspired the introduction of the federal Pregnant Workers Fairness Act, which she helped draft, and contributed to passage of the New York City Pregnant Workers Fairness Act of 2013. Dina is a co-author of the recently published Babygate: What You Really Need to Know About A Pregnancy & Parenting In The American Workplace, a national know-your-rights book covering pregnancy discrimination, family leave, caregiver discrimination, breastfeeding rights, workplace flexibility and more. Dina has written numerous articles and reports on workplace fairness including, most recently, “It Shouldn’t Be a Heavy Lift: Fair Treatment for Pregnant Workers.”
Prior to co-founding A Better Balance, Dina was an attorney with the NOW Legal Defense & Education fund (now Legal Momentum) where she pursued litigation and public policy advocacy on a wide range of women's issues including economic justice, child care and reproductive rights. Dina is a graduate of the University of Michigan Law School and Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the University of Michigan. She also served as a litigation associate with Kaye, Scholer LLP.
Board member Eric Berger is a Sr. Vice President in Executive Development at Citigroup. In that capacity, he designs and implements leadership development programs and initiatives for Citi’s senior leaders globally. Prior to joining Citi, Eric was a Human Capital management consultant at Deloitte, where he focused on leadership development, talent management, and strategic change. Prior to that, Eric was Manager of the Kennedy School Negotiation Project at Harvard University, where he led training programs on negotiation, leadership, and conflict management for senior executives and public leaders in Europe, Asia, North America, Latin America and the Middle East. In addition to his role at Citi, Eric is Adjunct Professor of Law at Georgetown University, where he teaches a course on negotiation and dispute resolution. Eric holds Master degrees in Public Administration and Theological Studies from Harvard, and a Bachelor of Arts from Queen’s University in Canada.
Board Member Ariel Devine earned her BA from the University of Maryland, her 2nd Degree Diploma from the University of Nice, France and her JD, cum laude, from the George Washington University Law School. She practiced corporate and intellectual property law in private practice for 9 years at the firms of Pavia and Harcourt LLC and Philips Nizer LLP. For the past five years, she has worked as in-house Counsel for IBM. She serves on the NY Regional Board of the Anti-Defamation League and served for three years as the Deputy Chair of the ADL's International Affairs Committee. She is also a member of the Young Families Committee of the Jewish Community Center. She also served as a Big Sister, mentor and volunteer with the Grand Street Settlement organizing programs for underprivileged children and as an Executive Committee member of Dress for Success, Young Executives for Success Division, a philanthropic organization helping women in need re-enter the work force. Ariel has also volunteered work for PS 75 Early Morning Reading Program, Dorot and the Downtown Boathouse. Ariel has a long-standing interest in women's issues which actually began in utero - her mother was one of the earliest members and organizers of the National Organization for Women and participated in countless NOW rallies while pregnant with Ariel, including one rally in which she was photographed the day before Ariel was born.
Board Member Mike Gaebler is an independent technology consultant and founder of Gaebler Technologies, Inc., which provides consulting and program management services to large organizations with the goal of increasing efficient use and implementation of technology. Over the past twenty years, he has worked with major consulting firms such as Accenture and Fortune 100 companies such as Yahoo!, Starbucks, AT&T Wireless and Intuit. He was a member of a Seattle-based non-profit, The Foundry, focused on bridging the digital divide, and he was also involved in the early days of Volunteermatch, connecting volunteer members with volunteer opportunities. He has a particular interest in the effective use of technology for non-profits and non-profit fundraising. Mike is a graduate of Yale University.
Board Vice Chair and Co-Founder Risa E. Kaufman is Executive Director of the Human Rights Institute (HRI) at Columbia Law School, where she is also a Lecturer-in-Law. At HRI, Risa works to develop and advance international human rights norms and strategies in the United States through research, advocacy, network building, and training. She also teaches a seminar on economic justice and human rights in the United States. Risa has extensive experience in public interest litigation, advocacy and legal education with a special focus on women’s rights, poverty law, and access to justice. She previously worked as Associate Counsel at the Community Service Society of New York, as a Gibbons Fellow in Public Interest and Constitutional Law at the law firm of Gibbons, P.C., and as a Skadden Fellow at NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund (now Legal Momentum). Prior to joining Columbia Law School’s Human Rights Institute, Risa was an Acting Assistant Professor of Lawyering at NYU School of Law and an adjunct professor at Fordham Law School and Seton Hall Law School. She has published several articles on the issue of access to justice and poverty. Risa holds a J.D. from New York University School of Law, where she was a Root-Tilden-Snow Scholar, and clerked for Judge Ira DeMent of the U.S. District Court in Montgomery, Alabama. She holds a B.A. from Tulane University.
Board Member Judy Enteles Landis is raising two children with her husband, Marc, on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. A graduate of Barnard College, she went on to earn a Masters degree from Columbia University’s School of International and Public Affairs. She was previously a producer at ABC News, working on shows like “Good Morning America” and “Nightline” as well as election night specials, where she was regularly assigned to breaking news stories from all over the globe. She has also worked as an independent producer, including consulting on the documentary “Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price.” Judy created the “Families for A Better Balance” video featured on our website.
Board Member and Co-Founder Sherry Leiwant is also Co-President of A Better Balance. From 2005 to 2006, Sherry was an Adjunct Professor of Law at CUNY School of Law teaching an upper level class on civil rights. From 1996 until 2005, Sherry was a senior staff attorney at NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund running the State Advocacy Project, working on issues intersecting women’s rights and poverty, including reproductive health, violence and child care. Prior to joining NOW Legal Defense Fund, she spent 12 years as a senior staff attorney at the Welfare Law Center, a national legal organization doing litigation and public advocacy on a variety of income support issues around the country. Prior to that, she was a staff attorney at the Department of Health Education and Welfare and an Assistant US Attorney in the Southern District of New York. Sherry graduated from Princeton University and from Columbia University School of Law School. She has three children and has served on the Boards of Bank Street College of Education and Basic Trust Infant and Toddler Center.
Board Member Ossai Miazad is a partner at Outten & Golden LLP. She is co-chair of the firm’s Discrimination and Retaliation Practice Group and is also active in its Class and Collective Action Practice Group and Family Responsibilities and Disability Discrimination Practice Group. She represents employees in class action discrimination and wage and hour cases, as well as individual litigation and negotiation in all areas of employment law, including cases involving discrimination, harassment, and retaliation; executive and professional contracts; and compensation. She has experience litigating before federal and state courts and FINRA arbitration panels. Ossai regularly lectures and publishes on employment issues. She is the co-Editor-in-Chief of "The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act," published by the American Bar Association’s (ABA) Section of Labor and Employment Law, and serves as co-chair of the ABA’s Subcommittee on the Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act. Ossai serves on the New York City Bar Association’s Committee on Civil Rights and is a member of the National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA) and NELA’s New York affiliate.
Board Member Gary Phelan is Special Counsel to Cohen and Wolf, PC and works in the firm's Westport and Bridgeport, CT office. Prior to joining Cohen and Wolf, he was a partner at New York City-based Outten & Golden, LLC, where he co-chaired the firm's Family Responsibilities Discrimination Practice Group. He has litigated and negotiated individual claims involving discrimination based on age, disability, and family responsibilities, wrongful termination and employment contracts. Prior to joining O&G he was a partner with Klebanoff & Phelan, P.C., in West Hartford, Connecticut, and Garrison, Phelan, Levin-Epstein, Chimes & Richardson in New Haven, Connecticut. He has been selected by peer review for The Best Lawyers in America* and was listed by Connecticut Magazine as one of the "Top Lawyers in Connecticut" in Labor and Employment Law.* He co-authored one of the leading treatises on disability law entitled Disability Discrimination in the Workplace, which is published by West Group. He has written and lectured on a wide range of employment-related topics and was an adjunct professor for several years at the Quinnipiac University School of Law. He was the President of the Connecticut Employment Lawyers Association and, was the co-chair of the disability rights committee for the National Employment Lawyers Association (NELA) and served on NELA's executive board. He is presently on the board of A Better Balance: The Work & Family Legal Center and the advisory board for the Center For WorkLife Law.
Board Secretary and Co-Founder Roslyn Powell is a teacher and program manager at the Academies @ Englewood, a public high school created in 2002. Roslyn's most recent legal position was with the Brennan Center for Justice at NYU School of Law, where she served as an associate counsel with the Center's Poverty Program. Prior to joining the Brennan Center, Roslyn worked as a staff attorney at NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund, where she focused on litigation and policy initiatives on child care and reproductive rights issues. Roslyn also worked as a litigation associate at Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen and Hamilton and served as a law clerk for the Honorable Robert L. Carter of the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York. Roslyn is a graduate of Stanford Law School (1993), Columbia University (M.P.A. 1986), and Brown University (B.A. 1983).
Board Member Elizabeth S. Saylor is a partner at Emery Celli Brinckerhoff & Abady LLP. Elizabeth represents clients in commercial and civil rights matters. Her civil rights practice has included constitutional litigation, class actions, police misconduct, prisoners’ rights, election law, wage and hour, and employment and housing cases alleging discrimination on the basis of race, sex, age, familial status, pregnancy, disability, and source of income. Prior to joining the firm, Elizabeth worked at The Legal Aid Society, where she began as a Skadden fellow and represented victims of domestic violence in a variety of cases, including a class action that successfully challenged the systematic denial of public benefits to immigrants. Elizabeth clerked for the Hon. Robert D. Sack on the Second Circuit Court of Appeals. Elizabeth received her B.A., summa cum laude, from Amherst College and her J.D., magna cum laude, from Harvard Law School.
Board Chair Yolanda Wu was a Co-Founder and Co-President of A Better Balance from 2006 to 2011. Yolanda has served as an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Law at New York University School of Law, where she taught an upper level seminar on sex discrimination law from 2003 to 2012. From 1994 to 2003, Yolanda was an attorney at NOW Legal Defense and Education Fund (now Legal Momentum), where she litigated impact cases in the areas of employment discrimination, educational equity, access to reproductive health care and equal protection, and conducted legislative and public policy advocacy on a wide range of women's rights issues. Yolanda is a graduate of the UCLA School of Law and Princeton University.