It is through the dedication of a few that we are able to touch so many. A special thanks to our board members for their commitment, passion, and vision. Together, we are making a visible difference in the health and well-being of our community.
Emeriti: Vince Chiappetta, Nina Kuscsik, Carl C. Landegger, Arno Niemand, Elizabeth Phillips, Peter Roth
George Hirsch, 82, has served as chairman of the NYRR Board of Directors since 2004. A lifelong runner, Hirsch ran New York’s first-ever five-borough marathon in 2:49. He has been the worldwide publisher of Runner’s World magazine, the publisher and president of New York magazine, the vice president of Rodale’s magazine division, and the publishing director of Men’s Health magazine.
In the 1980s, he ran for the U.S. House of Representatives; his campaigners included Frank Shorter and Bill Rodgers. Hirsch served on the President’s Council on Physical Fitness from 1986 to 1988 and was vice chairman of the New York City Sports Commission. He has provided television commentary for prominent racing events such as the Olympic Games, the U.S. Olympic Trials, and major marathons including Boston, Los Angeles, Philadelphia, and San Francisco.
He marked his 75th birthday by winning his age group in the 2009 New York City Marathon in a time of 4:06:14—a mere two weeks after running the Chicago Marathon in 3:58:42. He continues to shock runners half his age and younger by passing them in NYRR races, in which he routinely places in his age group.
Additional Board Position: Chair, Nominating and Governance
Michael Frankfurt is the senior partner and a founding partner of Frankfurt Kurnit, one of the pre-eminent media and entertainment law firms in the United States. His experience is in all aspects of the business practice of law, focusing on entertainment and media law, representing advertising agencies, commercial film, television, publishing, graphic and fine arts, and new media companies, and representing and counseling executives and talent in those and other businesses.
Frankfurt is an active member of the New York State Bar Association. He also serves as chairman of the board of directors of The Creative Coalition and The Armory Foundation and as a trustee of the Hunter College Foundation. He is a member of the USA Track and Field Hall of Fame Committee, Friars Club, Hunter College Alumni and Athletic Hall of Fame, and Millrose Athletic Association.
The Hollywood Reporter named Mr. Frankfurt one of the “Top 100 Power Lawyers,” and he was cited as one of New York’s best entertainment lawyers by New York magazine. He has been named a New York-area “Super Lawyer” by Super Lawyers magazine eight times, and has been listed in Best Lawyers' annual report since 1989.
Frankfurt is a graduate of Hunter College (B.A., 1957), University of Virginia (J.D., 1960), and New York University (L.L.M., 1962).
Additional Board Positions: Chair, Finance; Vice Chair, Investment
Mark Levenfus is a former managing partner of Marks Paneth LLP, a nationally recognized accounting and advisory firm with revenues exceeding $130M and a staff of approximately 600. In this capacity, he oversaw the firm's operations, managed business development efforts, and consulted on key accounts. He also played a major role in developing strategy, setting policy, and overseeing acquisitions. In his present role, managing partner emeritus, he is continuing to serve the firm in many of these capacities.
Under his leadership, the firm underwent a major transformation that included several significant milestones: built a nationally recognized brand and reputation for a firm whose heritage was the merger of two local New York firms; expanded its offerings beyond traditional accounting firm services to become an established provider of sophisticated advisory services; reorganized its organization model to align with the industries of its clients and developed compelling professional expertise in these industries; and increased firm revenue at an 8 percent compound annual growth rate.
Levenfus founded the firm’s media and entertainment business area and grew it into a major division of the firm, servicing prominent clients. Under his leadership, the firm has worked with nearly all segments of the industry, including internet and e-commerce; telecommunications; camera and lighting equipment rental and sales; direct mail; motion picture financing; motion picture production and distribution; theatrical production; television commercial production; editing and post-production; radio and television stations; book and magazine publishers; and advertising and public relations firms.
Since becoming president and CEO of NYRR in May 2015, Capiraso has committed the organization to making a bigger impact on youth, communities, and athletes of all abilities through running. To that end, NYRR has expanded its free programs in schools and neighborhood parks, serving more than 215,000 youth nationally and offering free weekly runs and walks in 10 parks across the five boroughs. The organization has also created new opportunities, like the first-ever Global Running Day and Million Kid Run.
Capiraso has continued to align NYRR with partners that help the organization drive innovation in the sport of running and provide runners the most technologically advanced experiences on and off the course. These include Tata Consultancy Services, NYRR’s premier partner and the title sponsor of the TCS New York City Marathon, and New Balance, a well-established brand that shares NYRR’s commitment to emerging technology and giving back to the community.
Capiraso, a runner and father of two, holds undergraduate and MBA degrees from Fairleigh Dickinson University and also studied film at New York University. Prior to NYRR, he accumulated 15 years of brand marketing, organizational strategy, and leadership experience at companies like National Football League, Major League Baseball, Cole Haan, and Calvin Klein. Capiraso has worked with NYRR since 2010. He became an executive vice president in 2012 and COO in 2014.
Peter Ciaccia has been a key player at New York Road Runners for the past 16 years. A native New Yorker, he is committed to growing and sustaining a vibrant, inclusive running community in NYC.
Ciaccia works to elevate the logistical integrity and overall race-day experience at NYRR events by coordinating with city, state, and federal officials. He holds certifications in emergency management (FEMA) and Command System (ICS) planning, and is a certified USAT Race Director and USATF official.
Ciaccia also leads recruitment of professional athletes in NYRR’s marquee races and directs NYRR Run Clean, an educational initiative that addresses the issue of doping in the sport. Ciaccia is especially committed to NYRR’s mission to build a community of young runners, and has established partnerships with city agencies to create more opportunities for youth races at NYRR events.
Ciaccia is a member of the Advisory Board for the National Center for Spectator Sports Security and was instrumental in developing the safety and security council for marathoning and road racing in the United States. Before joining NYRR, he held executive positions in the music industry, including roles at CBS Records, Inc. and Sony Music Entertainment. Ciaccia has a BA from the City University of New York and holds a School of Continuing and Professional Studies Certification in Sports, Entertainment & Events Marketing from New York University.
Board Position: Chair, Development and Philanthropy
Richard Byrne is the president of Benefit Street Partners, the credit‐investing arm of Providence Equity Partners. Prior to joining Benefit Street Partners in 2013, Byrne was the chief executive officer of Deutsche Bank Securities, Inc. He was also the global head of capital markets at Deutsche Bank and a member of the Global Banking Executive Committee and the Global Markets Executive Committee. Before joining Deutsche Bank, Byrne was global co‐head of the Leveraged Finance Group and the global head of credit research at Merrill Lynch. He was also a perennially top‐ranked credit analyst.
Byrne earned an M.B.A from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and a B.A. from Binghamton University. He is also on the Board of Directors of MFA Financial, Inc.
Board Position: Chair, Public Affairs
Raul Damas is vice president of corporate affairs & communications at Purdue Pharma LP, a privately held mid-cap specialty pharmaceutical company. He is responsible for the company’s corporate communications, government affairs, health policy, advocacy alliances, and business intelligence functions.
Previously, Damas spent seven years at Pfizer in various senior positions, including media relations, government relations, and policy development. He also served in the White House as associate director of the Office of Political Affairs, where he advised the president and senior administration officials on political and public policy matters. Prior to that, Damas was coalitions director at the Republican National Committee and co-founder of Latino Opinions, a bilingual polling and strategic communications firm.
Damas is a graduate of Villanova University, and holds a Master’s of Political Management from George Washington University and an MBA from Columbia University.
Damas resides in Manhattan with his wife, Rebecca, and daughter, Sarah.
Board Position: Chair, Audit
Doug Feltman is a CPA, a Certified Senior Advisor, and a Certified Alzheimer Caregiver. Other titles include: president of Home Helpers, the premier senior In-home care agency in Manhattan and Fort Lee, NJ; president of the Fort Lee Chamber of Commerce; board member and former president of the Sherman Chamber Ensemble; and member of Alzheimer’s Early Detection Alliance.
Feltman is a professional soccer referee, and has completed nine marathons and 25 triathlons. A member of the Central Park Track Club, he has been an active NYRR member since 1976.
Since 2001, Christopher Foster has served as an assistant district attorney for the New York County District Attorney’s office, prosecuting some of the most serious crimes in Manhattan. In addition to those prosecutions, Foster has supervised teams of handpicked prosecutors who build complex cases against violent street gangs.
Growing up in New York City, Foster participated in many different sports, but he primarily used running as a tool to obtain fitness. During his junior year in college, he was talked into joining the cross country team, which meant spending a summer running more than he ever thought possible. That foray into track workouts, long runs, and hill repeats forged an appreciation of the sport. Foster continues to participate in and enjoy the dedication, camaraderie, and sacrifice required to run NYRR events.
Being a board member has enabled Foster to combine his dedication to New York City and its communities with a sport that he has grown to love. He understands that the benefits of structure through sport are particularly helpful to young people, who can easily stray from productive habits.
Foster received his B.A. in history from Vassar College and his J.D. from Albany Law School.
Board Positions: Vice Chair, Audit; Vice Chair, Development and Philanthropy
Michael Gross has more than 25 years of experience in the private equity, distressed debt, and mezzanine lending businesses. He is the CEO, chairman, and a founder of Solar Capital Ltd. and Solar Senior Capital Ltd., two business development companies that provide primarily debt financing to sponsor-owned, U.S. middle market companies. Since founding Solar Capital in 2007 and Solar Senior Capital in 2011, Gross, as co-chair of the franchise’s investment committee, has overseen investments totaling more than $4.2 billion in over 160 companies to more than 140 financial sponsors. Between 2004 and 2006, Gross was the CEO and chairman of Apollo Investment Corporation, a business development company that he founded. In addition, Gross is a founder and former senior partner of Apollo Management, L.P., a leading private equity firm. During his tenure at Apollo Management, from 1990 to 2006, Gross was a member of the investment committee that was responsible for more than $13 billion invested in over 150 companies in the U.S. and Western Europe. From 1987 to 1990, Gross worked in mergers and acquisitions at Drexel Burnham Lambert.
Gross currently serves on the board of directors of Jarden Corporation and Global Ship Lease Inc. He also serves on the boards of the Mount Sinai Pediatrics Foundation and the Trinity School, and on the advisory boards of Kellogg Global and Ross BBA.
He earned a B.B.A. in accounting from the University of Michigan and an M.M. from the J.L. Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.
Board Position: Chair, Investment; Vice Chair, Finance
Thomas G. Labrecque Jr. is the co-founder of NextSteps Research, a consulting practice that he started in 2004. The firm focuses on helping investment professionals and management teams understand and manage competitive trajectories. Clients have ranged from Fortune 100 to middle-market companies, startups, and hedge, private equity, and venture funds. He is also the managing partner of NextSteps Capital, a lower-middle-market private equity firm that invests non-control growth capital into companies with product and revenue.
Before founding the NextSteps businesses, Labrecque was a managing director at the private equity firm Perseus LLC, a partnership with six investment funds and approximately $1.3 billion of capital. Joining the firm as it was expanding to its second fund, he led investments in private companies ranging from bridge financing to leveraged buyouts and restructuring transactions. Before Perseus, Labrecque was at Alvarez and Marsal, a turnarounds and workouts consulting firm. At A&M,There he assumed the roles of COO, CFO, and VP of business development for troubled companies in the telecommunications and manufacturing sectors.
Labrecque holds an M.B.A. from the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia and a B.S. in avionics engineering from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.
Board Position: Chair, Youth and Community Services
Nnenna Lynch is the director of development at The Georgetown Company, LLC, a privately held real estate investment and development firm in New York City. Prior to joining The Georgetown Company, Lynch served as senior policy advisor to New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg for six years. In that role, she led inter-agency teams to create and implement economic development policies, projects, and initiatives. Before serving in government, she was a partner in Urban Green Builders, LLC, a real estate development firm with a focus on transportation-based, mixed-use real estate projects in distressed neighborhoods throughout the New York City metro area, emphasizing eco-friendly design. Lynch has also worked as an analyst with Goldman Sachs and was a professional runner and spokesperson for the sporting goods corporation Fila. She is a board member of the Association of American Rhodes Scholars and a member of the Robin Hood Foundation's Housing Advisory Board.
Lynch received her B.A. in sociology from Villanova University in 1993. A standout runner at Villanova whose resume includes five NCAA and nine Big East titles as well as NCAA Woman of the Year and NCAA Top Eight awards, she was inducted into the University’s Athletics Hall of Fame in 2011. In 1993, she became the first of three Rhodes Scholars in Villanova history.
Lynch earned her master’s degree in social anthropology from Oxford University in 1996. She resides in Harlem with her husband and two children.
Claudia Malley is the National Geographic Society’s chief marketing and brand officer, heading brand marketing, membership, and market research. She was previously the National Geographic Society’s executive vice president, global corporate partnerships, overseeing all global corporate partnerships, sponsorships, and global media activities. She joined National Geographic in 2003 as associate publisher of National Geographic magazine. She became vice president and U.S. publisher of National Geographic magazine in 2004 and executive vice president and worldwide publisher in 2010.
Malley has transformed the National Geographic Society’s sales and marketing approach to a brand-first focus, allowing more accountability for clients while also enabling the development of tremendous business value and breakthrough custom marketing solutions that harness the depth of assets and touchpoints offered by National Geographic.
Malley has more than 25 years of experience in media brand management, sales, and marketing, working across media disciplines including print, television, and digital. She began her career at WNET/PBS NY, moved to Ziff-Davis and then to Rodale, where she was publisher of Runner’s World magazine from 1999 to 2003.
An avid runner, Malley has completed five marathons and won many awards on the road. Running continues to fuel her energy daily.
A New York native, Malley received her Bachelor’s degree in psychology from the University of Delaware. She lives in Bronxville, NY, and Sharon, CT, with her husband and son.
Adam Manus has been active with NYRR for more than two decades, first as a member, then serving on the board of directors with a focus on the organization's youth services.
Manus graduated from Hamilton College with a B.A. in Economics and earned an M.B.A. at New York University's Stern School of Business. He is the executive vice president of Holborn Corporation, a private reinsurance intermediary with principal offices in Lower Manhattan.
Nnamdi Okike is a venture capitalist and angel investor with a track record of investing in leading software and internet companies. Nnamdi is co-founder and general partner of 645 Ventures, a seed to Series A venture capital firm headquartered in New York. Nnamdi oversees the fund’s investment strategy and works with portfolio companies ALICE, LeagueApps, Rifiniti, Poshly, and Keaton Row.
Nnamdi previously worked as a private equity investor for Kayne Anderson Private Investors, as a business development officer at Verne Global, and as a consultant for Boston Consulting Group.
Nnamdi received his B.A. with cum laude honors, J.D. with cum laude honors, and M.B.A. with second-year honors from Harvard University, where he was a five-time letterman in track and field.
Board Position: Chair, Human Resources and Compensation
Martin Oppenheimer is an optional service partner of Proskauer Rose LLP, and a former chair of the firm’s labor & employment law department. He has a national reputation for representing employers in labor relations matters.
As spokesman in labor negotiations, attorney in arbitration and administrative proceedings, and counselor on all aspects of personnel and labor problems, he has represented, among his commercial clients, Time Warner, United Parcel Service, Amerada Hess, Coca-Cola Enterprises, and many of the leading United States shipping companies.
In addition to his work in the industrial and commercial sectors, Oppenheimer has represented a wide range of not-for-profit organizations, including Columbia University, Yale University, and Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts.
Oppenheimer is actively engaged in the New York City philanthropic community. He served as chair of the board of City Center of Music and Drama, Inc., and is a director emeritus of the Board of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and a member of the boards of the 92nd Street Y, New York City Opera, and The Emelin Theatre, as well as a member of the advisory board of the Mailman School of Public Health at Columbia University.
Oppenheimer is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania and Yale Law School, and was a Fulbright Scholar at Goethe University in Frankfurt.
Former JPMorgan Chase executive Steve Pamon is currently the CEO of Beyoncé’s management company, Parkwood Entertainment. In the time he has held the position, he has made history with his involvement in the Super Bowl 50 Halftime Show, the launch of the athleisure line Ivy Park, the groundbreaking release of Beyonce’s Lemonade film/album, and the commencement of The Formation World Tour.
Prior to joining Parkwood Entertainment, Pamon was the head of sports and entertainment marketing for JPMorgan Chase, where he led a team responsible for the ongoing marketing of the Global JPMC sponsorship portfolio.
Pamon’s team was also the primary sponsor behind many of the world’s most significant entertainment venues and productions, including Radio City Music Hall, The Rockettes, Chicago Theater, Los Angeles Forum, Beyoncé and Jay Z’s On the Run Tour, and The Concert for Valor, among others.
Before joining JPMC, Pamon was the vice president of strategy and new business development for the National Football League. He also served as the senior vice president and general manager of HBO's digital distribution and business development team.
Pamon holds an M.B.A. from Stanford University Graduate School of Business and a B.A. in business administration (concentration in finance) from Morehouse College in Atlanta, GA.
John Roberts is an adviser and consultant to the tech industry. He has spent 10 years in venture capital, working primarily on clean tech and data science startups, and has been the president of Central Park Track Club since 2008.
He was the first Brooklyn and ninth American finisher in the 2011 New York City Marathon but now gets winded chasing after his two young boys.
Board Position: Vice Chair, Human Resources and Compensation
Anne Beane Rudman is a solo practitioner with a criminal defense practice. Previously, she was an assistant district attorney and the chief of the Asset Forfeiture Unit with the New York County District Attorney’s office for 25 years. Rudman is chairman of the board and special counsel for Lawyers Without Borders and has been involved with trial advocacy training programs in Ghana, Liberia, Kenya, and Uganda. She also serves on the board of directors of the John Jay College of Criminal Justice. She has run the New York City Marathon nine times, with a personal best of 3:37.
Cidra M. Sebastien is the Associate Executive Director at The Brotherhood/Sister Sol, a Harlem-based organization that serves 1,000 youth across New York City.
Cidra graduated from Hampton University with a B.A. in English Arts, and from New York University’s Gallatin School with an M.A., completing her thesis on the connections between education, social justice, and the arts.
In 2005, Cidra was a co-awardee of the Ford Foundation Leadership for a Changing World Award and co-authored “Taking Back the Work: A Cooperative Inquiry into the Work of Leaders of Color in Movement-Building Organizations.” She traveled to Brazil and the UK in 2008 and 2009 to discuss issues of leadership and race in the U.S. She is a Ford Public Voices Fellow of The OpEd Project. She was appointed to the New York City Council’s Young Women’s Initiative as a Steer Committee member and Co-Chair of the Education Committee. Cidra is an avid runner and lives with her family in Brooklyn.