The New York University College of Arts & Science Dean’s Advisory Council (DAC) consists of alumni, parents, and friends selected to provide input and guidance for the College of Arts & Science at New York University. The DAC supports the Dean of the College in addressing the complex challenges of higher education that CAS students face today; garnering the resources needed for the College to improve its excellence and diversity; and setting the strategic priorities for the College’s future success. Commitment by DAC members can be expressed in a number of ways including volunteer participation and philanthropy.
Dean’s Advisory Council
NICOLE MEYER CO-CHAIR
Nicole attended the College of Arts & Science and earned a B.A. degree in Architecture and Urban Design with a double minor in Studio Art and Art History. Upon graduation, she was elected to Phi Beta Kappa and received the NYU Faculty Award for Architecture and Urban Design. Nicole received her master’s in Urban Planning from NYU's Robert F. Wagner School of Public Service. Meyer is Principal in her family’s business, Kushner, where she focuses on management and development of residential and commercial portfolios.
Rafael Polanco CO-CHAIR
Rafael Polanco is a Managing Director at Evercore, a leading global independent investment bank, in the firm's mergers and acquisitions practice. Currently, Rafael focuses most of his time on advising clients in the alternative asset management industry. Prior to joining Evercore, Rafael worked in the investment banking division at Credit Suisse First Boston, focusing on mergers and acquisitions in the technology industry. Rafael received a B.S. in Biology and a B.E. in Environmental Engineering from the Dual Degree Program in Science and Engineering at CAS with Stevens Institute of Technology. Rafael is a native New Yorker; raised in Queens, he currently lives in the East Village.
Steven Beckman graduated from the College of Arts and Science with a BA in History and minor concentrations in Economics and Cinema Studies. Beckman manages Content Partnerships at YouTube, where he focuses on creator representation and film acquisitions.
Marc H. Bell is co-founder of Terran Orbital. Terran Orbital is the most advanced manufacturer of small satellites in the world. He is also the co-founder of Armour Residential REIT and a two-time Tony Award-winning Broadway producer for Jersey Boys (Best Musical) and August Osage County (Best Play). In addition to the NYU College of Arts and Science Dean’s Advisory Council, he is a member of the NYU Board of Trustees, the NYU Langone Health Board of Overseers, the NYU Stern Center for Real Estate Finance Research Advisory Board, and the NYU School of Professional Studies Schack Institute of Real Estate Advisory Board. Marc is also chairman of the Boca Raton Police Foundation and serves on the board of SOS Children’s Villages Florida.
Howard Fluhr is Chairman Emeritus of The Segal Group, having previously served as President and CEO (1994 – 2005) and Chairman (2006 - 2016). He consults on topics including total compensation, human resource strategies, employee benefits and board governance and serves on several public policy boards. Howard earned an NYU bachelor's degree cum laude in mathematics and philosophy. He and his wife Margaret are devoted patrons of many arts organizations. Margaret, having been in the doctoral program, served on the School of Social Work DAC.
Jeffrey S. Gould (CAS '79) graduated from the NYU College of Arts & Science in 1979 at age 19. After obtaining his Juris Doctorate, he joined his family business, Gould Publications/GouldLaw, founded by his parents, Norman (1927-2018) and Jeanette. That business was sold to Lexis/Nexis in 2004. As President of Gould Training Center, he continues to serve the law enforcement community. Gould also serves as the Founder and President of Portable, Inc; a company that up cycles shipping containers into affordable housing. Gould serves on several philanthropic boards and with his family, has established many College Academic Scholarships. Gould is a member of the NYUAA Board, the NYU CAS Dean’s Advisory Board, the NYU College of Global Public Health Board and is a Trustee on the NYU Board of Trustees. In 2010, Jeffrey and his wife, Lenore, established The 3E Fund to support Expression, the Environment and Education.
James Hahn is President of Asia Alpha (www.AsiaAlpha.com), a NY based single Family Office specializing in Alternative Asset Fund of Funds. James began on Wall Street as a UBS Corporate Intern in 1986, and in 1992, he managed one of Asia’s first hedge funds based in Hong Kong. James is a Limited Partner investor in alternative asset funds including Hedge, Global Distressed Debt, Real Estate, and Venture Capital (AI, Life Science & Medical Devices, Big Data, Cybersecurity, Semiconductor, and Fintech.
After graduating from NYU’s Washington Square College with a B.A. in English, Rikki migrated to Wall Street. After working at several firms, she left finance and raised three children, two of whom are also NYU graduates. She is involved with a number of charitable organizations and serves on the board of the New York Center for Law and Justice.
Kerri B. Levine
A CAS graduate, Kerri Berson Levine is a Vice President at The Fidelco Realty Group and a dedicated philanthropist. Kerri focuses on a wide-range of properties in urban areas throughout the tri-state area. While partaking in Fidelco's success developing distinct destinations in overlooked inner-city neighborhoods, Kerri spearheads the business’s commercial leasing (securing tenants such as Chipotle, Krauszers, FastSigns, Redd's Beirgarten, PureBarre, Leadership Newark, and more), restaurant marketing, and media initiatives.
Ariel Ostad is a board certified Dermatologist and Dermatologic Surgeon as well as a Fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology. He graduated magna cum laude from Washington Square College with a B.A. and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. In 1991, he received his M.D. from the NYU School of Medicine. After an internship at Harvard Medical School and completing his residency in Dermatology at NYU Medical Center in 1995, Dr. Ostad completed a fellowship in Mohs micrographic surgery, laser and dermatologic surgery at UCLA and is a Clinical Assistant Professor in the Department of Dermatology at NYU Medical Center.
Kevin Prussia, a partner at WilmerHale in Boston, Massachusetts, is an experienced litigator and trial lawyer with experience across every aspect of trial and appellate practice, including bench and jury federal trials, International Trade Commission investigations, Patent Trial and Appeal Board proceedings, and appeals to the United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit and the Supreme Judicial Court of Massachusetts. Mr. Prussia serves as the President of the Board of Directors for the ACLU of Massachusetts. From 2008 to 2010, Mr. Prussia was on the part-time faculty at Boston University School of Law, where he taught a seminar in the Legal Writing Program. Prior to attending law school, Mr. Prussia was an assistant director of admissions for New York University's Office of Undergraduate Admissions.
Mamak Shahbazi is the Principal, Director, and Global Head of Marketing and Client Service at Colchester Global Investors. Mamak began her career in the field of investments in 1983. Her previous position was Director, Institutional Marketing at the hedge fund firm, Zweig-DiMenna Associates. She spent more than eight years at Delaware International Advisors as Head of Global Bond Marketing and more than eight years at CS First Boston as Vice President, Fixed Income Investments.
Karen Silvera was born in New York City but raised in Hong Kong and Sao Paulo, Brazil, graduating from NYU’s Washington Square College with a B.A. in Journalism. After college, Karen worked as an associate editor in the corporate communications department of Marsh and McLennan and wrote for “Commercial Property News,” a Gralla publication. Karen has been active in a number of not-for-profit organizations including Chairing the Board of Trustees of Dwight-Englewood School; most recently, she worked full-time leading all the School’s development efforts, including a $30 million capital campaign.