Tender Steps of New York, Inc. is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization founded in 2014 by Ms. Evelyn Bautista-Miller, LMSW, SDA.
Our mission is to serve families in Rockland County and Greater New York through case management, advocacy and quality bilingual social work in an effort to bridge language barriers within communities and help each child reach its potential.
FOUNDER & PRESIDENT
Evelyn has over 21 years of professional experience as a Bilingual Certified Licensed Social Worker (LMSW) in education, attained her Certified Bilingual School District Administrator’s (SDA) license, founded Tender Steps of New York, Inc., (TSONY), and is an adjunct professor at Colombia University’s School of Social Work. Evelyn encompasses the uncompromising belief that all students can succeed academically and emotionally when afforded a positive learning atmosphere. Connecting with the communities and families is pivotal to assisting students to be successful.
Evelyn earned both a Bachelor and Master’s Degree in Social Work from the State University of New York at Albany, the Rockefeller School of Social Welfare. She attained her Educational Administration license at the Leadership Academy at (MCLA) Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts. In 2017, Evelyn was invited as an Adjunct Professor at the Columbia University School of Social Work teaching “Social Work in the Bilingual Context: Multicultural Perspective.” She also works in District 4 on the IEP (Individualized Education Program) Team within the NYC Department of Education.
Evelyn is certified by the Department of Mental Health for skill building, intensive in-home and respite services. She also possesses certification with the New York State Department of Health for Group Development Intervention & Family/Caregiver Support Groups for the Early Intervention Program. Evelyn’s areas of professional experience include the child welfare system, the public education system and alternative high schools, early intervention services and drug treatment programs.
Evelyn is a charter member of the Zeta Phi Beta Sorority, Inc. the Tau Gamma Zeta Chapter in Rockland County. She was also part of the NPHC (National Pan Hellenic Council) chartering process within Rockland County. She was also part of the Task Force with the District Attorney Office and the Clarkstown Police Department. She also serves as a board member at the Martin Luther King Multi-Purpose Center, located in Rockland County.
Evelyn is Founder & President of Tender Steps of New York, Inc. (TSONY). This organization helps ameliorate social conditions-including, but not limited to, inequities in education, intimate partner violence, challenges due to language barriers, drug addiction and citizenship status concerns, which negatively impact the livelihood and well-being of individuals, families and communities. TSONY, Inc. offers a range of quality, bilingual social services to the community, including, but not limited to, advocacy, case management services and academic, and wellness workshops within schools, surrounding shelters and overall community. TSONY's mission is to better serve families within the Rockland County area and the five boroughs of New York City. We continue to provide parenting workshops to parents within the East Ramapo School District and also within two local shelters (Good Counsel Homes & Pomona Family Shelter). We also provide case management with cases within the school districts; regarding special education services and options.
Awards and Accomplishments
• An “Unsung Hero” and “William Darden Education Award” recipient by the NAACP Spring Valley Chapter.
• Honored by the Town of Ramapo honored me as an “Outstanding Citizen”.
• Honored by The County Legislature Office in Rockland County for “Women’s History Month” last year for all of my service within the community (Which entailed the work that I do within schools and community organizations).
• Honored by EPIC (Every Person Influences Children) for their 25th Anniversary, the Rockland County Chapter
• Honored as an “Ambassador” at the Dominican Parade which was held in Haverstraw August 2018.
• Honored by St. Charles AME Zion Church with the “Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.” Award.
• Recipient of the “40 Under 40 Rising Star” by the New York State Hispanic Coalition, Inc.
• Recipient of the “40 Under Forty” by REDC- Rockland Education Development Corporation.
Karen is a proud U.S. citizen, born in Limon, Costa Rica, Karen is the youngest of ten children, which allowed her to build the social skills she possesses and uses today. After seventeen years, Karen decided to leave her Wall Street life behind to become fully dedicated to making her children’s educational experience in the East Ramapo School District the best. In 1991, Karen moved with her husband Camille, to Rockland County. Together they have two boys, Brandon and Justin. Her husband and her children are very understanding of her hectic and busy schedule. They continue to support and cheer her on. Karen is very appreciative of her family, friends, and neighbors for their help and encouragement through the years. She became involved in the Hempstead PTA. Her first position was that of Council delegate and later became the Council delegate for Colton Intermediate School.
Karen is very fortunate to have the love and support of her family, while being a community activist. The many activities that she is involved in include: board member of Hillcrest Neighborhood Association, Rockland County Civilian Police Academy, Distinguish Service Award, East Ramapo PTSA, Superintendent’s Student Circle Advisor, Superintendent’s Bond Committee Member, NAACP, Central Hudson District Scholarship chairperson, Big Sisters of New York, American Heart Association, March of Dimes, Rockland Adoption and Foster Parent Associations, parent members on the district Shared Decision-Making Team, and was a parent member on the Colton Leadership Committee. Karen is an indestructible pillar in the community. She devotes all her time, love and energy in everything she does.
DR. AUDREY MARIE BAKER
MEMBER AT LARGE
Audrey pursued a Bachelor of Arts in Linguistics with a minor in Chinese at CUNY Queens College. She completed a Master’s of Science in Education Administration and Supervision from Pace University. Audrey also attended the Principal’s Center at Harvard University Graduate School of Education Summer Institute and also Critical Issues of Urban Education. Amongst her other credentials, she holds sixteen (16) licenses, permanent state certification (SAS and SDA) and has been certified as a New York State Impartial Hearing Officer. As a long-term educator with extensive experience spanning over 35 years, Audrey has had the privilege of serving in general, bilingual, special needs, and special education environments, from grades P-12. Audrey served as a Principal of a newly themed middle school, School for Theater, Arts and Research (STAR) Academy in the Hunts Point area. Under her leadership, in addition to the middle schools program, three (3) alternative high school programs (including recently released incarcerated student from the Spofford Juvenile Detention Center), a city wide (District 75) special education junior high school program, and a Pre-K program, and a community-based organization, Pathways for Youth, all co-existed peacefully in her building.
Audrey retired in 2003 from the NYC Department of Education. Audrey served as an instructor at City University and is an educational consultant with a few educationally driven companies. In 2014, Audrey pursued the open seat for the At Large position on the New York State Board of Regents. She was endorsed by the NYS Allies for Public Education, a cadre of 45 member organizations throughout the state. Although she did not win, she remains responsive to community needs and continues to proactively connect with teachers, educational leaders, parents and students for the betterment of our educational system at all levels throughout our state. Audrey earned a Doctor of Education (Ed.D) degree from the CSA/CITE/Sage Colleges Doctoral Program in 2017. She also received an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters (DHL) in 2016 from St. Martin’s College and Seminary in Wisconsin. She is a member of the Association of Black Educators of New York, Inc. (ABENY, INC.), the New York City Middle School Principal’s Association, New York Academy of Public Education (NYAPE), the 79th Police Precinct Community Council, Member of the Delta Kappa, Pace University, Delta Kappa Gamma International Society for Key Women Educators and Cornerstone Baptist Church. Audrey has been recognized and honored for her accomplishments as an educator and community activist. One of her most significant awards was being a recipient of a Congregational Record Award in Education and Community Service honoring Women Who Dare To Be Different from the Honorable Congressman Edolphus Towns. Audrey has also been recognized for her affiliation with organizations that include The Food Pantry, delivering food to the elderly. Audrey believes that her responsibility is to give back to the public school system, she quietly contributes to a high level of commitment and humanity in helping others. She values the viewpoint of others and has sought to be a role model with a moral high ground and an ethical framework. Audrey knows that her mission on earth is not to be served, but to serve.
ALEXANDRA K MANIGO
Alexandra was born and raised in Rockland County, N.Y. where she attended the local public schools and continued her studies at Rockland Community College. She is currently pursuing her Bachelor in Human Services at the Southern New Hampshire University; with a concentration in Child and Family Services. Advocating for children has become a passion of hers and this has motivated her to further her education. She desires to continue to make a significant impact within her community; to help in the social and emotional areas within a child’s life.
Alexandra has worked in retail as a human resources manager at Babies R Us for over five years. She has also worked as a surveyor in construction Local 15B. She is currently working as a schedule coordinator for nurses. Over the past year, Alexandra was fortunate enough to have worked closely with “Strong East Ramapo” when she was running as a candidate for the East Ramapo School Board. During that time, she educated families and school parents on their rights and the importance of becoming more involved within their local school district. Although she did not win, she remains responsive to the community needs and continues to proactively connect with families and continues to be involved within her local school district. As a parent of a 6 year old, she continues to be active in exercising her parental rights within her child’s local school district; as she continues to see a need for advocacy.
Kim Foskew and her involvement in the East Ramapo School District began in September of 1996 upon her daughter starting Kindergarten at Summit Park Elementary School. Kim jumped in quickly as she was class Mom, chaired many committees, and became the Girl Scout Leader of Troop 40500, who stayed together as a troop until graduation in 2009. She helped the troop/girls earn their Silver and Gold Awards, the highest awards in Girl Scouting. Kim was also active in the Boy Scouts and was a Den Mother and Chairperson to the Council.
Kim’s primary focus has always been all the children of East Ramapo and over the years has volunteered much of her free time participating in many programs which benefit the children including mentoring in the Mentor Program at Summit Park, Junior Achievement at both Summit Park and Hillcrest. Kim helped out with the Pomona Girls Softball team, the East Ramapo Girls Swimming and Diving Team, the East Ramapo Marching Band and has always been one of East Ramapo’s biggest cheerleaders and advocates.
From 1996 – 2011, Kim’s involvement in the PTA continued to grow as she went onto become the PTA President of Summit Park, Hillcrest, and Ramapo High School. Kim was also the PTA Council President from 2009-2011. During her tenure with the PTA Kim was a constant voice for all children and active at Board meetings. She frequently spoke of the inequities that have happened and continue to happen in our district and has proven to the past and present Superintendents, as well as the board that she will not be silenced until there is equity for all children in East Ramapo.
Although her two children have since graduated (2009 and 2011), Kim has remained dedicated to East Ramapo and has continued her advocacy by running for school board and through her involvement with the NAACP, of which she is a member of the Education Committee, as well as a Board Member to the Spring Valley Branch and was the recipient of the William “Bill” Darden Education Award in 2016. Kim currently sits on the Superintendents Circle where community members meet monthly with Dr Wortham to speak openly and honestly about the issues facing East Ramapo. She has met with Legislators, State monitors and traveled to Albany with StrongEastRamapo and others on behalf of the East Ramapo School District as well as lending her voice whenever needed.
Kim proudly stands with all the advocates of East Ramapo as we continue our mission of ensuring an equitable education for all of our children.
Kim lives in New City with her husband, Syd, and they have two children, Samantha and Vincent. Both proud Ramapo High School graduates.