Anat Gerstein, Founder and President, started her eponymously named firm in 2010 after years of seeing first-hand the support nonprofits need to effectively tell their story. Prior to starting the business, Anat served as chief of staff and press secretary to New York City Public Advocate Betsy Gotbaum; provided public relations services to top healthcare companies, including Eli Lilly and Cigna; developed effective communications materials for social service and other non-profits; and promoted political candidates at the state and local level. She began her career nearly 25 years ago in the advertising sector, working on consumer brands such as Vicks and Crest.
Anat is a graduate of New York University’s Stern School of Business and a Sabra (Israeli native). Anat served on The New York Community Trust Nonprofit Excellence Awards Selection Committee from 2013 to 2018.
Jeff Simmons, Executive Vice President, has more than three decades of experience in private and public sector communications, media, and journalism. Well-networked in New York City, Jeff currently hosts two shows on politics and policy on WBAI 99.5 FM radio: Driving Forces on Thursdays at 5:00 PM and City Watch on Sundays at 10:00 AM. He also hosts the It’s in Queens podcast for the Queens Economic Development Corporation.
Accomplished at leading long- and short-term communication initiatives, Jeff has designed strategic public relations and constituent outreach campaigns, tackled crisis communications, and overseen free and paid media campaigns.
Jeff previously served as senior vice president for communications at the Alliance for Downtown New York, the country’s largest Business Improvement District, where he spearheaded the organization’s public relations and communications strategy to amplify the region’s recovery a decade after the September 11th attacks. Prior to that, he ran communications for New York City Comptroller William C. Thompson, Jr., and served as campaign advisor to Thompson in 2009 and as his reelection campaign manager in 2005.
A born and bred journalist, Jeff spent 17 years as a reporter, working at The (Bergen) Record of Hackensack, New York Post, New York Daily News, and New York 1 News. A New Yorker for nearly two decades, Jeff lives with his partner and two Brussels Griffons in Queens. You can follow him on Twitter and Instagram at @JackHites.
Erin Clarke, Senior Account Executive, joined the anat. team in 2020 after working as a television news reporter for 12 years. Erin previously worked at the NBC affiliate in Pittsburgh, as the Bronx reporter at NY1, and at other stations throughout New York State. Erin is a graduate of the University of Pittsburgh, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in English Writing, and Syracuse University, where she earned a master’s degree in Broadcast Journalism. She lives in Brooklyn.
Jaime Williams, Senior Account Executive, joined the anat. team in 2015. Previously, she was a reporter at The Bronx Times, covering local news in education, government, business, and nonprofits. She is currently a member of The New York Community Trust Nonprofit Excellence Awards Selection Committee. Jaime is a graduate of the University of Missouri, where she earned a Bachelor of Journalism degree studying print and digital news. She lives in Queens.
Jake Oliver, Vice President, joined anat. in 2018, after working for over three years at The TASC Group, where he managed media relations and crisis communications campaigns for clients in the nonprofit, labor, financial services, and health care fields. Prior to that, he worked in New York City politics and government, where he served as chief of staff to a member of the New York City Council and as a communications aide on a number of successful campaigns that elected candidates for city, state, and federal offices.
Jake received his bachelor’s degree from Drew University and his master’s degree in urban policy analysis and management from The New School. He is a native New Yorker, and lives with his wife in Brooklyn.
Jamaal Fisher, Account Associate, joined the anat. team in 2021. He previously interned at Dini von Mueffling Communications and The Lead PR. Jamaal graduated from the University at Albany SUNY with a bachelor’s degree in journalism and a minor in English and film studies. A born and bred New Yorker, he lives in New York City
Joanna Gallai, Senior Account Executive, began her career at Shandwick Public Affairs (now Weber Shandwick) in Washington, D.C. where she worked on the team that supported the U.S. government and a client in a case at the World Trade Organization. She later moved to the New York office where she staffed and managed a variety of consumer goods and food accounts, including Ferrero USA, which makes Nutella, and Eastman Kodak Company. When she left full-time paid work to stay home with her children, she continued freelancing and spent seven years as the vice president of communications for PennNYC, the University of Pennsylvania’s Alumni Association. At PennNYC, she created content for and launched the organization’s website and crafted all communications materials. Joanna joined anat. part-time in 2013, fulfilling a career goal of working with nonprofits exclusively. In her current role, she especially enjoys finding engaging, moving, and surprising client stories that attract press coverage and ultimately move people to take action—whether it is purchasing an exhibition ticket, making a donation, or tweeting in support of a cause. She is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania where she earned a bachelor’s degree in communications and art history. She lives in New York City with her family.
Karin Venegas, Senior Account Executive, has been with the anat. team since 2019 and enjoys collaborating with her clients on stories and strategies that advance organizational goals. Prior to joining the firm, she worked in the nonprofit sector for 15 years, most recently as Director of Development & Communications at Exploring the Arts, an arts education nonprofit founded by legendary singer Tony Bennett. There, she led the organization’s external communications strategy and effectively fundraised to sustain programmatic expansion from 14 to 46 schools. Karin’s professional career began as a child actor in New York City’s off-off Broadway theatres, and she brings a lifelong passion for storytelling to her work. Her award-winning documentary film, “Unafraid,” is distributed by Women Make Movies and was inspired by her volunteer experience as a certified Victims Advocate, providing crisis counseling to survivors of sexual assault and domestic violence in the emergency departments of Manhattan’s Mount Sinai West and St. Luke’s hospitals. She is a graduate of Mount Holyoke College and a native New Yorker raised in upper Manhattan. She now lives with her husband and daughter in Astoria.
Marina Hansen, Account Associate, joined anat. in 2021. Prior to joining the team, Marina interned for B/HI, an entertainment-oriented public relations firm. She has also worked as a writing intern with media outlets Indie Band Guru and The Celebrity Cafe. She graduated from Pace University in 2021, with a bachelors degree in communications and a minor in art. At Pace University, Marina worked with different organizations through the Women’s Leadership Initiative which advocated for diversity, inclusion and accessibility across campus. Her advocacy work in university and love for the arts is what inspired her to work with non-profits. A native Texan and a New Yorker since 2017, she currently lives in Brooklyn.
Nate Svogun, Account Executive, joined the anat. team in 2019. He previously worked as a writer and web content producer for Fordham University School of Law’s marketing and communications department, writing stories for Fordham Law’s online newsroom and alumni magazine. Nate has interned at Fordham University Press, the oldest Catholic university press in the country, and worked as a writer and editor for several student-run publications at Providence College, his alma mater. He also has several years of experience working as a writing tutor. Nate holds a bachelor’s degree in English from Providence College and a master’s degree in English from Fordham University, where his research interests included Milton, Shakespeare, and contemporary science fiction. A New Yorker since 2016, Nate currently lives in the East Village.
Rajath Vikram, Senior Account Executive, joined the anat. team in 2021. Prior to coming aboard, Rajath spent 17 years in New York City broadcast journalism starting at 1010 WINS Radio in 2004, WPIX-11 in 2005 and NY1 from 2007-2021 culminating in a news management role. Leading the assignment desk, Rajath’s teams had their hands in all stories big and small ranging from the Miracle on the Hudson, Hurricane Sandy and the global movement for police reform to more individualized stories of NYCHA tenants, hate crime victims and cultural figures experiencing what the world threw their way. Rajath graduated from Sarah Lawrence College and currently resides in Brooklyn.
Sandra Tharas, Account Associate, began her public relations career working for the German National Tourist Office in New York, showing U.S. travel journalists her home country. Sandra graduated in 1999 with a master’s degree in social sciences from Friedrich-Alexander University in Nuremberg, Germany and moved to the United States a year later. After her son was born in 2005, Sandra decided to stay home with him and work part time positions as an administrative, public relations, and marketing assistant. She lives in Queens with her family.
Sophie Crumpacker, Senior Account Executive, joined anat. in 2017. Her clients include advocacy, health, and social service nonprofits. Prior to joining the firm, she worked in communications and development at Partnership with Children, a nonprofit that provides counseling services to New York City public school students. She also interned at the Huntington Disease Society of America and worked as a research assistant in a psychology lab. Sophie graduated from Washington University in St. Louis, where she earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology and public health. She lives in Portland, Oregon.
Sydney Brown, Digital Media Manager, joined the anat. team in 2020 as an Account Associate. A Pittsburgh native, she previously interned at Elisco’s Creative Café and Pittsburgh Ballet Theatre. Sydney graduated in 2019 from the Ohio State University with a bachelor’s degree in communications and French. In spring 2018, she studied French at the Cours de Civilisation Française de La Sorbonne in Paris. While at Ohio State, she served with two student organizations—Buckeyethon and She’s the First—which inspired her to pursue a career working with nonprofits. She lives in Astoria, Queens.
Zac Roy, Vice President, has more than 15 years of experience in public relations and communications. Since joining anat. in 2011, Zac has developed and executed communications strategies for wide variety of New York City nonprofits, including organizations that provide social services, education, community development, and small business support.
Previously, Zac was a part of the corporate communications team at Time Inc., the world’s largest magazine publisher, where he specialized in media relations, corporate branding, social media, speechwriting, and internal communications. He began his career as a journalist, covering communities in Lower Manhattan for The Villager and Downtown Express newspapers.
Zac is a graduate of New York University, earning bachelor’s degrees in Journalism and History, with a concentration in African Studies. He has also done graduate work in Strategic Communications at Columbia University. A native of St. Louis, Missouri, and a New Yorker since 2000, he lives with his wife and son in Westchester County.
Anat Gerstein, Inc. is a communications firm that supports a broad array of nonprofits in their work to benefit society. We help local and national nonprofits tell their stories and communicate with key audiences: donors and funders, elected officials, community members, and the general public. Our nonprofit clients assist people experiencing poverty, homelessness and mental health concerns; they provide education, arts programming, advocacy and civic engagement; and they support local businesses and communities. A full list of available positions is available here.