Our team members are made up of passionate & committed individuals.

They contribute their time, talents and resources to help us achieve our mission and goals.

OUR BOARD


Ian Sandler

CO-CEO, Riley's Way Foundation +

Ian Sandler, Riley’s father, co-founded Riley's Way Foundation with his wife Mackenzie to honor their most magical daughter and to carry Riley’s spirit and love of life forward. Ian joined Insight venture partners in 2016 where he is a Managing Director and Insight's Chief Operating Officer. Ian was a board member of the Children’s Cardiomyopathy Foundation for seven years with a focus on event planning and fundraising.

Ian’s goal is to ensure that the Foundation embodies Riley, who was the truest of friends and loved helping people. Ian serves as the main spokesperson for Riley’s Foundation. He is actively involved in all facets of RSMF with a specific focus on the strategic direction and fundraising efforts. His hope is that Riley’s Foundation will grow the way Riley would have and make a lasting impact on the world.




Mackenzie Sandler

CO-CEO, Riley’s Way Foundation +

Mackenzie co-founded the Riley's Way Foundation in honor of Riley, her daughter and best friend. As the person who knows Riley best, Mackenzie intends to make sure the Foundation stays true to the essence of who Riley was: a kind, compassionate and truly special friend to all who were lucky enough to know her. She has no doubt that Riley would have been immensely proud of the work that is being done in her name.

Mackenzie previously worked as a bankruptcy attorney.




Amy Bersh

DIRECTOR & SECRETARY, Riley's Way Foundation +

Amy Feinsilver Bersh, a close friend of Mackenzie and Ian Sandler, is a former intellectual property attorney. As a mother of two, Amy values the importance of teaching your children to be thoughtful and kind.

Amy is devoted to developing programming that promotes Riley’s qualities by emphasizing the values of kindness and empathy. Amy works on the day-to-day tasks involved in developing and growing the foundation. She works with a subdivision of the board and consultants to develop RWF’s mission. She assists with events, fundraising and communications with board members and the public.




Brian Potash

DIRECTOR & TREASURER,
Riley's Way Foundation +

Brian graduated from the University of Michigan Business School with a Bachelor of Business Administration in 1996. He has spent his career in financial services, most meaningfully between 2000-2011 as a founding Partner and CFO at Intrade LLC, a proprietary trading firm located in New York City.

Since closing Intrade in 2011, Brian has focused his energies primarily on volunteer work. In addition to his responsibilities as treasurer of Riley's Way Foundation, Brian also volunteers his time as a math teacher for Literacy Partners, Inc., a financial literacy teacher for Operation Hope Inc., and as a volunteer for Helping Hands for the Disabled of NYC. Brian also serves on the Board of Directors of Hudson National Golf Club, in Croton On Hudson, NY.

Brian and Ian have been the closest of personal friends for the past 25+ years. Brian lives in Purchase, NY with his wife Robin and two daughters, Reese and Casey.



Terry Kaplan

DIRECTOR & CHIEF CREATIVE OFFICER, Riley's Way Foundation +

Terry Kaplan is Riley's grandmother. She serves as a creative consultant and photographer to the Foundation and is the driving force behind Miami events. Terry hopes to see RSMF inspire many children to be kind, confident, nonjudgmental and mindful of the people around them with long lasting results. Terry is currently an artist and president of Terry Tiles.



David Berg

GENERAL COUNSEL Riley's Way Foundation +

David heads his own boutique law firm in Manhattan. David and his wife Maggie are close family friends with Ian and Mackenzie and their eldest son was Riley's nursery school classmate.

David's goal is for RSMF to bestow upon children the opportunity to enjoy the same level of unconditional friendship, kindness and warmth that Riley brought into the lives of each person she encountered.



Paul Burke

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Paul Burke is honored to contribute to a very special foundation for an even more special member of the Nightingale community. Riley was the quintessential Nightingale girl, an inquisitive and imaginative student who was a friend to all. Riley’s Foundation lives out the promise that a particularly magical Lower School represented for all of us who remain. To that end, every Nightingale girl, with Paul as their representative, is privileged to be a part of a very real and ambitious effort to make the world more reflective of Riley’s heart and mind.



Jay Canell & Neil Canell

DIRECTORS, Riley's Way Foundation +

As former long-time Timber Lake campers and as well as parents who currently have children at Timber Lake, Jay and Neil were truly saddened by Riley’s passing. Although they had never met Mackenzie or Ian before the summer, they felt a sincere obligation to help raise money in Riley’s honor and to rally the Timber Lake family to support this wonderful cause. Over the past 25 years, they have helped organize many charitable events for various organizations and they expect to use this experience in order to raise money and awareness for the charitable causes supported by Riley's Way Foundation. Mackenzie, Ian and their family, will always be a part of their family and they will help to keep Riley’s memory alive through this wonderful organization.



Scott Eisenberg

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Scott Eisenberg is a dear friend of Mackenzie and Ian. Scott is a Media and Entertainment Executive and serves on the board of the Israel Tennis Centers with a focus on marketing and fundraising for the foundation. Scott’s wife Tamara, daughter Olivia and son Jake share a special bond with the entire Sandler family.

Scott’s goal as a board member is to use his personal connections and his media and marketing expertise to continue to shine a light on the magic of Riley and to have her kind, compassionate and gentle spirit inspire other children to exhibit the same.




Eric Frank

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Eric Frank is a childhood friend of Ian Sandler and he and his wife Lisa are close friends with Ian and MacKenzie. He is a father of three boys and lives with his family in Tribeca. Eric is a partner at Intrade Capital Group II and Tribeca Property Group.

Eric is primarily focused on helping Ian and MacKenzie grow Riley's Foundation to help children in need and to recognize children for acts of kindness. He currently assists with Strategic Planning, Event Planning, and Fundraising. His main goal is to help steer this Foundation towards its ultimate goal of making a difference in children's lives today and tomorrow. He is excited and proud to be a part of the Riley's Way Foundation.



Jordan Freundlich

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Jordan Freundlich is a close friend of Mackenzie and Ian Sandler, and one of Ian’s closest friends since second grade. Jordan is currently a lawyer with Vishnick McGovern Milizio LLP in Lake Success, practicing estate and commercial litigation. Jordan is also a board member for Literacy Nassau, a not-for-profit organization providing services for hundreds of functionally illiterate adults in Nassau County.

Jordan’s goal is ensure that the Foundation meets its mission to help children and promote the characteristics that made Riley so special, especially her kindness and empathy. Jordan is involved in developing the Foundation’s ideals and organizing fundraising events.



Laura Rebell Gross

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Laura Rebell Gross is the Managing Director of Girls’ Education for the Young Women’s Leadership Network (YWLN), which serves more than 8,000 girls through five New York City-based all-girls' public schools and thirteen national affiliates. As a leader in the education field for the last fifteen years, on a daily basis Ms. Gross implements a vision for developing innovative programs that enrich girls’ lives, create experiential leadership opportunities, and build a path to college. Ms. Gross’ expertise is widely recognized and she was recently asked to serve on the New York City Council’s New Young Women’s Initiative. To impact the lives of girls beyond New York City, Laura co-founded the Young Women’s Charter Prep School of Rochester, a public school serving low-income girls, and takes the lead in identifying and establishing new school affiliates nationwide. Notably, Ms. Gross’ path to leadership started as a public school teacher, including serving as an English teacher at YWLN’s flagship school in East Harlem for six years. Ms. Gross earned a BA from Tufts University, an MAT from Brown University, and has completed coursework toward an Ed. D. in Curriculum and Teaching at Teacher's College, Columbia University and the Warner School, University of Rochester. She lives in Brooklyn, NY with her husband, three daughters, and an excitable puppy.

Laura's goals for the foundation are to empower young women in the Youth Council to change their communities and spread Riley’s values of kindness, empathy and friendship and to help ensure that work of RSMF creates a sustainable model of programs to impact schools across New York City.



Noah Heller

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Noah and his wife Meryl are close friends of Ian and Mackenzie. Noah is Chief Executive Officer of Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP, a 650 lawyer international law firm.

Noah is actively involved in developing the Foundation’s programming. His goal is for the foundation to honor the memory of Riley and improve the lives of many children. Noah is also a Board of Director for the Fairfield/Westchester Chapter of the Crohn’s and Colitis Foundation of America.



Meryl Heller

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Meryl and her husband Noah are close friends of Ian and Mackenzie. Meryl is a devoted mother to her two children.

Meryl’s goal is ensure that the Foundation meets its mission to help children and promote the characteristics that made Riley so special, especially her kindness and empathy.



John Horner

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

John and his wife Christina have been friends with Ian and Mackenzie since the fall of 2010. This is when Riley started kindergarten at Nightingale Bamford and became one of their daughter’s best friends.
John’s hope is to help the foundation create programs that over time will materially impact the lives of children, the way he knows Riley would have.

John is currently a Managing Director at JPMorgan.



Jay Jacobs

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Jay is the CEO of the TLC Family of Camps, Chairman of the Timber Lake Foundation for Children and the Director of Timber Lake Camp, the summer camp that Riley attended. His company’s mission: teaching children the skills of making and keeping friends while building their self-esteem, self-confidence and resilience, was exemplified by Riley Sandler who serves as a perfect example of how children should treat each other.
 
Jay is committed to the mission of Riley’s Foundation as a way to promote the kindness, empathy and spirit of friendship that is so needed in today’s world.  His focus will be on programatic and project funding.  It is his hope that through the work of the foundation we will be planting the seeds for a better future.  



Mindy Jacobs

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

As the Girls’ Director at Timber Lake Camp, Mindy formed a profound relationship with Mackenzie and Ian since the inception of the RSMF. Mindy was fortunate enough to witness Riley’s magical qualities during the summer Riley spent as a freshman girl at camp. Riley’s love of making friends and being kind and compassionate made a lasting impact on everyone who was fortunate enough to know Riley.

Mindy, in her role at camp, is devoted to teaching the beautiful qualities that we affectionately term “Riley’s Way” to the children at camp each summer. Mindy’s professional experience and many years of working with children will assist in helping RSMF accomplish its goals.



David Johnson

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation+

A former colleague and close friend of Ian and Mackenzie, is currently a Managing Director at the The Carlyle Group in the Global Market Strategies division. David is a member of the Investment Committee and brings over 10 years of direct investing experience to the Committee. He hopes the work of the Riley’s Way Foundation honors the memory of Riley and makes a tangible impact in fostering kindness in children.



David Kerstein

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Dave and his wife Erica are close family friends of Ian and Mackenzie. Dave and Erica's oldest son knew Riley since birth, was one of her oldest friends and attended camp with her, and their youngest son is friends with and attends camp with Brody. Dave is currently an Investment Manager and Legal Counsel at Bentham IMF. Dave is a 1996 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, and a 1999 graduate of the University of Pennsylvania School of Law, where he first met Ian nearly 19 years ago during orientation week at an all-you-can-eat Sushi dinner.

Dave’s goal is ensure that the Foundation meets its mission to promote Riley’s legacy and ensure that her spirit helps to instill kindness, empathy and friendship in other children.



Lauren Madison

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Lauren Madison, a close friend of Mackenzie and Ian Sandler, is the mother of two daughters. Her oldest, Megan, was one of Riley's nearest and dearest friends. Lauren serves as a Vice President of the Riley's Way Foundation and is committed to the enduring legacy of Riley as the kind, caring and fun-loving child whose genuine goodness touched all who knew and loved her. Lauren's dedication to the Foundation is founded on sharing the magical essence of Riley with as many children as possible.

Lauren is the former National Sales Manager for fashion designer Betsey Johnson.



Gerard O'Connor

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Gerard has been a long time friend of Ian and MacKenzie after originally meeting them years ago through Ian’s parents. Gerard is honored to be part of such a special cause and is committed to keeping Riley’s memory alive and instilling in other children Riley’s spirit and kindness to others. Gerard works in the Private Wealth Management Group at Goldman Sachs. Prior to joining Goldman Sachs, Gerard was an attorney in the Mergers and Acquisitions Group in the New York office of Shearman & Sterling LLP. Prior to attending law school Gerard served as an officer in the United States Army which he left as a Captain after five years of distinguished service after graduating from West Point in 1989. Gerard also serves as the Chairman of the Board of the Viscardi Center in Albertson, Long Island which has 170 students with severe physical disabilities and who often require life-sustaining medical treatment throughout the school day. Gerard and his wife Deanna live in Garden City, NY where they are raising three wonderful children.



Joel Sandler

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Joel is a board member of the RSMF and proud uncle of Riley Sandler. In his day job, Joel is a business development strategy consultant to oncology-focused pharmaceutical companies. He has spent more than 10 years as a research scientist at several world-renowned academic institutions, and currently sits on the board of a number of charitable foundations including Echoing Green and the Degregorio Family Foundation.

Joel is determined to help communicate his niece’s message through the implementation of initiatives that will help make the world a kinder and more empathetic place to live in.



Todd Solow

DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Todd Solow is a General Partner at Norwest Equity Partners, which since 1961 has raised over $5 billion of capital for leveraged buyouts, growth equity and minority recapitalizations.

Todd is a 20-year friend of Ian’s. His goal for the foundation is to create a permanent legacy of Riley’s spirit by creating opportunities for children to better the world we live in.





OUR STAFF


Laura Kikuchi

PROGRAM DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Laura is thrilled and honored to join RWF as one of the Program Directors. Prior to RWF, Laura worked for the Stalking Resource Center, part of the National Center for Victims of Crime, in Washington, DC. Laura received her BA from Vassar College and her Masters of Social Work from Columbia University.

Laura's goal is that children and adults view "Riley's Way" as a way of life, and that these bunny ear ambassadors honor Riley's memory and carry on her kind, generous, and magical spirit.



Lauren Shenkman

PROGRAM DIRECTOR, Riley's Way Foundation +

Lauren Shenkman is honored to be joining the Riley's Way Foundation team after six years as the Director of Membership & Community Engagement at Brooklyn's Congregation Beth Elohim. Previously she worked as the Director of The Educational Alliance's historic Downtown Community Center, at the 14th Street Y as the Director of Youth Programs, and as the Beacon Director at Moshulu Montefiore Community Center. Lauren lives in Brooklyn with her husband Ben and their two sons.

 
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