“La Educación es la clave” – “Education is the Key” … Hector Contreras. Maribel C. Touré has held these prevailing words her entire life. She is confident in saying that the greatest gift a parent can give his child is a good education. Subsequently, she has righteously lived by this stimulating notion. Maribel was born March 3, 1962 in the northern region of Mexico. She is the youngest of five children. By the time she was 18 and graduated from High School, she moved to Mexico City, 2600 miles away from home to compete for a place in a well-recognized University, UNAM (Universidad Autonoma de Mexico). Ultimately, she graduated with a degree majoring in Biochemistry and a minor in Radiological Science.
In the course of her college career she met Mamoudou Touré, a West African exchange scholar recipient, whom she married at the age of 27 in 1989. Soon after, they embarked in a new learning journey moving to New York. Starting a new life in the United States was like hitting the reset life button; having to learn English and beginning a career from scratch was the new challenge for Maribel, but those words that her father recited to her as a child, “La educación es la clave/Education is the key,” recounted yet again through her mind and into her planning. It was then that Maribel began to attend La Guardia Community College, where she became a certified EMT (Emergency Medical Technician) while she learned English and worked for an ambulance service company. All this facilitated her to get ready to sit for the Department of Health and the American Registry Radiology Technologist Board to gain her certification as an X-Ray Technologist and eventually as a certified Mammography Technologist. In the course of her studies she became confident and prepared for her current position at New York University Medical Center/Bellevue Hospital where she has been working since 2004. Maribel has not only become proficient in her radiological field, but she has become an instructor to students in the radiological field.
Maribel is the proud mother of four children: Eva Maria, Kelety Almammy, and twins Khalil and Omar. Maribel has assured that her children have a fundamental value for education, yet raising her family up in Hempstead, New York attested that it was not an easy task. She became an advocate for her children, consistently attending board meetings to fight for just causes and the education of her children. She quickly realized that the fight was greater than just for her own family. She knew all children in Hempstead needed a voice and a person who cared. As an active member of NYCC (New York Communities for Change) she decided to unite with other organizations such as the TCC (The Corridor Counts) and many others to turn the district of Hempstead around. Together with many alliances, the community of Hempstead was successful in electing Maribel Touré for the school board. She is not only an active leader in the community, but more so an activist who wants to make sure that every single child in the community of Hempstead holds a key that will one day open the doors to success. “A Good Education” and “Education for All.”
Ms. Jackson brings to the Hempstead School Board close to 40 years of educational and administrative experience. She retired in 2008 from Nassau BOCES Program for the Hearing Impaired.
As a teacher for the hearing impaired she held numerous positions. She was a classroom teacher, a parent advisor, a cooperating teacher, and an itinerant teacher. She has developed Individualized Educational Plans and participated in countless Committee for Special Education Meetings. She is well verse in the area of curriculum and instruction.
Ms. Jackson is the founder and director of Florosa Homework and Learning Center, which she started in 2003.
Ms. Jackson holds an undergraduate degree in Speech Pathology and Audiology, a Masters Degree in Deaf Education, and a Professional Diploma in School District Administration.
Ms. Jackson is on the board of the Nassau Reading Council. It is her hope that all of our children will be reading on grade level by the 3rd grade and that every Hempstead School becomes a school of excellence.
Ms. Jackson feels it is crucial to bring all the stakeholders- parents, teachers, students, administrators, and the community- together to achieve the mission of the Hempstead School District. “As long as every decision we make, starts with what is in the best interest of the children, we will be successful as a district.”
LaMont E. Johnson has been a village resident for over 41 years, he is also a home owner. Mr. Johnson is a Hempstead Public School graduate. He is a former member of the NYPD & the Hempstead PD.
He was golden glove participant 1997. He currently serves on the school district audit committee. Mr. Johnson is a generous man who strongly believes in supporting the children in the community. He donates to numerous charities such as Toys for Tots, and catholic charities, He is an NAACP Member. Mr. Johnson hopes to develop leadership skills that will help him succeed in the public policy arena. He is particularly interested in learning about public partnerships, as well as state and local government systems. Mr. Johnson believes in Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. philosophy that "everyone can be great because everyone can serve.”
Melissa Figueroa is a Hempstead resident of more than 30 years. She has been actively involved in issues of Educational justice affecting her community and is a proud member of various local organizations: New York Communities for Change (NYCC) The Corridor Counts (TCC) and a longtime supporter of the Hempstead Hispanic Civic Association (HHCA).
In 2002 she graduated with a Bachelors from Adelphi University and continued graduate work at Adelphi’s School of Education in Bilingual Education & Teaching English to Speakers of other Languages (TESOL). As a student, she represented Adelphi at the United Nations during their annual Conference for Peace and Human Rights in Education.
Melissa has first-hand experience working for the Hempstead Public School District in 2005 and 2006 as an educator assisting in Early Childhood Education and English Education. She hopes to make that experience a better one for the teachers and students in Hempstead.
She has worked throughout the United States and abroad to achieve social and economic progress through various organizations. In 2012 she worked in Mozambique Africa as a volunteer in ongoing community projects teaching vulnerable children in orphanages and working on marine conservation projects. Her passion as an Environmental Activist has allowed her to work not only in the Indian Ocean but also throughout the Caribbean and Atlantic Oceans. She is a progressive Dive Master and Instructor who continues to aid GREENPEACE and Project AWARE, a movement of divers protecting the ocean-planet.
As a Hempstead Library Board Trustee, Melissa effectively works with board members in re-establishing policy and long-term plans for the direction of the library. She is also a founding member of Church Unleashed and pointchurch.tv with locations in both Nassau and Suffolk counties.
It's her belief that when people start working together their actions inevitably can make a positive impact on all people within a community. As a Trustee of the Hempstead Board of Education, she continues to work on behalf of the community to advocate for student rights and educational justice.