Principal Investigator

Niobe Way is Professor of Applied Psychology in the Department of Applied Psychology at New York University. She is also the co-Director of the Center for Research on Culture, Development, and Education at NYU and the past President for the Society for Research on Adolescence.She received her doctorate from Harvard University in Human Development and Psychology and was an NIMH postdoctoral fellow in the psychology department at Yale University. Way's research focuses on the intersections of culture, context, and human development, with a particular focus on the social and emotional development of adolescents. She is interested in how schools, families, and peers as well as larger political and economic contexts influence developmental trajectories. Her work also focuses on social identities, including gender and racial/ethnic identities, and the effects of gender and racial/ethnic stereotypes on adjustment and on friendships. Way is a nationally recognized leader in the field of adolescent development and in the use of mixed methods; she has been studying the social and emotional development of girls and boys for over two decades.

Way is the author of numerous books and journal articles. Her sole authored books include: Everyday Courage: The Lives and Stories of Urban Teenagers (NYU Press, 1998); and Deep Secrets: Boys' Friendships and the Crisis of Connection (Harvard University Press, 2011). Her co-edited or co-authored books include: Urban Girls: Resisting Stereotypes, Creating Identities (NYU press, 1996); Adolescent Boys: Exploring Diverse Cultures of Boyhood (NYU Press, 2004). and Growing up Fast: Transitions to Adulthood among Inner City Adolescent Mothers(Erlbaum Press, 2001). The latter co-authored book (with Bonnie Leadbeater) received the Best Book Award from the Society of Research on Adolescence (2002). Her current research projects focus on the influence of families, peers, and schools on the trajectories of social and emotional development among adolescents in New York City and in Nanjing, China. Her research has been funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, The National Science Foundation, The William T. Grant Foundation, The Spencer Foundation, and by numerous other smaller foundations.

Co-Principal Investigator

Carol Gilligan is the author of In a Different Voice, described by Harvard University Press as “the little book that started a revolution.”  Her 2002 book The Birth of Pleasure was described by the Times Literary Supplement as “a thrilling new paradigm.”  She was the Graham professor of Gender Studies at Harvard, the Pitt Professor of American History and Culture at the University of Cambridge, the recipient of a Heinz award for her contributions to understanding the human condition, and was named by Time magazine as one of the 25 most influential Americans. Gilligan is a novelist and playwright as well as a psychologist. Her novel Kyra was published in 2008, and her play, “The Scarlet Letter,” written with her son Jonathan Gilligan, has become the libretto for an opera called “Pearl.”  She is currently University Professor of Applied Psychology and the Humanities at New York University, and her most recent book is Joining the Resistance.

Co-Principal Investigator

Pedro Noguera, Ph.D., is the Peter L. Agnew Professor of Education at New York University. He holds tenured faculty appointments in the departments of Teaching and Learning and Applied Statistics, Social Science, and Humanities at the Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Development at NYU.  He is also the Executive Director of the Metropolitan Center for Urban Education and the Co-Director of the Institute for the Study of Globalization and Education in Metropolitan Settings (IGEMS). Dr. Noguera is the author of seven books and over 150 articles and monographs.  His most recent books are Creating the Opportunity to Learn with A. Wade Boykin (ASCD, 2011) and Invisible No More: Understanding and Responding to the Disenfranchisement of Latino Males with A. Hurtado and E. Fergus (Routledge, 2011).


Amber Madison, M.A., LMHC-LP is an author, lecturer, freelance writer, media expert, and practicing therapist specializing in relationship issues.  She currently writes a sex column for Seventeen Magazine, a dating column for The Metro, and contributes articles to Glamour Magazine, Cosmopolitan, Men’s Fitness and many more.  She is the author of Hooking Up: A Girl’s All-Out Guide to Sex and Sexuality (Prometheus Books, 2006), Talking Sex with Your Kids (Adams Media, 2010), and Are All Guys Assholes? (Tarcher, 2011). She frequently lectures on college campuses about healthy relationships, and appears regularly in the media commenting on issues of sex, dating, and intimate relationships.  

Assistant Director

Kim Nguyen is currently in the Human Development and Social Intervention Master’s program at New York University (NYU). Kim also works at It Takes A Village, a new project at NYU, that pairs mentors with middle school boys from a Brooklyn KIPP school. Kim's research interests are in gender socialization, child development within the cultural context, parent-child dynamics, and political war trauma. Prior to her work at NYU, Kim was a teacher in Vietnam and a cook in Spain and Los Angeles. 

Educational Liaison

Joseph Nelson, Ph.D. is the Associate Research Director of the Center for the Study of Boys' & Girls' Lives within the Graduate School of Education at the University of Pennsylvania. In this role, Dr. Nelson facilitates and provides support to school-based research teams conducting youth participatory action research projects. He is also visiting faculty at Bard College in the Master of Arts in Teaching program, and taught first-grade in a single-sex classroom of boys in his hometown of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. 


Anna Smith directs research and programming at the EXCEL Academy @ NYU, a university-community alternative college preparatory program. Her dissertation research examined how a group of young men developed as writers both in and outside of school in an urban setting. The co-author of Developing Writers: Teaching and Learning in the Digital Age, her research works to move the dialogue in education beyond the deficit framework, and includes composition in the digital age, theories of writing development, and global youth.

Communications Consultant

Dana Zucker Prior to working with PACH, Dana was an Associate Director at social@Ogilvy’s Singapore office. Named by The Holmes Report as the “Best Digital Consultancy in the World” in 2013, social@Ogilvy is a global, cross-discipline team of social experts from across all of Ogilvy’s businesses. In this role, Dana had the responsibility of implementing best practices to help clients develop effective and innovative social media strategies. She has experience in social media crisis preparedness and response and also worked on B2B, B2C, government, education, technology and health clients. Before joining the social@Ogilvy team, Dana got her start on the traditional side of communications, working in Ogilvy Public Relations’ New York City office on a variety of top global pharmaceutical clients.


Dana Kalmey Dana is a documentary filmmaker with producing, directing, cinematography, and editing expertise.  She is currently in production of her debut feature documentary film, THE LAST 90 MINUTES, and brings with her a versatile background as a former architect, college soccer coach, and teacher at The Green Gecko Project in Siem Reap, Cambodia.  She is a recent recipient of an MFA in Social Documentary Film from the School of Visual Arts and is currently a freelance filmmaker and production assistant with Big Mouth Productions on the upcoming human rights documentary, E-TEAM.  Through her work, she strives to reveal underlying emotions, strengths, and weaknesses; to right wrongs, and to create dialogue that encourages exploration of our world.