Leslie Ehrlich President

Leslie Ehrlich President

As an advisor, staff member, and board member, Leslie has been nurturing innovation in the business and non-profit worlds for many years. Leslie began her career at The Boston Consulting Group and went on to lead product development and marketing organizations for Citigroup, Instinet, JPMorgan Chase, GE and Mastercard. An early advocate for the internet's potential to transform our lives, her best-known and most widely used product is the chase.com online banking website, which underwent a top-to-bottom redo following the JPMorgan Chase/Bank One merger. In addition to websites, she has also launched credit cards and mutual fund families.

Her non-profit roles include serving as the President of the LCU Fund for Women’s Education, a 160-year old grant making foundation devoted to improving New York women’s lives through higher education. She also serves as the Treasurer of Double Entendre Music Ensemble, which produces concerts of and commissions new works for double reed instruments. She was also the co-founder of Think Tank for Schools, whose curriculum enhances college readiness by teaching high school students to think and work independently and the founding co-chair of the Dress for Success financial literacy program.

Leslie holds an AB degree from Princeton University and an MBA from Stanford University. She lives in New York City with her family.

Diana Polvere Vice President

Diana Polvere Vice President

Diana Polvere is the Vice President, Annual Giving and Analytics at Sesame Workshop, the non-profit organization behind Sesame Street, which reaches 183 million children globally. In her role at Sesame, she supports the Workshop’s mission to use the educational power of media to help children everywhere grow smarter, stronger, and kinder, through high-quality programming for all children, but especially children and families in need. Diana has been at Sesame for 11 years and is responsible for building and strengthening the organization’s broad base of donors and potential donors through fundraising and engagement efforts, creating and implementing an annual giving effort, and managing donor analytics and CRM efforts. Previously, she was head of the Insights group, responsible for brand and audience measurement, market research and digital analytics.

Prior to Sesame Workshop, Diana worked at American Express for six years as Director of Research, leading a team in their Global Marketplace Insights group, providing research to inform key business initiatives, new product development, product line strategy, brand communications, acquisition and customer satisfaction. Her other experience includes client and supplier side positions across various industries including consumer packaged goods, travel, technology, financial services and media.

Diana earned an M.B.A. from New York University’s Stern School of Business and completed her undergraduate degree in Marketing and Management at Cornell University. She currently resides with her family in Port Washington, New York.

Colleen Minde Treasurer & Chair – Finance Committee

Colleen Minde Treasurer & Chair – Finance Committee

Colleen Minde is a Business Development Executive at RealFoundations, a real estate consulting firm. In her role she advises real estate firms on how to make better, more profitable decisions.

Prior to joining RealFoundations, she spearheaded real estate technology sales for LEVERTON and Yardi Systems both domestically and internationally. Born and raised in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado, she began her career in real estate as an Associate Broker with Newmark Knight Frank and subsequently served as an Associate at SL Green Realty Corp in New York City.

She strongly believes the empowerment of women begins with access to quality education. It is vital to providing women genuine possibilities to become everything they wish for. An art enthusiast, she is consistently captivated by the dedication and talent of the many grantees preparing for careers in the arts. Colleen holds a BA in Psychology.

Katherine Schmitt Secretary

Katherine Schmitt Secretary

Katherine Schmitt is a Manager in the People Advisory Services practice at Ernst & Young (EY). She specializes in organizational design and change management, specifically helping Fortune 500 companies navigate large-scale transformations. Katherine graduated from Cornell University in 2015 with a B.S. in Industrial & Labor Relations.

As a native of New York City and a current resident, Katherine understands first-hand how outstanding educational opportunities in NYC are often accompanied by unaffordable housing. She is delighted that she is able to use her knowledge and experience to help underprivileged female students find safe and affordable housing. In addition to the LCU, Katherine volunteers for the New York City Mentoring Program, the Cornell Alumni Admissions Ambassador Network and various outreach programs at the Church of the Heavenly Rest.