Tawni J. Engel

She/Her Pronouns

Tawni serves as the PFY Project Director, where she is in charge of all administrative aspects of programming. She is also responsible for program development and grant writing, in addition to overseeing contract reporting. She supervises multiple staff and coordinates the day-to-day operations of the agency. Tawni is also a trained counselor on Long Island Crisis Center’s crisis intervention hotline.

Contact Tawni: Tengel@longislandcrisiscenter.org or 516-679-9000, ext. 12


Devon Zappasodi

He/Him Pronouns

Devon is responsible for the day-to-day operations of Pride for Youth’s Suffolk location, ensuring that all services to young people and their families are of high quality. He also oversees all of the agency’s prevention line services that span across Queens, Nassau and Suffolk counties. In doing so, he also provides direct supervision and facilitates the professional development of Nassau and Suffolk based staff. Devon provides grant management for all site programs/contracts as well as grant writing for program expansions and development. In addition, he spearheads evaluation initiatives to ensure that site programs are meeting the health and wellness needs of the Long Island LGBTQ+ community. Devon carries a counseling caseload of LGBTQ+ individual clients and families. He is available to present professional trainings on LGBTQ+ Cultural Competency, PrEP/PEP, Transgender Health and YMSM concerns.

Contact Devon: dzappasodi@longislandcrisiscenter.org or 631-940-1964

Aiden Jay Kaplan

He/Him or They/Them Pronouns

Aiden manages PFY's NYS HHS initiative, as well as LICC's NYS HIV Hotline. In addition, he oversees PFY's Community Education and internship programs, as well as the agency’s social media. Aiden also facilitates the bi-weekly “Pride for Parents” group, and is available to conduct professional development trainings on LGBTQ Cultural Relevancy. Aiden is also a trained counselor on Long Island Crisis Center’s crisis intervention hotline.  

Contact Aiden: AKaplan@longislandcrisiscenter.org or 516-679-9000, ext. 11

Tiffany Vasconcellos

She/Her/Hers Pronouns

As PFY’s Prevention Services Manager, Tiffany oversees the agency’s case management program and high impact evidence based counseling program. Tiffany directly provides case management and counseling services to high risk young gay/bi/queer men and transgender individuals up to age 30. Tiffany supervises the agency’s YMSM Services Coordinator and prevention line peer workers. In addition, Tiffany works closely with the PFY Project Director (Suffolk) on prevention line quality assurance and improvement projects, provides oversight with data collection/reporting, and assists with the program development.

Contact Tiffany: tvasconcellos@longislandcrisiscenter.org or 516-679-9000, ext. 22 or (631) 526-1072

Maria Demauro

She/Her Pronouns

Maria Demauro oversees the Long Island Ending the Epidemic (ETE) Project, which aims to end the HIV epidemic in this region. Maria oversees all programmatic aspects of the TransAction program, a weekly social support space for transgender and nonbinary individuals ages 15-30. She carries a counseling caseload of families and individuals for psychotherapy and assistance in gender-affirming services. Maria organizes community-wide events, multimedia campaigns, and coalition building efforts to spread the U=U message and educate the community. She sits as a Co-Chair on the Nassau County ETE committee, which was established by Governor Cuomo to end HIV in New York by 2020. The committee works to do this through increasing access to HIV testing, linking people living with HIV to comprehensive and sustained care, and providing access to PrEP/PEP (HIV prevention medications). Maria is also available to provide a variety of trainings to professionals in educational, health & human service, and medical provider settings.

Contact Maria: mdemauro@longislandcrisiscenter.org  Call our office at: (516) 679-9000 ex.16 or (516) 514-0234

Charlie Arrowood

They/Them Pronouns

Charlie Arrowood (they/them) is Pride for Youth's Data Specialist. They are responsible for entry and reporting of all program data on PFY's contracts with the AIDS Institute.

In addition to their role at PFY, Charlie is an attorney licensed in New York state. They run a solo practice focusing on transition-related legal services and they are also Name Change Project Counsel at the Transgender Legal Defense & Education Fund's Name Change Project. Charlie is the Chair of the LGBTQ Committee of the Nassau County Bar Association, a member of the National Trans Bar Association, and previously served as the Director of Name & Gender Recognition at Transcend Legal and Community Mobilization Coordinator at PFY. They are a parent of two and graduate of Tulane University (B.A. History, 2009) and New York Law School (2013).

Contact Charlie: carrowood@longislandcrisiscenter.org  or 516-679-9000 ex. 17

Lauren McCarthy

They/Them/Theirs Pronouns

Lauren oversees all aspects of PFY’s Peer Navigation program, including supervision of multiple peers who deliver sexual health education and outreach under the Youth Health Advocate initiative. In addition, through PFY’s renowned Community Education program, Lauren facilitates workshops in middle schools, high schools and colleges across Long Island on the topics of Understanding Sexual Orientation and Understanding Gender, which help to create safe spaces in an ever-increasing number of school and agency settings. They also provide clinical support at Coffeehouse, and have availability for drop-in counseling the third Friday night of every month. Lauren also conducts personalized counseling for individual clients and families.

Contact Lauren: lmccarthy@longislandcrisiscenter.org  Call our office at: (516) 679-9000 ext. 15 or (631) 769-5373

Vanessa Visquerra

She/Her Pronouns

¡Hablo Español!

Vanessa oversees all aspects of PFY’s Coffeehouse & Queer Connect programs. Additionally, Vanessa oversees the individual therapeutic counseling programs and carries a caseload of individuals and families.  

Vanessa is of Puerto Rican and Guatemalan descent, Vanessa received her bachelor’s degree in Psychology from Long Island University Post Campus. She will graduate from St John’s University with a degree in Mental Health Counseling with a certificate in LGBTQ competency in December 2020. Vanessa has a passion for working with the Latinx community and advocates for racial equality among all populations. She continues to advocate for the importance of LGBTQ mental health. Vanessa continues to educate herself on how to continue to serve underserved populations.  

Contact Vanessa: Vvisquerra@longislandcrisiscenter.org  Call our office at: (516) 679-9000


Dervis Pulgar

He/Him/His Pronouns

¡Hablo Español!

Dervis provides confidential HIV testing at Pride for Youth for gay/bi/queer men and transgender individuals up to the age of 45. As an HIV Services Navigator, Dervis offers initial PrEP/PEP screenings, linkages to HIV medical services and STI linkages. Dervis is also a facilitator for MpowerVIDA in Nassau, a Latinx social group for Spanish speaking and bilingual LGBTQ identified peoples ages 18-45. He is also available to provide light case management work with Latinx individuals who may be in the process of seeking asylum, transitioning and/or need support in getting connected to further supportive services. In addition to the above, Dervis also conducts community and social media outreach for these services with a particular focus on engaging young gay/bi/queer men and transgender individuals of color. All of the services Dervis offers are conducted in both English and Spanish!

Contact Dervis: Dpulgar@longislandcrisiscenter.org  Call our office at: (516) 679-9000 ext. 29 or (516) 469-0494

Yonatan Matheus

He/Him/His Pronouns

¡Hablo Español!

Yonatan facilitates PFY’s MpowerVIDA project, a social group for Hispanic/Latino gay/bi/queer men and transgender individuals ages 18-45, including all corresponding community and social media outreach. Yonatan provides vital case management services to Hispanic/Latino clients who may need asylum assistance, housing support, and access to medical services such as HIV testing, PrEP/PEP,  STI testing, antiretroviral medication, and primary care services. Yonatan is available to provide rapid HIV testing, Syphilis testing, and confirmatory HIV testing in both English and Spanish.

Contact Yonatan: ymatheus@longislandcrisiscenter.org  Call our office at: (516) 679-9000 ext. 27 or (631) 398-4505  

Damon Evans

He/Him/His Pronouns

Damon is responsible for the overall execution, coordination, and oversight of PFY’s Long Island based PrEP/PEP programs as well as the agency’s integrated STD testing program, Project P.U.S.H.. Damon also facilitates PFY’s homegrown intervention Mpower+ which is designed to address the health/needs of gay/bi/queer men who are living with HIV/AIDS. As part of his role, Damon conducts targeted outreach on social media apps, helps coordinate and execute large-scale events, and provides direct point-of-care testing services such as rapid HIV and rapid syphilis testing. To better support his clients in their engagement, linkage, and retention into bio-medical sexual health based care, Damon provides HNS case management services. In addition, Damon supervises a prevention based Peer Navigator who assists in identifying gay/bi/queer men of color in need of HIV/STD testing, PrEP/PEP, and HIV care/treatment.

Contact Damon: devans@longislandcrisiscenter.org call: 516-679-9000, ext. 20 or call: 631-398-7846

Shavayne Lawson

He/Him/His Pronouns

Shavayne provides community-based outreach to young gay, bisexual and transgender individuals throughout Queens. His work primarily focuses on young men of color and connecting them to PrEP/PEP services with our community partner Damian Center. Outreach is done through various means including social media, apps, bars/clubs, and schools. Shavayne’s outreach cuts across various communities throughout Queens. In addition, Shavayne provides ongoing sexual health education and adherence counseling to all PrEP/PEP enrolled clients.

Contact Shavayne: slawson@longislandcrisiscenter.org  Call our office at: (646) 726-2677 or call (516) 605-7733

Alex Accomando

They/Them Pronouns

Alex is in charge of managing the office during afternoon hours. They provide clerical support to staff and help keep PFY: The Linda Leonard Center programs and events running smoothly. Alex also designs and creates all of the agency’s promotional and campaign materials including digital images that are utilize to engage LGBTQ individuals into HIV prevention services. Alex manages PFY: The Linda Leonard Center’s social media accounts and manages all social media promotions. Alex also provides administrative support to the PFY Suffolk Project Director as well as assisting clients with transportation services to programming and outside medical health services.

Contact Alex Accomando at 631-940-1964 or via email at aaccomando@longislandcrisiscenter.org

Vincent Maltese

He/Him Pronouns

Vincent is in charge of managing the office during evening hours. He provides clerical support to staff, and helps to keep PFY's programs and events running smoothly. Additionally, Vincent is available to provide transportation for various programs and services on an as-needed basis.

Contact Vincent: VMaltese@longislandcrisiscenter.org or 516-679-9000, ext. 10

Kaitlyn Mae Abreu

She/Her Pronouns

Kait co-manages the PFY offices in our Nassau location. She provides clerical support to the administrative staff on a daily basis, and helps keep our programs and events running smoothly.

Contact Kait: kabreu@longislandcrisiscenter.org or Call our office at 516-679-9000 ext. 10.