President and Chief Executive Officer
In June 2019 Kim Zimmer was named president and CEO of Helen Keller Services by the organization’s Board of Trustees. For over 125 years the nonprofit organization has enabled individuals who are blind, visually impaired, deaf-blind or have combined hearing-vision loss to live, work and thrive in the communities of their choice. Helen Keller Services consists of two divisions under its umbrella, Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths and Adults and Helen Keller Services for the Blind.
Prior to her role at Helen Keller Services, Zimmer was chief marketing officer and senior vice president of global development at Goodwill Industries International (GII), a global social enterprise that provides job training, career and support services to nearly 39 million people a year, through the revenue from the sale of donated clothes and household goods. At GII, Zimmer developed and implemented innovative communication and public affairs initiatives for 160 members across the United States, Canada and 13 other countries. She executed international business development, brand and cause marketing, social media and digital applications that directly impacted top-line growth.
Prior to joining Goodwill, Zimmer was the vice president of corporate communications for National Industries for the Blind (NIB), a national nonprofit that works in partnership with more than 88 associated agencies around the U.S. to enhance economic opportunities and professional development for people who are blind and employed through federal set aside contracts. While at NIB, Zimmer led a team to develop and implement strategic corporate communications and marketing campaigns to drive social enterprise, increase brand awareness and positively impact mission measures.
Before NIB, Zimmer was vice president and chief operations officer at the Columbia Lighthouse for the Blind (CLB), in Washington, D.C. CLB is dedicated to providing training programs, services and employment opportunities to people who are blind. In that role, she oversaw key areas of opportunity, including consumer programming, the introduction of virtual skills development, fundraising and brand marketing and public policy. She also introduced social enterprise through federal set aside contracts for employment of people who are blind.
Zimmer started her career as a consultant to state and county economic development initiatives and global technology companies.
She holds a degree from James Madison University.
Marc Feldman, CPA
Chief Financial Officer
A financial executive with over 30 years of experience, Marc Feldman oversees the financial and accounting functions for Helen Keller Services.
Prior to joining HKSB, Mr. Feldman was the chief financial officer (CFO) at The Dyson-Kissner-Moran Corporation (DKM), a privately held multi-industry, multi-national corporation. At DKM, he directed all external relationships related to corporate finance, tax, real estate, insurance, audit/financial reporting, cash management, pension, environmental and IT. In addition to his responsibilities as CFO, Mr. Feldman managed invested assets as treasurer of The Dyson Foundation.
He also served as chief financial officer at Biopharmaceutics, Inc., and as assistant vice president of Finance at Del Laboratories. Mr. Feldman began his career as a supervising audit senior at Ernst & Young.
He holds an M.B.A. in finance (Dean’s List) from Columbia University’s Graduate School of Business and a B.B.A. with distinction from the University of Michigan. Mr. Feldman is also a Certified Public Accountant (CPA).
Chief Development Officer
Ms. Fu joined HKS in January 2015 as part of the HKNC Helmsley Grant development effort and has continued in that position after grant support ended. Ms. Fu has over 20 years of experience in development and prior experience in the financial sector. She earned her Bachelor of Science (BS) Degree from Hofstra University and her Master of Business Administration (MBA) Degree in Finance from LIU. Ms. Fu heads up the HKS Development Team and is responsible for all day-to-day development operations and will supervise and manage the entire development team.
Ms. Fu has responsibility for all HKS’ IT infrastructure, contracting, policy, logistics and change management and continue to act as liaison to LISS Consulting, our IT service firm. Also, she continues her role as liaison to the HKS Board of Trustees.
Ms. Fu currently serves as a Vice President and the Treasurer of the Association Fundraising Professionals, Long Island Chapter.
Lorraine M. Locurto
Executive Director, Helen Keller Services for the Blind
Lorraine LoCurto has helped further the mission of Helen Keller Services for the Blind for over 30 years. She is responsible for all programs serving the blind at all HKSB locations.
Before becoming executive director, Ms. LoCurto was responsible for all rehabilitation and social services in Nassau County, including the day habilitation and residential habilitation programs. She also had served as director of day habilitation services and psychometrist. In these roles, Ms. LoCurto was responsible for day-to-day operations and psychological evaluations for the blind and visually impaired. She began her career as the school psychologist intern for the Copiague Public Schools on Long Island.
Ms. LoCurto earned an M.A. in clinical psychology and a B.A. in psychology from St. John’s University, where she is also a doctoral candidate in the field of child psychology. Ms. LoCurto has permanent New York State Certification as a school psychologist.
Associate Executive Director, HKSB
Elizabeth (Liz) Meade began her career at HKSB in 1995 as a supported employment training specialist, developing clients’ pre-employment skills and providing career counseling and job placement services. In 2007 Ms. Meade was promoted to coordinator of pre-employment services, overseeing the provision of services for both youth in transition and adults who require evaluation and/or other training prior to being referred for competitive employment. She was instrumental in the development of a 12-session training program to improve clients’ soft skills (i.e., communication, decision making, personal management, etc.). She then became the director of rehabilitation and placement services for Helen Keller Services for the Blind. In this role, Ms. Meade oversees all vision rehabilitation, adaptive living, pre-vocational, placement and summer camp programs and instructors.
Ms. Meade graduated from Iona College with a B.A. in psychology and an M.B.A. in organizational behavior, and she has a certification in advanced interpretation of the Comprehensive Vocational Evaluation System (CVES) from McCarron-Dial Systems. Ms. Meade is a member of the Nassau Placement Network and was elected to their executive board in 2004.
Chief Facilities Officer
Gary Messina is the Chief Facilities Officer for Helen Keller Services (HKS), where he coordinates the operation and maintenance of the physical plants of both the Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths and Adults (HKNC) division and the Helen Keller Services for the Blind (HKSB) division. Mr. Messina works closely with the director of facilities to ensure optimal operation of HKS’ buildings and premises, and to maintain a safe and cost-effective environment for all who utilize the facilities and grounds.
Mr. Messina joined HKS in 2014, bringing with him a wealth of experience and knowledge in construction management, building materials, workmanship standards, municipal codes and safety regulations. He has managed projects ranging from new construction to restoring historic landmarks; has implemented cost controls to improve efficiency and productivity; and has conducted training programs to develop staff, facilitate efficiency and improve performance. Mr. Messina also owned and operated a private residential and commercial renovations business for nearly 20 years.
Chief Human Resources Officer
Effective January 2017, Mia Murro has been appointed the agency-wide position of HKS Chief Human Resources Officer and will oversee all human resources for Helen Keller Services. Prior to this appointment, she was the director of human resources at the Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths and Adults (HKNC). Since 2007, she has been responsible for the management and direction of the human resources function, providing support to over 150 employees. Her duties include recruitment and selection, training and development, policy development and implementation, benefits administration, compensation and employee relations within a union environment.
Prior to joining HKNC, Ms. Murro was the HR manager at Bertelsmann Direct North America, the largest direct-to-consumer distributor of media products in the United States. Over nine years with Bertelsmann, she implemented many innovative and cost-savings procedures, which resulted in a number of successive promotions culminating in being appointed HR Manager.
Ms. Murro graduated from Hofstra University with a B.A. in psychology and business management. She also earned a certificate in human resources from LIU Post and is a member of the Society for Human Resource Management.
Sue Ruzenski, Ed.D.
Executive Director, Helen Keller National Center for Deaf-Blind Youths & Adults
Sue Ruzenski has dedicated her career to working with and advocating on behalf of the deaf-blind community.
Over the course of her 35-year tenure at HNKC, Ms. Ruzenski held positions of increasing responsibility, including director of direct services, before assuming her current role as executive director. She has led and worked with employees across the organization to implement innovative changes, especially in the area of vocational rehabilitation programs.
Ms. Ruzenski earned an B.A. in special education from Dowling College, an M.A. in deaf education from New York University and an Ed.D. from Columbia University.
Director of Government Relations, HKS
Geralyn Zuzze is the director of government relations at Helen Keller Services for the Blind (HKSB). In this role, Ms. Zuzze manages government functions, including responding to government funding opportunities, developing responses to RFPs and managing the subsequent contract development/contract management process. She also coordinates legislative outreach and is liaison to government officials, arranging legislator site visits at HKSB offices and HKSB visits to legislators' offices. Additionally, Ms. Zuzze coordinates Helen Keller Services’ out-of-state charitable registration process and works closely with senior management on special projects and compliance matters.
Ms. Zuzze has 20 years of experience in the nonprofit sector. Prior to joining HKSB’s Development Department in 2007, Ms. Zuzze spent nine years in the HKSB Braille Library, in both director and assistant director roles. Previously she held positions at the American Cancer Society and at the Center for Independence of the Disabled in New York (CIDNY), where she conducted outreach around health care to people with physical and sensory disabilities.
Ms. Zuzze holds an M.P.H. in urban public health from Hunter College and an M.A. in health advocacy from Sarah Lawrence College. Her B.A. degree in psychology was obtained from the State University of New York at Buffalo. Ms. Zuzze has been hard of hearing for most of her adult life and has a sibling with developmental disabilities, both of which informed her development as a strong advocate for the needs and rights of all people across the disabilities spectrum.