Leslie-Bernard JosephCEO of Coney Island Prep Brooklyn, NY Award Year: 2022
Educator, attorney and social impact leader, Leslie-Bernard Joseph is the CEO of Coney Island Prep, a K-12 charter school that serves over 1,100 scholars across four campuses, aiming to train the next generation of leaders on tools to reset the vision of our country as a just racial democracy by centering the voices of marginalized communities. Prior to the pandemic, Joseph and the Coney Island Prep team launched an advisory curriculum that emphasizes identity development, diversity, justice, action, and leveraging a “hero’s journey” mindset to channel goal orientation and persistence. During the pandemic, Joseph led Coney Island Prep to distribute more than 125,000 meals to communities in need, loan more than 790 laptops and tablets, and disburse over $200,000 in microgrants to over 150 families in need. He drafted policy recommendations and a framework for re-opening schools during COVID on behalf of more than a dozen charter schools serving more than 35,000 students across NYC. Joseph received his bachelor’s degree in Politics and African-American Studies from Princeton University, where he served as both the student body president and Black Student Union president. He holds a J.D. with distinction from Stanford Law School and an M.Ed. from Stanford Graduate School of Education. While at Stanford, Joseph was a 2013 Paul and Daisy Soros Fellow. He is also an alumnus and former trustee of Prep for Prep, a non-profit organization in New York City, and a Pahara Institute Fellow.