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Meet the Staff

Deborah Martinez
Executive Director 

Deborah Martinez has an extensive background in the nonprofit management arena with over 20 years of experience. Her work focuses on establishing management and organizational structure with clear governance protocols, building fundraising relationships, developing strong corporate and community partnerships, and creating educational and collaborative opportunities with underrepresented and mainstream populations.

A native of Washington, D.C., Martinez’s career has spanned the nonprofit education and healthcare sectors.  She holds certifications and training in nonprofit management from ASAE and Howard University, and was named by Diverse Issues and Higher Education as a recipient of the Top 25 Women in Higher Education Award in 2013. 


Jerry Grodin, PhD
Director of Professional Affairs 

Dr. Jerry Grodin has a long history with NYSPA, being a member since 1991, serving as President of NYSPA in 2010, and leading many initiatives and projects as a committee chair, regional association leader and active mentor.
Jerry works with the Executive Director, the Legislative Committee Chair and our lobbyist to build relationships with legislators, their staff and state agency officials. He is available to participate in hearings, testify on behalf of the profession and serve on active committees to be sure that psychology is "at the table." Jerry produces a bi-weekly newsletter for members, the DPA Dispatch.

 Rosemary E. Aguirre
 Director of Membership & Programs

Rosemary E. Aguirre is a Jill-of-all-trade’s with management experience in nonprofit operations and programming geared to engineering, healthcare, and education. Through her years working in the nonprofit sector, she has gained extensive experience in program development, grant writing, budget and forecasting, meeting planning, website management, report preparation, marketing and social media, outreach, membership management, interaction with government agencies and management assessment. She has the ability to manage multiple projects, train others, problem solve and possesses excellent written and oral communication skills, in English and Spanish. Rosemary holds a Bachelor of Science degree from the University of Texas at Arlington with emphasis in Engineering, Physical Science, and Business.

Crystal Parsons
Executive Assistant

Crystal Parsons has over six years of experience in home health aide and is certified as H.H.A., P.C.A., and T.B.I.. Crystal has over four years of experience in hospitality working as a front desk associate and sales representative. Crystal has worked for the Guilderland Nursing Home as a receptionist and administrative assistant in 2015. 


Gabby Knizek
Grant Assistant

Gabrielle Knizek holds a BA in sociology with a double minor in criminal justice and psychology from University at Albany. In addition to her studies at the university, Gabrielle is a founder and member of the Andrew Izzo Memorial Fund, an organization that preserves the memory of a Galway High School student, as well as promotes suicide awareness and prevention within the community. She also is an active volunteer with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention. At NYSPA, Gabrielle is responsible for providing administrative and financial advice, as well as support services to designated grants and program staff, recipients, and donors throughout the life-cycle of a project. 

Erika Wiggins
IT Support

Erika has over 10 years of experience in the administrative field. She has transitioned to providing website and tech support to clients in the nonprofit, government, and private sector. Some of her tasks are email account management, content updates on websites, and setting up email marketing campaigns. She is able to deliver quick results and is innovative when it comes to problem solving.