Staff & Board

Staff & Board

The Leadership Alliance's Executive Office is located at Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island.

Taiese Bingham-Hickman Headshot
Taiese Bingham-Hickman, MS, MBA, PhD

Interim Executive Director, The Leadership Alliance


Dr. Bingham-Hickman embodies this mission as an alumna of the Leadership Alliance Summer Research Early Identification Program (SR-EIP) and a Leadership Alliance member institution. After participating in the SR-EIP at Harvard Medical School, she earned both M.S. and Ph.D. degrees from New York University School of Medicine and completed her M.B.A at Northeastern University.

Dr. Bingham-Hickman brings to this position a wealth of experience and an impressive record of results across multiple sectors. In the past three years, she served as the Assistant Director of Biomedical Informatics Research and Operations at Brown University, where she supported the operational functions of the Brown Center for Biomedical Informatics (BCBI) with major statewide initiatives. In this capacity, she also served as the technical liaison for assigned projects with BCBI collaborators across Brown and its affiliated hospitals, as well as regional/national/international partners.

Before coming to Brown, Dr. Bingham-Hickman worked in the private industry at Beacon Health Options as the Vice President of Data Analytics where she oversaw Beacon’s Analytics Innovation Center that provided thought leadership and analytic capabilities to ensure optimal behavioral health solutions for regional and specialty health plans; employers and labor organizations; and federal, state and local governments. She managed a team that leveraged advanced analytic concepts to drive actionable, insight-driven and outcome-oriented decision making to deliver the best in class service for its members, providers and clients. Dr. Bingham- Hickman also worked as the Manager of Analytics for Beacon’s Pharmacy Intervention Program and was key in the development of evidence-based algorithms to help identify medication- related problems specific to behavioral health conditions. An active scholar, Dr. Bingham is a member of the American Society of Pharmacology and Experimental Therapeutics and a published author in her field.

Gina headshot
Gina F. Astorini, M.S., Ed.D.

Program Manager for Graduate and Undergraduate Programs

Dr. Astorini currently serves as the Program Manager for Graduate and Undergraduate Programs. Dr. Astorini was the Associate Dean for undergraduate academics at the University of Miami and joined The Leadership Alliance Executive Office in September 2021.

Her personal and professional identity is dedicated to advancing values of diversity, equity, and inclusion through culturally responsive and strategic initiatives. Dr. Astorini earned a Doctoral degree in Higher Education Leadership and holds a Master’s of Science degree in Student Life and Development as well as a post-master’s certificate in Enrollment Management.

Maria Dovale Headshot
Maria Sanchez-DoVale

Conference and Events Specialist

Maria DoVale is the Conference & Events Specialist for the Leadership Alliance. It is Ms. DoVale’s primary responsibility to plan, organize, coordinate and develop sessions that promote networking, mentoring and professional development for undergraduate students, graduate students, and our doctoral scholars. As the Ex-Officio of the Leadership Alliance Symposium Planning Committee, she works alongside colleagues from various member institutions who provide suggestions on different aspects of program planning for the Symposium. Ms. DoVale comes to us with a wealth of experience in administration, event planning and management augmented with exemplary technical, organizational and customer service skills. Prior to her appointment with the Leadership Alliance, Ms. DoVale worked for 5½ years at the Providence Warwick Convention & Visitors Bureau helping to promote the state of Rhode Island as well as the city of Providence as a convention destination. Prior to this appointment, she worked for American Express corporate travel for eight years. Ms. DoVale holds a B.A. in Travel & Tourism Management from Johnson & Wales University.

Samantha Andersen Headshot
Samantha Andersen

Coordinator of Undergraduate Programs

Samantha Andersen is the Undergraduate Coordinator for the Leadership Alliance. In this capacity, she coordinates the combined application process for the undergraduate summer research sites and supervises the Alliance’s Summer Research Early Identification Program (SR-EIP) at Brown University. Ms. Andersen cultivated a passion for connecting diverse populations of students with research opportunities when she began her career in higher education at the University of California, Santa Barbara (UCSB). At UCSB Ms. Andersen coordinated the Internships in Nanosystems Science, Engineering and Technology (INSET) program which gave community college students from across California the opportunity to engage in research at USCB labs under the guidance and supervision of university mentors during an 8-week summer research program. Holding a master’s degree in Early Childhood and Elementary Education from New York University, she has also coordinated after-school programs in science, technology, engineering, art and math at UCSB and at Teachers College, Columbia University. These programs bring university students and resources to public elementary, middle, and high schools in Santa Barbara and New York City, and they bring K-12 students to the university. The after-school programs are designed to expose young students to university life and opportunities early in their educational career and to give university students and faculty the chance to engage with local communities and practice communicating their research and work with varied populations in a setting that is very different from the lab. Since moving to Rhode Island in 2012 Ms. Andersen has worked with United Way of Rhode Island on initiatives focusing on out-of-school time and expanded learning opportunities for Rhode Island youth and with the Community College of Rhode Island and the Rhode Island Department of Education to establish a youth apprenticeship program which allows students to begin a career while they are still in high school.

External Advisory Board
The Mission of the External Advisory Board is to advise, promote and actively support The Leadership Alliance in realizing its vision of developing underrepresented students into outstanding leaders and role models in academia, business, and the public sector.
Carlos Ramos Bellido, PhD

Vice President of Academic Affairs, University of Puerto Rico, Rio Piedras

Caryl McFarlane, PhD

Executive Consultant, University Alliance

Peter J. Bruns, PhD

Former Vice President for Grants and Special Programs, Howard Hughes Medical Institute

Liza Cariaga-Lo, PhD

CEO, President and Founder at The LCLO Group - A Higher Education and Workforce Development Consulting Firm

George C. Hill, PhD

Chief Diversity Officer and Vice Chancellor for Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, Vanderbilt University