Staff

Our institute is temporarily closed to the public, but our staff are working from home. Please contact us by email.

We invite you to contact each staff member of the Goethe-Institut New York directly. Please refer to the department staff lists to find out who can best assist you. We look forward to hearing from you.

Joerg Schumacher Dr. Jörg Schumacher
Executive Director
joerg.schumacher@goethe.de
Andrea Pfeil Andrea Pfeil
Director Language Program
Deputy Executive Director
Tel.: +1 212 4398719
andrea.pfeil@goethe.de

For further questions, please send an email to:
program-newyork@goethe.de

Joerg Schumacher Dr. Jörg Schumacher
Executive Director
joerg.schumacher@goethe.de
Sara Stevenson, Photo: © Jacobia Dahm Sara Stevenson
Residency Program Director Ludlow 38
Program Curator: Visual arts, film, academic programs
sara.stevenson@goethe.de
Katharine Maller Katharine Maller
Cultural Program Coordinator & Communication Officer
katharine.maller@goethe.de
To contact the Library:
Tel:  +1 877 GOETHE-1 (toll-free within the USA)
Tel:  +1 212 4398688
Fax: +1 212 4398705
library-newyork@goethe.de

For questions regarding our language courses and examinations, please write: germancourses-newyork@goethe.de
 
Katherine Lorimer Katherine Lorimer
Library Director
katherine.lorimer@goethe.de
Dean Whiteside Dean Whiteside
Library and Information Project Manager
Tel.: +1 212 439 8697
Fax: +1 212 439 8705
dean.whiteside@goethe.de
Andrea Pfeil Andrea Pfeil
Director Language Program
Deputy Executive Director
Tel.: +1 212 4398719
andrea.pfeil@goethe.de
Robert Bloom Robert Bloom
Language Program Officer
Tel.: +1 212 439 8685
robert.bloom@goethe.de
Anne-Sophie Albrecht Anne-Sophie Albrecht
Project Coordinator
Tel.: +1 212 439 8683
anne-sophie.albrecht@goethe.de
Ajkuna Hoppe Ajkuna Hoppe
Educational Liaison
Tel.: +1 212 439 8704
ajkuna.hoppe@goethe.de
 
Ebru Ahuja Ebru Ahuja
Teacher
ebru.ahuja@goethe.de

I am from Hamburg, a port city in the north of Germany where I did my Master's degree in Social and Economic History. After working several years in the field of press relations and corporate communications, I began a training as a teacher of German as a foreign language in 2016. In addition to German and English, I speak Turkish, Portuguese and a little French. I am passionate about languages and their importance for intercultural understanding. In 2016 I moved to New York and I am still fascinated by this multicultural city - the perfect base to learn and make use of languages. My goal is to teach German in a way that is motivating and fun for my learners.
   
Anne-Sophie Albrecht Anne-Sophie Albrecht
Teacher
anne-sophie.albrecht@goethe.de

Before moving from the Bavarian Alps to New York City, I worked as a speech and language pathologist, specializing in neurological diseases and helping patients who lost their ability to speak. I hold a Master’s degree in Speech Therapy. I am also a certified teacher of German as a foreign language. I love music and have been playing the harp for almost 30 years. Connecting and learning about other cultures enriches and expands my vision of the world.​
   
Elena Mezger Elena Alston
Teacher
elena.alston@goethe.de

I grew up in the southern city of Stuttgart and studied at the University of Tübingen. I obtained my teaching degree in German and English with a focus on literary studies, linguistics, and education. Beginning in my first semester, I worked as an assistant in the department for German as a foreign language at the university and discovered my passion for teaching my mother tongue. Since then I have been following this passion and worked at different institutions in both the USA and Germany. The most fascinating aspect of teaching German is the combination of Lehren (teaching) and Lernen (learning) – for both my students and me. Learning a language takes you on an enriching journey that does not end in the classroom.
 
   
Gitte Beckmann Gitte Beckmann
Teacher
Gitte.Beckmann.extern@goethe.de

After completing my master’s degree in social anthropology and geography in Berlin, I spent several years researching, teaching and curating an exhibition at the ethnographic Museum of the University of Zurich. At the same time, as a PhD student at the University of Zurich, I was able to co-found a new research field of social anthropology in Zurich (Disability & Technology). As part of a transnational research project I lived five years in Uganda. I moved to New York in 2017 and, as parent representative (PTA Co-president), I am actively involved in setting up a German language program at a public elementary school. I find it super exciting that the exchange in the (digital) classroom always shows new and often inspiring perspectives.
   
Pauline Bender Pauline Bender
Teacher
pauline.bender.extern@goethe.de

I grew up in a small town near Germany’s capital Berlin. I studied International Development in Vienna and Management in Nonprofit Organizations in Osnabrück. Especially through my internationally oriented studies and my various stays abroad (e.g. in the US, Zimbabwe, China and South Korea), I have met many people from different countries and cultures, who enrich my life to this day. In 2018 I started my training at the Goethe-Institut New York to teach German as a foreign language. For me it is important that my students not only learn the German language, but also experience the culture and enjoy learning.
   
Edna Biesold Edna Biesold
Teacher
Edna.Biesold@goethe.de

After studying Philosophy, Linguistics and German & Spanish Literature in Heidelberg, Salamanca (Spain) and as a Graduate Student in Berlin, I moved to New York in 2009. I studied filmmaking at NYU's Tisch School of the Arts and have since been working worldwide as a cinematographer. My certificate for teaching German as a foreign language has allowed me to work at the Goethe-Institut since 2016. I'm excited about the many Americans who have an interest in my language and culture, and I have a neverending fascination for the students' quick transformation from beginners to true conversation partners.
   
Claudio Conidi Claudio Conidi
Teacher
claudio.conidi.extern@goethe.de

I grew up in a small town in the canton of Aargau in Switzerland. I studied history and Italian at the University of Basel. After completing my M.A., I obtained my teaching diploma at the Educational College of Basel for those two subjects, and later for German in 2018. Having grown up bilingual, languages have always been my passion, both learning and later teaching them! My first teaching experience goes back to 2006. In Switzerland, I taught at different middle and high schools. I’ve always enjoyed teaching, so it was clear to me that I wanted to teach after I had moved to New York in February 2019. The classes at the Goethe-Institut give me the possibility to learn from my students and to convey to them joy for the German language and culture!
   
Shila Rahmani Coutard Shila Rahmani Coutard
Teacher
shila.rahmani.coutard.extern@goethe.de

I grew up in the beautiful university town of Heidelberg, in southwest Germany, where I studied pedagogy. In addition to relevant training courses and internships for the qualification of German as a foreign language, I have been able to acquire valuable pedagogical and didactic knowledge and educational experience at the Goethe-Institut New York over the past few years. I grew up bilingual and early in life I learned that mastering another language goes beyond knowing its grammar. Speaking another language is opening a gate to a new, exciting world. It is entering a new culture, getting to know other interesting people and their stories. I believe that the key to successful learning lies in the interaction between the cognitive and the emotions. Therefore, together with our participants, I like to create a professional and yet fun learning environment that offers the opportunity to learn beyond a language.
   
Marike Heesch Marike Heesch
Teacher
Marike.Heesch.extern@goethe.de

Growing up in the Dutch-German border region, I have always loved spending time in spaces where cultures and languages co-mingle and shape one another. I obtained my B.A. in Liberal Arts in a picturesque seaside town in the Netherlands, before moving to New York City in 2017 to pursue a Master’s degree in Cultural Anthropology at the New School for Social Research. To me, teaching a language means being able to constantly spend time in that space, where I am surrounded by a multitude of languages and cultures. I enjoy passing on my knowledge of the German language and culture just as much as I enjoy learning about the languages and cultures of my students. The continuous exchange, where both students and teacher learn from one another in infinite ways, is the aspect about teaching I find most enriching.
   
Stéphanie Meier Stéphanie Meier
Teacher
stephanie.meier.extern@goethe.de

Before moving to the USA, I lived in Zürich, the biggest city in Switzerland. While I was studying philosophy and comparative literature, I valued reading texts in their original language, deepening my knowledge of French and English along the way. My interest in French language and culture led me to Paris for half a year, where I learned about the advantages of teaching languages through immersion. I am an avid fan of film and love seeing good movies on the big screen. I have been living in New York since 2019 and am excited to get to know the people of this exciting city personally as a teacher at the Goethe-Institut and to accompany them as they learn my native language.
   
Mernosch Mirzaei-Reyes Mernosch Mirzaei-Reyes
Teacher
mehrnosch.mirzaei-reyes@goethe.de

I grew up in the historic city of Würzburg and lived in Berlin for 11 years, where I worked in the advertisement field. I hold degrees in Business Psychology and in Translation (English and Spanish). In 2012 I started teaching German to international students and artists. I enjoyed working as a German teacher and, therefore, started organizing group conversation as well as individual classes. It is a pleasure for me to teach German, and always a rewarding experience, when I can help my learners to make progress. In 2013 I decided to move to New York City. This place fascinates me because of its unique cultural structure and layered diversity. I am happy to help people here, to open the door to the wonderful German language and its rich culture.  
   
Lucia Monti Lucia Monti
Teacher
lucia.monti@goethe.de

Being from Berlin with Italian origins, I was born a polyglot. After studying linguistics and literature for German and English, I moved first to Switzerland then to Austria, where I obtained a Masters degree in Translation Studies and Conference Interpreting respectively. Besides speaking German and Italian as a mother tongue, I am fluent in English and French and speak a little bit of Spanish. In parallel with my activity as a translator I have also been teaching constantly German as a foreign language. This gave me the chance to enhance the intercultural exchange between students with different origins and backgrounds. Teaching German represents for me a professional as well a personal enrichment​.
 
Ala Soliman Ala Soliman
Teacher
ala.soliman@goethe.de

I am from Polotsk, an old Belarusian town in the north of Belarus. I graduated from the University of Polotsk with a diploma as a teacher of German and English. During my studies, i spent almost a year in Germany. After earnig my Master’s degree in Philology (German literature) I worked at the Polotsk State University as a university teacher of German. In 2012 i moved to New York. In February 2017 i started my advanced training as a teacher of German as a foreign language at the Goethe-Institut New York. I find the best after teaching is, if my students can take from the classroom something out: a pice of German culture, a new idea, a new skill ... I try to put my heart and soul into the teaching and i help with pleasure my course participants with their language learning. It is very important to me if my students enjoy learnig and show their minor and major successes.
   
Molly Rowland Molly Rowland
Executive Director
GAPP, Inc.
Tel.: +1 212 4398700
Fax: +1 212 4398705
molly.rowland@goethe.de
Stefanie Proessl Stefanie Proessl
Program Manager
GAPP, Inc.
stefanie.proessl@goethe.de
Helga Lehmann Helga Lehmann
Administrative Assistant
GAPP, Inc.
helga.lehmann@goethe.de
 Canet Gatewood
Director of Administration
canet.gatewood@goethe.de
Lee Grice Lee Grice
Media Technician
Guard
lee.grice@goethe.de
Michael Sanabria Michael Sanabria
Media Technician
Guard
michael.sanabria@goethe.de
Marc Paradise Marc Paradise
Media Technician
marc.paradise@goethe.de
 Marlen Mitschke-Elgasmi
General Administration/Human Resources
marlen.mitschke-elgasmi@goethe.de
Geoff Geoffrey Dobbs
Reception
geoffrey.dobbs@goethe.de
 Jonathan Wooten
Reception
jonathan.wooten@goethe.de