John Cragg, Ma. ABS – Executive DirectorJohn has been the Executive Director of Long Island Youth Mentoring for 35 years. Previously, he managed a tire store for ten years while starting his family and finishing his education. John has a Master’s Degree in Applied Behavioral Science. He briefly taught a few courses in communications at a college in Spokane Washington. John has a life calling for the fatherless and a love for men’s and marriage ministry. He and his wife Kay live in West Islip, NY and have three married children and ten grandchildren. Kay is a fourth-grade school teacher. They have both mentored several children over the years.
Beth has been a member of the Long Island Youth Mentoring staff for 27 years. She currently supervises the other case managers and supports mentoring relationships in the One-to-One ministry. Throughout the years, Beth has also been a mentor to 3 different girls at different times. Beth was born and raised on Long Island; she earned a Bachelor’s Degree from Hofstra University and in 1998 received her Master’s Degree in Social Work from SUNY Stony Brook. Beth has been married to Len for 20 years and is the mother of their two children, Noah and Hannah. She has been a member of the Dix Hills Evangelical Free Church for 20 years as well and has served in the Sunday school ministry as well as the nursery and Mothers of Preschoolers when her children were young. Currently, she enjoys overseeing the Youth Mentoring Homework Club at her church.
Vince Eppolito – Activities Director/ Intake Coordinator
Vince has been involved with LIYM as a mentor and activities volunteer for 25 years. He joined the LIYM staff full-time in 2006. His Long Island Youth Mentoring duties include: 1) Screening and training prospective volunteers; 2) Intakes on referral families; 3) Organize and execute group activities; 4) Support and oversee the Homework Club program; and 5) Support and Oversee match relationships.
Vince taught religion at LI Lutheran School in Brookville and led a basketball ministry to teens in Babylon. For the seven years before that, he served with LI Youth for Christ. His role at YFC was to assist teens in starting Christian Bible clubs in public schools and organizing youth leader networks to work together as well as support the ministry on their campus. Vince was ordained in 2001 and has served as a Youth Pastor and then a Missions’ Pastor for 17 years. Vince is now on the Missions’ Committee at Axis Church in Medford. He and his wife Diane lead mission teams and teach a weekly bible study. Vince and Diane have both answered God’s call to help serve children, Diane is a Director at Long Island Head Start, and together they are foster parents.
Laurie Golan – Office Manager
Laurie has been the office manager of LIYM for eleven years. Laurie first answered God’s call to this ministry to be a mentor. After going through the training and being matched to a young girl, Laurie told God she would love to work for the ministry. The next month she saw and answered an advertisement that read: Low pay, long hours and an excellent opportunity to impact the kingdom of God. Two weeks later she left her job as the office manager for an orthopedic practice where she had worked for 12 years and before that, 20 years as the office manager for an employment agency. Laurie lives with her husband of 32 years in Valley Stream. She has one daughter and a six-year-old grandson. Laurie enjoys reading, crocheting, gardening, walking, and spending time with her family.
Cathi joined the Long Island Youth Mentoring staff 9 years ago. Her 25 + years of experience in the area of Human Services: Child Welfare, Substance Abuse Counseling, Homeless Advocacy & Transitional Housing Services, and Supported Employment are invaluable to her work as a case manager.
Cathi also has 40 years of experience as a “foster care” provider for displaced teens.
Ken Fleury – Case Manager
Ken was brought on staff as a Case Manager in June of 2016. He uses his background in Biblical Studies and certification in Life Coaching to support the work of mentors and needs of the young people and families involved with Long Island Youth Mentoring. Ken particularly enjoys directing the Brentwood Homework Club that serves 1st – 4th graders in the neighborhoods that surround the Long Island Youth Mentoring Ministry Center.
Ken and his wife, Brittany, are happy to be knee-deep in a “fixer-upper” and spend much of their time turning it into a home for their present and future family. Ken and Brittany have two sons; Byron and Winn.
Nicole Eng – Director of Social Media
Nicole came on staff in 2020 out of Covid Necessity. The ministry lost its ability to speak in churches to recruit mentors at the same time the need for more mentors was rising. Nicole continues to do a tremendous job using our social media presence to communicate God’s heart for the fatherless while showing how the Church is called to respond.