We’re thrilled to announce that Nicole Milone, Esq., Litigation Associate at Certilman Balin Adler & Hyman, LLP, has stepped into the role of Co-Chair for MENTOR New York’s Young Professionals Advisory Board (YPAB). Nicole’s leadership comes at a critical time, as we celebrate 30 years of scaling mentoring across New York State—and raise the stakes for our impact over the next three years. As the Co-Chair of the YPAB, Nicole will lead a group of civic leaders dedicated to advocating for mentoring and raising funds for MENTOR New York.
"My goal as Co-Chair of the Young Professional Advisory Board is to re-invigorate public interest and investment in this work that we’ve unfortunately seen dwindling in recent years. Times are tough for everyone right now, and that is going to be especially true for young kids," said Nicole. Nicole's commitment to expanding mentoring opportunities to all young people recently saw her recognized in the Long Island Business Review. For MENTOR New York CEO Brenda Jiménez, the recognition couldn't be more deserved. "Mentoring touches so many lives and we are grateful to have leaders like Nicole who generously give of their time and treasure to make sure that all young people have access to caring adult mentors wherever they live, learn, work, and play," Brenda said. From her first year serving on the Young Professionals Advisory Board, I knew Nicole was an outstanding advocate for mentoring and would make a great leader."
A non-governing body, the Young Professionals Advisory Board is vital to the success of MENTOR New York, as we work to close the mentoring gap affecting one in three young people across our state. When she joined the YPAB in 2022, Nicole exhibited leadership, dedication to raising funds for mentoring, and a true connection to MENTOR New York’s mission and work.
"My experience with the Young Professionals Advisory Board has really taken me out of my ‘professional’ shell, so to speak," Nicole explained. "The YPAB’s welcoming, warm atmosphere makes it easy to embrace philanthropy and become an advocate for mentoring. I have felt empowered in the learning process—never embarrassed to ask if I don’t know something."
Mentoring is a cause close to Nicole’s heart. Known as "Miss Nicole" to almost every kid in town while working as a camp counselor, cheerleading coach, and dance teacher, she has had the privilege of mentoring many young people. This continued when Nicole joined the Certilman Balin team, where they have been mentoring students in the local elementary school for over 20 years.
LIKE (Lawyers Involved in Kids’ Education) Mentoring Program was founded by Brian Ziegler and Fred Skolnik, partners at Certilman Balin. Both Ziegler and Skolnik serve on MENTOR New York’s Board of Directors and leveraged the organization's expertise when creating their mentoring program. Years later, it continues to bring together attorneys like Nicole and elementary school students for weekly mentoring sessions.
"Honestly, I really love kids! I think of my own children, the young kids in my extended family, and the kids that I’ve mentored over the years. The positive impact they have had on me is enough to motivate me to do this work," Nicole said. "I know the mentor relationship is truly for the benefit of the mentee, but I have experienced firsthand how the mentor gets a lot from it, too."
Nicole’s leadership has come at a crucial moment, with the annual MENTOR of the Year Awards fast approaching. The ceremony is made possible due to the dedication of YPAB members and will honor five outstanding mentors and the life of Luke Boisi, who tragically passed away at the age of 21. Nicole leads the young board alongside Zach Boisi, who co-founded the YPAB in 2004 after his brother Luke’s passing. Do you want to make a difference like Nicole? Join us at the MENTOR of the Year Awards at the Bowery Hotel in Manhattan on Wednesday, June 21, or show your support for mentorship by making a donation.