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Meet Our Team

Milly Arciniegas

Executive Director

Milly Arciniegas serves as the Executive Director of Hartford Parent University, a parent-led organization she was integral in establishing and launching in 2011, along with a group of Hartford parents. Over the past nine years, Milly has continued to work with Hartford parents, community organizations, school leaders and educators to develop a research-based model that provides culturally relevant courses and pedagogy, and ensures all children receive an equitable, high-quality education.

Prior to the development of Hartford Parent University, Milly served as Vice President of Technology for a private financial company for more than 10 years. During that time, Milly worked with parents, teachers, administrators, district staff and superintendents on a volunteer basis to increase parent engagement throughout Hartford Public Schools.

Marcelo Alvarez

Program Associate

Marcelo Alvarez serves as the Program Associate of Hartford Parent University. He is responsible for program administration, marketing and social media. Marcelo recently joined HPU in September of last year, while completing his double career in economics & statistics at CCSU. He also has a certificate in Spanish, which makes him responsible for the translation / interpretation at HPU. Like many immigrants, Marcelo being a Peruvian immigrant who first came to the United States in 2011, has fought for the American dream to become someone productive for society,

Deborah Bigelow


Deborah Bigelow serves as the Program Coordinator of Hartford Parent University.  She is responsible of developing the parent programs and providing technical support and training to the HPU parent coaches. Over the past five years, Deborah has been Hartford Parent University (HPU) graduate and Facilitator. As Program Coordinator some of her duties include: Providing technical, administrative and moral support to the HPU Coaches. In addition, Deborah also supports the Executive Director with the planning, coordinating and implementation of HPU’s Learning Sessions, Community Based Meetings and Events. She also holds monthly meetings with Hartford Public Schools district wide Parent Teachers Organizations (PTO’s) and School Governance Council (SCG) members.

Our Board

Sam Irizarry, President

Diane Jones, Vice President

Carmen Sierra, Treasurer

Attorney Cynthia Jennings, Secretary

Delmarys Serrano

Beayanka Pinckney Naraine

Estela Morales Segarra

Michael Buhdram

Meet Our Coaches

Tynima Toney

Tynima is a graduate of Hartford Parent University (HPU) and the No Child Held Back (NCHB) program. She’s an HPU Coach and Facilitator and has been affiliated with HPU for approximately 5 years. Her experience with HPU has taught her who to go to when she has an issue or concern and she loves sharing that information with parents and care givers. Tynima is very passionate when it comes to parents and their children and when it comes to supporting them and their rights.

Lucy Smith

Lucy is a graduate of Hartford Parent University (HPU) and the No Child Held Back (NCHB) program. She’s an HPU Coach and Facilitator. She has been affiliated with HPU for approximately 6 years. By being a part of HPU she feels that she has gained a better understanding of how to help her children navigate their way through the Hartford Public School system and loves sharing that information with other parents.

Milagros Vega

Milagros is a graduate of Hartford Parent University (HPU) and the No Child Held Back (NCHB) program. She’s an HPU Coach and Facilitator and has been affiliated with HPU for approximately 7 years. She also provides support for our Spanish speaking parents with children with special needs, teaching them the planning and placement team process. She is and has always been a big supporter of parent engagement and is affiliated with other Community Based Organizations.

Drupatti Phulbas

Drupatti has been a HPU facilitator for eight years and a HPU coach for a year. She was an active volunteer prior to HPU and one of the first to graduate as a HPU facilitator in 2012.

Natalie Delgado

Natalie is a Hartford Parent University (HPU) Coach and Facilitator. She has been affiliated with HPU for 4 years. She provides verbal communication of HPU’s informational documents for our Non-English speaking parents and care givers. Her passion is helping parents understand their rights as it relates to our school system and helping their children get the quality education they deserve.


Our Partners

Hartford Parent Leadership Coalition (coalition of SGC parent/student members and PTO's throughout Hartford Public Schools)

Achieve Hartford! –

Blue Hills Civic Association -

Capital Community College -

Charles N. Robinson Fund

City of Hartford –

Connecticut Parent Advocacy Center -

CT Parent Power -

Department of Children and Families -

George A. & Grace L. Long Foundation -

Hartford Communities that Care -

Hartford Knights Youth Organization –

Hispanic Health Council -

J. Walton Bissell Foundation -

Knox Foundation -

Mabel F. Hoffman Charitable Trust -

No Child Held Back –

Mesirow Financial –

Retirement Plan Advisors –

Sankofa Kuumba -

SpedConnecticut, Inc. -

State Department of Education -

State Education Resource Center -

United Bank Foundation –

United Way -

University of Connecticut -

Voices of Women of Color -

YMCA (Albany Avenue Branch) -

Friends of Hartford Parent University



330 Market Street
Harford, CT 06120

© 2022, Hartford Parent University.