Board of Directors

The Board of Directors is the governing body for all of the West Side Federation For Senior and Supportive Housing, Inc.


President and Director – Sheldon J. Fine

Sheldon J. Fine has been a Director of WSFSSH since 1979, serving as Secretary from 1983 to 2000 and as President of WSFSSH from 2000 to the present.  He is also currently in his second term as a commissioner on the New York City Age-Friendly Commission.  Mr. Fine has also served since 2007 as the Team Chief of the Upper West Side Community Emergency Response Team (CERT).  The team has been a recipient of NYC Emergency Management’s coveted Citywide Emergency Deployment and Preparedness Award.


As a social activist leader on the West Side since 1971, Mr. Fine has been the Chair of the local Area Policy Board, the Neighborhood Advisory Board, the Community School Board of District 3 and Vice Chair of the Citywide Community Action Board.  In addition, since 1986, he has been a member of Community Board #7 on which he has held several leadership positions, including two distinguished terms as Chair of the Board.  He is also a Director of Friends of Bloomingdale Inclusive Park and Playground, supporting the new uniquely constructed, truly inclusive park in Manhattan Valley.

As a career educator in the New York City Public Schools, Sheldon Fine has been a teacher, principal, District Director of Math, Science & Technology and Assistant Superintendent of a large South Bronx school district. He has also served as an adjunct professor and clinical supervisor for several colleges with specialties in STEM, educational leadership and special education. Currently, Mr. Fine is employed as an educational consultant for Fordham University and the Metamorphosis Teaching Learning Communities in New York City schools.

Vice President and Director – The Reverend John Duffell

The Pastor of the Church of the Blessed Sacrament on the Upper West Side of Manhattan, Father Duffell has had considerable experience in services to the homeless in Westchester County where he was the founding member of a shelter for homeless families and on the board of a housing development corporation. He has been a WSFSSH Director since 1995.

Director – The Reverend Alistair Drummond

The Pastor of the West End Presbyterian Church at West 105th Street and Amsterdam Avenue in the heart of Manhattan Valley, Reverend Drummond has long been active in clergy coalitions to assure the right to shelter for homeless single adults and families.   He joined the WSFSSH Board in 2003.

Director – Charles Gatewood

Consultant with special expertise in housing finance and in the area of federal new market tax credits, Mr. Gatewood has had more than 30 years of experience in real estate financing with various lending institutions in the New York City area.  He joined the WSFSSH Board in 2012.

Director – Jerilyn Perine

The Executive Director of Citizens Housing and Planning Council, Ms. Perine is an urban planner with nearly 30 years of experience in housing and community development in New York City’s neighborhoods. She served both the Giuliani and Bloomberg administrations as Commissioner of the NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development. Ms. Perine joined the WSFSSH Board in 2009.

Director – Julie Sandorf

President of the Revson Foundation, Ms. Sandorf is an expert on national and international issues surrounding homelessness. She was the founder in 1991 of the Corporation for Supportive Housing, a national intermediary organization which underwrites supportive housing programs, gives technical assistance to state and local governments, as well as providers, and provides grants and loans for the development of supportive housing.  Ms. Sandorf joined the WSFSSH Board in 2000.

Director – Lynn Wishart

Professor Emerita of Legal Research at the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University, Ms Wishart brings an array of professional and community skills to the Board. Ms. Wishart is an active leader at Fifth Avenue Presbyterian Church. She has been a key to the success of the joint Fifth Avenue/WSFSSH “Steps Project”, an innovative program of outreach and services to assist men living on the streets to transition into permanent housing. Ms. Wishart joined the WSFSSH Board in 2015.


Other Officers

Executive Director and Assistant Secretary – Paul R. Freitag

 Paul R. Freitag joined the West Side Federation for Senior and Supportive Housing, Inc. (WSFSSH) in 2015 as the Executive Director. He brought to WSFSSH over 20 years of experience in the affordable housing and social services sectors first at Catholic Charities of Brooklyn and Queens and later at Jonathan Rose Companies as a Managing Director. At WSFSSH, Mr. Freitag oversees the implementation of all housing development, social services and asset management activities in the agency.  He is the primary liaison to the Board of Directors and is responsible for the well-being of WSFSSH tenants and staff. Mr. Freitag received a B.A. and a B.S.  from Brown University, a Masters of Architecture from the University of Virginia and a Masters of Urban Planning from City College of New York.

Treasurer – Laura Tavormina

Deputy Director and Chief Operating Officer, Ms. Tavormina has oversight for property management, asset management, and information technology, and is also involved in the development of new projects. She has been with WSFSSH since 1990. Prior to joining WSFSSH, Ms. Tavormina worked for six years for the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) a national community development financial intermediary which provides loans, grants, and other program supports to non-profit community development corporations throughout the country. Ms. Tavormina received an MBA in Finance and Non-Profit Management from Columbia University. Her undergraduate degree is in Economic Development from Michigan State University.