Meet the Admission Team

Amin Abdul-Malik Gonzalez
Director of Admission

Mr. Gonzalez joined the Choate Admission team in 2016 after eight years as Yale University’s Associate Director of Undergraduate Admissions and Co-Director of Multicultural Recruitment. A graduate of the Loomis Chaffee School in Windsor, Conn., he attended Wesleyan University in Middletown, Conn., where he earned a B.A. in History as a Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellow. Prior to his Yale experience, Mr. Gonzalez served as Associate Dean of Admission at Wesleyan University and Swarthmore College. At the secondary school level, he was Co-Director of College Counseling at McDonogh School in Owings Mills, Md., and taught history and coached football and wrestling at George School in Newtown, Penn., and Northfield Mount Hermon School in Northfield, Mass. He lives on campus with his wife, Khadija, and four children: Ismael, Zayd, Noor, and Safiya.

Joanne Bailey
Associate Director

Ms. Bailey began working in the Admission Office in 1999. She holds a degree in French literature from Wheaton College (Massachusetts). Her previous professional experience includes teaching French and doing development work in a K–9 private school, and running a home furnishings consulting business.

Jeffrey Beaton
Associate Director

Jeffrey joined the admission team in the summer of 2013 after a year as an Admission Counselor at his alma mater, Bates College. During his college career, Jeff was on the varsity tennis team for which he was a two-year captain, and he spent his junior fall in Copenhagen, Denmark where he was a service-learning volunteer in the public schools. Before college, Jeff was a post-graduate at The Loomis Chaffee School where he won both the English Honors Award and the History Honors Award.

Dana Brown
Senior Associate Director & Director of Multicultural Recruitment

Ms. Brown joined the Choate Admission team in 2014. A graduate of Smith College with a bachelor of arts in education and child study and a minor in biology, she comes to Wallingford from Lakeville, Conn., where she held a senior associate of admission position at the Hotchkiss School. Prior to that she was assistant director of admission and coordinator of multicultural recruitment at the Peddie School in Hightstown, N.J. She has traveled extensively through Asia for the Foundations Global Education Program and is currently co-chair of the Diversity Roundtable Group for the Ten Schools Admission Organization.

Corina R. Fitzgerald
Admission Officer

Ms. Fitzgerald joins Choate from Lehigh University, where she recently completed a double major in Chinese and Asian Studies with a minor in business. She spent time in China, studying at Peking University in 2013, and teaching as part of the Keystone Academy Summer Program, a three-week English intensive program to middle schoolers, in Beijing in 2015. Ms. Fitzgerald is also a graduate of The Hotchkiss School, making her keenly familiar with the admissions needs of a boarding school community. Most recently, she worked in the Lehigh Office of Admissions as an Admissions Fellow.

Matthew McDonald
Director of Financial Aid & Associate Director of Admission

Mr. McDonald joined the Choate Admission team in 2015 after more than 11 years at Buckingham Browne & Nichols School, in Cambridge, Massachusetts. In addition to his role as the Upper School Associate Director of Admission, Mr. McDonald was a member of the History department, served as an academic advisor, and was a coach for the boy’s varsity soccer team. A graduate of the Roxbury Latin School and Dartmouth College, where he received an A.B. in Government and was a member of the men’s soccer program, he is an avid golfer who also enjoys spending as much time as possible in, on, or around the ocean. He lives on campus with his wife, Sarah, and their two daughters, Molly and Anne.

Grace McGee
Assistant Director

Ms. McGee earned her B.A. in philosophy and studio art from Washington and Lee University and her M.A. in philosophy from Virginia Tech. She joined the Choate Admission team in 2015 after working two years as an admissions counselor at Washington and Lee where she served on a highly selective admissions team overseeing the international application process, managing domestic territories (including California, Colorado, Florida and New Jersey), and leading on-campus admissions programming and communications. Prior to her admission experience, she was a member of the faculty at Avon Old Farms School where she taught English and moral philosophy, coached boys’ soccer and squash, and was a resident adviser.

Helene Ramirez Guerra
Assistant Director

Ms. Ramirez Guerra, a graduate of The Loomis Chaffee School, comes to Choate after serving in Loomis’ Admission Office for six years where she was instrumental in coordinating and managing diversity efforts for multicultural and international recruitment in Latin America and the Caribbean. In addition to her role in admission, Ms. Ramirez-Guerra was a counseling intern at Loomis Chafee and also co-founded and was a faculty adviser to a student mentorship program for students of color. She earned a bachelor’s degree in psychology, cum laude, from Hunter College and recently completed her masters of social work degree at Boston University with a concentration on adolescent development. She lives on campus with her husband, Oscar.

LJ Spinnato
Assistant Director

Mr. Spinnato joined the Choate Rosemary Hall admission team in the fall of 2008 and serves as the Office’s Athletic Liaison. He came to Choate, after a two-year stint at Northfield Mount Hermon where he taught a variety of strength training and personal fitness classes and was the school’s Sports Information Director. LJ is a 2006 graduate of Amherst College with a bachelor’s degree in Law, Jurisprudence and Social Thought. He played football for the Lord Jeff’s, earning four varsity letters. In 2014, in his first season as Head Varsity Football coach, Coach Spinnato led the Wild Boars to an undefeated season and New England Championship. He lives on campus with his wife, Brianna ’06, an admission committee interviewer.

Cynthia Stahura
Assistant Director

Ms. Stahura is a native of Lunenburg, Nova Scotia, Canada. After receiving her Bachelor of Science degree in biology, and a postgraduate degree in education from Mount Allison University in Sackville, New Brunswick, her career as a middle school science teacher spanned more than 10 years. She most recently worked part time in the Teaching and Learning Center and coached JV Volleyball. She was also Director of the Math and Science Institute for Girls (MSIG) for two summers and taught biology in Choate's Summer Programs for three years. Prior to joining the Admissions department full time, Ms. Stahura was a part time admission reader and interviewer for four years. She lives on campus with her husband Eric, Senior Associate Director of College Counseling, and their two daughters, Isabella and Emilia.