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Meet Our Team

Joel Geller

Joel B. Geller

Executive Director

Executive Director for the Gersh Academy Driver Education Program and the Gersh Academy Driver Education Extended Program which is a one-of-a-kind driver training for people on the autism spectrum. Joel has been with Gersh Driver Education since 2015 which is now the largest driver education program in the state of New York. Prior to Gersh, Joel was the Vice President of Sales and Marketing for the fastest-growing ignition interlock company in the country. "It is my goal to provide each student with the necessary information and techniques needed to be a safe and responsible driver." Joel has been with his wife for 30 years and has 2 adult children. He is also a Navy veteran.

Steve D’Argenio

Steve D'Argenio

Certified Classroom Instructor

I started teaching Driver Education in 1979, in my final year at WVU, in the Adult Driving School. Since then. I have taught Driver Education for multiple schools. I am a retired Physical Education Teacher, from the Lexington School for the Deaf. Since 1980 I have coached football and lacrosse. 23 of those years, I was a college coach, and 19 as a Head Coach. As an educator and mentor, I feel a strong responsibility to give my students the best perspective on how to be a safe and defensive driver, and, to keep themselves and all who share the roads as safe as possible and out of harm's way. I am married with 2 children, and a very supportive wife.  

Bill Englert

Bill Englert

Extended Program Instructor & Certified Driving Instructor

 

Emily Fedler

Emily Fedler

Certified Classroom Instructor

Emily is a born-and-raised Long Islander. She has taught social studies in NYC for five years and looks forward to educating her fellow Long Islanders about safe driving. Her goal is to make driver education useful and engaging. Emily enjoys sports through all seasons -- softball, skiing, and golf. She lives in Plainview with her husband and daughter.

Debbie Mavrich

Debbie Mavrich

Certified Classroom Instructor

 

Deborah Pomerenke

Deborah Pomerenke

Certified Classroom Instructor

I am a certified driving instructor as well as a secondary mathematics teacher for students with special needs. I am employed within Nassau BOCES in a highly specialized, therapeutic program catering to students with emotional disturbances. I also instruct a Twilight Program at Uniondale High School for youth at risk. I reside in Suffolk County and have two children ages 23 and 20. Outside of teaching I enjoy hiking, bicycling, gardening, and spending long summer days on the beach. Parents and young drivers are counting on the instructors to be passionate teachers and give the students the time and attention that they need to become safe and responsible drivers.

Mike Racanelli

Mike Racanelli

Certified Classroom Instructor

In addition to his early career in the business world, Mr. Racanelli has been an educator for over 25 years. He is currently a high school Guidance Counselor at a local public high school on Long Island. In conjunction with this, he has been working in various capacities in the field of Driver Education for the past 21 years. "My primary goals as an educator have been to teach young people the importance of being responsible, making good decisions, and maximizing one's potential. These are life lessons that I consistently infuse into each and every one of my driver education lessons."

Doug Schanars

Doug Schanars

Certified Classroom Instructor

Doug has been a teacher in the Syosset Central School District for 23 years. He coaches Basketball,  Tennis & Lacrosse as well as teaches Driver's Education. Doug recently joined the Gersh Team and is very excited to be a part of such a wonderful group of professionals. "Teaching is the easy part. Educating  students to become responsible adults in the classroom, on and off the field and behind the wheel of a car is where my skill set is most valuable. I look forward to working with all our students and I hope to make a lasting impression."