About the Center


Lori Takeuchi, PhD

Acting Executive Director

Lori Takeuchi is acting executive director of the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop. Prior to holding this position, Lori directed the Center’s research program from 2009–2018, and before that served as its postdoctoral research fellow from 2008–2009. As research director, Lori led several of the Cooney Center’s distinguishing initiatives, including the fellows program, Print … 

Catherine Jhee

Director of Web and Strategic Communications

Ms. Jhee is Director of Web and Strategic Communications at the Joan Ganz Cooney Center, where she leads its digital media and publication efforts. She is a writer, editor, and interactive producer with more than 10 years of experience creating and distributing educational and documentary content for organizations including POV … 

Lili Toutounas

Senior Manager of Administration

Ms. Toutounas oversees administration for the Cooney Center as the Senior Manager of Administration, overseeing meetings, board relations, and database management, as well as providing administrative support to Michael H. Levine. Prior to her work at the Cooney Center, she managed administrative services at the Japan Society for four years. Lili has … 

Sadaf Sajwani

Director of Partnerships and Planning

Ms. Sajwani joined the Cooney Center in January 2013 and managed the Cooney Center’s work on the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation grant for the Games and Learning Publishing Council, among other projects. Before joining the Cooney Center, Sadaf was the project manager for Sesame Workshop’s co-production in Pakistan – … 

Alexia Raynal

Research Manager

Mrs. Raynal joined the Joan Ganz Cooney Center team in 2016. As Research Manager, Alexia supported leadership in three main projects: the Aprendiendo Juntos Council, the Center’s partnership with Apple’s ConnectEd initiative, and the launch of a supplementary curriculum to reinforce social and emotional learning. Her experience working with low-income and Latino-Hispanic …