Meet the Team

Fred Cohen / President
Fred’s vision to change the impersonal approach that was associated with the “employment agency business" has stayed with us into the millennium. This philosophy has allowed his firm to become one of the more respected and successful agencies in New York City and the surrounding area. Over the years Merit has applied its resources in developing a full service organization that provides superior temporary services and full background checking services. Merit Personnel and Consulting still provides the old-fashioned virtues that made the firm a valuable asset to clients in meeting candidates and assessing that they are the right “fit” for our clients. He has transformed the traditional and impersonal “employment agency" into a more personal and professional Human Resources Partner with both clients and candidates.

Prior to establishing Merit, Fred spent his first five years developing the most profitable division of what once was one of NYC’s pre-eminent agencies, Stanton Personnel.

Fred is a graduate of Fairleigh Dickinson University, 1977, with a dual major of Psychology and Business Management. He continued his education with the Cornell Baruch School of Labor Relations where he pursued a MBA in Industrial Psychology while establishing a career in the Staffing Industry. Fred is also an active member of the community through working with youth sports leagues and political organizations.

Gregory Hueth / Vice President
Gregory Hueth is the Executive Vice President of Merit Consulting Services. He is responsible for overseeing all aspects of permanent and temporary job recruitment. He specializes in all areas of the financial industry. Mr. Hueth began his career at Merit in 1985 as an entry level job recruiter. In 2009, Mr. Hueth became partner and Vice President for the company. Before joining Merit, Mr. Hueth operated commercial and recreational vessels on the Jersey Shore.

Mr. Hueth holds a B.A. in English and History from Mount St. Mary’s University. Mr. Hueth is also an avid fisherman and is President of the saltwater fishing club The Shark River Surf Anglers, Monmouth and Ocean County Fishing Alliance and Chairman of Save the Summer Flounder Fishery Fund based in Belmar, New Jersey.

Alexandria Lambert / Office Manager

Alexandria (Alex to everyone) Lambert is the Office/Finance Manager for Merit Personnel and Merit Consulting Services. She has been with Merit for 17 years, although somehow she still looks 12 years old. She has undertaken most of the duties involved in operating a staffing service, from interviewing candidates and dealing with clients over job orders. These days, though, the majority of her time is spent managing the procedures, including payment, for our temp candidates on assignment, and dealing with our clients’ accounting departments for all matters financial. She is something of a techy guru and is always the point person in the office when our computers/printers/cell phones are on the fritz.

Alex is always upbeat and positive, though she herself denies this, and maintains she gets angry like ordinary mortals, but Merit staff have seen no hints of this so far. We love our Alex.

Nicole Haltses / Director of Recruitment

Nicole has been with Merit since 2007 when she started as an intern. She quickly moved up the ranks to become our Director of Recruitment. Graduate of Pace University, she brings her marketing expertise and personable touch to our recruitment efforts. Offering sound advice to candidates in search of employment and finding great matches for our clients, she puts others’ needs first. A true leader as she manages our internship program and develops college students to become professionals in our field. Approachable with the intent to leave people feeling they have gained something useful in either building their career, or finding the right match.

Margaret Kennedy / Recruitment Consultant

Margaret was born in Glasgow, Scotland and attended Glasgow University, graduating many moons ago with a degree in Microbiology. After working with Glaxo R&D as a research bacteriologist, then HR Manager, she came to New York where she has been in the recruitment industry for 15 years. She is writing a book on Grammar Made Simple and is active in the New York-Scottish community. She stresses that these two activities are unrelated.

Roxanne Deresz/Recruiter

Roxanne is a 2014 Rowan University alumni with a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Resource Management. She joined the Merit team in February of 2015 where she started as a Recruiting Coordinator. Roxanne typically handles database searches for available positions, phone screenings, coordinating interviews with clients, editing resumes, and references checks.

Finding an interest in HR at an early age, Roxanne was instantly drawn to the recruiting world. Having always described herself as a people person, she takes pride in relating with applicants and making connections that will last for years to come. She finds it exciting to be a part of others’ journeys to find a new position or career and enjoys assisting applicants though every step in the hiring process.

Meagan Donovan/Recruiter

Meagan graduated from Rowan University in 2013 with a Bachelor’s Degree in Human Resource Management. A few months after graduating she started her career here at Merit where she is now a Recruiting Coordinator.  Meagan holds many responsibilities within Merit, some of which include sourcing and interviewing candidates, updating job boards, coordinating with clients, scheduling appointments and completing background checks. Her outgoing personality and professional demeanor allow her to help candidates reach their goals of finding new positions and furthering their careers.

Prior to Merit, Meagan worked as an Administrative Assistant at Rowan University’s Health Center and also interned within the college’s HR Department. She believes in being active within the community, by coaching youth basketball and playing rugby.  Meagan applies her background and leadership skills by training new employees and assisting candidates throughout the job search process.

Manaya Colon/Recruiter

Manaya joined Merit in March 2015 as a Recruiter/Office Assistant. She is very friendly, approachable, and loves working with others. As a Recruiter, Manaya has a knack for making her applicants feel comfortable. She enjoys the interpersonal side of the recruiting industry and keeps in touch with applicants throughout the evolution of their career and while they are working with Merit on various assignments. Learning someone’s preferences both personally and professionally over time helps Manaya assist them in finding a job that works best for them. Her area of expertise is working with entry-level graduates and those searching for administrative support roles.

In her personal time, Manaya appreciates all that New York City has to offer and likes to spend her free time exploring new neighborhoods, attending street festivals, and seeing live theatre. Other hobbies include binging on Netflix and spending time with her family, especially her incredible dog, Francis.

Darya Ilazarova/Recruiter

Darya Ilazarova has an Associates in Education and a Bachelors in Psychology. Darya coordinates Merit’s social media activities, assesses resumes for potential placements, edits resumes,  and coordinates interviews. She always tries to expand on her knowledge within the recruiting and HR world while making positive connections with new people every day. Darya’s calm and professional attitude gives others a sense of comfort. She possesses strong communicative skills and a heartwarming yet hardworking character.

Prior to Merit, Darya worked as a Behavioral Analyst for several Magnet schools in the Connecticut area. She helped children reach educational goals and behavioral milestones. Darya’s personal interests include playing piano, Zumba, and exploring New York City. She is also pursuing her Masters in Human Resources and Psychology. Her inspiration comes from the thought that she can change someone’s life by helping them find a career path they have been searching for. She believes that helping the world can come in many forms and in this case, being a recruiter and working within the HR world.