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LFP Cohort I (Jun 2015 - Jan 2017)


Ken Foster APAP
Ken Foster
Ken Foster is Associate Professor of Practice in the Thornton School of Music and Director of Arts Leadership at the University of Southern California. Before joining the faculty of USC, he was executive director of San Francisco's Yerba Buena Center for the Arts (YBCA) for ten years. The organization thrived under his leadership, benefitting from his dedication to nurturing long-term relationships with artists, growing YBCA's audience and establishing the Center as an international leader in the contemporary arts. Foster has more than 30 years of experience as an arts administrator, curator, educator, and performing arts presenter at Millikin University, Penn State University and the University of Arizona in addition to YBCA. He has served as a board member for national arts organizations like the Association of Performing Arts Professionals, Dance USA, and Chamber Music America, is a Founding Member of the Africa Contemporary Arts Consortium and consults regularly with arts organizations around the world on issues of relevance to the arts and the contemporary world.
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Scott Stoner
Scott Stoner, is the vice president of programs and resources at APAP, has devoted his professional life to integrating the arts in education, in health care, and in the community. At APAP, he is responsible for the organization’s grants, leadership, and annual conference programs. As Vice-President for Education at VSA, and Director of National Education Programs at The Kennedy Center, he also focused on professional development and founded ArtsEdge (one of the first educational websites). He served as a teacher and therapist in both private and public schools, and co-founded a public charter school in Washington, DC. In conjunction with Smith Center for Healing and the Arts. He established an artist-in-residence program for cancer patients in Washington, DC hospitals and for wounded warriors at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.
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Group Leaders: Cohort I

Janera Solomon
Janera Solomon, is the executive director of the Kelly Strayhorn Theater, a historic live arts venue in Pittsburgh, now in its seventh year of presenting progressive, evocative new works in dance, music, film, education and cultural programming. Recognized for her transformative leadership and contributions to the revitalization of East Liberty, Janera managed the merger of the Kelly Strayhorn Theater and the Dance Alloy in 2011, while maintaining affordable dance instruction at The Alloy School, and creating a series of diverse programs designed to inspire and engage a wide range of audiences. Janera has contributed significantly to the artistic development and career advancement of numerous dancers and choreographers supported by Kelly Strayhorn’s residency programs. Janera maintains volunteer board positions for several organizations including the Greater Pittsburgh Arts Council, the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh and Winchester Thurston School. In 2014, she joined the August Wilson Center Recovery Committee and led a series of community meetings. In a recent settlement, it was announced that the AWC will continue as a fully dedicated center for African-American culture in Pittsburgh.
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Barrie Steinberg
Barrie Steinberg, has nearly three decades of experience in artist management, production, artistic administration, andmanagement consulting. As Director of Frank Salomon Associates, she currently represents a roster of internationally renowned, classical musicians. Through her work as Executive Director of the International Arts Foundation, she has facilitated the commissioning of dozens of new works, as well as planned and implemented meaningful tours and residencies on both sides of the Atlantic. The Santa Fe Chamber Music Festival and Los Angeles Philharmonic, are among the organizations with whom she has worked previously. Ms. Steinberg holds a BA from the University of Pennsylvania and an MBA from UCLA's Anderson School and has served as guest lecturer/panelist at both institutions, as well as at New York University and Arts Presenters, Chamber Music America, and the League of American Orchestras conferences. She currently holds the position of Treasurer for Backshore Artists Project, Inc. and has previously served as an Executive Board Member of NAPAMA.
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Carlton Turner
Carlton Turner, is the Executive Director of Alternate ROOTS, a regional non-profit arts organization based in the south supporting artists working at the intersection of arts and social justice. He is the co-founder and co-artistic director, along with his brother Maurice Turner, of the group M.U.G.A.B.E.E. (Men Under Guidance Acting Before Early Extinction). M.U.G.A.B.E.E. is a Mississippi-based performing arts group that blends of jazz, hip-hop, spoken word poetry and soul music together with non-traditional storytelling and a member of the Progress Theatre Ensemble. Carlton is currently on the board of Appalshop, an advisory member to the National Theater Project at New England Foundation for the Arts and Michael Rohd’s Catalyst Initiative. Carlton is a member of the We Shall Overcome Fund Advisory Board at the Highlander Center for Research and Education, a steering committee member of the Arts and Culture Social Justice Network, and former Network of Ensemble Theaters steering committee member.
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Clyde Valentín
Clyde Valentín, is the Director of Ignite/Arts Dallas, a project of SMU Meadows School of the Arts. Prior to joining the staff of the Meadows School in 2013, Clyde Valentín served as executive director of the New York City-based Hip-Hop Theater Festival (HHTF), where he oversaw its transition to become Hi-ARTS, an arts organization fostering creative, multi-disciplinary work, outreach and education through the hip-hop art and culture movement. Known as one of the most influential outlets showcasing hip-hop performing arts, HHTF has presented hundreds of artists and introduced diverse, national audiences to the stories, people, music, dance and word of hip-hop. Under Valentín’s leadership, HHTF presentations and productions appeared in major urban centers around the United States.
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Jacob Yarrow
Jacob Yarrow, is programming director for the University of Iowa’s Hancher Auditorium, a multidisciplinary presenter that presents 25-30 performances each year and a wide variety of education and artist residency programs. He serves on the boards of the Chamber Music America, the National Theatre Project, Iowa Cultural Corridor Alliance, and Any Given Child-Iowa City. Prior to coming to Iowa in 2009, Jacob was executive director of Garth Newel Music Center in rural Bath County, VA where he founded the Virginia Blues & Jazz Festival. Jacob also worked as education director at the Association of Performing Arts Presenters in Washington, DC. He began his career as a touring musician and as a junior high music teacher.
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Jon-Catherwood-Ginn Cohort Group Leader
Jon Catherwood-Ginn
Jon Catherwood-Ginn is the partnerships & engagement manager at the Center for the Arts at Virginia Tech. Jon received a BA with Honors (Theatre, English) from Bucknell University and MFA (Directing & Public Dialogue) from Virginia Tech. As an artist and consultant, Jon has worked with the Pennsylvania Humanities Council, Sojourn Theatre, The TEAM, Lost Nation Theatre, Hamilton-Gibson Productions, Extant Arts Company, and the Off-Broadway Aquila Theatre. His work has been featured at conferences by the Network of Ensemble Theaters, Imagining America, and Association of American Colleges & Universities and in pieces published by Animating Democracy and Routledge Press.
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Joe Clifford
Joe Clifford is the first Audience Engagement Director at the Hopkins Center at Dartmouth College in Hanover, NH. His responsibilities include management of the organization's strategic communication—marketing, public relations and design—and ongoing student engagement research. Previously, Joe managed the Hop's Outreach and Arts Education programs planning 200 multi-disciplinary residency events yearly. He serves as President of the Arts Presenters of Northern New England (APNNE) consortium. Joe participated in APAP’s inaugural Leadership Development Institute (LDI) and 2004 class of the Emerging Leadership Institute (ELI). He holds a BA in Communications/Public Relations from Seton Hall University in South Orange, NJ.
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David Denson
David Denson is the Senior Programming Manager for the AT&T Performing Arts Center. Notably, he’s responsible for the “Off-Broadway on Flora” series and the critically acclaimed “Elevator Project”, which provides performance space for small local theater companies in the Dallas Arts District. Previously, David spent two years with the City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs where he opened Dallas City Performance Hall, a brand new 750-seat venue, in 2012. He managed the City’s Free Night of Theatre initiative and led the campaign to bring the 2013 Theater Communications Group National Conference to North Texas. David is also a respected director, working in New York and regionally.
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Jill Dombrowski
Jill Dombrowski is the Executive Producer for the Office of Arts & Cultural Programming (ACP) at Montclair State University. Jill came to Montclair State in 2004 to help launch Peak Performances, a program that presents and produces the work of leading artists in the world in dance, music, theater and opera. Under the auspices of Peak Performances she has produced, presented, and worked with artists including Bill T. Jones, David T. Little & Royce Vavrek, Caroline Shaw, Robert Whitman, Liz Lerman, Richard Schechner, Robert Wilson, David Gordon, the Kronos Quartet, Jan Fabre and Romeo Castellucci. Jill holds a BA in Fine Arts from New York University.
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Simone-Eccelston APAP Cohort
Simone Eccleston
Simone Eccleston is the Assistant Director of Programming at Harlem Stage, where she coordinates the implementation of all main stage performances with a special emphasis on the management and curation of Uptown Nights. She is responsible for the administration of the Harlem Stage Fund for New Work, a commissioning program for emerging artists. She also manages Harlem Stage’s Dig Deeper Initiative, designed to provide audiences with unique opportunities to engage with art, artists and the creative process. She also serves as the Director of Concerts and Touring Productions at Revive Music Group and is the founder of They’ve Got Next.
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Tanya Gertz
Tanya Gertz is the director of campus programming at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa. She manages the Center Stage Series, School Matinee Series, Distinguished Lecture Series, major campus events, the master calendar, ticket office, Center for Faith and Life facility, and oversees summer conferences. She’s been president of Iowa Arts Presenters since 2006, co-chair for the 2011 Midwest Arts Conference, and an APAP Emerging Leader. Before arts presenting, Tanya worked in Chicago at the Northwestern Memorial Foundation, the AIDS Pastoral Care Network, and served with Lutheran Volunteer Corps. She is personable, passionate, craves meaning, and seeks collaboration.
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Jason Hodges
Jason Hodges is a life-long Alaskan, born and raised in Fairbanks, AK. He attended college at Santa Clara University, majoring in English and minoring in theatre arts. Out of college, he taught English and drama at the Catholic Schools of Fairbanks for four years and served as the Development Director for the schools for another seven years. During that time, he was an active in community theatre as an actor, director, and writer. In 2005, he took the position as Executive Director of the Fairbanks Concert Association and moved to Anchorage in 2008 to assume the Executive Director role at the Anchorage Concert Association, where has been since.
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Brooke Horejsi
Brooke Horejsi is the Assistant Dean for Art & Creative Engagement & Executive Director of Utah Presents at the University of Utah. Previously, Brooke was the Deputy Director of Fine Arts Programming at the College of Saint Benedict/Saint John’s University and held positions with both commercial and non-profit theater companies. Horejsi has BA degrees in Spanish, English and Theater, and a MA in Arts Administration. She has served as adjunct faculty, a grant panelist, and a board member. Having acquired a complicated Czech last name, Brooke cannot pronounce it with linguistic accuracy, but she can spell it correctly (most of the time.)
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Anne Kogan

Anne Kogan is the Programming Manager at the AT&T Performing Arts Center in Dallas, TX. Anne was previously with Lisner Auditorium at The George Washington University,and worked on folk and traditional arts festivals at the National Council for the Traditional Arts. She was a producer of A Tale of Two Nations, a 2013 Brazilian carnival tour featuring Maracatu Estrela Brilhante from Recife and Brooklyn’s Nation Beat. Anne studied ethnomusicology at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where she wrote her master’s thesis on swing dancing and musicality. She’s also an avid baker and devotee of mid-century modern style.
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Jaamil Olawale Kosoko

Jaamil Olawale Kosoko is originally from Detroit, MI and is a Nigerian American curator, producer, poet, and performance artist currently based in Brooklyn, New York. With his creative partner Kate Watson-Wallace, he co-directs anonymous bodies || art collective, a visual performance hub focusing on innovative approaches to curation, performance, and education. Kosoko is a Founding Advisory Board Member of the Coalition for Diasporan Scholars Moving and has most recently been elected to the Executive Committee on the Board of Trustees at Dance/USA. He has sat on numerous funding and curatorial panels including The Map Fund, Baker Memorial Prize, the National Endowment for the Arts, Movement Research at Judson Church, and the Philadelphia Cultural Fund.
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Dr. Chris Ludwa

Dr. Chris Ludwa is the Artistic Director of Bay View Music Festival. He programs and oversees over 50 performing arts events for this Chautauqua and conservatory in Michigan. He is also Music Director for The Federated Church in Chagrin Falls, OH. Prior to that, he served as Director of Performing Arts for Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland, Director of Encore Vocal Arts in Indianapolis, and Conductor of the Bloomington Pops Orchestra. In 2015, he founded Kaleidosong, a professional vocal sextet. Ludwa excels at connecting great music to people through teaching and collaboration, continuing to conduct various ensembles while initiating arts-in-education initiatives.
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Stephanie McKee

Stephanie McKee is a performer, choreographer, educator, facilitator and cultural organizer based in New Orleans, LA. She is the Artistic Director for Junebug Productions Inc., the organizational successor to the Free Southern Theater (FST), which was formed in 1963 to be a cultural arm of the Civil Rights Movement and was a major influence in the Black Theater Movement. Ms McKee is a member of AlternateROOTS, a New Voices emerging leaders alumnus and has been a faculty member and facilitator for the Urban Bush Women Summer Leadership Institute for over 10 years. As an artist, Stephanie's art is for everyone and is deeply committed to creating art that substantively reflects disparate conditions, as a powerful tool for change.
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Allen Moon

Allen Moon toured nationally and internationally with the Mehmet Sander Dance Company and Diavolo. For the past 13 years, he has worked at David Lieberman Artists’ Representatives, currently as Director of Touring, where he has booked national and international tours for the Merce Cunningham Dance Company, Kronos Quartet, Circus Oz, Diavolo, Bang on a Can All-Stars, it gets better, amongst many others. Moon co-founded and serves as Artistic Director of Santa Ana Sites, a series that presents performance in public and private spaces in Santa Ana, California. Moon serves on the CSU Summer Arts Advisory Board and a committee member for the International Society for the Performing Arts.
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Rosalina Ooi

Rosalina Ooi is President of the Perak Society of Performing Arts and a graduate of the Royal Academy of Dance, London and University of Durham. She has spent her life dedicated to the teaching, development and promotion of performing arts in Malaysia. Presenting artists both local & international has won her a tourism award as an “Outstanding Personality of Performing Arts” and she is an active board member The Dance Society Malaysia. She also produces and directs her own productions including the original musical “Shiny Black Gold”. She believes passionately in connecting performing arts communities and advocates that an entrepreneur spirit is essential in the development of performing arts.
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Crystal Michelle Perkins

Crystal Michelle Perkins is the Associate Artistic Director for the Dayton Contemporary Dance Company. A native of Augusta, GA, she holds a MFA in Dance from The Ohio State University and a BFA in Dance Performance from Southern Methodist University. Ms. Perkins has traveled internationally to Ougadougou, Burkina Faso and Port of Spain, Trinidad as a choreographer, performer and researcher. Her current work investigates body images of women of color through contemporary dance choreography. In 2010 she was awarded the Josie Award for exemplary dance performance and most recently received the 2014 Individual Excellence Award from the Ohio Arts Council.
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Andre Perry

Andre Perry lives in Iowa City where he serves as the Executive Director of the Englert Theatre, a 100-year-old performing arts space in the heart of downtown. He is also the co-founder and director of the Mission Creek Festival, a weeklong exploration of music, literature, theater, film, and food culture that inhabits established venues as well as non-traditional performance spaces in Iowa City.
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Samuel Pott

Samuel Pott founded Nimbus Dance Works in 2005 and has brought the company’s unique brand of dance performance and collaboration to audiences throughout New York City, New Jersey, New England and California at venues including the Brooklyn Academy of Music, NJPAC and the Jacob’s Pillow Dance Festival. Mr. Pott founded the School of Nimbus Dance Works in 2013, annually serving 130 students on site and over 1100 throughout the Jersey City school system. Mr. Pott received a Choreography Fellowship in 2008 from the New Jersey State Arts Council and a Governor’s Award in the Arts in 2012.
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Heather Rigby

Heather Rigby is a Los Angeles native and General Manager of Productions for the L.A. County Arts Commission at the Ford Theatres, a historic outdoor amphitheatre in Hollywood. She is passionate about valuing and integrating authentic community partnerships and direct arts participation into the presenting field. Heather has a B.A. in Art History from Harvard University, an M.A. in Cultural Studies from Claremont Graduate University, serves as vice-chair of WAA’s Latino Arts Network Steering Committee and volunteers with California Presenters and the Frankie Manning Foundation, a project supporting the national and international Lindy Hop community.
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Omari Rush

Omari Rush has continually expanding roles of service as an artistic administrator and community leader, in part through his work as curator of public programs at the Ann Arbor Art Center. Additionally, he has served in advisory roles for organizations of varying cultural and geographic scopes: Vice Chair of the governor-appointed State of Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, member of the Kennedy Center Partners in Education National Advisory Committee, and Chair of the Board of Directors for the Ann Arbor Public Schools Educational Foundation. Omari earned degrees in music from the University of Michigan and Florida State University.
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Kevin Seaman

Kevin Seaman is a multidisciplinary artist, administrator and advocate with 10+ years experience in the Bay Area nonprofit arts sector. He is General Manager of the Queer Cultural Center and oversees the Creating Queer Community commissioning and technical assistance program. Kevin previously worked with the Arts & Culture Program at The San Francisco Foundation, has served on grant panels for the San Francisco Arts Commission, the City of Berkeley and the Endeavor Foundation, and has led workshops in grant writing with the Center for Cultural Innovation and on queer arts as part of the 2011 Grantmakers in the Arts conference.
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Nurit Smith

Nurit Smith has nearly two decades involvement in arts and entertainment organizations as performer, community developer and non-profit executive. She has worked at varied organizations including Blue Man Group, Highways Performance Space and over a decade at the Screen Actors Guild Foundation. A UC Berkeley grad, her work as a performer and creator has been seen on tv and film and on stages across the country. She is overjoyed to be a part of the Grand Performances family.
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Kathleen Spehar

Kathleen Spehar is an arts educator, leader, manager, and advocate for arts organizations. Currently the Executive Director for The O'Shaughnessy at St. Catherine University, Spehar previously served as managing director for History Theatre, Mu Performing Arts, the Department of Theatre Arts and Dance and Centennial Showboat, all in MN. She project managed The Daily Show with Jon Stewart broadcast during the 2008 Republican National Convention. Spehar help found the Twin Cities Theatre Alliance and U of MN Arts and Cultural Leadership Program, and held adjunct or visiting faculty positions at the U of MN’s Department of Theatre, St Mary’s University and Florida State's School of Theatre. She served as board member and adviser for MN Citizens for the Art and other small arts organizations and performs with several orchestras. She holds a Bachelors of Music from Western Michigan University and a Masters of Liberal Studies from the U of MN.
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Beatrice Thomas
Beatrice Thomas is a grants consultant, multi-disciplinary artist, & performer. She has worked in administrative, curatorial, creative and educational roles for the municipal agencies, community colleges, galleries and non-profits. Ms. Thomas leads workshops and facilitates dialogues on grant strategy, queer arts, and cultural equity. She has served as Program Officer for San Francisco's Cultural Equity Grants program, Program Manager for First Night Austin, an interdisciplinary, urban, arts festival, and Chair of the Austin Art and Public Places Panel. She is dedicated to integrating exceptional art from queer communities and queer communities of color into meaningful public experience. Ms. Thomas received a BA from Hampshire College and a MFA from the University of Texas.
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Tamica Washington-Miller
Tamica Washington-Miller, Associate Director of Lula Washington Dance Theatre, (LWDT), handles programming and outreach for the LWDT School and professional company; manages relationships with high schools and community organizations and heads the Preparing Achievers for Tomorrow, program funded by California Community Foundation. She earned a scholarship to the Fund Raising Academy for Communities of Color lead by Compass Point; and graduated from Leadership LA a program for emerging leaders, on scholarship from the LA County Arts Commission. Tamica was asked to chair the Next Generation Leadership Committee for the International Association of Blacks in Dance, and was voted onto its Board. Tamica was a lead dancer for LWDT for many years. She now focuses on her leadership development and continues to teach, choreograph and perform in cameo roles with the company.
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