Erika Burnett, Executive Director of Women’s Fund of Greater Chattanooga: In 2018, Erika Burnett, alongside business partner Nicole Kemp, launched the Women of Color Collaborative, demonstrating a strong commitment to advocating, empowering and securing the resources for women and girls to work, play and build together. Before starting her consultancy, Burnett served the community in a variety of leadership roles at the Center for Nonprofit Management (Nashville), Communities in Schools of Tennessee, Leadership for Educational Equity and Hands On Nashville. Burnett is a graduate of New Leaders Council and of Nashville Emerging Leaders, as well as a long-time member of the National Council of Negro Women.
Justine MK Schmidt, Chief Content Officer of UNC-TV Public Media North Carolina: Schmidt has twenty-five years of experience working in the broadcast industry where she most recently served as a Content Development and Acquisitions Consultant for Showtime (ViacomCBS)/Smithsonian Networks. She is an award winning filmmaker in media, communications and conservation who has led programming, content sourcing, development and production projects internationally; clients include the Smithsonian Channel, National Geographic, Discovery Communications, CNN and The Ocean Foundation. She served as a key member of various linear and digital global network launches including M Media, Alhurra TV, Ecology TV and the Ocean Channel.
Patrick Sims, Executive Vice Chancellor & Provost of University of North Carolina School of the Arts: Sims spent over fifteen years working as an administrator and faculty member at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, where he most recently served as the Deputy Vice Chancellor for Diversity. Sims also worked as Vice Provost for Diversity and Interim Vice Provost, and founded the Theatre for Cultural and Social Awareness (TCSA). Before joining the faculty at UW Madison, Sims was a company member at the Oregon Shakespeare Festival and a faculty associate in the Department of Theatre and Dance at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. There he served as a founding member and Artistic Director of the Human Experience Theatre (HET).
Rachel Seff Koenig, Director of Human Resources of The Houston Ballet: Koenig is a strategic executive bringing the Houston Ballet over twenty years of experience in human resources, recruitment, and marketing, most recently serving as Vice President of Human Resources at Steward & Stevenson LLC. She also previously served as the Manager of Leadership Recruitment & Selection for the Houston Independent School District. She holds an M.S. in Educational Administration from Texas A&M University and an Ed.D. in Educational Administration & Educational Leadership from the University of Houston.
Frederick J. Ferrer, CEO of Child Advocates of Silicon Valley: Ferrer has three decades of leadership in mobilizing stakeholders and staff toward change through groundbreaking nonprofit and public policy initiatives, programs and systems reforms. Most recently, he worked as President and Principal Consultant at Manzanita Solutions. Prior to this, he served as CEO of the Health Trust for nine years. Ferrer is Vice Chair of the Santa Clara University College of Arts and Science Leadership Advisory Board. Additionally, he serves as a Dean’s Executive Professor of Public Health at Santa Clara University and adjunct instructor in Child Development and Education at De Anza College.
Clark Halvorson, President & CEO of United Way of Anchorage: Halvorson brings to UWA thirty years of experience working to overcome social, health and environmental challenges at the nonprofit, local, state, tribal and national levels. He has worked for the Washington State Department of Health for the last ten years, most recently serving as Assistant Secretary of Emergency Response and Preparedness leading the state’s public health response to the COVID-19 pandemic. He holds a B.A. in Geology with an emphasis in Hydrology and a minor in Environmental Studies from Pacific Lutheran University.
Kelly Tweeddale, Executive Director of San Francisco Ballet: Tweeddale has a 30-year career leading arts organizations throughout North America, in the process building audience engagement, driving sustained revenue growth, and creating environments that foster innovation. She previously held executive positions at Seattle Opera and is stepping down as President of the Vancouver Symphony and VSO School of Music. San Francisco Ballet was founded in 1933 as the first professional ballet company in the United States, and is one of the world’s leading classical ballet organizations.
Susan Frutcher, Deputy Director, Museum Operations & COO of The Royal Ontario Museum: Fruchter was instrumental in a growth and progress of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History over the last two decades as she evolved from an Associate Director of Operations when she joined, to serving as the Museum’s Deputy Director. Fruchter also served at Nature Serve, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and National Aeronautics Space Administration. She has a double B.A. in Political Science and Russian from Tufts University and an M.A. in International Affairs from the Columbia University.
Deana Haggag, President & CEO of United States Artists: Haggag is a dynamic leader in the arts sector. Before joining United States Artists, she was the Executive Director of The Contemporary in Baltimore , where she led the museum for nearly four years during a significant period in its history. At The Contemporary, she commissioned four award-winning, large-scale art projects, created a new speaker series, and hosted a national artist retreat, growing the institution exponentially during her tenure. She has taught courses at Towson University and the Maryland Institute College of Art and has also led multiple curatorial projects across Newark, Baltimore and Minneapolis.
Tommy Phillips, President and Artistic Director of The Philharmonic Society of Orange County: Tommy was Director of Artistic Planning at the San Diego Symphony for eight years before leaving to consult with the San Francisco Symphony, Minnesota Orchestra, Grand Rapids Symphony, San Antonio Symphony, Charlotte Symphony, Pacific Symphony, and Mainly Mozart Festival. In addition, Phillips is the co-founder of Black Cats Production Company, which arranges pieces for Chinese and American musicians to perform in each other’s countries. His list of clients includes violinist Joshua Bell, the Shanghai Quartet, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, and France’s Malandain Ballet Biarritz.
Lori Klein Brennan, Executive Director of the Pennsylvania and Delaware Chater of The Nature Conservancy: Brennan brings TNC over twenty years of experience working as a fundraising, marketing, and communications professional, most recently serving as Senior Director of CCS Fundraising in Philadelphia. She also served as the Director of Marketing and Communications at the University City District. Prior to that she was the Director of Communications and Marketing for the Academy of Natural Sciences in Philadelphia.
Dale Hedding,Vice President for Development of theChicago Symphony Orchestra Association (CSOA): Dale Hedding comes to the CSOA with 25 years of leadership experience and fundraising accomplishments at nonprofit arts, culture and education institutions. Most recently he was the Managing Director for External Affairs and Patron Engagement at the Cleveland Institute of Music. Hedding was Vice President of Development for the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra. He also served as Director of Development at the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Phoenix Symphony, as well as the Manager of Development at the National Symphony Orchestra at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts.
Sarah Jesse,Deputy Director, Orange County Museum of Art: Sarah was the Associate Vice President for Education at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art where she worked since 2011. Prior to joining LACMA, she was the Bernsen Director of Education and Public Programs at Tulsa’s Philbrook Museum of Art. Before Philbrook, she held various positions at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago and was the Chair of the Education Committee of the American Alliance of Museums from 2014-2016. She completed the Getty Leadership Institute in 2017.
Charles Hirschhorn, President of Otis College of Art and Design: Hirschhorn adds to Otis leadership over two decades of experience working as a media executive and producer in motion pictures, television and animation, most recently serving as the President of AEG Television. He has also served as a trustee of the Berklee College of Music, on the advisory board of USC’s Lloyd Greif Center for Entrepreneurial Studies, and on the advisory committee for Harvard University’s Office of the Arts. Established in 1918, Otis today has an operating budget of $42 million and about 960 full and part-time faculty & staff serving close to 1,200 BFA and MFA students.