Rachel Fine is Managing Director of the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills, drawing upon an 18-year career in the arts as a versatile administrator, educator, and fundraiser, as well as a professional classical musician.
Ms. Fine has served as Senior Consultant at the DeVos Institute, where she worked with an international portfolio of arts and cultural organizations, as well as Executive Director of the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra (LACO) from November 2010 through February 2015. Some of the highlights of Ms. Fine’s LACO tenure included establishing LACO as orchestra-in-residence for the Center for the Art of Performance at UCLA in an ongoing and mutually beneficial collaboration; successfully shepherding LACO through the challenges of the Great Recession; and expanding the reach of the Orchestra with prestigious debuts beyond Los Angeles. In addition, she spearheaded such high-profile community events as Play Me, I’m Yours, an ambitious three-week project that placed 30 pianos in 30 locations across Los Angeles, and Strad Fest LA, a four-day citywide festival featuring eight Stradivarius violins. Strad Fest LA earned press coverage in The Wall Street Journal and on 60 Minutes, and also resulted in the highest-grossing fundraiser in LACO history.
Previously, she served in leadership positions at such institutions as the Los Angeles Children’s Chorus, where she helped found the Young Men’s Ensemble, a rare choral group for young men with changing voices, for The Juilliard School, Santa Fe Opera, and the Aspen Music Festival, as well as the renowned San Francisco-based period ensemble Philharmonia Baroque Orchestra.
Ms. Fine completed a one-year comprehensive training program as one of six American Management Fellows in 2001-02 at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts under the guidance of then-President Michael M. Kaiser. The program, now part of the DeVos Institute of Arts Management, included intensive training in strategic planning, development, marketing, public relations, and finance. Ms. Fine was also selected to participate in the 2012 Leadership L.A. program, the Los Angeles County Arts Commission’s 2008-09 Arts Leadership Initiative, and the 2007-08 Wells Fargo New Executive Directors Institute of Southern California’s Executive Service Corps. She is a founding mentor of the Los Angeles Emerging Arts Leaders’ mentorship program.
An accomplished pianist, Ms. Fine studied at the Eastman School of Music and the University of California, Irvine, where she graduated Phi Beta Kappa with a degree in music. She also attended graduate school in musicology at Yale University. Ms. Fine served on the Board of Directors of the Association of California Symphony Orchestras (ACSO) for six years and recently joined the Board of Councilors for the University of Southern California’s Thornton School of Music, where she also teaches a graduate course in executive arts leadership. She has been enlisted as moderator and panelist by ACSO, League of American Orchestras, USC Thornton School of Music and Chorus America conferences, and has served as advisor since 2009 to the DeVos Institute of Arts Management.
She and her husband, Christopher Hawthorne, the architecture critic of the Los Angeles Times, have two children who love the arts.
Elliot Fox served as Managing Director of Primary Stages in New York City for 11 seasons until he stepped down in June 2015 to pursue new opportunities in education and consulting. In collaboration with the Primary Stages team, he planned, produced, and developed more than 50 new plays during 11 seasons of productions, readings, special events, and educational and playwright development programs. He also created the Fordham/Primary Stages MFA in Playwriting.
His work in non-profit theater spans more than 25 years and includes positions in management, production, and performance. As General Manager of the historic Cherry Lane Theatre, Mr. Fox initiated its recent renovation and worked on Samuel Beckett’s Happy Days and Irene O’Garden’s Women On Fire, among others. As General Manager and Associate Director of Signature Theatre Company in New York for its first nine seasons, he established Signature’s first home on West 42nd Street and worked with Romulus Linney, Lee Blessing, Edward Albee, Horton Foote, Adrienne Kennedy, Sam Shepard, Arthur Miller, John Guare, and Maria Irene Fornes to present their seasons of plays. He also served as General Manager of an internet consulting firm and the Chief Operating Officer of a software development company.
Mr. Fox is a graduate of Brandeis University. He has served on the boards of Primary Stages, Signature Theatre Company, the Foundry Theatre, and The Off Broadway League, as well as on panels for the New York State Council on the Arts, The Alliance of Resident Theatres/NY, and the Kennedy Center’s Arts In Crisis Mentor program.
Boo Froebel is Producer of Lincoln Center Festival (LCF).
Prior to LCF, Ms. Froebel served as Executive Producer of the Imagine Festival of Arts, Issues, and Ideas; curated and produced the live art at The Whitney Museum of American Art; was Artistic Director of Galapagos Art Space (Obie Award in recognition of supporting new work); and curated and produced the monthly performance showcase Phat Tuesdays, among other projects.
A performance generalist, Ms. Froebel has sat on numerous panels and convenings for foundations and arts councils, including the Foundation for Contemporary Arts, Creative Capital Foundation, The CalArts Alpert Award in the Arts, the Bush Foundation Artists Fellowships, the MAP Fund, and USArtists International. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of Movement Research. Ms. Froebel, a Minnesota native, graduated from Sarah Lawrence College.
Michael John Garcés
Michael John Garcés has been the Artistic Director of Cornerstone Theatre Company, a community-engaged ensemble based in Los Angeles, since 2006.
Directing credits at the company include California: The Tempest by Alison Carey; Plumas Negras by Juliette Carrillo; Café Vida by Lisa Loomer; Making Paradise by Tom Jacobson, Shishir Kurup, and Deborah Wicks La Puma; and 3 Truths by Naomi Iizuka. For Cornerstone, he has also written Consequence, out of story circles with students, teachers, administrators, and parents in South Kern County, and Los Illegals, created in residence with communities of day laborers and domestic workers. Directing credits at other theaters include, most recently, Lights Rise on Grace by Chad Bekim (Woolly Mammoth Theatre), The Body of an American by Dan O'Brien (Wilma Theater), Wrestling Jerusalem by Aaron Davidman (Intersection for the Arts), The Motherfucker with the Hat by Stephen Adly Guirgis (South Coast Repertory) and Red, Black, and Green: A Blues by Marc Bamuthi Joseph (Yerba Buena Center for the Arts and The Brooklyn Academy of Music). His full-length plays include The Web (needtheatre), Points of Departure (INTAR Hispanic American Arts Center), and Acts of Mercy (Rattlestick Playwrights Theatre), as well as a solo performance, Ague Ardente (The American Place).
Mr. Garcés is on the executive board of the Stage Directors and Choreographers Society. He is a recipient of the Rockwood Arts and Culture Fellowship, the Princess Grace Statue, the Alan Schneider Director Award, a TCG/New Generations Grant, and the Non-Profit Excellence Award from the Center of Non-Profit Management. He is a Southern California Leadership Network Fellow, a company member at Woolly Mammoth, and a proud alumnus of New Dramatists.
Sandra L. Gibson
Sandra L. Gibson’s arts and culture training, teaching, and practice over three decades have given her a unique understanding of partnership, creativity and collaboration.
Ms. Gibson’s professional experience began with her role as program representative for UCLA Extension’s Department of the Arts, where she developed and managed 180-200 nationally recognized programs annually. Ms. Gibson later became Director of West Coast Operations at American Film Institute. Her work as the Executive Director of the Long Beach Regional Arts Council in California developed her gifts for working with diverse cultural communities, individual artists and patrons of arts and culture. She directed the city’s first Cultural Masterplan and launched the first Smithsonian Institution Program Affiliation in Long Beach.
In 2000, Ms. Gibson was appointed the fourth president and CEO of the Association of Performing Arts Presenters, the leading service and advocacy organization for the presenting industry worldwide. Ms. Gibson engaged the association in new technologies and expanded its reach globally and across industry sectors, including partnerships with the leadership of Consejo Nacional de la Cultura y las Artes in Mexico, the French Embassy Cultural Services Division, the Netherlands Consulate, and the Cultural Ministry of Colombia, among others. She served as a Commissioner on the Culture Committee of the U.S. National Commission for UNESCO from 2005 to 2009.
In 2004, Ms. Gibson launched the Creative Campus Initiative with a landmark meeting of the American Assembly at Columbia University, and in 2007 the Creative Campus Innovations Grant Program to support exemplary cross-campus, interdisciplinary projects that integrate the arts into the academy.
Ms. Gibson became an independent consultant in July 2011 and the following year formed Sandra L. Gibson and Associates, LLC, a consulting practice dedicated to advancing the arts, culture, and education globally. She is an ethnomusicologist and musician with a master’s degree in music from Northwestern University.
Brent D. Glass
Brent D. Glass is Director Emeritus of the Smithsonian’s National Museum of American History, the world’s largest museum devoted to telling the story of America.
A national leader in the preservation, interpretation, and promotion of history, Mr. Glass is a public historian who pioneered influential oral history and material culture studies, an author, television presence, and international speaker on public memory and museum management. As director of the National Museum of American History from 2002 to 2011, Mr. Glass led a two-year, $87 million renovation and development of 20 new exhibitions including a new gallery for the Star-Spangled Banner, the flag that inspired the national anthem.
Mr. Glass is an active member of and consultant to the diplomatic, cultural, and academic communities. For 10 years, he was a member of the Flight 93 Memorial Advisory Commission. He travels frequently as a featured speaker and participant in U.S. State Department cultural diplomacy programs and currently serves as a consultant and advisor to cultural and educational organizations including The Presidio in San Francisco, the DeVos Institute of Arts Management, and Drexel University in Philadelphia. Before joining the Smithsonian, Mr. Glass served from 1987 to 2002 as executive director of the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, managing the largest and most comprehensive state history program in the country.
Mr. Glass earned his doctorate in history from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill, a master’s degree in American Studies from New York University, and a bachelor’s degree from Lafayette College.