Arts Management 2011-2012 Fellows
Miriam Aiken comes to the Kennedy Center from Vancouver, where she held the position of Senior Manager, Development & Special Projects at Arts Umbrella, a not-for-profit arts education center for children and youth ages 2 to 19. Recent success includes playing a key role in the organization's first expansion effort to create two new facilities in outlying communities. Ms. Aiken's arts management career began as the Development Assistant at the Stratford Shakespeare Festival, after which she worked to generate government funds for the Toronto International Film Festival Group. Ms. Aiken further honed her development skills at TVOntario, a public educational media organization, and the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television, a nonprofit professional association dedicated to the promotion, recognition, and celebration of exceptional achievements in Canadian film and television. In addition to her professional experience, Ms. Aiken serves on the Board of Directors of Boca Del Lupo, a dynamic Vancouver theatre company specializing in innovative and experimental theatrical productions in collaboration with international, national, and local artists.
Sarah Baumann comes to the Kennedy Center from Toronto, Canada where she spent the last four years as the Marketing Communications Manager for Luminato, Toronto's annual festival of arts and creativity. Prior to Luminato, she worked in development communications and prospect research at the Toronto Symphony Orchestra and was a development intern at the National Arts Centre in Ottawa as part of the Income Managers Program, a post-graduate arts management program. Ms. Baumann is a co-founder and board member of Theatre Smash, a Toronto-based independent theatre company dedicated to developing and producing contemporary new work with a global twist. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree with honors in Stage and Screen Studies from Queen's University in Kingston and is a graduate of The Banff Centre's Theatre Craft program.
Sarah Case recently received her Master of Education in Arts in Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education. While at Harvard, she worked extensively with Boston Ballet's Education and Community Outreach Department where she developed dance education and programming for special needs populations and underserved communities in the Boston area. Ms. Case has also worked as a professional dancer and choreographer with regional theatres across the country and as a dance educator for the National Dance Institute and The School at Columbia University. She has served as Marketing Director for the New York International Ballet Competition and as Development and Membership Associate for American Ballet Theatre. In addition, she worked extensively for Columbia University, where she received her Bachelors of Arts. Ms. Case will continue her work in building, strengthening, and advocating for high quality, accessible arts education programming that fosters social change and transformative experiences for all populations.
As an active member of The International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, Dave Crook is an accomplished sound engineer with a diverse background in arts administration, including education, marketing, promotion, and performance. During his years in the arts profession, he has lead crews, negotiated contracts, and achieved the highest levels of proficiency in technical theater. In his eight years of active I.A.S.T.E. membership, he has served as a committee chair and worked with countless artists including Stevie Wonder, Zakir Hussein, Arturo Sandoval, and Diane Reeves. Prior to his theatrical work, Mr. Crook spent time in studio production and on-air radio. He worked for six years with the children's performing arts program of the National Guitar Workshop and since 2004 he has owned and operated a studio recording company in the Washington, D.C. area.
Mieko Hatano Di Sano
Mieko Hatano Di Sano comes to Washington, D.C. from Aspen, Colorado where she served as the Aspen Music Festival Orchestra Manager. Previously, she was Artistic Administrator for the Young Musicians Foundation in Los Angeles, where she presided over the organization's 11 programs including: a pre-professional training orchestra, a chamber music series, a $40,000 scholarship fund, numerous competitions, extensive outreach programming, and arts management training. In 2008, she produced the organization's first fully staged opera performance, Act II of Richard Wagner's Tristan und Isolde at the newly built Eli & Edythe Broad Stage in Santa Monica. Originally from San Jose, Ms. Di Sano holds a Bachelor of Music from the University of Michigan and both Master of Arts and Doctor of Musical Arts from the University of Southern California on a full Dean's Scholarship in French Horn Performance with minors in Musicology, Music Education, and Conducting.
Claire Huschle served as Executive Director of the Arlington Arts Center from 2005 to 2011. In that role, she significantly increased the operating budget, built operational reserves, negotiated a favorable 25-year lease, and brought together a talented staff, raising the AAC's profile both regionally and nationally. Previously, Ms. Huschle was the Director of Target Gallery in the Torpedo Factory Art Center in Alexandria, VA, where she worked as the gallery's Community Liaison, coordinating a national conference and liaising with arts groups and advocacy organizations. She has served as managing curator of Duncan & Miller Gallery, a contemporary art space featuring emerging artists, and coordinated numerous exhibitions throughout the Washington, D.C. area. She has served on the Virginia Commission for the Arts Grants Review Panel, as well as the Fairfax, VA and Montgomery County, MD grant review panels. In addition to being a part-time professor for George Mason University's Master in Arts Management program, she serves as co-Chair of the Program Committee for the D.C. chapter of ArtTable, a national professional organization for female executives in the visual arts. She is a 2010 graduate of Leadership Arlington, and the 2010 recipient of the American Association of University Women's Elizabeth Campbell Award for the Advancement of the Arts in Arlington. Ms. Huschle received her master's degree in Art History from the University of Texas at Austin and her undergraduate degree in Art History from the University of Michigan.
Irfana Jetha comes to Washington, D.C. from New York Live Arts, where she served as the Manager for Institutional Giving and provided instrumental support during the merger between the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company and Dance Theater Workshop. Ms. Jetha chaired the Dance/NYC Junior Committee, leading a group of her peers to assist in the production of The Bessie Awards and the Committee's first major research initiative, Dance Workforce Census: Earnings Among Individuals Ages 21-35, to which more than 1,200 members of the New York City dance workforce responded. She has enjoyed co-directing, advising, and teaching for CLASSCLASSCLASS and has also worked for Dance New Amsterdam, David Dorfman Dance, and Atlanta Ballet. While a student, Ms. Jetha completed an internship in the dance programming department of the Kennedy Center and worked as the Assistant Company Manager of The Suzanne Farrell Ballet. Ms. Jetha holds a Bachelor of Arts in International Relations and Dance and Movement Studies from Emory University in Atlanta, GA.
Joshua Kohn comes to the Kennedy Center from the National Council for the Traditional Arts where he served as Programming Manager since the fall of 2006. At NCTA, he managed the artistic programming of 16 national festivals in communities including Richmond, Virginia and Butte, Montana, where he made a directed effort to attract younger and more diverse audiences and artists. He also consulted on community-based projects, developed school outreach programs, wrote arts travel guides, and produced programs for public radio. Previously, Mr. Kohn co-managed the NCTA's traditional arts touring program where he oversaw the development of conceptual touring programs reframing the music of Appalachia, Mexico, the Caribbean, and the American West, bringing 100 musicians and dancers to new audiences in 19 states.
Jill Leininger spent the past four years as Director of Development for the Vermont Studio Center, the largest artist residency program in the country. During her tenure, the Studio Center secured more than 30 new sponsored fellowships for artists and writers and celebrated the largest gift in the organization’s history. Prior to her time in Vermont, Ms. Leininger worked as Director of Development & Communications at the University of Oregon, where she earned her M.F.A. in poetry in 1999. At Oregon, she led the marketing and public relations efforts to launch the College of Arts & Sciences’ $76 million dollar capital campaign, which included an expansion to the university’s theatre and a groundbreaking for its new integrative science complex. Ms. Leininger’s recent writing can be found or is forthcoming in Harvard Review Online, Poetry International and cream city review and her first poetry chapbook will be published in the fall of 2011.