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Leadership Fellows Program Co-Directors 

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 Presenters, 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.

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.

Leadership Fellows Program Group Leaders: Cohort I 2015-2017 

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.

Barrie Steinberg, has nearly three decades of experience in artist management, production, artistic administration, and management 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.

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.

Clyde Valentin, 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.

Jacob Yarrowis 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.