Jennifer Cuevas (she/ella) is a cultural arts producer and Founder/CEO of Jenerate Media (Jennifer Cuevas Consulting), a Los Angeles-based boutique communications agency that specializes in the arts, social impact and non-profit organizations. She's a communications and digital marketing expert, and leadership advisor, who works closely with her clients' senior leadership and staff to support institutional and programmatic communications, as well as special projects. At the core of her work is a passion for producing, the arts, and cultural preservation; and connecting people and sharing unique places, while documenting the experiences.
Her agency currently represents Self Help Graphics & Art, the Vincent Price Art Museum and Cultural Treasures of South LA (in partnership with LA Commons and DCA). Jennifer has worked previously with clients such as Alliance for California Traditional Arts, Metro Art, Academia Avance Charter School, California Native Vote Project, Women Organizing Resources, Knowledge and Services, and many international performing artists, cultural organizations and collective’s spanning more than 20 years. Jennifer has a B.A. in Communications, with a concentration in Public Affairs/Information, from the University of La Verne. She is a member of Arts for LA’s Board of Directors and former ACTIVATE program fellow.
Julia Diamond is a fierce champion of human connection through arts, culture and public space. As Interim Director of Grand Park at The Music Center, Julia sets the strategic direction and oversees all aspects of programming, engagement, operations and facility management for L.A.’s central gathering space. Grand Park is a 12-acre urban greenspace and public commons located in Downtown Los Angles's Civic Center. It presents free year-round public programming that unites Los Angeles County through shared experience and showcases the very best of Los Angeles’ creative and cultural communities. She manages the $6 million budget, spearheading revenue strategies both earned and contributed, and working to build stakeholder support at all levels of government and community in order to support the park’s continued growth and service. From 2012-2016, Julia served as Grand Park’s first Programming Director, building the park’s diverse, fresh, dynamic suite of free year-round culture and wellness programming that serves 200,000 Angelenos and visitors annually. Julia has more than 15 years of experience in the performing arts across multiple disciplines including positions with Los Angeles Opera, LA Dance Project, and the Komische Oper Berlin. She holds a M.A. in Arts Administration from Columbia University and a B.A. from Georgetown University. Julia serves on the Boards of Directors of California Presenters and the Dance Resource Center of Greater Los Angeles, the LA County Arts Commission Advisory Committee for the Cultural Equity and Inclusion Initiative and the Ford Theatres Connectors Council. She has served as a grants panelist for the NEA and the City and County of Los Angeles. She is a frequent speaker/present on arts and public engagement strategy. She is currently a fellow of the 2018 Leadership LA cohort of the Southern California Leadership network.
Dorsay Dujon is Founder of Make Music Los Angeles, a non-profit (501) c 3 organization dedicated to creating educational, cultural, and family inclusive events for all of Los Angeles County annually on June 21st and throughout the year.
Dorsay is an art’s advocate dedicated to engaging, and transforming communities of Los Angeles through shared cultural experiences of the visual and performing arts. To ensure all children and their families have an opportunity to participate in ongoing music and art programs to stimulate lifelong learning and creative invention.
As a volunteer for the Silver Lake Neighborhood Council, Dorsay created a kite festival and brought in professional kite flyers to demonstrate and teach the art of kite flying. (Kid’s Fly LA). In addition she presented concerts in the park with music ranging from jazz, classical, folkloric, zydeco and hip-hop.
Throughout her career as a tradeshow producer and exposition manager Dorsay was active on several advisory boards, St. Basils in Chicago, Hands Across Watts, the International Association for Exhibition Management (for which Dorsay became a Certified Exposition Manager). Dorsay formed a consulting firm Dorsay Dujon & Associates with clients the American Dental Association, National Exhibition Center, Birmingham, England, and the British Tourist Authority.
Dorsay is currently Vice President of the Silver Lake Improvement Association. Dorsay produced articles for Gentlemen’s Quarterly Magazine and was a featured presenter/author of education modules Communicating with Exhibitors, Project Management for the Exhibition Industry, and Cultural Diversity – Organizational Learning for the Tradeshow Industry.
Executive Director, Las Fotos Project
Born to a Mexican immigrant father and Colombian immigrant mother, Eric is the youngest of three, an uncle to four brilliant kids, and dad to a spirited terrier named Elmer.
Eric was introduced to photography at a young age by his mother, Sofia, who was an avid photographer that loved documenting family parties and travels, creating photo albums, and archiving the Ibarra family history. During his teenage years, Eric became more interested in photography and received his first 3-megapixel digital camera as a gift from his parents. Taking it everywhere - to soccer practice, parties, hanging out with friends - Eric quickly began to appreciate the process of documenting his own stories and adventures.
After attaining his bachelor’s degree in Sociology from Cal State Fullerton, Eric learned about therapeutic photography, phototherapy, and photography for social change. This led to the development of a project that would put cameras in the hands of young people and teach them how to document their own stories. In the summer of 2010, Las Fotos Project was born.
Las Fotos Project teaches teenage girls how to use photography and written expression to explore identity, advocate for changes in their neighborhood, and strengthen their emotional and social well-being. Las Fotos Project’s mission is to inspire teenage girls and elevate their voices through photography and as of 2018 after 8 years of programming, the organization has worked with over 1,400 teenage girls.
Chief Operating Officer, Global Girl Media
Jasmine is a native Los Angelena who has cultural roots from India and Mexico and a professional background in theater, music and film which shapes the lens of diversity and celebration of creativity she brings to each project.
Jasmine worked extensively with AFI FEST, a program of the American Film Institute, implementing and overseeing the Cultural Relations office which facilitated Foreign Film Language Oscar contenders and supported the festival's robust slate of world cinema. During her time at AFI FEST, she revived their Screen Education program for nearly 2,000 students at Title 1 schools which inspired her to focus on educating youth with digital media, access to world cinema and mentorship.
Jasmine served as the first Artistic Director for the Indian Film Festival of Los Angeles at ArcLight Hollywood, one of the oldest US festivals focused on Indian and diasporic film, and developed diversity driven feature film content for studios and international producers. She started in independent producing while working for Wim Wenders Productions in LA. Jasmine produced two films for ITVS including Beholder directed by Nisha Ganatra (Transparent) starring Jessica Paré (Mad Men). Beholder premiered at the SXSW Film Festival and screened at the Tribeca Film Festival.
Jasmine's professional background began in the music industry at Capitol Records, segueing her to George Harrison’s Estate. She has credits on music documentary Concert For George, Harrison's Grammy-winning album Brainwashed, The Dark Horse Years box set and The Traveling Wilburys.
Jasmine is an alumna of Carnegie Mellon University’s Drama Program in Direction, the Tribeca Film Institute, Film Independent’s Producers Lab and ACTIVATE as an Arts Education Fellow.
Originally from the East Coast (Western NY and South Florida), Michele Jaquis moved to Los Angeles in 2000 after completing her MFA in sculpture from Rhode Island School of Design and her BFA in sculpture and experimental studio with a minor in psychology from Hartford Art School at University of Hartford. She is a multi-media artist who combines strategies of conceptual art, documentary and social practice to examine the complexities within personal and social relationships, identity, language and communication, resulting in a range of image-based, object-based, time-based and engagement-based projects. Her work has been exhibited in alternative spaces, galleries, museums and film/video festivals across the US and in Australia, Canada, Ireland, England, New Zealand and South Korea. Recently, Michele was featured in KCET's "Artist-Mothers: Where to Find Them and Who Supports Them." Michele's career as an educator began in the late nineties when she became a therapist of applied behavior analysis for children with autism and a therapeutic art instructor for incarcerated youth. She has also taught in an after school media arts program for teens and at Rhode Island School of Design, Cal State Long Beach and UC Riverside. Since 2000 Michele has taught at Otis College of Art and Design where she is currently Associate Professor and Director of Interdisciplinary Studies and the Artists Community Teaching Program, overseeing all undergraduate minors while engaging students in collaborating with each other and various community partners.
Nathalie Sánchez is a Los Angeles based artist, art educator, museum educator, and arts advocate. Sánchez received her Bachelor of Arts in Art History and Studio Arts with an emphasis in education from Loyola Marymount University (LMU). Her curatorial, art administrative and art education experiences with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Fowler Museum, ESMoA, the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, ArtworxLA, P.S. Arts, and Avenue 50 Studio, further enhance her personal and professional art practice. In 2010, Sánchez graduated from Otis College of Art and Design with a Master of Fine Arts in Public Practice. Combining her passion for socially conscious enriching work, and participatory engagement through cross-cultural conversation, multi-media installation, and event production, she has developed an art practice based on and in the public realm. She has collaborated with cultural organizations and art institutions to produce small and large-scale community art projects and public art programs.
Currently, she serves as the Visitor Engagement Supervisor at the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.
Brian Sonia-Wallace is a 3rd generation Angeleno who makes live poetry and theatre with communities. His work has been published in The Guardian and profiled by the New York Times, NPR and the BBC, and he is currently working on a book for Harper Collins on poetry's intersections with marginalized spaces. As an cultural critic and commentator, Brian has profiled everything from Mariachi music to the avant garde, writing for LA County Art Commission, The Ford Theatres, LACMA Unframed, HowlRound, ArtsBeatLA, LA Theater Review, Mississippi Review, and others. As an arts entrepreneur, Brian regularly creates live typewriter poetry installations and shows for large clients including Google, YouTube, the City of Los Angeles (Artist-in-Residence 2016), the City of Santa Monica, the City of Long Beach, Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce, The Music Center, Grand Park, The Broad Stage, the National Endowment for the Arts, and more.
Brian authored a chapter on urban arts activism in Art + The City (Rutledge, 2017) and has guest lectured or presented workshops at UCLA, CSUN, UC Berkeley, Miami University (OH), University of North Dakota, Grand Forks, and University of Nebraska, Omaha. As a teaching artist, Brian also brings poetry and theatre to K-12 students throughout LA County, in partnership with Get Lit and 24th Street Theatre. Brian holds an MA from the University of St Andrews, Scotland, with a thesis on community voicing projects.
Harry Weston grew up in Santa Cruz, California, surrounded by West African dance and drumming, his first artistic inspirations. He fell in love with hip-hop dance culture at age 15, changing his life and setting him on a path of creativity, community engagement, teaching and mentorship. In 2008, he moved to Los Angeles to attend UCLA, and graduated with a Bachelor of the Arts Degree in World Arts and Cultures with a concentration in Dance, as well as a Minor in Civic Engagement. While at UCLA, he participated in a number of artistic and teaching endeavors. In 2009 he was invited to dance professionally with the internationally renowned hip-hop dance company, Versa-Style, whom he also managed from 2012-2016, and is now serving as Partnerships Manager. In 2010, he inherited and directed an after school hip-hop dance program at Abraham Lincoln High School in East LA, before passing it off to two alumni in 2014, who still direct the program today. And in 2012, he created his own work, "Without Fear," exploring the emotional complexity of the grieving process, premiering in the department's undergraduate showcase, "WACsmash." His work was later featured at the prestigious John Anson Ford Amphitheater in 2013 at Los Angeles’ premier street dance theater showcase, The J.U.i.C.E. Hip Hop Dance Festival. He also was fortunate enough to serve as Head Counselor for the UCLA Dance/Performing Arts Summer Intensive each summer during his time at UCLA, which he has now Co-Directed for the last two years. Harry has continued his work as a professional artist throughout his ten-year tenure in Los Angeles, touring as a principal dancer with Versa-Style in places such as India, Israel, and Scotland, and competing in prestigious hip-hop freestyle dance competitions such as Battle of the Year (Israel), Step Ya Game Up (New York), Bust A Move (Montreal), and Last One Stands (Vancouver).
You can read about his work as a 2018-19 ACTIVATE Fellow Arts Education East Los Angeles here:Link to Project Materials