OPERA America Selects 13 Participants from the U.S., Canada and Latin America for its 2017 Leadership Intensive Program
Developing Future Leaders and Strengthening Opera Companies
OPERA America, the national service organization for opera and the nation's leading champion for American opera, is pleased to announce that 13 participants from the United States, Canada and Latin America have been selected for its 2017 Leadership Intensive program. These future industry leaders were chosen through a competitive selection process focusing on candidates’ potential to make significant contributions to the opera field. This program is made possible by the generous support of
The Leadership Intensive exemplifies OPERA America’s long-standing commitment to identify and nurture leaders who will advance the creation, presentation and enjoyment of opera for years to come. This program identifies the most promising professionals in the field of opera administration and provides them with a unique experience designed to bolster their leadership capacity and advance their careers.
The 2017 Leadership Intensive participants are:
- Alejandra Valarino Boyer, director of community programs, Lyric Opera of Chicago;
- Jennifer Dubin, chief development officer, Austin Opera;
- Julia Gallagher, assistant production director, Minnesota Opera;
- Jason Hardy, director of development, Opera Memphis;
- Steven Humes, education manager, Opera Philadelphia;
- Caroline Koelker, managing director, Opera Maine;
- Rhanda Luna, director of administration and education, OPERA San Antonio;
- Alisa Magallón, teaching artist, Minnesota Opera;
- Nicole Malcolm, development manager, Pacific Opera Victoria;
- Alejandra Martí, executive director, Ópera Latinoamérica;
- Courtney Rizzo, budget manager, LA Opera;
- Michael Sakir, music director, Opera Memphis; and
- Robin Whiffen, manager of artistic operations, Opera on the Avalon.
This is the fifth class of Leadership Intensive participants to have been selected since the program’s inception in 2012.
OPERA America’s partner organizations, Opera.ca and Ópera Latinoamérica, were responsible for selecting the Canadian and Latin American participants.
“American Express has long advocated for the advancement of emerging nonprofit leaders and performing arts institutions,” said Timothy J. McClimon, president of the American Express Foundation. “By continuing our investment in OPERA America’s Leadership Intensive program, we hope to develop arts professionals committed to securing the longevity of this industry.”
As part of the Leadership Intensive, participants will convene at the National Opera Center in New York City from Friday, August 11 through Friday, August 18 for a weeklong learning program that will address strategic issues, build essential skills and foster strong professional connections. These developing leaders will be prepared to apply new skills, share their learning with colleagues and demonstrate leadership that contributes to their local companies and communities. Expert faculty for the August session include Astrid Baumgardner, J.D., certified professional coach; Micaela Blei, storyteller and educator, The Moth; Walker Lewis, stage director and communications coach; Jeremiah Marks, chief financial officer, Opera Philadelphia; Michelle Ramos, project director, Vera Institute of Justice; and Marc A. Scorca, president/CEO, OPERA America.
Building upon that weeklong foundation in August, Leadership Intensive participants — including those from the previous four classes — will take part in additional professional development programs throughout the year, including regular group coaching calls, webinars with field executives and roundtable discussions at OPERA America’s annual conference, making this a comprehensive professional development experience.
“The Leadership Intensive has proven to be a crucial training ground for a new generation of opera leaders who would not otherwise have access to such specialized learning opportunities or to an international network of peers,” stated Marc. A. Scorca, president/CEO of OPERA America. “We are deeply grateful for American Express’ continued support of this program.”
For more information about the Leadership Intensive, including a list of program alumni, visit operaamerica.org/Leadership.