A visual artist and former teacher who moved to Philadelphia in 1974 and started her arts management career in 1978. From 1981 to 1999 she produced over 60 plays working as Managing Director of the Germantown Theatre Guild, Founder and Executive Director of Kopia Theatre at Cornucopia on Parkside Avenue, and co-founder of Venture Theatre where she was executive director for thirteen years. At Venture Theatre she worked with teachers and administrators at 15 different Philadelphia public schools to implement Theatre for Learning, a program that used theatre to teach across the curriculum. Her other positions have included 12 plus years as Development Officer at Art Sanctuary, Founding President of the Business Association of West Parkside, Member of the Mayor’s Small Business Advisory Council (Goode administration), and four years on the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance Board of Directors. She also served on the Program and Board Placement Committees of PVLA (Philadelphia Volunteer Lawyers for the Arts). Betty returned to West Parkside in 2000 where she lives with her husband. She served for three years on the Board of the Friends of the Shofuso Japanese House and Garden and is a member of the East Parkside Historic District Coalition and the Mann Center Virtuoso Committee.
Andre is a native of Philadelphia and has been writing poetry since 1982 when he was in junior high school. He received his MFA from Temple University and served as the 2013 Emerging Artist in Playwriting for the Delaware Division of the Arts in Wilmington, DE. He has over 17 years of experience in various areas of theater, including acting, scene design, lighting, directing, and stage management. Some of the plays he has written include Verbalized Ink, The Alien Ones, and a Nation of Millions.
Niesha Kennedy-Robinson is an accomplished public relations professional that has a genuine love of the arts. With over 8 years experience in Public Relations, and over 10 years as a small business owner, Niesha has the expertise to properly represent the arts and culture industry and entrepreneurs who run small businesses. She has worked with a diverse group of artists and is known and respected in the arts community. Niesha has always been “in the know” and the go to person for the latest happenings. She started her public relations career as Director of Public Relations for Sharp With Art Group. She is also a contributor for Philly Entrepreneurs, Handmade Philly, Mandis Mag and others.
Niesha is passionate about community service. She is a Founding Member and Vice President of the Wolfpack Community Association. In addition to she also has volunteered for Alex’s Lemonade Foundation, Philadelphia Community Corps among others. She currently resides in Philadelphia with her husband and two daughters.
Megan is a ceramic artist and recent graduate from the BFA program at Tyler School of Art, Temple University. Megan has experience working with children in Harrisburg and Philadelphia. She specializes in wheel-thrown pottery and incorporates elements of drawing and painting with three-dimensional forms. Her work often features themes of sustainability, wellness, and (im)balance.
Shanel is a choreographer, dancer, photographer and performance artist n the Philadelphia area. She is currently dancing with D2D The Company and trains in creative movement and hip-hop dance street styles. Shanel has danced in World Dance Competition, Prelude Urban Dance Competition, Clutchfest, Thesis Dance Competition, and many more.
Annie hails from Mount Kisco, NY. Her extensive dance background includes performing at Alice Tully Hall at Lincoln Center and training at the Joffrey School, the Ailey School, Peridance and Boulder Ballet. In 2015, Annie graduated Cum Laude from Goucher College with a degree in Dance. While at Goucher, she spent semesters at Taipei National University of the Arts in Taipei, Taiwan and at Rick Odums Centre International de Danse Jazz in Paris, France. Annie is a performer with Ballet 180 (Paoli, PA) and loves to share her passion for movement through teaching all styles of dance.
Franklyn is Senior Vice President Network and Communications Engineering at Comcast Cable where he has worked for the last 22 years. He has a BS degree from the Rochester Institute of Technology in Computer Science and has previously worked for the Franklin Mint, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania and J.P. Morgan.
Natasha Cohen-Carroll graduated from Haverford College with a double major in English and Fine Arts with a concentration in photography. She was awarded the Center for Peace & Global Citizenship Grant and taught photography and theatre to children in Ahmedabad, India. Natasha is bilingual in English and French and advanced in Spanish. She has been an artist/counselor with the West Park Cultural Center’s Camp Ginkgo for the past two summers and has led stop-motion and poetry workshops throughout the year. She recently co-organized the Mustard Seed Film Festival with Hariprasad and is working on documentary film projects about community and culture.