|CARY CLARKE 503-225-5900 Ext. 228
|LORNA KRIER 503-225-5900 Ext. 234
The Right Brain Initiative Arts Integration Coach & Implementation Assistant
Mr. Clarke has been a dedicated champion of the arts, education, and community throughout his career. He served youth and their families as an English Language Learners (ELL) educator in East Portland’s Parkrose School District and, as co-founder and co-director of nonprofit organization PDX Pop Now!, he worked to broaden young people’s participation in and access to Portland’s thriving music community.
Most recently, Mr. Clarke was the Arts & Culture Policy Director for the City of Portland in the Office of former Mayor Sam Adams, where he managed partnerships with local school districts, the Regional Arts & Culture Council, independent artists and arts organizations. He oversaw major initiatives including the creation of a dedicated public fund for arts education and access, and the implementation of an equity initiative to ensure that the full diversity of Portlanders receive the benefits of the arts in their communities. Mr. Clarke is a musician who has recorded and toured nationally, is fluent in Russian, and holds a B.A. from Yale University.
Crystal Cortez, Office Manager for Young Audiences, has had a lifelong passion for music and art. She is especially passionate about experimental and electronic music which she often performs around the city. She has used her performance experience to help local small businesses and nonprofits
connect with artists and organize opening events and benefit shows. Crystal received her B.A. in Social Science from Portland State University and has since held administrative positions at two education nonprofits in the Portland metro. Originally from Minnesota, she has called Oregon her home for the past 5 years and loves to take advantage of all the outdoor adventures it has to offer.
Deann is a teacher at heart. She has always believed that teaching is both an art and a science and those teachers that can skillfully combine the two, are the teachers that leave a lasting impression. Inspired by one such teacher, Deann entered the profession earning an Elementary Teaching Credential from California Polytechnic State University with an Art Minor. As a lifelong learner and artist, she continued her training at Oregon State with a Master of Education and Reading Endorsement.
Over the past 23 years, Deann has continued to challenge herself to blend the art and science of learning. She has taught 3rd, 4th and 5th grade, volunteered as an Art Literacy Presentor, mentored AVID students and tutored adults working towards a GED. In each new experience, she encourages students to take ownership of their learning and find creative ways to express their understanding. As an arts integration coach with the Right Brain Initiative, she will help teachers and artist blur the lines between their crafts to achieve lasting student experiences.
Emily Fitzgerald has worked in the US and abroad as an interdisciplinary artist and educator for the past 13 years. An unequivocal emphasis on relationship bridges her work which exists at the intersection of social engagement, visual art and education. Through her practice she explores collaboration, integration, ethical representation and dynamic storytelling processes. With projects that often manifest outside a traditional exhibition space, her intention is to transform public sites into a place for civic engagement and dialogue. Emily’s recent community collaborations have included the Hollywood Senior Center, Beaumont Middle School, Portland Art Museum, Zenger Farm, TriMet, the City of Portland, King Public School, Multnomah County Health Clinics, and Disjecta Contemporary Art Center, and she is currently working on an intergenerational project with some of the oldest homeowners in Portland. As a coach with the Right Brain Initiative, she hopes to apply her experience as an artist and educator to effectively facilitate collaborative, integrative partnerships between schools and teaching artists. Emily is in the final stages of finishing her MFA in Art and Social Practice, and teaches undergraduate courses in Design Thinking and Art at Portland State University.
As our grants coordinator, Jonathan Frochtzwajg connects foundations, businesses, and other arts-learning supporters with opportunities to invest in Young Audiences’ work. Prior to joining YA, he served as grants coordinator for the local-music organization PDX Pop Now!. He is also an independent journalist. Originally from Los Angeles, Jonathan moved to Portland in 2005 to attend Lewis & Clark College, where he earned a bachelor’s in sociology. Today, he runs a lot and secretly tries to write plays.
Tony has worked as a teaching artist for the last 16 years. A freelance mask maker, puppeteer, and director, he uses both visual and performing arts in his practice. Three years ago, Tony cofounded the Teaching Artist Studio at Young Audiences in Portland, Oregon to address the needs of development and community in the field. Tony has also taught arts-integrated residencies for multiple grade levels in both Portland and New York City Public Schools; after-school classes for multiple arts organizations and community centers; and skills based workshops for college students and professionals. With ETP Northwest, Tony assisted new teaching artists in developing curriculum for ACTive Voices, the high school residency program he established. Tony has also taught workshops for educators at the Portland Art Museum, Right Brain Summer Seminar, and Teach For India in Pune, India. He is a graduate of the Dell’Arte International School and the University of Kansas.
Catherine is an accomplished fundraiser in the political and non-profit arenas. Her track record of success includes holding a still-unbroken fundraising record in an Oregon statewide election. Catherine is passionate about connecting businesses, individuals and foundations with with the causes they care about to inspire growth and positive change. She brings over 15 years of experience in major gift solicitation, corporate engagement, direct response fundraising and event planning to her work at Young Audiences, where she directs fundraising strategy to increase program capacity. In her free time, Catherine fulfills her duties as professional assistant to Checkers Hayes, her incredibly adorable canine adopted from the Oregon Humane Society.
As the controller, Brett handles the financial side of things at Young Audiences. Originally from Eugene (Go Ducks!), he moved to Portland in 2006 and spent 10 years as an accountant for a small local CPA firm where he prepared corporate and individual tax returns and provided bookkeeping services to small businesses.
While not crunching numbers, Brett enjoys camping, water skiing, art, and web design. He is also a member of the David Douglas Soccer Club board and an assistant girls basketball coach at David Douglas High School.
Lorna Krier, a versatile keyboardist, composer and music producer, is an active advocate for the creation of new music and has worked with some of the nation’s finest young composers and performers to create and premiere exciting new works. Having a background in new classical, experimental, electronic, pop and indie music, Lorna has quickly become a go-to spokeswoman for new music audiences nationwide.
Her professional background is in non-profit grants management with the artist-serving organization New Music USA as well as directing NYC-based community development for Found Sound Nation, a collective of musicians and artists who leverage the unique power of sound-making to help build strong, just, healthy communities. As a teaching artist, she has been sought after to help build and facilitate community-serving afterschool programs and is currently an instructor at Ethos Music Center.
Ms. Krier has received commissions and toured internationally and is currently represented by New Amsterdam Records in Brooklyn, NY. She has attended NYU for an MFA in Piano Performance and is eager to become a part of the rich fabric of the Portland arts scene.
Music has been an important part of Josephine’s life from an early age, starting with violin and then classical voice. She received her Bachelor’s of Music in Vocal Performance from The Boston Conservatory and a Master’s in Arts Administration and Certificate in Nonprofit Management from the University of Oregon. While she is originally from Northern California, Oregon has been her home for the past eight years.
As Program Operations Manager, Josephine assists over 200 schools each year with their arts planning and scheduling needs, manages the organization’s database, and develops efficient systems to support Young Audiences’ programs.
Briana Linden, a Portland, Oregon native, has worked in regional non-profits since 1997 including the Oregon Zoo, Portland Art Museum, Artists Repertory Theatre and as director of Blue Sky/Oregon Center for the Photographic Arts; prior to that she was a preschool teacher. Briana’s first role at Young Audiences was visioning and implementing The Right Brain Initiative.
As Director of Programs for Young Audiences, Briana oversees the artists and programs that bring regional students arts-rich learning experiences. She is responsible for the evolution of existing programming, development of new programming and the evaluation of both. She also manages teaching artist and classroom teacher professional development including the Teaching Artist Studio, an inquiry-based professional development program designed for teaching artists where the creative process is front and center as artists examine and articulate what lives at the heart of how and what they teach.
Briana received her bachelor’s of fine arts with a focus on works on paper from Marylhurst University in 2005. A practicing artist, Briana works in encaustic, printmaking, drawing and photography. She and her husband spend as much time as possible out in the rich, lush Northwest landscape with their son Jasper and daughter Astrid, and all the rest of their time in the kitchen whipping up feasts drawn from their prolific garden.
Maia McCarthy, Teaching Artist Specialist for The Right Brian Initiative, has worked as an actress, writer, teaching artist and teacher trainer. Maia had an “aha” moment as an educator when she realized she tapped the same skills working on a theatrical production that she used when training teachers toward excellent, value-based, culturally relevant teaching practices. Maia believes that all quality arts and educational experiences are borne from challenging and collaborative relationships founded on shared values and playful inquiry. Maia has worked with organizations such as Seattle Children’s Theatre, The French American School of Puget Sound, and Profile Theatre in Portland. Most recently Maia spent 7 years with Growing Seeds Learning Community, the last four as the school’s Director. She received her degree BFA in Acting, with a minor in Literature from NYU.
Pat is a teaching artist, playwright, actor, director, photographer, and producer. Originally from Seattle, he received his BA in theatrical performance from the University of Portland, and spent many years touring and teaching with Oregon Children’s Theatre, where he created residency programs to bring free art and health programming to high-need schools. As OCT’s Educational Theatre Program’s Head of New Work and an ensemble teaching artist, he wrote, directed, and dramaturged educational plays that toured to over 60,000 students in Oregon and Washington. He has also devised grief programs for children and families who are dealing with loss, and taught a wide range of residencies, from Social Anxiety and Playwriting to Communication Strategies and Devised Theatre. He presented and performed at the TYA One Theatre World conference in 2011, 2013, and 2015.
When he’s not teaching or creating work for young people, he’s the managing director of Action/Adventure Theatre, a theater in Southeast Portland dedicated to producing new work, where he is also an actor, director, and playwright. He’s also a freelance photographer whose work has been featured in the Portland Mercury, Portland Monthly, the Oregonian, Artslandia, Willamette Week, and more.
Pat has a dog named Marlowe and a cat named Queequeeg. He loves baseball, mystery novels, listening to podcasts, traveling to places not featured in guidebooks, and old school hip hop. He probably knows too much about Harry Potter.
Kristi Riedel, the Community Engagement Manager for Young Audiences, is a Portland native with a great love for exploring other parts of the world.
Her career has focused on arts education in many different forms. She has been an administrator of arts outreach programs and a camp director for the Portland Children’s Museum. She has been a teaching artist, bringing materials into local schools to integrate them into the classroom, and running workshops with other community organizations. Clay is her favorite medium both in teaching and in her own art.
She is an outdoor enthusiast and tries to spend as much time in the woods as she can while enabling others to do the same.
Emily Stone, Programs Coordinator, is a multidisciplinary artist whose work is situated on the threshold of dance, theater, and visual arts. While she has been a performing artist and educator for nearly 20 years, Emily recently earned her MFA in Interdisciplinary Art with a focus in experiential education from Goddard College. Professionally, her collaboratively devised projects have been presented by experimental theaters, contemporary art galleries, new dance, video and time-based art festivals, academic conferences and colleges throughout the Northwest. As an experienced arts educator, she has worked with pre-K/12 students in a wide variety of settings — in the classroom, onstage and backstage at numerous children’s theaters, and outdoors in wilderness therapy programs. Most recently, Emily has served as drama specialist for the Oregon Episcopal School and the Opal School at the Children’s Museum. She’s an active parent volunteer at Abernethy Elementary in PPS, where her two daughters attend their neighborhood public school.
Kim Strelchun, The Right Brain Initiative Coach Team Lead, has devoted the last 15 years to education and arts advocacy. Kim gains her inspiration from her children Ali and Lucas who opened her eyes to the power of arts integration. She has worked closely with parents and educators in her roles as Parent Director at Creative Children’s Center, Team Coordinator at Stand for Children, PTA President and Hillsboro School District Board Member. In her free time, she enjoys fusing glass, spending time with her family and watching live theatre. She received a BS in Social Sciences/Political Science from Portland State University. After volunteering with the Right Brain Initiative for six years as a Parent Advocate, Kim joined our coaching team in 2014.