March 2019 Arts & Culture Leaders of Color Coffee Talk
Arts & Culture Leaders of Color Network Coffee Talk
Americans for the Arts is proud to support the Arts and Culture Leaders of Color Network through quarterly “coffee talk” digital convenings, eNews, blogs, and other resource sharing tools. Each quarter, we bring you an arts administration professional to share their insights and journey to inspire you. Coffee talk format invites you to ask questions and share your experiences with the group.
Join Suzan Jenkins, Chief Executive Officer of the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County as she shares her career journey, successes and challenges and how having close relationships have been helpful along the way.
Hosted by Ruby Lopez Harper, Director of Local Arts Services
Ruby Lopez Harper (Moderator)
Senior Director of Local Arts Advancement, Americans for the Arts
Ruby is the Senior Director of Local Arts Advancement for Americans for the Arts. She is the Co-chair for the National Coalition on Arts Preparedness and Emergency Response, serves as Co-chair on the Support for Individual Artist Steering Committee for Grantmakers in the Arts and serves on the WETA Community Advisory Council. She is also on the board of the Gard Foundation. Prior to joining AFTA, Ruby was the Director of Grants and Services at the Greater Columbus Arts Council in Columbus, OH. At the Greater Columbus Arts Council, Ruby focused on grantmaking, community development, economic development and tourism, and public art. She has a varied background that includes corporate affairs, marketing, and business administration. She served on the Emerging Leaders Council for Americans for the Arts and was the primary contact for the Arts and Economic Impact Study for Central Ohio. She also worked with PhilanthropyOhio on their Member Services Committee.
Originally from California, where she was a dance instructor in her spare time, Ruby worked with local community theatre companies creating choreography for their musical theatre productions earning numerous local, state and regional recognition for her work both on and offstage. She has and continues to serve on grant panels for the Ohio Arts Council, Kentucky Arts Council, Cuyahoga Arts and Culture, MetroArts Nashville and the National Endowment for the Arts. Ruby has an associate degree from Cerritos College, a certificate in Corporate Community Involvement from Boston College, and is a trained meeting facilitator.
Chief Executive Officer, Arts & Humanities Council of Montgomery County
Suzan E. Jenkins, CEO, Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County, Maryland has been a visionary leader in the non-profit arts and culture sector for over twenty years, serving in executive positions at the Rhythm and Blues Foundation, the Smithsonian Institution and the Recording Industry Association of America.
A Peabody Award winning producer of the radio series Let the Good Times Roll for Public Radio International, Jenkins has often been recognized for her leadership and entrepreneurial endeavors, including by the Gazette of Politics and Business, Women Business Leaders of Maryland, Jazz Alliance International, the Mid-Atlantic Jazz Festival and Glen Echo Park Partnership for Arts and Culture.
As an educator, Jenkins has served as Executive in Residence in the College of Music at Loyola University and as Adjunct Professor at both American and George Mason Universities. As co-founder of the Nonprofit Energy Alliance, Jenkins is the winner of the 2012 Washingtonian Green Giant Award.
Jenkins serves on the Board of Nonprofit Montgomery; as a member of the Silver Spring, MD Arts and Entertainment Advisory Committee; as Co-Chair of the Women of Color in the Arts Mentoring Committee; on the Community Advisory Council of WETA and on the American University Arts Management Advisory Council. Jenkins recently completed her fellowship with National Arts Strategies: Chief Executive Program and a former Board member of Culture Capital and of DataArts, previously known as the Cultural Data Project.
Suzan Jenkins holds an Honorary Degree in Public Service from Montgomery College, MD; a BS in Psychology and Management, and an MBA from the University of Maryland.