LOS ANGELES (September 9, 2019) – The Board of Directors of The Music Center announced the addition of six esteemed members of the Los Angeles community to The Music Center Board. They include Jill Baldauf, UCLA Anderson School of Management associate dean of alumni relations; Susan Baumgarten, former aerospace engineer/executive and president of Center Dance Arts; Terri Kohl, co-founder of Brighton Collectibles and president of The Blue Ribbon; Melissa Ann Romain, a public relations consultant and arts philanthropist; Maria S. Salinas, president and CEO of the Los Angeles Chamber of Commerce; and Matthew J. Spence, a national security expert and co-founder of the Truman National Security Project. These individuals bring community, business and international relations expertise to a growing, diverse alliance of Los Angeles leaders who support and guide The Music Center, one of the nation’s largest performing arts organization. The Music Center presents world-class dance performances, nationally recognized K–12 arts education programs and free and low-cost public concerts and events, and manages The Music Center’s four theatres, the Music Center Plaza and Grand Park on behalf of the County of Los Angeles.
“We are excited to welcome the fresh perspectives and leadership acumen of these six outstanding individuals to The Music Center Board,” said Lisa Specht, board chair, The Music Center. “Beyond their strong passion for the arts, these new Board members bring vital experience and knowledge in community engagement, innovation and both financial and risk management that will aid us as we re-ignite The Music Center as an important anchor institution in Los Angeles with the goal of deepening the cultural lives of all in our great county.”
Jill Baldauf is a global brand strategist with more than 30 years’ experience. Her career has spanned both coasts with key positions at DDB, Grey, Ogilvy & Mather and Benton & Bowles. Baldauf’s clients included Procter & Gamble, Nestle, Mars and Henkel, as well as toy powerhouses Mattel and Hasbro; she launched her own agency, Ampersand, in 2003, with a retainer from Hasbro to work on Disney products. Baldauf returned to her alma mater, UCLA Anderson School of Management, as associate dean, alumni relations in September 2014. She served on the board of visitors of the Anderson School from 1992 to 1997. Highly active in the community, Baldauf has served on the boards of Chrysalis, The Broad Stage, The Blue Ribbon, Wildwood School, Stanford Parents Advisory Board and LA Opera. She has a Bachelor of Arts from UCLA and an MBA from the UCLA Anderson School of Management. Baldauf was previously a designee to The Music Center Board during her term as president of The Blue Ribbon, a Music Center support group; she will remain on the board firmly committed to The Music Center’s arts education initiatives that introduce children to the arts from an early age through STEAM in-school programs or by attending performances that take place on campus.
Susan Baumgarten is a former ballerina, aerospace engineer and executive, and executive-in-residence for technology and leadership at the UCLA Anderson School of Management. Her professional career spanned 33 years, offering her a breadth of experience in executive leadership, business development and systems engineering at Hughes Aircraft Company and at Raytheon Company, where she also served as President of Raytheon International, Inc. Baumgarten now focuses on philanthropic leadership in STEM and the arts, emphasizing dance. She joins The Music Center Board as the designee for The Music Center’s support group Center Dance Arts (CDA), where she serves as president. CDA is a founding supporter of The Music Center’s dance series Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center, and comprises dance enthusiasts who work to foster the spirit of dance throughout Los Angeles. Her passions include enabling broad-ranging arts education and performances available to all, especially for underserved youth in Los Angeles, and she wants to inspire STEM careers and opportunities especially for young women. Baumgarten was a member of the board of directors of Raytheon Systems Ltd, UK, Raytheon Canada Ltd, and Raytheon Australia; she has served on the UCLA Foundation Board, where she chaired the philanthropy committee, on the board of trustees of Marymount High School as vice chair, and now serves on the boards of UCLA’s Women & Philanthropy (former president), Physical Sciences at UCLA, and The Gabriella Foundation. She earned a Bachelor of Arts in mathematics and biochemistry, a master's degree in electrical engineering and an MBA from the Anderson School, all at UCLA.
Terri Kohl is the co-founder with her husband Jerry Kohl of Brighton Collectibles, a family-owned leather and silver accessories manufacturer with 180 individual retail stores with 4,000 boutiques carrying their products nationwide. Kohl is actively involved as a volunteer and patron for numerous local and national organizations and has served on the board of trustees for ArtCenter College of Design since 2006. She is a member of the San Marino League, a volunteer group that supports Art Center and the Huntington Library. She is a supporter of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, LA Opera, Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, the Colburn School, Pasadena Symphony, MUSE/IQUE, Pasadena Pops, HOLA the Heart of Los Angeles, the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel, City of Hope, Jewish Vocational Services and The Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C. In recent years, the Kohls have provided the Pasadena School District with more than 2,000 guitars for students and is currently funding a new cardiac unit at Pasadena’s Huntington Hospital; Kohl, with Brighton Collectibles, designed a special “Blue Ribbon” pin to help support The Blue Ribbon Children’s Festival, which is held annually on The Music Center Plaza. Kohl joins The Music Center Board as a designee in her role as president of The Blue Ribbon and is deeply committed to supporting the arts, especially ensuring that opportunities exists for all to share in the joy of music.
Melissa Ann Romain moved to Los Angeles in 2017 from Washington, D.C., where she served on the advisory board for the Town Hall Education Arts Recreation Campus (THEARC), a state-of-the-art campus that allows access to high-quality educational, health, cultural, recreational and social service programs in the capital’s struggling Ward 8 neighborhood. While living in D.C., Romain was the audience development director for Arena Stage, where she increased audience size and improved audience engagement by creating partnerships with local artists, government, businesses, social media influencers and community groups. With a lifelong experience of attending community theatre and other performing arts presentations, Romain joins The Music Center Board with a desire to increase arts education and exposure to the arts for underserved communities. As both a performer during her school years and with a career in the arts, Romain understands how the human experience is enriched by attending live arts performances, bringing various communities together through cultural connections and shared conversations. She earned a bachelor’s degree in both biochemistry and neurophysiology from the University of Maryland in 2005.
Maria S. Salinas has been the president & CEO of the Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce since August 2018 and became the first woman and Latina to lead the Chamber in its 130-year history. An accomplished business woman, entrepreneur and a stalwart community leader, Salinas’ business acumen and financial expertise represents the Los Angeles business community in local, state and federal policy initiatives. She is a member of the board of directors of Mobility 21, a regional transportation effort, and was appointed by Mayor Garcetti to the MEXLA Commission, a foreign policy initiative between Mexico and Los Angeles. Salinas also serves on the board of directors of Pacific Council, Southern California Leadership Network. Prior to the L.A. Chamber, Salinas was an entrepreneur having founded Salinas Consulting, a finance and accounting consultancy firm, and held financial leadership roles with The Walt Disney Company, Ernst & Young and Kenneth Leventhal & Company. As a corporate director, Salinas is former Chairwoman of ProAmérica Bank. A graduate of Loyola Marymount University (LMU), Salinas earned a Bachelor of Science in accounting. Recognizing the importance of attending artistic and music performances with her own children, Salinas joins The Music Center Board determined to maintain the performing arts organization not only as a premier arts institution, but also as a successful economic driver impacting the surrounding community and all of Los Angeles County.
Matthew J. Spence spent seven years in senior national security positions in the Obama Administration and has served as a foreign policy commentator in national news media, in Congressional testimony and in speeches and panels around the country. Trained as a lawyer, Spence also practiced criminal and international law in California and served as a law clerk for Judge Richard Posner of the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals. He is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations, is on the advisory group on the Foundation for the Defense of Democracies Project on Cyber-Enabled Economic Warfare, is a senior fellow at the Reiss Center on Law and Security and is a senior advisor at the Milken Institute California Center. He splits his time between Los Angeles and New York. Spence joins The Music Center Board with a worldly perspective of arts and culture and aims to propel Los Angeles’ reputation as a global leader through arts presentations. Given some of his earliest memories of attending performances with his family at The Music Center’s Dorothy Chandler Pavilion and the Hollywood Bowl, he intends to aid The Music Center in its mission to ensure everyone has those same opportunities. A Marshall Scholar and Truman Scholar, Spence received his doctorate in international relations from Oxford University; his J.D. from Yale Law School; and his Bachelor of Arts and Master of Arts in international policy studies from Stanford University.
About The Music Center
The Music Center convenes artists, communities and ideas with the goal of deepening the cultural lives of every resident in Los Angeles County. The non-profit performing arts organization has two divisions: The Music Center Arts (TMC Arts) and The Music Center Operations (TMC Ops). TMC Arts, The Music Center’s programming engine, provides year-round programming inside The Music Center’s four theatres, on The Music Center Plaza, outside at Grand Park—a 12-acre adjacent green space—and in schools and other locations all over Los Angeles County. TMC Arts presents world-class dance with Glorya Kaufman Presents Dance at The Music Center, free and low-cost public concerts and events, as well as K–12 arts education programs. TMC Ops manages the theatres, the plaza and Grand Park on behalf of the County of Los Angeles. The Music Center is also home to four renowned resident companies—Center Theatre Group, Los Angeles Master Chorale, LA Opera and LA Phil. For more information, visit musiccenter.org. Follow The Music Center on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter @MusicCenterLA.
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