Board of Directors Biographies
Board Chair; Chair, Executive Committee
President & CEO
Dana Pauley is the President & CEO of Leadership Montgomery, a community leadership organization whose mission is to educate, inspire, convene, and connect leaders to advance Montgomery County. Together with staff and board, Dana leads the organizations’ strategic direction, program development, and day-to-day operations to serve an alumni network of more than 2,500 leaders. Before joining LM in 2018, Pauley served as Development Director for MdBio Foundation (now called Learning Undefeated), where she was instrumental in growing revenue more than forty percent during a three-year period. She has held leadership positions in development and marketing for education and health nonprofits after a career transition from retail management. Across her nonprofit career, she has partnered and worked with global companies, foundations, government agencies and nonprofit organizations to further collaborative leadership that achieves access, equity, and inclusion. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Human Services with a concentration in Counseling and is a Certified Fund Raising Executive (CFRE). She resides in Montgomery County with her husband and three children.
Board Treasurer; Chair, Finance Committee; Public Arts Trust Steering Committee
Elaine Robnett Moore
Board Secretary, Grants Committee
Artist and CEO
Elaine Robnett Moore Collection
Elaine Robnett Moore is a jewelry artist, international business consultant, teacher, and author. As an artist/international development consultant, she works through governments, foundations, NGOs and private companies – assisting artists, artisans, and women’s coops in developing skills, establishing cottage industries, and refining products for export to western markets. Robnett Moore’s work has been published and exhibited internationally and she was recently commissioned by the Rwandan government to write their first “how to” book “Professional Jewelry Making With Beads”, an initiative being used to provide an income stream for women and girls throughout the country. Her second book, “The Art of Bead Stringing: Artist to Entrepreneur”, was published in November of 2014.
Eleanor Park Choi, AIA, LEEDap BD+C
Chair, Public Art Trust Steering Committee
Senior Project Manager and Architect
Eleanor Park Choi is an Associate, Project Manager and Architect at Page. Through her work on award winning, LEED certified, historic and institutional projects- both locally and nationally, she promotes sustainable design and place-making. By engaging the public through every stage of each project and continuing to build relationships even after project completion, she has seen the positive impact that these buildings have had on their communities. She had the honor of working directly with local artists to elevate the architecture of the building with the installation of their meaningful, authentic works of art. Combining her passion for music and architecture, Eleanor played the violin and presented a lecture titled “Architecture as Frozen Music,” with three of her colleagues. Born and educated in Montgomery County, a proud graduate of University of Maryland at College Park with a Masters of Architecture, and having served on the Friends of White Flint Board, Eleanor is committed to supporting local artists and encouraging opportunities for diverse cultural expression.
Ruby Lopez Harper
Chair, Advocacy Committee; Grants Committee
Mexican, Mother, Wife, Dancer, Photographer, Poet and Social Justice Warrior. Ruby is the Executive Director for CERF+; Chair, Gard Foundation Board; a National Coalition on Arts Preparedness and Emergency Response steering committee member; a special consultant for the Association of Tribal Archives, Libraries and Museums and serves on the WETA Community Advisory Council. Ruby’s work has focused on equitable access, grant making, supporting individual artists, community development, economic development, cultural tourism, marketing, and public art. Selected as a 2019 Arizona State University Practices for Change Fellow, Ruby is a 2017 National Association of Latino Arts and Cultures Advocacy Leadership Institute Fellow and Class of 2017 American Express Leadership Academy Alum.
Raesharn Spain Beam
Chair, Audit Committee
Raesharn Spain Beam is an interior architect, space planner and project manager for Davidson Brown. She serves as a contractor for United States Citizenship and Immigration Services in Washington, DC. She has over 25 years experience in design, graphic art, furniture, construction and project management with projects from Washington, DC to Guam. She is CEO/artist of Zaneta P. A jewelry and design company where she is committed to creating unique art and design elements. She designs jewelry, produces graphic art interior design pieces. She volunteers her services at First Baptist Church of Glenarden as an art ministry member and Banner Specialist. She is also a member of the Charles County Arts Alliance. She received her Bachelor of Architecture degree in 1993 from Illinois Institute of Technology, College of Architecture, Chicago, IL & Castiglione Fiorentino, Arezzo, Italy.
Chair, Grants Committee; Advocacy Committee
Executive Coach, Communications Strategist
Mamie Bittner is a career and leadership coach based in Takoma Park, Maryland. She focuses on resilient leadership helping clients develop the skills they need to maintain a positive attitude during periods of turbulence and find creative ways of moving forward. Most recently she was director of communications and congressional relations for the Architect of the Capitol. In this role she directed all internal and external communications and client relations for the 2100 person agency that serves the U.S. Congress and the Supreme Court. Previous to that she held a series of leadership positions at the Institute of Museum and Library Services, a federal grantmaking agency, the primary source of federal support for U.S. libraries and museums. She has a B.A. in Political Science from Fairfield University and a M.A. in Education and Human Development from George Washington University. She is currently pursuing International Coach Federation certification through the George Mason University Leadership Coaching for Organizational Well-Being.
Board Vice Chair
Visual Artist and Instructor
Lauren Cook teaches visual arts at St. Andrew’s Episcopal School in Potomac, serving four terms as department head, and is a committed advocate of arts education for all ages. She has experience as a consultant on K-12 arts curricula and teacher training, as an independent curator and jurist for art competitions, and designed and ran an accredited overseas summer studio program for K-12 art teachers. Cook is a trained facilitator in educational neuroscience research for the Center for Transformative Teaching and Learning at St. Andrew’s and previously worked for the Council on Foundations and the Council of Governors’ Policy Advisors on intersectional policy development. She maintains an active studio art practice and holds a M.A. in Art Education from Maryland Institute College of Art, a M.B.A. from George Washington University, and a Bachelor of Philosophy from Grand Valley University.
American Gene Technologies
Norman S. Rogers has over 10 years of experience in the biotechnology field with the last two spent in the heart of Montgomery County. In his position as a business development lead for American Gene Technologies, Norman promotes the positive growth of the Montgomery Country biotechnology market as a leader in life-saving medical advancements. As a graduate from a liberal arts college and an avid “artistic tinker and part-time ice sculpture”, Norman has a deep respect for the arts and their role in the preservation and articulation of Maryland culture. Norman is honored to bring together his role in the biotech sector and love of the arts to support AHCMC’s mission and development.
Chair, Governance Committee; Grants Committee
Producer, Programming & Partnerships
Suraya Mohamed is a three-time Peabody Award-winning producer, sound designer and editor. As NPR Music’s Producer of Programming & Partnerships, she serves as the Project Manager for Jazz Night In America, a multi-platform cooperative between NPR Music, WBGO and Jazz At Lincoln Center. She is also the Project Manager for Slingshot – a new artist initiative designed to boost public radio music station collaboration, develop and diversify digital content to incorporate new methods of storytelling and accelerate the careers of multi-genre, exceptional, emerging artists. She works on a variety of NPR Music projects including the Tiny Desk Concert series and also produces the NPR holiday specials package that includes Tinsel Tales, Hanukkah Lights, Toast Of The Nation, Hamilton: A Story Of US and others.
Prof. Cinder Cooper Barnes
Director of the Global Humanities Institute, Professor of English
Global Humanities Institute
Cinder Cooper Barnes has over 20 years of higher education teaching experience. She is presently a full-time faculty member in the English department at Montgomery College and serves as the director of the Global Humanities Institute. As part of her professional responsibilities, she serves as the college’s Fulbright Scholars Liaison, writes proposals and grants; develops various programs for faculty, staff, and students; and mentors junior faculty. In recent years she served as a member of Montgomery County’s Victims’ Services Advisory Board and volunteered as a Victim Assistance and Sexual Assault Program outreach volunteer. Cinder earned a bachelor’s degree in English at the University of South Carolina and master’s degree at Northern Illinois University. She is currently working on her doctorate in Education Policy, Organization and Leadership with a focus on Global Studies.
Dr. Sharon Fechter
Dean of Humanities, Professor of Spanish
Dr. Fechter has served as Dean of Humanities at Montgomery College and as Professor of Spanish and chair of the Department of World Languages and Philosophy. She earned her Ph.D. from New York University. She has served as president of the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese (AATSP), as community college representative, and as an associate editor for the refereed journal Hispania. She is a member of the national work group for America’s Languages under the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and the MLA’s Community College Committee. She has presented and published on topics concerning community colleges, world languages, literature, distance education, and international education.
Curator of Public Programs
Daniel Guzman serves as Director of Events and Public Space Activation for the City of Alexandria’s Office of the Arts. Prior to this role he worked in New York City for 10 years, developing culture crawls and pop-up events. Daniel serves as Co-Chair for the Arts Administrators of Color Network, a national organization focused on empowering BIPOC arts administrators and creatives. He has served as a panelist for the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities and the Virginia Commission for the Arts. He holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Carnegie Mellon University and a Master of Science in Project Management from George Washington University.
Sarah Andrew Wilson
Strategic Entrepreneur and Performing Arts Leader
Sarah Andrew Wilson is an entrepreneur and performing arts leader, cultivating innovative arts experiences for learners of all ages for over 20 years. As the co-owner of Matchbox.io, an award-winning tech start-up acquired in 2022, she was named one of the Top 12 Leaders in Voice Artificial Intelligence. Wilson previously led teams of performing artists, educators, and students at Levine Music, Wolf Trap Foundation, and Thelonious Monk Institute of Jazz. She holds an Executive Certificate in Arts & Culture Strategy from the University of Pennsylvania and degrees in music from Arizona State University and the University of North Texas.
Executive Associate, National Assembly of State Arts Agencies (NASAA)
Feby Emelio is the executive associate to the chief program and planning officer at the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies (NASAA). She leads special projects, conducts research, and manages events relating to advocacy, communications and strategic planning. Before joining NASAA, Feby founded an artist management company in India and led public relations initiatives for Sangeet Natak Akademi (National Academy of Performing Arts) under the Ministry of Culture in India. She has been a congressional fellow at the office of Congressman Jim McDermott. A Fulbright scholar, she has two master’s degrees, in arts management and English literature, and a postgraduate diploma in copywriting. Feby speaks more than five languages. As a cross-cultural arts manager, she has worked in three capital cities of the world.