Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland (moCa) Announces Dynamic New Board Directors & A More Inclusive Board Leadership Model

August 4, 2021

Co-Presidency in arts leadership puts policy into practice. 

At the recommendation of the Governance Committee and to a unanimous vote on Thursday, July 29th, moCa’s Board of Directors installed a new cohort of board members and restructured the Office of the President. moCa’s valued trustees are not just fiduciaries of the organization, but critical advocates for the public interest. Their executive expertise and guidance help moCa push the boundaries of innovation, creativity, and exploration through exhibitions, education, and engagement. 

"This evolved diverse leadership framework goes beyond creating seats at the table. It allows for equitable conversation, decision making, listening, and a diversity of perspectives that are unprecedented in moCa’s history," said Co-President Audra T. Jones. A refreshed board leadership structure allows moCa to move forward with a unique and bolder lens centered fully on artists, audiences, and equity. moCa stands firmly grounded in putting policy into practice, equity in decision making, and inclusion in governance with six new members who represent a wider array of Cleveland communities and professional sectors. The Co-Presidency was made official on July 29, 2021, and the three new co-presidents are Audra T. Jones, Joanne R. Cohen, and Stephen Sokany

The co-presidents will serve a two-year term and succeed former Board President Larry Oscar. Oscar continues service as an accomplished and visionary board member. “As we carry forth our mission forward, moCa is fortunate to retain and reside in the purview of consideration of top-tier talent. Our desire to be in deeper, collaborative discourse with artists and art lovers from a diversity of backgrounds continues to demonstrate itself through a board that is critically engaged in the hard work of institutional change. We will continue to evolve - alongside other museums nationally - and as we move forward, our museum will be dynamically responsive to the people we serve. We are becoming a more equitable space of belonging for everyone to engage with art” said Interim Director Megan Lykins Reich.

As a nation, we are in a time that demands more from museums, artists, and collaborative spaces - beyond being agile, proactive about inclusion, and purveyors of interactive experiences. Contemporary museums must answer the call to represent the ideas and creators of our time fully. Our cohort of new directors represents skills that enhance our overall governance, and, best of all, they represent a diversity of professional insight.

moCa remains humbled by the caliber of talent we continue to attract despite the global COVID-19 pandemic. As an institution, moCa remains in deep gratitude for the dedication of its board, who continue to remain steadfast, "on mission," and in dedicated service to the arts.    

Audra T. Jones

Audra T. Jones

Audra T. Jones, M.B.A., is moCa’s first African American Board Co-President. This creative visionary is also the founder/C.E.O. of Krystal Klear Communications, L.L.C (KKC LLC), an award-winning, full-service communications consulting firm. Jones' firm provides strategic counsel to organizations, entrepreneurs, and industry leaders interested in growing and protecting their organizational value through signature events, custom workshops, and effective marketing solutions. As one of N.B.C.'s “WKYC Live On Lakeside Everyday Champions,” she has also received recognition in  Currents Magazine, The Cleveland Plain Dealer, and Shaker Life Magazine. Her faith informs her core values and has shaped her pathway to success. She remains an active member of the Mt. Zion Church in Oakwood Village, Ohio. An engaged and passionate advocate for service, she believes in investing in Cleveland's diverse community and building pathways to a deeper commitment to excellence.

Joanne R. Cohen

Joanne R. Cohen

Joanne R. Cohen is a passionate advocate for the arts. For over 35 years, she has been a dedicated curator, collector, and advisor within the international and contemporary art space. In her various roles, she has been responsible for numerous significant donations of art and currently is a consultant for the healthcare and education sector of Museum Exchange, a digital platform that connects donors of art with North American museums. In addition, Cohen established the groundbreaking Cleveland Clinic Art Program, growing the highly regarded art collection to 7,000 objects and 40 site-specific commissions displayed throughout 33 million square feet of healthcare facilities nationwide. In 2010 Joanne and the Cleveland Clinic Art Program were awarded the prestigious Martha Joseph Award for distinguished service in the arts from the Cleveland Arts Prize.  

Stephen G. Sokany

Stephen G. Sokany

Stephen G. Sokany, M.B.A., is a senior executive specializing in institutional advancement and fundraising. The Principal and Founder of Sokany Strategic Consulting LLC, he adds deep donor relations, campaign management, and a track record of excellence specific to the management and governance of non-profit institutional boards. Sokany is passionate about civic service and leverages the breadth of his professional expertise to serve impactful organizations. For over a decade, his dedicated service to moCa has centered on supporting the accessibility of contemporary art for all, ensuring that moCa delivers on our mission and amplifies LGBTQ creative voices and their art. In moCa's history, Sokany is our first LGBTQ Board Co-President and also serves as the inaugural Executive Director of the West 117 Foundation, Inc.

moCa’s New Cohort of Directors

F. Allen Boseman, Jr.

F. Allen Boseman, Jr. is notably rooted in Cleveland's legal, professional, and community engagement sectors. Boseman is the Co-owner/Principal of the Sherman Boseman Legal Group, a law firm specializing in labor and employment, entertainment law, commercial litigation, complex negotiations, and, most importantly, problem-solving. Allen and Bradley Sherman founded the firm in September 2017 after long, successful careers at large, global firms representing the interests of a  wide range of Fortune 500 companies worldwide. Boseman is currently serving a  six-year term as the first African American Commissioner for the Cuyahoga County Personnel Review Commission. Intensely committed to culture, arts, and community, Boseman is also the co-founder of a successful promotions company – Tell A Friend Promotions.

Katy Dix Brahler

Katy Dix Brahler is a powerhouse. Professionally she remains a 12+ million dollar premier real estate agent serving the East/West Cleveland and Akron/Kent areas. Awarded the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Woman of the Year award in 2015, Brahler has hosted TWO HGTV Househunters episodes and served as a real estate expert on the "Drew Carey Saves Cleveland" national episode. She believes that art has played a critical role in the revitalization and beautification of our public spaces. As a realtor for more than 25 years, Brahler witnessed how art has transformed homes and brought that sense of "identity" to many people's space across generations. Inspired by the art in her childhood home, from her father's piano playing to her mother's painting, her appreciation for the arts continued to evolve as she visited museums during her international travels. She credits art as one of the things that enrich her life, discovering a few items in her collection at moCa. 

 

Rafael Hernández-Brito

Rafael Hernández-Brito, known as Rafa "El Alcalde" ("The Mayor"), is in his seventh season of bringing his high-energy play-by-play style to each of his Cleveland Cavaliers broadcasts. Before joining the Cavs, Hernández-Brito was the Spanish voice of Brooklyn Nets games for the franchise's first two seasons. He also was the voice of the New Jersey Nets from 1997 to 2001 and called the action for the St. John's University men's basketball team during that same period. In 2018 Rafa became the first Spanish voice of the Cleveland Browns.  Nationally, his broadcasting experience includes eight years as the voice of  National Football League for Spanish Broadcasts of Thursday Night Football, Sunday Night Football, Monday Night Football, the Playoffs, and Superbowl on Univision from 2005 to 2013. He has worked 11 Super Bowls and still maintained his passion for contemporary art.  Today Rafa has a daily syndicated radio sports show airing in the U.S. and Latin America, and he is the co-host of the Emmy award-winning show Cavs H.Q. on Fox Sports Ohio. He also served as the executive producer of the popular podcast "Road Trippin' with R.J. and Channing."

Nicole Finley is the Manager of Student Recruitment & Outreach for Breakthrough Schools. She is responsible for ensuring full enrollment at all schools within the Breakthrough Public Schools network and executing strategies to meet that goal. Finley began her career with Cleveland Metropolitan School District as a Science & Technology Developer and Facilitator. Finley has held various professional roles within education during her seventeen-year career.  She has taught at Collinwood High School, Job Corps, Cleveland Heights High School, Cuyahoga Community College (Upward Bound), and Bryant & Stratton College. Early in her career, she realized that two of her true passions were coaching and guiding minorities into the STEM field and ensuring access to contemporary art for all.

Jonathan Kurtz

Jonathan Kurtz founded JKURTZ Architects Ltd. in Cleveland in 2016. JKURTZ is an architectural practice operating at the intersection of intuition, knowledge, and craft. His practice works purposefully across project types and scales to maintain conceptual and technical dexterity while expanding value to clients and designing buildings of distinct character which shape new behaviors. Jonathan’s work has received broad recognition by peers and publications for over 20 years, in which time he’s led projects to win over 50 design awards. In 2012, he was the recipient of the Cleveland Arts Prize Emerging Artist Award for Architecture. Jonathan teaches design studios at KSU, serves as a guest critic at universities throughout the country, is a returning board member, and has acted as design juror for several State AIA and ASLA Awards programs. Jonathan holds a Master of Architecture with Distinction from Harvard University and a Bachelor of Architecture with Honors from Kent State University.

Nadya Scheiner

Nadya Scheiner earned her Bachelor of Arts in women's studies at Duke University and a Juris Doctor degree at Stanford University Law School. She has spent her adult life experiencing the world as a student, attorney, teacher, and artist. Raised in Washington D. C., Nadya has also lived in Boston, San Francisco, New York City, and Boston. Her professional experience includes working as an attorney for a New York law firm and the New York Civil Liberties Union. Scheiner also taught upper school history at several independent schools. For the past decade, she has worked as an artist in Beachwood, specializing in pen, pencil, acrylic, and mixed media. The majority of her current art focuses on the written word centered around the themes of womanhood, symmetry, disruption of order, surrealism, serenity, and discomfort.

In Gratitude To moCa’s Additional Members At-Large:

Roland Anglin, Scott Bogard, Tim Boyle, Yuval Brisker, Marcella Brown, Dick Cahoon, Grosvie Cooley, Leslie DiNovi, Leslie Dunn, Harriet Goldberg, Joseph M. Grunfeld, J. Bennett Guess, Karen Hillenbrand, Donald Insul, Terry Jenkins, Michelle Shan Jeschelnig, Paul M. Katz, David Lamb, Melissa Leonard, Nancy Leizman, Clyde Miles, Lawrence Oscar, Nicholas Reif, James Stone, Steve Washington, and Harriet Warm

Honorary Directors

Timothy Callahan, Becky Dunn, Char Fowler, Peter Galvin*, Bill Ginn*, Agnes Gund, Hope Hungerford, Jack Katzenmeyer*, Mary Ann Katzenmeyer, Stewart Kohl, Toby Devan Lewis, Scott Mueller, Roger Salomon*, and Boake Sells

*Indicates a deceased Honorary Director

About the Museum of Contemporary Art (moCa)

moCa Cleveland plays an exciting role in the city’s cultural landscape. As a non-collecting institution, moCa is ever-changing, introducing new exhibitions throughout the year to create fresh experiences for visitors each season. Since its founding in 1968, moCa has presented the works of more than 2,000 artists, often through artists’ first solo shows. For more than 50 years, moCa has been both conduit and catalyst for anyone seeking creativity and inspiration, bringing the art and ideas of our time to Cleveland and the region at large. moCa was the first in our region to exhibit works by creative icons like Andy Warhol, Roy Lichtenstein, and Adrian Piper, as well as gifted artists working locally like Julian Stanczak and Jae Jarrell. We continue in that tradition, featuring the work of emerging and established regional, national, and international artists.

All current moCa Cleveland exhibitions are funded by Leadership Circle gifts from an anonymous donor, Yuval Brisker, Joanne Cohen & Morris Wheeler, Margaret Cohen & Kevin Rahilly, Grosvie & Charlie Cooley, Becky Dunn, Harriet Goldberg, Agnes Gund, Richard & Michelle Jeschelnig, Kohl Family, Jan Lewis, Toby Devan Lewis, and Kelly & Scott Mueller.

moCa Cleveland is provided institutional support in part by the residents of Cuyahoga County through a public grant from Cuyahoga Arts & Culture, an anonymous donor, the Cleveland Foundation, the George Gund Foundation, the Leonard Krieger Fund of the Cleveland Foundation, the Ohio Arts Council, the Carl & Marilynn Thoma Art Foundation, and the continuing support of the museum’s Board of Directors, patrons, and members.

Media Contact:

Museum of Contemporary Art Cleveland (moCa)

Akidah Felder, Senior Communications Director | 216.389.6426

afelder@mocacleveland.org

For more information, visit mocacleveland.org.

Facebook: @moCaCleveland

Twitter: @moCaCleveland

Instagram: @moCacleveland #moCacleveland

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