Createquity is growing! We are pleased to introduce the two newest members of Createquity’s editorial team. Over the course of a three-month trial period that started this summer, these folks demonstrated their ability to help us tackle the thorniest questions in the arts while also building our networks, strengthening our organizational viability, and expanding our influence. We’re excited to continue working with them going forward. Say hello to:

michael head shot

Michael Feldman provides strategic and engagement advice to local and international arts organizations. Based in Washington, D.C., he also serves as a board member of the Alliance for a New Music Theatre, an arts partner of the Czech Embassy for their Mutual Inspirations Festival. Michael is a former cultural attaché and diplomat whose experience bridges the arts, development, and public policy worlds. Michael was a director at PEPFAR, the President’s Emergency Fund for AIDS Relief; a director for Europe and Central Asia at the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative; and professional staff of the Budget Committee of the U.S. Senate as part of a fellowship with the American Political Science Association. At the US State Department, Michael served in Europe and Central Africa; he oversaw assistance for the Balkans; and he negotiated policy with the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the G-7/8 process, and the European Union. Michael graduated from Wesleyan University with a B.A. in Economics and speaks German, Czech, French and Italian.

Shawn LentShawn Renee Lent is an international social practice dance artist, blogger, educator, and manager with experience from South Chicago to East London to Northwest Bosnia. Shawn is currently transitioning back to the States after three years living abroad. In 2012, she moved to Cairo, Egypt as a Fulbright Scholar with a project titled “Artist as Catalyst.” Following her grant, Shawn remained in Egypt as the EducationUSA Advising Coordinator with AMIDEAST and the US State Department, while also building dance programs for 57357 Children’s Cancer Hospital Egypt and the U.S. Embassy Cairo. Previously, Shawn was the Arts Integration Program Specialist at Columbia College Chicago and a member of numerous nonprofit boards. Her honors include being selected for the UN Alliance of Civilizations International Fellowship, American Express Social Purpose Leadership Academy, World Forum on Intercultural Dialogue in Baku, and the Universal Exposition in Milan. Shawn holds a Master of Arts Management degree with a concentration in Arts in Youth and Community Development from Columbia College Chicago, a Post-Graduate Certificate in Youth Arts Development from Goldsmith’s College, and a BFA from Millikin University, where she had the honor of being Commencement Speaker in 2014.

Cover image credit: “Applause” by Thomas Quine, via Flickr Creative Commons