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Staff & Board

Board of Directors

Ashima Aggarwal is a Queens-born Brooklyn resident who took brief detours to Ohio and Massachusetts before returning to her beloved New York City.  Ashima is mom to brilliant young Nouri, married to lawyer and musician Konrad, and serves as Associate General Counsel and Vice President at the 200+ year old global publishing company John Wiley & Sons, Inc.  At Wiley, she serves as the general counsel for Wiley’s Education Publishing business which includes Wiley’s book publishing businesses, businesses that provide professional development products and services and a global education technology business. Ashima has degrees in Art History and Political Science from Wellesley College and attended Boston College Law School.  She is a voracious reader who loves sharing book reviews and recommendations and enjoys baking and wandering the streets of NYC.

Naomi Beckwith is the Manilow Senior Curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago, focusing on conceptual practices in contemporary art. Her master’s thesis on Adrian Piper and Carrie Mae Weems earned Distinction from the Courtauld Institute of Art in London. Her exhibitions and work have been featured in The New York Times, Artforum, T Magazine, Uptown, CODE Magazine, and Ebony Magazine where she was recently listed as a Top 100 Leader in Arts and Letters. Naomi was a fall 2008 grantee of the Andy Warhol Foundation for the Visual Arts and was named the 2011 Leader to Watch by ArtTable. In addition to her curatorial work and service to The Laundromat Project, she has served on several host committees such as RUSH Philanthropic Gold Rush Awards, the BAMart Annual Auction, Triple Canopy, and the Art for Africa auction for the Africa Foundation.

Aaron Cedolia is a Co-Founder and Communications Director for Peoplmovr, a creative studio specializing in engagement. A communications strategist, creative producer, and artist, Aaron has worked for over ten years in communications strategy and marketing. Aaron managed the overall communications strategy for New York University’s (NYU) music and performing arts programs (2004-2012) and currently directs communications for NYU’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study. As an artist, Aaron has created work for organizations including The Present Group, Art in Odd Places, New Museum’s Festival of Ideas for a New City, and ArtPrize.

Susan (Suzy) Delvalle is the President and Executive Director of Creative Capital, a national arts organization that supports innovative and adventurous artists through funding, counsel and career development services. In the last 19 years, Creative Capital has committed $45 million in financial and advisory support to 561 projects representing 700 artists and reached more than 18,000 artists in 700 communities through in-person and online workshops. Only the second director in Creative Capital’s history, Suzy comes to the organization with a strong background in the arts, fundraising, and institution-building. She most recently served as the founding Director of the Sugar Hill Children’s Museum of Art & Storytelling, where she oversaw all aspects of the development and opening of the museum. Suzy previously served as Director of External Affairs and Development at El Museo Del Barrio, where she dramatically increased the museum’s budget and attendance over her eleven-year tenure. Before joining El Museo, she worked for American Composers Orchestra following a career in consumer banking and advertising. Suzy is a guest lecturer in the Arts Management program at The New School and has served as an adjunct faculty member at NYU’s School of Continuing and Professional Studies.  She was born and raised in Curaçao and speaks Spanish, Dutch, and Papiamento. 

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Marcus Ellington is the Head of Industry for Media and Entertainment at Google, where his team oversees Google and YouTube’s cable television advertising business. Marcus has been in digital advertising for over a decade, helping marketers use digital solutions to tell brand stories, reach consumers and drive results. He began his career at CBS Television Stations in digital sales marketing where he developed campaigns for CBS On-air franchises such as March Madness, Grammy’s, and US Open Tennis. Marcus then worked at Radio One as Director of Ad Sales for Interactive One where he focused on helping brands reach multicultural consumers. Marcus is passionate about new emerging trends in media and technology and loves to work with partners that have this same drive to push the boundaries and try new innovative approaches. Marcus holds a BA in communications from Temple University and in 2015 graduated from Duke University’s Google Global Business Academy.

Dr. Erika Faust is an orthodontist practicing in midtown Manhattan. She is a graduate of Spelman College and Howard University College of Dentistry. Prior to making a full-time commitment to her dental practice, she served as a part-time attending dentist and clinical instructor at Bronx Lebanon Hospital Center. She is active with Operation Smile, an international charity organization that treats facial deformities in children, and New Yorkers for Children, a charity that assists foster children as they enter college. Her professional affiliations include the American Dental Association, and the American Association of Orthodontists. Dr. Faust is a native New Yorker, is an avid supporter of the arts, and has lent her support to such institutions as the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum, The Fashion Institute of Technology, and the New York Public Library.

Rasu Jilani is an independent curator, cultural producer, and social sculptor who investigates the intersections between art, culture and civic engagement as a means of raising critical consciousness. The main objective of his work is to catalyze interaction between artists, cultural institutions, the local community and the wider public, in order to promote cultural awareness through exhibitions, public programs, and cultural events. Currently Rasu serves as the Director of Cultural Diversity and Strategic Partnerships at NEW INC, The New Museum’s creative entrepreneurship incubator for art, tech and technology. From 2013 through 2016, Jilani worked at MAPP International Productions as the Director of Community Programs.

Kevin Rabsatt is a Senior Software Engineer at Jigsaw, a unit within Google, where he leads a team of socially minded engineers to develop technology to make the world safer.

While at Google, Kevin has led the technical teams behind products used by millions of users around the world. His work spans product areas across the Google portfolio from Classroom to Drive and GSuite to Maps. Currently at Jigsaw, Kevin is using his technical expertise to build products that seek to create positive change. He is part of a team that uses technology to tackle social issues including disinformation, online harassment, and censorship. Outside of his technical work, Kevin also takes the time to mentor and help build diversity and inclusion at Google. Kevin is an experienced technologist and prior to Google, he built software as part of the Microsoft Dynamics and Windows Media Divisions.

Kevin lives in Harlem with his wife and two boys. He holds a BS in Computer Engineering & Computer Science, and an MS in Multimedia and Creative Technologies from the University of Southern California.

George Suttles is the Director of Research, Commonfund Institute at Commonfund. He previously served as a Program Officer with The John A. Hartford Foundation, a private, nonpartisan, national philanthropy dedicated to improving the care of older adults. He has also held roles in the philanthropic divisions of U.S. Trust, Anthem Foundation, and the New York State Health Foundation. In additional to his role on The Laundromat Project board, he also serves on the nonprofit boards of Odyssey House, The Support Center, and Drive Change Inc.

Founder

Risë Wilson

Staff

Moncho is a Latinx-queer-poet, translator, visual artist, and educator. They’ve been published in 2018 Emerge Lambda Fellows Anthology, Poets.org, and other publications. They are a recipient of fellowships and residencies from The Helen Wurlitzer Foundation, Lambda Literary, Poets House, Troika House, the Summer Seminar at Sarah Lawrence College, and won the Academy of American Poet’s John B. Santoianni award for excellence in poetry. They received an MFA from Sarah Lawrence College, where they were awarded the Thomas Lux Scholarship for dedication to teaching, demonstrated through writing workshops with youths in Sunnyside Community Services in Queens, New York. Born and raised in Pacoima, California, they currently live in Brooklyn, New York.

Tiara Austin is a Brooklyn-native, writer, educator and daughter of Jamaican immigrants. She received her B.A. in Africana Studies and Sociology from Smith College. Her undergraduate research through the Mellon Mays Undergraduate Fellowship focused on black feminist art and theorizing public gatherings. Tiara recently completed the Brooklyn Museum Education Fellowship in Public and School Programs. In her downtime, Tiara can be found reading or singing around the house.

 

Amelia Brod is Development Manager at The Laundromat Project. Prior to LP, she was an Arts Specialist at Kickstarter, where she helped artists and institutions build sustainable support and community. Before that she worked on exhibitions and programs at SculptureCenter, Creative Time, and ArtTable. She also curates independently, including Order My Steps at BKSD (2018), and holds an MA in Curatorial Practice from the California College of the Arts.

Emma Colón is an artist and cultural worker committed to supporting art’s capacity to build community and effect social change. Prior to joining The LP, Emma worked as Editorial and Communications Manager at A Blade of Grass, where she wrote about socially engaged art and helped to develop and carry out a comprehensive content strategy for the organization. She holds a Bachelors’ degree in Creative Writing from Macalester College and has run arts-based youth programs as part of Casa Experimental in New York and Highpoint Center for Printmaking in Minneapolis. 

Kemi Ilesanmi is the Executive Director of The Laundromat Project. With 20 years of experience in the cultural arena, she is inspired by the immense possibilities for joyful justice at the intersection of arts and community. Prior to joining The LP, she was Director of Grants and Services at Creative Capital Foundation where she supported the work of American artists making adventurous new work. From 1998–2004, she was visual arts curator at the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis. While there, she organized several exhibitions, including The Squared Circle: Boxing in Contemporary Art, and ran the visual arts residency program. In 2015, she was appointed by the Mayor of New York City to the Cultural Affairs Advisory Commission and has served as Chair since 2020. She has been honored by the Metropolitan Museum and Project for Empty Space and serves on the boards of the Joan Mitchell Foundation and The Broad Room, as well as advisory boards for Brooklyn Public Library, Smith College Museum of Art, Black Arts Future Fund, Indigo Arts Alliance, and WNET All Arts. A graduate of Smith College, NYU, and Coro Leadership NY, she is also a Sterling Network Fellow.

Ladi’Sasha Jones is an alumna of The LP’s Fellowship program (2013), and is also an accomplished writer, and curator. She has written for Aperture, Avery Review, IAM magazine, Houston Center for Photography, Temporary Art Review, and Recess among others. Ladi’Sasha was the Sophie Davis Curatorial Fellow for Gender and Racial Parity at the Norton Museum of Art. She held prior appointments at the New Museum’s IdeasCity platform and NYPL’s Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. As a founding board member of the I, Too, Arts Collective, Ladi’Sasha is a part of a group working to transform the historic landmark brownstone of American poet James Mercer Langston Hughes into a residency for Black writers. She holds a B.A. in African American Studies from Temple University and a M.A. in Arts Politics from NYU, Tisch School of the Arts. Ladi’Sasha will be working with the programs team and among many other things she will reimagine our alumni engagement strategies.


Julia Mata is an illustrator, comic book artist, and event producer who grew up in Southern California, with familial roots in Central America and the Eastern European Jewish Pale of Settlement. She is an independent curator, event producer, and is one third of the WOC run comics collaborative, Spicy Mango Comics. She has been working professionally as a curator since her teens, and has been a part of various collaborations to produce concerts, radio shows, gallery exhibitions, and parties. She also creates visuals and illustrations for women of color run projects and initiatives.

Hatuey Ramos-Fermín is an artist. He is the co-founder of meta local collaborative, an artist collective, and Boogie Down Rides, a bicycling and art project celebrating cycling in the Bronx. He has organized projects and made presentations at a security guard training school (in tribute to Fashion Moda), community centers, churches, restaurants, laundromats, as well as galleries and museums. He has mentored young adults at the Center for Urban Pedagogy, and The Bronx Museum of the Arts, where he also served as Curator of Education. Ramos-Fermín has also participated in the Elizabeth Foundation for the Art’s Shift Residency, and The Laundromat Project’s Create Change Public Artist Residency. He received his BA from the University of Puerto Rico and his MFA from St. Joost Art and Design Academy.

Ayesha Williams is an art professional with over a decade of experience working with visual artists, presenting programs, and generating funding for both commercial galleries and nonprofit institutions. From 2010-2016, Ayesha managed Visual Arts at Lincoln Center, a comprehensive program that provides visual art offerings and experiences to Lincoln Center’s audiences and supporters. Prior to joining Lincoln Center, Ayesha was the Director of Kent Gallery. In addition to her professional experience, Ayesha is on the boards of the Marcus Garvey Park Alliance and The Possibility Project. She also served as a Steering Committee member of the UN Women’s Conference 2016. Ayesha received her Master’s degree in Visual Arts Administration from New York University and Bachelor’s degree in Political Science from University of Southern California, Los Angeles.

Our first full-time Community Engagement Manager, Cievel Xicohtencatl is a multidisciplinary artist and cultural organizer who lives and works in New York and Mexico. As a second generation migrant, her work often explores themes identity-based politics and culture. She graduated from CUNY Hunter College and served as Community Relations Coordinator for Friends of the High Line.

National Advisory Board

The National Advisory Board is a diverse brain trust of creative, talented, and highly accomplished leaders who help amplify our work as we continue to equip, empower, and embolden artists and neighbors to serve as creative change agents in their own communities.

Erin Barnes
ioby

Ryan Dennis 
Mississippi Museum of Art

Teresita Fernandez
Artist

Sonia Guiñansaca
Artist

Thomas Lax
Museum of Modern Art

Susana Torruella Leval
Director Emerita, El Museo del Barrio and Arts Activist

Glenn Ligon
Artist

Larry Ossei-Mensah
Independent Curator
Co-Founder, Art Noir

Katy Rogers
Dedalus Foundation

Nelini Stamp
Working Families

Eugenie Tsai
Brooklyn Museum

Javier Valdes
Make the Road New York

Tiana Webb Evans
ESP PR

Dr. Deborah Willis
Artist and NYU Tisch
School of the Arts

Merele Williams Adkins
Arts Advocate

Laura Zabel
Springboard for the Arts

Teaching Artists & Faculty

The Laundromat Project works with professional teaching artists, primarily from our three anchor neighborhoods: Bedford-Stuyvesant, Harlem, and Hunts Point.

Fay Bonas

The Black School

Alejandra Delfin

Sajata Epps

Havanna Fisher

Ebony Noelle Golden

Markita Miler

Ahmed Tijay Mohammed

Shani Peters

Dennis Redmoon Darkeem

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