Chairman, HARLEM Arts Alliance
As Chairman of the organization Voza Rivers brings over 40 years of experience as an arts administrator and arts producer. He is one of the nation’s leading African–American theater, music and events producers. Throughout his career Rivers has worked with the some of the world’s most talented artists such as Nancy Wilson, Nina Simone, Ruby Dee, Luther Vandross, The Count Basie Orchestra, Tito Puente, Celia Cruz, Miriam Makeba, Hugh Masekela, Tony Bennett, Anita Baker, Max Roach, Gloria Lynne, Yolanda Adams, Dionne Warwick, Manhattan Transfer, and Stevie Wonder. Rivers received a Grammy nomination for Mbongeni Ngema’s Sarafina, and he produced the Obie-Award winning plays The Huey P. Newton Story at the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture and Woza Albert! at La Mama and the American Museum of Natural History. He is Co-Chairman of the Board of Directors for Community Works, a multi-cultural arts and education organization that serves 100,000 New York City students and adults. In addition, Rivers is the Executive Producer of HARLEM WEEK, the Harlem Jazz and Music Festival, and the National Black Sports and Entertainment Hall of Fame.
Vice Chairman, HARLEM Arts Alliance
President & CEO of The Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce.
Lloyd Williams is the Chairman of The Greater Harlem Chamber of Commerce, founded in 1886. Williams is also the Co-Founder of HARLEM WEEK, Inc. and Harlem Jazz & Musical Festival. HARLEM WEEK began as a one day celebration back in 1974 and is now the biggest summer event held every August attracting over 3.5 million people. Mr. Williams is the Chairman/Co-founder for LMR Productions, Inc., Greater Harlem Housing Development Corporation, The National Black Sports & Entertainment Hall of Fame and Vice-Chairman of the The National Jazz Museum in Harlem. He is also serves as a member of the Executive Board of NYC & Company. As a professor Williams has taught various courses in history, Urban Development, Tourism, business and economics at Cooper Union, Hunter College, The City College of New York, Rutgers University, Pratt Institute, Shaw University, Hostos Community College, University of Michigan, University of Massachusetts, Malcolm-King College, Fordham University. The New School for Social Research, and Central State College to name a few.
Board Secretary, HARLEM Arts Alliance
Recently appointed as the Vice President of Programming of Harlem’s esteemed performance institution, Jazzmobile, Ms. Walton is a long-time Harlem resident who also served as the Executive Director of the HARLEM Arts Alliance for two and a half years. Her significant contributions to the HAA, through mobilization, organization, and advocacy of Harlem’s artistic community are numerous. Highlights include fundraising, in particular a multi-year grant from the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone; managing grant making programs awarding over $100,000 to artists and arts organizations by administering re-granting programs such as the Urban Artists Initiative and Councilmember Inez Dickens’ Cultural Collaborative; co-developing the Artz, Rootz and Rhythm Festival; solidifying partnerships with business and community organizations; and facilitating artists’ workshops such as the two-year-old Uptown/Downtown initiative. In serving on numerous tasks force and advisory boards, Ms. Walton has increased the visibility of HAA and its programming locally, throughout New York City, and nationally.
Patricia Boyd MST, CPA
Board Treasurer, HARLEM Arts Alliance
Founder of P.Boyd CPA, PLLC, Certified Public Accountants and Consultants, Ms. Boyd has more than fifteen years experience in auditing and taxation for public accounting firms and private industry. Ms. Boyd has given lectures on accounting and tax issues at the New York Chapter of Black Journalists. Ms. Boyd is a member of the Tax committee of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, New York State Society of Certified Public Accountants, National Association Public Accountants, and National Association of Black Accountants. She is the Corporate Accountant for HARLEM WEEK, INC.
Geoffrey Eric Eaton
Deputy Chief of Staff for Congressman Charles B. Rangel, Mr. Eaton is Congressman Rangel’s designee to a number of important Boards, including the New York Empowerment Zone, the Upper Manhattan Empowerment Zone, and the Harlem Community Development Corporation. Mr. Eaton is Chairperson of Uptown Dance Academy, Inc.
Garland Lee Thompson
For the past 35 years, award-winning playwright, lecturer, and educator, Garland Lee Thompson has dedicated his life to emerging and established playwrights. Along with actor, Morgan Freeman, Mr. Thompson founded the Frank Silvera Writers’ Workshop. The Workshop creates a space for playwrights of all colors to have an opportunity to expose their new works in a positive and nurturing environment. Under Garland Lee Thompson’s artistic direction, the workshop also provides critical peer counsel and an opportunity to further enhance the playwrights’ craft and skill.
Gregory A. Thomson, Esq.
Gregory A. Thomson is a New York-based entertainment attorney and management consultant. He specializes in advising clients on economic and strategic issues in the entertainment and media industries. His current work includes serving as an expert witness for the City of Los Angeles for Wallace vs. Los Angeles, a major lawsuit brought by the heirs of slain rapper Notorious B.I.G. Thomson’s prior experience includes five years heading business affairs for Quincy Jones Productions in LA during the 1990s, responsible for such projects as Boyz ‘N The Hood, Q’s Jook Joint, and Sarafina!. Subsequently, Thomson served in VP of Business Development roles at Discovery Communications and Guggenheim.com, and as a media management consultant at Booz Allen & Hamilton. Thomson began his career as a film and television attorney at Loeb and Loeb in Los Angeles. Thomson is also the Producer and Director of Lowriders (1995) an award-winning documentary. He holds an MBA from Columbia Business School, a JD from Yale Law School, and a BA from Yale College.
Manager of the Adam Clayton Powell, Jr. State Office Building, Mr. Walker was appointed by the Governor to this position in 2005 and has managed many capital projects since his appointment. Formerly a manager for the RKO Theaters, Mr. Walker is an ordained minister and has served on the Board of Directors for organizations such as the Mayor’s Task Force Against Domestic Violence, Harlem Legal Services, and the National Committee for Black AIDS Day for the Center for Disease Control. Mr. Walker is also the founder of the Little Walker’s Kindle College in Harlem Day Care facility. Founder and Chairman of Harlem Summerstage, Mr. Walker is also Chairman of the Harlem Summer Stage Cultural Program.
President of Walker International Communications Group, Ms. Walker-Kuhne has received acknowledgement from the Arts & Business Council as the nation’s foremost expert on Audience Diversification. She is an accomplished arts administrator and adult educator. Clients include The Romare Bearden Foundation, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, the Broadway hit “Hairspray,” WNYC Radio, the Apollo Theater, and Sony/BMG Music. She was recently an Associate Producer on the George C. Wolfe’s “Harlem Song” (Apollo Theater) as well as a co-producer for the 2004 Audelco Awards.
Gerri Warren-Merrick is President of WarrenMerrick Communications, a newly established boutique consulting firm specializing in public policy, communications strategy, philanthropy, and social responsibility. Most recently, she served as Vice President of Global Public Policy for Time Warner Inc. where she was responsible for local, state, and national partnerships, communicating company objectives, and leading initiatives related to public policy, education, and the arts. Over the past 20 years, Gerri held several executives positions in community relations, public affairs, government relations, and communications for Time Warner and Time Warner Cable. She also managed executive initiatives and partnerships for Chairman and CEO Richard Parsons. Ms. Warren-Merrick is currently a member of the Friends of Education at MOMA and sits on the boards of the Abyssinian Development Corporation and Big Brothers, Big Sisters. Gerri was also a Harlem YMCA Black Achiever and a former Chair of the Board of Managers for the Harlem YMCA.
Chief Diversity Officer & Office of Civil Rights, MTA
Stacy R. Lynch, Esq
Founder & CEO, Stacy R. Lynch Consulting Group
Executive Director, The City College of New York