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Cornish is grateful for the dedication of our volunteer Board of Trustees.

2020-2021 BOARD OF DIRECTORS

CHAIR

Sharon Cornish-Martin, MBA, Cornish Alumna, Retired | Click for Bio
Sharon Cornish-Martin is a business professional with 35 years’ experience in the industry. She applied her skills in communications, strategic planning, and project management as an independent consultant working with organizations to improve efficiency and effectiveness. In 2008 Sharon suffered a severe concussion that resulted in significant short-term memory loss and forced early retirement. To help heal her memory, in 2011 she enrolled in the music program at Cornish College of the Arts and graduated summa cum laude in 2013 with a BM in classical piano performance. Sharon was a founding board member and past president of Cascade Leadership Challenge, a non-profit providing outdoor adventures to underprivileged and immigrant high school teens. She provides pro bono consulting services to small social services non-profits. In 2014, as a means of giving back to Cornish College of the Arts, she volunteered to serve on the Board of Trustees and is currently board chair. In addition to playing the piano and volunteering, she dotes on her two grandchildren, the oldest of which plays violin in the Tacoma Junior Youth Symphony.

VICE CHAIR

Don Blakeney, VP of Advocacy & Economic Development, Downtown Seattle Association | Click for Bio
 Don Blakeney joined the board of Cornish in 2015 and has served as Board Vice Chair, Board Secretary and the Chair of the Facilities Committee. Don is the Executive Director of the U District Partnership (UDP), a nonprofit organization that works to ensure that the University District is a vibrant, diverse, and healthy neighborhood for all. Prior to the UDP, Don led advocacy and economic development for the Downtown Seattle Association (DSA) where he oversaw a variety of initiatives and programs that shape public policy, planning, and efforts to improve the quality‐of‐life and economy of Downtown Seattle. Before his time at the DSA, Don spent five years leading cultural programming and working with small businesses as the Executive Director of the Chinatown-ID Business Improvement Area. Prior to 2009, Don lived in New York City where he worked for the Times Square Alliance—a business improvement district in New York’s theatre district. Don earned masters degrees in both Public Administration and Urban Planning from Columbia University. Don has been actively involved in the Seattle community over the past decade. He co-founded Seattle’s first storefront arts program–Storefronts Seattle–and has served on a variety of boards including Historic South Downtown, the Cal Anderson Park Alliance, Friends of the Benson Trolleys. Today, Don lives on Capitol Hill with his wife Erin.  

SECRETARY

John W. Jordan, Partner, NetGalley LLC | Click for Bio
Mr. Jordan has been a trustee of Cornish College of the Arts since 2000. He has also served on the boards of a number of local arts organizations and early stage companies.

Previously he was Director and Senior Vice President International Business at Wizards of the Coast, an innovative game company startup that published Magic: The Gathering and Pokemon trading card games.  Mr. Jordan was the architect of its international business strategy from its inception in 1993 until it was sold to Hasbro in 1999.

Prior to Wizards, Mr. Jordan worked for Boeing Defense & Space Group for 14 years as a systems engineer in Advanced Launch System Design, including the Sea Launch commercial launch vehicle program.

He is a graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with an S.B. in Aeronautics and Astronautics

TREASURER

Michael Fortin, Microsoft Executive, Technology & Management | Click for Bio
Michael Fortin, PhD is a Microsoft Corporate Vice President focusing on Operating Systems products and technologies and is one of three VPs responsible for the Core OS that powers Windows, the Xbox, the HoloLens, the Surface line of PCs, embedded devices as well as the Azure cloud. The Core OS team develops and delivers technology including the kernel, deployment tools, virtualization technology, data science, fundamentals, storage, filesystems, networking technology, and more. Fortin has a Ph.D. and Masters in Computer Science from The Ohio State University and a Bachelor of Science degree from Xavier University. He is a member of Xavier University’s Board of Trustees, has been recognized as a Distinguished Alumnus from The Ohio State University’s College of Engineering, and has authored over 20 U.S. Patents. Fortin lives in the Seattle area with his wife of 30 years, his four daughters, two grandchildren, and an extended family.


Robin Du Brin, President and CEO at Columbia DuBrin Realty Advisors | Click for Bio
Robin Du Brin is the founder, CEO and President of Columbia DuBrin Realty Advisors (CDRA). She works in the areas of senior housing, operations, real estate, investment advising, finance, development, pension funds, business and real estate law, and debt restructuring. Robin is also an investor in several senior-housing properties. She has been involved in asset management, development, and financing the construction and expansion of new and existing senior housing facilities. Robin earned her BA and Certificate in Education at the UW and her Juris Doctorate at the University of Puget Sound/Seattle. She is on the board and founding member of Computers for the World and has been a board member of American Friends of Whistler, the Malaria Rotarian Project. She has been actively involved in Rotary Projects in many countries including building girls’ schools in Afghanistan.
Gary Fluhrer, Attorney, Foster Garvey | Click for Bio
Gary Fluher has been an attorney with the law firm Foster Pepper since 1979. His practice focuses on property development, leasing, financing, acquisition, and disposition of projects, portfolio, and multistate acquisitions, as well as workouts of distressed projects. Gary has worked with a variety of developers and investors, including commercial and residential developers, clients in the hospitality, industrial, and healthcare industries. Gary has also worked on loan restructurings in Washington, Oregon, Alaska, Hawaii, Texas, and California. Gary has been named a “Washington Super Lawyer” for many years. Seattle Business magazine rated him “Best in the Business” in the real estate category in 2013. Washington Law & Politics has rated him a “Super Lawyer” and “Top 100 Lawyer.” Originally from Iowa, Gary holds a bachelor’s degree in aerospace engineering from Iowa State University and a Juris doctor degree from the University of Washington.
Marianne Francis, Cornish Alumna, Realogics Sotheby’s International Realty | Click for Bio
Marianne Sorich Francis is a Global Real Estate Advisor and Broker for Sotheby’s International. She is an alumna of Cornish College of the Arts and received a BFA in sculpture in 1996. She has had regional leadership roles in environmental politics protecting our parks and Puget Sound’s water quality. Marianne has co-chaired the Cornish Gala five times raising scholarship monies for our students. She previously worked in the luxury fashion world for both designers and retail stores and has been serving as a trustee since 2007.
Jeff Gelfuso, Executive Design Director, Facebook | Click for Bio
Jeff Gelfuso, Executive Design Director – Product, UX, Design Tools and Systems
Facebook, serves on the Digital Innovation Advisory Council board for ALSAC / St Jude Children’s Research Hospital and the Board of Trustees for Cornish Cornish College of the Arts.

He has spent his career designing all types of experiences. Lifestyle. Product. Digital. Brand. His superpower is inspiring and leading creative teams to design and deliver innovative and meaningful experiences that enrich people’s lives.

Before joining Facebook, Jeff was at Amazon for 5 years leading the retail experience design team for the consumer division. He spent a decade at Microsoft leading design and product teams in XBOX Live, Windows, and ms.com. Before that, he led creative teams at Corbis, an image licensing company founded by Bill Gates.

 
Larry Hard, Attorney, Retired | Click for Bio
Lawrence E. Hard has served as interim Deputy General Counsel – Real Estate for the Seattle Housing Authority (SHA). He also worked as an Asset Manager/Deputy General Counsel for the SHA until 2007. In addition, Lawrence was a private-practice lawyer with LeSourd & Patten, P.S. from 1970 until 2000. At various times during his legal career, he has served as counsel for several nonprofit organizations, the City Attorney for the City of Tukwila, counsel for the Puyallup Fair, counsel for the nation of Cuba and its national bank, and the Chancellor for St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church in Seattle. Volunteer efforts include board positions with Medic One Foundation, the Epiphany School, University Preparatory Academy, St. Stephen’s Episcopal Church Endowment Committee, Pratt Fine Arts Center, and Environmental Works. Lawrence holds degrees from Amherst College and the University of Michigan Law School.
Leslie Mays, Chief Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Officer at Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation | Click for Bio
Bio Forthcoming
Julia Fryett McDaid, Global GTM Lead, Amazon Web Services (AWS) | Click for Bio
Julia Fryett McDaid is a Global GTM Lead at Amazon Web Services (AWS). Driven by the intersection of creativity and technology, her interdisciplinary background spans cybersecurity, cloud, AR/VR, digital entertainment, and the arts. Her career began in the art world, acquiring and selling art for a global dealer who built markets for luminaries such as Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat. She was introduced to the complexities of frontier technologies through the new media art scene in New York City and later pivoted into the tech sector where she has held positions at an early stage VR startup and Microsoft. Julia holds a BA in Literature, BA in Public Policy Studies from Duke University, and a MA in Film Curating from London Film School.
Emily Parkhurst, Publisher & Market President, Puget Sound Business Journal | Click for Bio
Emily Parkhurst is Market President and Publisher of the Puget Sound Business Journal (PSBJ). She joined the PSBJ in 2012 and served as a reporter, managing editor and editor-in-chief prior to being named publisher in October 2018. Prior to 2012, she was an education and government reporter in her home state of Maine.

Ms. Parkhurst is a national award-winning journalist. The PSBJ won the Society of Professional Journalists Sigma Delta Chi award for public service journalism in 2018 for its Price of Homelessness package, the 2018 SABEW award for real estate reporting, and her series of stories on restraint of school children in Maine won the Sigma Delta Chi award for investigative reporting in 2010.

She holds a master’s degree in creative writing from Vermont College of Fine Arts and an Bachelor’s of Music in Clarinet Performance from the University of Southern Maine. In the early 2000s, Ms. Parkhurst played clarinet, flute and saxophone professionally for the Bangor Symphony Orchestra (Maine), Seacoast Repertory Theatre (New Hampshire), and in the Boehm Wind Trio. She also maintained a studio of clarinet and saxophone students.

Ms. Parkhurst was the classical music columnist for the alt weekly newspaper the Portland Phoenix for five years, where she covered the classical music scene in Portland, Maine. She also wrote reviews for the Classical Voice of New England magazine.

Joel Petersen, Managing Partner, Sound Legacy Wealth Advisors | Click for Bio
Joel Petersen, for over sixteen years, has been applying his broad financial and business experience in a wealth planning and advisory capacity working with high and ultra-high net worth individuals and families, along with foundations, nonprofits and endowments. First at Bernstein Global Wealth Management then at Bank of America Private Bank (formerly U.S. Trust) and now as the leader of Sound Legacy Wealth Advisors, Joel continues to be sought out to provide trusted and thoughtful financial guidance to his clients. Joel is passionate about enabling his clients to live their very best financial life and advising them in forging a life and legacy of impact within their family and their community. Prior to his move to the financial services arena, he spent over twenty years driving and advising the strategic, marketing and operational efforts of market leaders, small to mid-sized privately held companies, as well as startups.

Joel earned a BA degree in Business Administration with a Finance Concentration from Western Washington University.
And Joel is highly engaged in the local community. Beyond his role at Cornish, Joel is President Elect of Rotary Club of Emerald City where he has been a member for over 12 years and he is a past President and current member of the Board of Trustees of Bellevue Arts Museum. Joel also is an Advisory Board Member for WWU’s Center for Innovation in Education.
With all his extra time, Joel loves skiing, hiking, fly fishing, travel, yoga, and playing drums in a local garage band (and he’s not that bad!).

Sherry Raisbeck, Cornish Alumna, Philanthropist | Click for Bio
Sherry Raisbeck received a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a Master’s degree in Special Education from California State University. A prolific visual artist, she also received a Bachelor of fine Arts degree at Cornish College of the Arts in 1988. Sherry is involved with Seattle Opera, Pacific Northwest Ballet and Artists Trust, and is active philanthropically with her husband, James Raisbeck, of Raisbeck Engineering. Sherry has served on the Allocations Committee of the Corporate Council of the Arts and has been involved with the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Institute, Hope Heart Institute, Seattle Conservatory of Music, and the English Speaking Union. She is co-trustee of the James D. and Sherry Raisbeck Foundation.
Jon Rosen, Attorney, The Rosen Law Firm | Click for Bio
Jon Rosen is a labor attorney, who for over 45 years, has represented and advised labor organizations, individuals, and occasionally, employers across a broad range of labor and employment law issues in Washington and across the US. He has been a member of and chaired many law associations. Jon has been listed in Best Lawyers in America since 1987 and is rated AV-Preeminent by Martindale Hubbell. Jon has long been involved with community and the arts in Seattle. He chaired the Friends of 4th and Ward Park which financed and constructed, in conjunction with the City of Seattle, a much-needed family-friendly urban park facility on the south slope of Queen Anne. As an active member of the Jewish community, Jon served as president of Temple De Hirsch Sinai and as a board member of Music of Remembrance and Jewish Family Services. He served as both member and chair of the Seattle Arts Commission and is currently a member of the boards of directors of the Seattle Symphony Orchestra and Classical KING-FM.
Lisa Scribante, Partner, Mithun Architects | Click for Bio
(Coming soon)


Dr. Raymond Tymas-Jones, Ex Officio, President of the College

Dr. Tom Baker, Ex Officio, Music Faculty, Faculty Senate President


Kenneth Alhadeff, Trustee Emeriti

Eve Alvord, Trustee Emeriti

Join us

Interested in becoming a member of our Board of Trustees?

We are always evaluating potential candidates to enrich the breadth of experience and expertise on our Board. Contact our Advancement Team to learn more.

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