The legendary choreographer, Chester A. Whitmore has been apart of the Board for over 8 years and is currently serving as Treasurer. He is known for his work on Strange Days (1995), Moonwalker (1988) and Jackie Robinson Tribute: Youth in Salute (2013). Currently, he is travelling around the world, touring as choreographer / director, and entertainer. He and his dance company, Black Ballet Jazz, have performed with the Lionel Hampton Orchestra, the Duke Ellington Orchestra under the direction of Mercer Ellington, the Count Basie Orchestra under the direction of Frank Foster and the great Miles Davis. Chester Whitmore's choreography can be seen in music videos by Weird Al Yankovic, Tina Marie, Boys 2 Men, and most recently, Sugar Ray and the list goes on. Mr. Whitmore is active in the Los Angeles arts community and leads our creative team in choreography.
For more than ten years, Dr. Barbara Reece has served on the board of directors and has served as the Chair for the past three years, Dr. Reese is the CEO of Eureka International, a real estate and investment corporation. As a graduate of UCLA and Loyola Marymount University Dr. Reese shares her expertise in the world of Education. Dr. Reece is a retired LAUSD teacher and currently serves as the Director of Christian Education at Phillips Temple CME Church. Amongst others, she is Wife, Mother, Grandmother, and a licensed private pilot.
DeBorah Sharpe-Taylor has been a Board member for 8 years. Hailing from Joliet, Illinois, she earned her Bachelor of Science Degree from Oral Roberts University (ORU). She attended ORU on a full vocal scholarship where she majored in Telecommunications and minored in Music. She later earned her MBA from the University of Phoenix. She has trained privately in both New York City and Hollywood. Ms. Sharpe-Taylor has a long history working in theater, film, and television as a vocalist and actress. DeBorah Sharpe-Taylor is currently a vocal instructor at The American Academy of Dramatic Arts and Musicians Institute in Hollywood. At MI, DeBorah teaches Jazz Vocals, R&B Vocals, Gospel Choir, Vocal Performance, as well as Private Lessons.
(Music Director-Composer-Arranger-Orchestrator-Vocalist) Is recognized by the world-renowned Down Beat magazine for performing, arranging and orchestrating his own compositions. He composed, orchestrated, and produced the underscored music for films: The Club, starring Tommy Ford, The Gifted, starring Dick Anthony Williams; the NBC-TV-syndicated series: Images and Realities’ episodes: African American Men, hosted by Louis Gossett Jr.; The African American Family, hosted by Danny Glover and Esther Rolle; and African American Women, hosted by Vanessa Williams, Queen Latifah, and poet/author Maya Angelou, ABF–America’s Black Forum, hosted by Julian Bond and orchestrations for Elton John's The Road To El Dorado, for Dreamworks’ animation feature film soundtrack. His compositions, arrangements, and orchestrations contributed to The Tonight Show, hosted by Johnny Carson; Lou Rawls–UNCF Parade of Stars, The 1992 U.S. Olympic Festival, the TV series Fame, and the acclaimed dance, choral arrangement and orchestration for The Martin Luther King- Kennedy Center Special production number, For All We Know medley, choreographed by Michael Peters, performed by Michael Peters and Debbie Allen, Los Angeles Symphony Orchestra, Denver Symphony Orchestra, and the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra, featuring Grammy Award winner, Marilyn McCoo. His many collaborations include Pattie Labelle, Frank Sinatra, The Doobie Brothers’, Quincy Jones, Daryl Coley, Debarge, Phyllis Hyman, Robert Guillaume, The Temptations’, The Dells, Eddie Kendricks, Stevie Wonder, Rick James, and Tina Marie. Theatre credits include Ray Charles Live–The Musical, Pasadena Playhouse, directed by Sheldon Epps, written by Suzan-Lori Parks. He composed the original score and sound design for the 2015 hit SASSY MAMAS, and was nominated for the NAACP Theatre Award, 'Best Sound Design' for Camp Logan. A two time recipient of the NAACP Theatre Award for 'Best Sound Design' for The Emperor's Last Performance and Anna Lucasta, Los Angeles Drama Logue Award for 'Best Musical Direction' of Four Seasons. He orchestrated Off-Broadway’s Thunder Knocking on the Door,starring Leslie Uggums with music by Keb Mo. Eric’s songs were recorded by Eddie Kendricks, Robert Guillaume, Leslie Drayton, Vivian Reed, Patrice Rushen, and Nancy Wilson. Eric has an extensive music library of over 300 songs and themes in his Aw-Love-It Music Publishing Company catalogue ranging in styles from R&B, Pop, Jazz, Country, Hip-Hop, to Rock and Musical theatre. He continues to create new material all the time.
Co - Founder and Artistic Director for the past 30 years serving the under-served and disenfranchised youth, young adults, and families of South Los Angeles and surrounding areas. Beginning in 1994 alongside Co-founder Mr. Michael Ray Barnes, as they shaped it's foundation to become a formidable arts, arts education, and self esteem building nonprofit organization.