MARIANNE LOCKE, Ed.D, Founding Executive Director, is a model program consultant for curriculum.
For over 30 years, Dr. Locke has been a teacher and leader in arts education in California public schools. She worked with agencies including the California Music Educators Association (CMEA), Music Educators National Conference (now NAfME), and US Dept. of Education. Dr. Locke designed the Multicultural Music and Dance in Public Schools model project, aimed at improving equity and excellence for Marin County’s underserved students. Dr. Locke was named Multicultural Music Educator of the Year by CMEA. She received a Bachelor of Music Education from Northwestern University, a Master’s from UC Berkeley, and a Doctorate in Educational Leadership from Fielding University.
JEAN MILLERholds a Bachelor's degree in piano performance from the University of California at Santa Barbara. Jean has performed for many years, both as soloist and in ensembles. She has an active interest in music education, having studied piano pedagogy with Roger Grove, completed Level 2 Orff certification, held Kindermusik and Musikgarten certification. She was a co-founder of the Performing Arts Camp at College of the Siskiyous. The summer camp offered programs in music, art and dance for students throughout
Northern California. Jean lives in Mount Shasta where she teaches piano privately.
TSEDAL T. AGIDEW was born in Nairobi, Kenya and has lived in Ethiopia, Barbados, and multiple states in the U.S. Her dance style is inspired by the variety of art and culture she has been exposed to around the globe. She teaches World Dance to children seamlessly incorporating historic narrative in story-form while maintaining a fun and active learning environment. Tsedal holds a Bachelor's degree from The University of California at Berkeley in Cross-Cultural Education and bridges her Education background with her passion for the Arts. Tsedal has performed at festivals, taught Ethiopian dance at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, DJ's world music, and is also a World Fusion Singer-Songwriter & recording artist.
YANQUIN ZHAO is one of the world’s foremost yangqin performers. As an emerging artist in 1982, she won China’s first nationwide competition for folk music instrumentalists and embarked on a worldwide performing career. By the 1990’s, she moved to the U.S. and introduced traditional Chinese music to American audiences with her ensemble Melody of China. She has also become an innovative figure in the world of American jazz music. Yangqin Zhao has been a teacher with Young Imaginations since first arriving in California and teaches privately as well as presenting educational programs including the San Francisco Symphony’s program for public school children.
JULES HILSON is a percussionist from Oakland, CA who works as a performing musician and educator. She has devoted her musical studies primarily to the music and traditions of the African and Latin diaspora in the Americas, and to deepening her understanding of the complex history of the western hemisphere. She currently studies and plays music from Cuba, Colombia, Brazil, and the USA. Through her studies and teaching, she aims to celebrate the diversity and hopeful future of California. Jules has studied and performed music from Brazil, Cuba and Colombia with many notable Bay Area musicians and masters, including Jorge Alabe, Sandy Perez, Michael Spiro, Elizabeth Sayre and Carolyn Brandy. She currently plays percussion in several local projects, including Susana Arenas Pedroso's Arenas Dance Company, an all female Afro Cuban music and dance group, an Afro-Colombian based band, and a scattering of funk, soul, and top 40 projects.
SHANNON WOLFE holds a Master of Music degree from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music where she studied opera and chamber music performance. A versatile and radiant performer, she writes and creates American Songbook cabaret shows and is a regular performer at Society Cabaret in downtown San Francisco. Other performance credits include Broadway San Jose, Comedy Talks at UCSF’s Presentation Theater and the Angela Peralta Theater in Mazatlan, Mexico. She serves on faculty as a voice teacher at the Holy Name Conservatory of Music in San Francisco, and as the assistant choral director and Kids Yoga specialist at the San Francisco Youth Chorus. Shannon directed the Children's Musical Theatre class at Mira Loma Elementary for two years. She maintains a private voice studio in San Francisco's Inner Sunset, where she offers lessons in singing, acting and audition preparation for children and teens.
Placing the arts at the core of the educational process
TRAVIS CLARKE is the Administrative Director of Young Imaginations, working with YI's school partners and donors to build music and dance programs each fall. Travis holds a B.A. in History from UC Santa Barbara, and was a high school English teacher in San Jose for three years. Before this, Travis worked on State Assembly campaigns in the Los Angeles area and ran a statewide campaign for the Campus Election Engagement Project - the only national non-partisan organization working to inform and mobilize college students to participate in the democratic process. Travis is also an accomplished guitarist and pianist, and brings his love of education and music and his passion for social justice to Young Imaginations.
RON TARICA is the Treasurer and Business Manager of Young Imaginations. Originally from Chicago, Ron moved to the San Francisco Bay Area in 1969 after earning a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from Northwestern University. He worked for Chevron for 28 years, mostly in the Information Technology field. He and his wife, Sandi, lived in Marin and Contra Costa Counties before moving to the Central Coast of California in March 2005 to be near two of their five grandchildren. Ron has three children, two sons and a daughter. An avid choral singer since 1977, Ron performed with the College of Marin Community Chorus, the Diablo Valley Masterworks Chorale, and now the San Luis Obispo Master Chorale. He also sang in the ensemble for ten operas with the North Bay Opera.
JULIE BENNETT was born in Glendora, California, and studied ballet and tap growing up. She received a BA degree from CSU Hayward, in English, and an MA degree in Dance from Mills College. She had her own dance studio, "Centrifigus," in Mt. Shasta for six years. She then worked for Siskiyou County Schools as a sign language interpreter for hearing impaired students. She received her teaching credential from CSU Chico in 1988 and taught kindergarten through third grade for twenty-five years. She became a member of Shasta Taiko and has performed with them for over fifteen years.
JERROLD MOORE, Ph.Dhas been one of California’s leaders in music education for decades – earning
him the title of Music Educator of the Year after he served for ten years on the board of the California Music Educators Association. Jerry earned degrees in Music Education from Humboldt State University, Eastman School of Music and Kent State University. His teaching career and his parallel performing career throughout Northern California included elementary through community college – with over 30 years of jazz and world music leadership at College of the Redwoods. Since moving to the Bay Area, he continues his fascination with jazz as an arranger/performer, as well as bringing jazz and other world musics to public school children