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Queens Council on the Arts inaugurates junior board of trustees

Photo courtesy of Nicole E. Reiner/QCA

The Queens Council on the Arts (QCA), located in Astoria, has inaugurated a junior board of trustees.

According to QCA Development Coordinator Nicole E. Reiner, the junior board is comprised of 10 young professionals passionate about making an impact in their communities and bringing new perspectives to the boardroom table.

In accordance with its mission statement, the QCA, founded in 1966, has spent the past 50 years working “to foster and develop the arts in Queens County and to support individual artists and arts organizations in presenting their cultural diversity.” The junior board, with its diverse cultural makeup and professional experience in fields ranging from education to municipal administration to entrepreneurship, will come together with the goal of working with QCA staff to strengthen the nonprofit’s work as an arts services organization.

Four members of the junior board — Argentina Flores, Monica Sarmiento Castillo, Morgan Jones and Omar Solis — have already undertaken a project to advance toward this goal. Along with QCA staff, they have begun pooling their language and media skills to create a web series of multilingual informational videos designed to provide career-building skills to artists and art organizations.

In addition, the junior board organized a guided tour of Kaufman Astoria Studios, as well as a meet-and-greet with Principal Donna Finn of the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts, which included a student dance concert.

“Hearing Donna speak with pride about her accomplished students and teachers and their vision for the school’s further development was a spine-tingling highlight,” Reiner said.

QCA’s junior trustees, who are mostly in their 30s, will benefit from working with the more experienced senior board of directors, who will mentor the junior board and help them develop fundraising knowledge, make professional contacts and build their resumes. This mentorship will prepare the junior board to eventually succeed the current board of directors.

The following are the 10 members of the junior board of trustees:

Aryana Anderson – associate producer, Amplify Inc.
Monica Sarmiento Castillo – assistant director, Spanish graduate program, St. John’s University
Eileen Diskin – alumni relations director, Rudolf Steiner School
Claudia Filomena – NYC regional lead, NY Rising Communities Reconstruction Program, NYS Governor’s Office of Storm Recovery
Argentina Flores – founder, QNS Collective
Morgan Jones – senior advisor of outreach, Office of the Mayor
Alexandru Lucaci – personal banker, Investors Bank
Emily Schwartz – public programs manager, King Manor Museum
Emily Rios – blogger, We Heart Astoria
Omar Solis – founder, Digital Villain

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