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Board of Advisors

Jeffrey Thomas Burke

Jeffrey Thomas (J.T.) Burke is a digital artist who creates unique image compositions that have been exhibited in Europe, New York City and throughout California. He currently serves on a number of non-profit boards and committees, including chair of the Board of Trustees of Brooks Institute (Ventura, CA), a board member and trustee of the South Pasadena Chamber of Commerce, and a member of the Finance Committee of the City of South Pasadena.

Previously, Burke was an advertising photographer, commercial director and stock photo agent. He was the CEO of PictureArts Corporation, President of the Picture Archive Council of America, and was the co-founder and chair of the PLUS Coalition, an international trade association for image licensing. Burke earned a BA in Design at UCLA, was awarded an Hon MS in Photography from Brooks Institute of Photography and has a Certificate in Management from the UCLA Anderson School of Management.

Kathryn Compton

Kathryn Compton is an accomplished and award winning event producer with more then 20 years experience in the event industry, with a history of producing events for Disney, Warner Bros. Coca-Cola, The Democratic National Convention, Comic Con and the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3). She is known for producing large-scale events, multi-media art installations and interactive and social media experiences.

Kathryn has collaborated and delivered on spectacular events including The Grammys, The Oscars, The Olympics, The Super Bowl, The Cannes Film Festival, The Fire and Ice Ball, and well over 40 Premiere Parties and Red Carpet events. Her passion is cultural, artistic and philanthropic events that combine her artistic flair with her technical expertise. She is currently consulting with the USC Cultural Affairs Dept. and the USC Pacific Asia Museum as part of their transition team.

Steve Fjeldsted

Steve Fjeldsted has been the City Librarian for South Pasadena for more than 8 years. He graduated from San Jose State with a Master’s in Library Science in 1980 and is one of the few to have ever served as a Library Director in Southern, Central, and Northern California. He was accorded the Mayor’s Image Award by the City of South Pasadena in 2010.

In addition, Steve is co-editor and contributor, along with nationally-known poets Molly Fisk and Steve Sanfield, of the 2007 anthology “Open to All: What the Library Means to Me.” Fjeldsted is on the Advisory Committee of the California Chapter of Poets & Writers, Inc. and has served on the Literature Alive! Board. As a Library Director, Steve has spearheaded projects to honor Ray Bradbury, John Steinbeck, and Jack London, as well as South Pasadena’s William Holden, Joel McCrea, and Nelbert Chouinard. In all, he has coordinated and publicized more than 200 well-attended major events for the South Pasadena Public Library.

Dr. Marina Khubesrian, M.D.

Dr. Marina Khubesrian, M.D. was elected to the South Pasadena City Council in November 2011. She currently serves as Councilmember for the current term. Mayor Khubesrian values teamwork and works closely with her talented and dedicated colleagues on the City Council, Staff, Commissions and members of the community to preserve and enhance the quality of life for South Pasadena families and plan for a healthy and sustainable future for the City.

Councilmember Khubesrian is a Board Certified Family Physician, a Fellow of the American Academy of Family Physicians, and a Medical Board of CA licensed Physician and Surgeon. She is a double alumnus of UCLA receiving both a Bachelor of Science degree in Biology and her Medical Doctorate.

Dr. Michele Kipke

Dr. Michele Kipke has served on the Governing Board since 2008. She was the Board President in 2010-2011, and the District Liaison to the City of South Pasadena’s Youth Commission in 2006. From 2006-2008, she served on the Board of Trustees of the South Pasadena Educational Foundation. Since 2004, she has been a Court-Appointed Special Advocate and an educational guardian for children under the jurisdiction of the Department of Children and Family Services.

Michele is a Professor of Pediatrics and Preventative Medicine at the University of Southern California Keck School of Medicine, and Vice-Chair of Research at Children’s Hospital Los Angeles. A longtime resident of South Pasadena, Michele is the proud mother of five children.

David Plenn

David Plenn was a full time musician/songwriter, with a track recorded that included 2 platinum and 2 gold records, as a songwriter, as well as television soundtracks and concerts. After his son was born, he opened up a toy and bookstore, The Dinosaur Farm, in 1994. Playing music is still his first love, but now he does it for fun – which of course, was why he started playing guitar in the first place.

Jon Primuth

Jon Primuth is a local trusts and estates attorney active in the community. He is a volunteer in numerous organizations including in AYSO, SPHS Booster Club, South Pas Chinese American Club, South Pas Chamber of Commerce (board of directors), SPHS PTSA and the South Pasadena Educational Foundation (SPEF). He has served as the president of SPEF, a forty-member nonprofit raising money and providing enrichment programs to the school district. Jon Is current serving on the South Pasadena Unified School District School Board.

Craig Watson

Craig Watson has served as  the Director of the California Arts Council, a position he has held since August 2011 when the Council chose him after a nationwide search. Watson started his career in the arts field at local arts agencies and arts-services organizations, and later built a career in the telecommunications industry before returning to the arts as Executive Director of the Arts Council for Long Beach. The California Arts Council is the official state arts agency for California, the state with the largest number of artists and creative-industry workers in the nation.

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