Jerome Foundation Announces Staff and Board Changes

Monday, July 10, 2017

The Jerome Foundation is excited to announce updates to its staff in Program, Administration, and Finance.

“This is a thrilling moment at the Foundation, as we open our doors in new ways to artists and to organizations—and the arrival of new staff could not be more optimally timed. The Board and I are both excited and grateful that such extraordinary individuals have chosen to join the staff at this moment. We all look forward to the road ahead.”

—Ben Cameron, Jerome Foundation President

Eleanor Savage has been named Program Director. Savage has been on the program staff at the Jerome Foundation for over 9 years and most recently served as Acting Program Director.

Venessa Fuentes joined the Jerome Foundation as Program Officer in May 2017, having previously served in two different roles at the Bush Foundation. Most recently, she was part of the Communications Team and led story-sharing efforts that helped elevate the Bush Foundation’s investments. Fuentes joined the Community Innovation Team as one of the first Ron McKinley Philanthropy Fellows in 2014. She’s held various roles, including program management and philanthropy writing, at Twin Cities arts and social services nonprofits. Fuentes is a poet, essayist, and an arts advocate who lives in south Minneapolis with her family.

Chitra Vairavan joined in May 2017 as Administrative and Communications Associate. For the past ten years she has served as the Program Coordinator for the Interprofessional Center for Counseling and Legal Services at the University of St. Thomas School of Law. Chitra is a contemporary Indian dancer and choreographer, and a recipient of the 2016 McKnight Fellowship for Dance. She is a co-founding member of Ananya Dance Theatre and a dance collaborator with Aniccha Arts. Chitra has a master’s in International Leadership Development from the University of St. Thomas and is a graduate of the University of Minnesota.

Andrea Brown joined as Grants Administrator in December 2016. She was with the Walker Art Center for five years, most recently as the Associate Director of Strategic Marketing. After graduating from Smith College, she started at the American Academy in Berlin, then took a 7-year detour into software as an account supervisor at Marketing Bridge/Gage Marketing before returning to the arts.

Matt Stowell, Controller, and Hannah Ericksen, Senior Accountant, of CliftonLarsonAllen LLP joined the Finance office in December 2016. Both serve in CLA’s Public Sector Group, specializing in foundations, social service organizations, and other nonprofit organizations and bring a combined 15 years of experience to the Foundation.


Daniel Alexander Jones and Mark Tribe Elected to the Jerome Foundation Board of Directors

The Jerome Foundation welcomes two new board members in June 2017. We are honored to have Daniel Alexander Jones and Mark Tribe join the board! Read more about their incredible work and craft below.


Daniel Alexander Jones (elected 2017) makes theatre, music, and live performance. His wildflower body of work continues to grow in dialogue with a wide range of collaborators and audiences. Duat premiered at Soho Rep in 2016 to critical acclaim (including a five-star review from Time Out). His other performance pieces and plays include Phantasmatron, Phoenix FabrikBlood:Shock:Boogie, and Bel Canto. He adapted the second of L. Frank Baum’s Oz books into a musical, Bright Now Beyond, with composer Bobby Halvorson and director Will Davis. Daniel’s multi-chapter series of solo autobiographical performances, The Book of Daniel, included collaborations with MacArthur Fellow Walter Kitundu, and celebrated director Tea Alagic.

Daniel first appeared as his performance alter-ego, Jomama Jones in 1995; since her “comeback” in 2010, Jomama has released four albums, Lone Star, Radiate, Six Ways Home, and, in 2017, the double-album, Flowering. Jomama premiered Radiate to rave reviews and sold-out houses at Soho Rep in 2010 and the piece subsequently toured to cities including Los Angeles, Austin, Minneapolis and Boston. Most recently, Jomama presented Black Light at Joe’s Pub as part of the Public Theatre’s Under the Radar Festival, and at Penumbra Theatre Company.

Daniel received a 2015 Doris Duke Artist Award, among the most prestigious awards in the arts, in recognition of his risk-taking practice, and a 2016 USA Artist Fellow; he was also named an inaugural Mellon Foundation Creative Research Fellow at the University of Washington in Seattle for 2017-2019. He is an Associate Professor of Theatre at Fordham University in NYC, where he resides.



Mark Tribe (elected 2017) is an artist who works across media and forms, including drawing, photography, installation, video and performance. His recent work explores the relationship between landscape and technology.

He has had solo exhibitions at the Corcoran Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C.; Momenta Art in New York; Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions; the Queen Victoria Museum in Launceston, Australia; and DiverseWorks in Houston. His work has also been shown at Jack Shainman Gallery in New York; Ronald Feldman Gallery in New York; Yossi Milo Gallery in New York; the Palais de Tokyo in Paris; the Menil Collection in Houston; the Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris; the National Center for Contemporary Arts in Moscow; MUAC in Mexico City; SITE Santa Fe; the San Diego Museum of Art; el Museo de Antioquia in Medellín; the Blanton Museum of Art in Austin; the Telfair Museum of Art in Savannah; the Montclair Art Museum in New Jersey; the DeCordova Museum in Lincoln, Mass; and the Contemporary Museum in Baltimore. He has received grants from Creative Capital and the New York Foundation for the Arts. He is the author of two books, The Port Huron Project: Reenactments of New Left Protest Speeches (Charta, 2010) and New Media Art (Taschen, 2006), and numerous articles.

Tribe is Chair of the MFA Fine Arts Department at School of Visual Arts in New York City. In 1996, he founded Rhizome, an organization that supports the creation, presentation, preservation, and critique of emerging artistic practices that engage technology.


The Board of Directors bid a fond farewell to Charles Zelle, Carlyle Brown, Gary Nan Tie, and Calogero Salvo. We honor them for their many years of service on the Jerome Foundation Board of Directors.

Charles Zelle, Commissioner for the Minnesota Department of Transportation, served on the Board of Directors for 10 years, and as Chair beginning in 2012. Zelle will continue as Board Chair of the Camargo Foundation.

Carlyle Brown, Writer, Performer and Artistic Director of Carlyle Brown & Company, served on the Board of Directors for 9 years. Brown will continue as a Trustee of the Camargo Foundation.

Gary Nan Tie, mathematician, served on the Board of Directors for 8 years, and was Treasurer beginning in 2010. Nan Tie will continue as Treasurer of the Camargo Foundation.

Calogero Salvo, filmmaker, served on the Board of Directors for 9 years, and was Vice-Chair from 2012-2015. Salvo will continue as a Trustee of the Camargo Foundation.


The Jerome Foundation is deeply indebted to Charles, Carlyle, Gary, and Calogero for their extraordinary commitment, insight and dedication to the work of the Foundation and to artists in Minnesota and New York City. They will be greatly missed.

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