Board of Directors
Community Advisory Board
Past Community Advisory Board (2013-2014)
Long inspired by global traditions and spontaneous music making, Tina Blaine (also known by her stage name, Bean) has been studying and performing on a variety of electronic and acoustic percussion for more than 30 years. She has written music for NPR, video games, TV and documentary soundtracks, and has performed/recorded with Brian Eno, Mickey Hart, D'CuCKOO, Haunted by Waters, Maze Daiko, Pandemonaeon, Shakini, The Bindi Society, and others lured by the muse.
Blaine is a facilitator, presenter and performer of musical and rhythm-based events, exhibits, classes and workshops. She holds a Masters of Entertainment Technology from Carnegie Mellon University and taught there from 2000 to 2006. Blaine has been an integral part of the development of arts programming, outreach efforts, marketing, fundraising, and administration. After serving in the capacity of interim Executive Director for 7 months, she became RCW’s executive director in December 2010, drawing on the management expertise she developed at Interval Research, Carnegie Mellon and the Tech Museum of Innovation.
Born in New Jersey, but bred in Brazil, Bob Gonsalves demonstrated his skills with technology at an early age by 'improving' his parents' stereo system. Mr. Gonsalves has previously served as a consultant to Panasonic, Atari, Xerox and numerous startup firms and museums (Exploratorium, Randall Museum). In addition to computer hardware design, he has won several awards for a series of interactive computer games. He holds two patents based on his work on The Lingraphica System for speech-language rehabilitation. He holds a BA in Comparative Religion from Swarthmore College and an MFA in Multimedia from Mills College/Center for Contemporary Music.
Janet Koike taught dance and movement through Oakland Parks and Recreation, and served as an Artist in Residence for Early Learning through the Arts, in Head Start Programs. She worked as the Arts School Program Coordinator for the Oakland Museum, then joined the artistic staff of San Jose Taiko as Outreach Coordinator. In 1998, Rhythmix world percussion ensemble was formed and Rhythmix Cultural Works (RCW) became a 501(c)(3) organization. As director of RCW, Koike organized tours to Cuba to study folkloric music and dance, and pioneered a trip to Sado Island to study at the Kodo apprentice center. In 2007, Koike launched RCW's community arts center in Alameda with performance space, gallery and classroom to realize her vision of bringing people together through culture and the arts.
Audrey Lord-Hausman brings a varied corporate as well as nonprofit management and board experience to Rhythmix. She is co-founder of Pedestrian Friendly Alameda and created the city-wide Walk & Roll to School Day program, aspects of which have been incorporated on a year-round basis in many schools and organizations. She sits on the City of Alameda’s Commission on Disability Issues and is a passionate theatre and music lover. Audrey also served for six years as the Administrative Coordinator of the Alameda Collaborative for Children, Youth & Families, City of Alameda. Some of the projects include children's health, after school programming, safety, and the teen program produces the Youth Yellow Pages and a teen magazine, "Out Loud - Thoughts of a Teenage Mind."
Corey Hill is passionate about social justice, art, and good food. As the founder and CEO of Indie Food Hub, an online resource center for small food businesses, he is committed to vanquishing the scourge of soulless chain restaurants off the face of the earth. He has served as a communications adviser to numerous nonprofit organizations, and his work as a freelance journalist has been featured in publications including Earth Island Journal, Alternet, the East Bay Express, and many others.
Making things happen is what Jan Mason is all about. Owner of OMM, Inc., an established Alameda real estate and property management company, Jan is known for her unique and artistic approach to the business of real estate. With her strong art background, her commitment to transformation - whether it is a building or a new idea, she is enthusiastic about championing Rhythmix Cultural Works to the Alameda community. She loves the TAIKO classes! Jan was awarded Business Woman of the Year 2007 by the Alameda Chamber of Commerce, and Professional Business of the Year, by the Park Street Business Association. With great joy, Jan Mason brings her business moxie plus her exuberant energy to Rhythmix Cultural Works.
She studied classical music throughout her youth, but it was the visceral experience of taiko drumming that really changed her life! Just days after seeing her first taiko concert in 1998, Carolyn West joined Emeryville Taiko, and studied and performed extensively with the group for seven years. In 2001, she participated in the first KasaMix trip to Japan, a cultural exchange cosponsored by Kodo Arts Sphere America and Rhythmix Cultural Works. In 2006, she joined Maze Daiko, the ensemble based at RCW, known for combining traditional taiko forms and rhythms with non-traditional instrumentation and cross-cultural grooves. Carolyn has also held a progression of positions in small businesses involved in entertainment, manufacturing, construction and law. Since 1996, she has been practicing trusts and estates law, and is currently with a firm in downtown Oakland. An Alameda resident for over 15 years, Carolyn is delighted to support Rhythmix Cultural Works, and invites everyone to attend and participate in arts events, performances, classes, theater, and other gatherings in a beautiful community venue.
Amos White is a marketing consultant, executive coach and an award winning American haiku poet and author. Amos has trained or coached thousands of executives, top producing professionals and companies with his marketing strategies. Recognized for his vivid poetic imagery and breathless interpretations as a Haiku poet, he was awarded in the NPR National Cherry Blossom Haiku Contest, and in "The Witt Literary Journal" Haiku Writing Contest. He is published in Area 17, Bones Journal, Brass Bell, Oakland Review, San Francisco BayView, the Wittenberg Review and World Haiku Association Anthology, and an active poet reader supporting San Francisco Bay Area literary organizations and others internationally. Amos has served in numerous community based organizations for more than 30 years, drafted state education reform policy, directed the Kids First! Oakland Fund for Children and Youth campaign and organization; and Assistant Director of Eureka Foundation–SF Bay Area. Classically trained as a concert bassist, and also a rock musician, Amos has a strong background in music performance and in supporting the arts.
William Wong brings over 25 years of hands on experience developing and managing successful business ventures. He is currently pioneering a new business model called "Localize It", by creating a Business Alliance of Independently Owned Local Businesses to come together as one to compete against the chain and big box businesses. William is also a Division Manager for EVO Platinum Services Group, building a team of Bankcard Sales Professionals to transform the Merchant Services Industry by providing Bank Card Processing and Gift & Rewards Programs and Services to all types of business on a foundation of honesty and integrity.
Hiro Cooper began her professional music career at 18, then transitioned to living a dual life as an occupational therapist by day and singer/band promoter by night. As a therapist, working with a vast population of patients has given Hiro a great appreciation of life. A transplant to the Bay Area by way of Kansas and Miami, Hiro became involved in the business community, booking events and entertainment through her husband Mike’s venture 1400 Bar & Grill in Alameda and the “Hiroko Sound Express”, a local access TV show. She also books talent for the “Battle of the Bands” at the Crab cove festival, as well as the Neptune Beach Celebration on Webster Street. Hiro recently launched a silk screening business “The T-Hiro” and plans to transition to full time silk screening by 2017. As a co-founder of the non-profit West End Arts and Entertainment District, the organization provides grants to local youth to receive music lessons and a platform for those young students to perform. Hiro has a daughter attending Encinal High School and is proud to be a Jet mom!
Elaine N. Fong is the founder and artistic director of Odaiko New England, one of the few taiko (Japanese drum) groups in Massachusetts. She has over twenty five years of taiko performance, teaching and administrative experience. In addition to taiko, Ms. Fong has over ten years of dance training. Ms. Fong is also a certified TaKeTiNa rhythm instructor at the basic level. Ms. Fong received her undergraduate degree from Princeton University, and a Masters in Public and Private Management from the Yale School of Organization and Management. In addition to her experience in the arts, Ms. Fong has over sixteen years of not-for-profit administrative experience. She has also worked in the public and private sectors. She is currently a board member of the YWCA Boston, and a United Way allocations committee volunteer.
Eric Kos is the co-founder and co-publisher of our only locally owned and most widely distributed newspaper, the Alameda Sun, now in its 13th year. Eric and Dennis Evanosky teamed up in 2004 to write East Bay Then & Now. Since then they’ve been contracted to write five other California history books: San Francisco Then & Now, San Francisco in Photographs, Lost San Francisco, Lost Los Angeles, and Los Angeles from the Air Then & Now. With Dennis as author, Eric has helped publish three local history books including Alameda an Architectural Treasure Chest. They have about two dozen presentations on local history they can present and they also host the Web site www.oaklandhistory.com. Through the Alameda Recreation and Parks Department’s Alameda Walks program, they lead free history walks in town. Eric’s degree is in Illustration from the Rhode Island School of Design with a focus on design using the computer. Eventually he came back to using his traditional hand painting skills through his association with the Pacific Pinball Museum. As an artist in the museum’s mural painting program, Eric has created four giant reproductions of pinball backglass art on canvases averaging 10 feet by 10 feet. Eric also plays bass with the Bay Area garage punk band, Cleveland.
An Alameda-based artist inspired by nature, Ginny Parsons paints with everything from laundry detergent to bacon grease. Ginny also teaches art to children and finds inspiration and creativity in the areas around the shoreline, estuary and parks. Her work involves chance, and uses found wood and other materials in her art making. She is interested in dripping, pouring, splashing and moving paint, working intuitively, using a variety of common household ingredients including beeswax, bacon grease, borax and castoff house paint. Ginny’s imagery comes from nature, a place where she feels the greatest connection and concern.
Becca Perata has spent nearly 25 years in communications across a range of industries, including online, telecommunications, children’s health and education, land use and the energy sector. Becca founded Vox Populi -- a full-service public relations/public affairs firm -- in 2001. She serves as strategic advisor to non-profit organizations, start-ups and large corporations. Her firm has managed community engagement, media relations, corporate communications, special events, crisis management and direct marketing for clients, including YCS Investments, the Oakland Zoo, Calpine Corporation, Tim Lewis Communities and SaveMart/Lucky Stores. Previously, Becca was vice president of corporate communications for Women.com — a top 50 online media company owned by Hearst Media. She also held internal communications positions with SBC/Pacific Bell, Beyond.com and Sun Microsystems. Becca has worked as media relations director for political campaigns and served as a communications consultant, fundraiser and writer for statewide ballot measures and initiatives.
An entrepreneur and artist with a strong commitment to all things art and music, Sandy Russell is co-owner for the last five years of The Fireside Lounge a local bar, lounge, community meeting place and music venue with a diverse live music program. The Fireside Lounge participates in the 2nd Friday Art Stroll and hosts a monthly art opening called ArtSmash for emerging Bay Area artists. As co-director of West End Arts & Entertainment District (501c3), Sandy works diligently to develop the art and entertainment scene for Alameda’s West End businesses and to provide Alameda youth with scholarships for local music and art programs. Sandy’s company, Crate Big Ideas, repurposes wood wine crates and many other items into beautiful home décor. She looks forward to bringing together Alameda’s artistic and musical communities as a member of the Rhythmix Community Advisory Board.
Kari Thompson, approaching 25 years experience in the local banking community, Kari Thompson is the Assistant Vice President & Branch Manager of First Community Bank in Alameda. Born and raised in Alameda, Kari has been actively involved in the Alameda Community in both service and leadership roles. She currently serves as the President of the Alameda Chamber of Commerce, the Secretary of the Alameda Homeless Network (a.k.a Midway Shelter), and is actively involved in the Alameda Girl Scout Service Unit. Education, youth services, and protecting our senior population from financial and elder abuse are areas that Kari is particularly passionate about. She strongly believes in the philosophy that your day is not complete until you’ve learned something new. Rhythmix Cultural Works brings that philosophy to the Alameda Community and Kari is very proud to be a part of Rhythmix Cultural Works.
Kathy Moehring is a generous contributor to the Alameda community in her involvement on many levels with local nonprofits such as Alameda Family Services, Alameda Education Foundation, Alameda Rotary Club, Girls Inc. of the Island City, and, of course, Rhythmix where she has performed on a number of occasions. Kathy loves her job working for AEC Living, a local family owned company that provides assisted living and many other services to people in their senior years. She studied theater in her hometown of New York City and performed on many stages off-Broadway in New York City to off-Broadway in Alameda!
Vicki Varghese teaches English Language Development at Otis Elementary School in Alameda, and is especially interested in integrating world culture and the arts into education. For the past ten years she has volunteered with several non-profit groups working to empower and support students in economically disadvantaged communities in El Salvador and in the East Bay. Prior to teaching she worked in the international adventure travel business, leading trekking and whitewater rafting excursions. She enjoys taking djembe drumming classes and participating in the P.A.L. (Performing Arts and Learning) at Rhythmix. She and her family have lived in Alameda for 20 years.
Kathleen C. Woulfe is the Endowment Coordinator & Community Relations for the Boy Scouts Council of Alameda, a non-profit. She currently sits on the Boards of Alameda Meals on Wheels-VP, FAAS-Friends of the Alameda Animal Shelter, Alameda Education Foundation - Adopt A Classroom Chair, Alameda Chamber of Commerce Director, Alameda Chamber GREDC, Chamber Ambassador & Campaign Director for Mayor Marie Gilmore 2010 & 2014. Kathie served as Director of Development & Community Relations for both the Boys & Girls Club of Alameda and St. Joseph Elementary School of Alameda. She served 9 years on the Alameda Rotary BOD. Cannot sing or dance, but plays a decent Viola. Born in the Alameda Hospital original elevator on Clinton Avenue, and is committed to giving back to our community.
Carolina Yong, owner of Chicha bistro on Webster St. resident of Alameda since 2000 and former property manager for Alameda Point Collaborative. She firmly believes that fostering culture and art promotes education, tolerance and social peace. Carolina has dedicated over 15 years administering low income program developments, leading not only housing programs but also social outreach projects for youth and adults at risk. She has volunteered over a decade at La Peña Cultural center in Berkeley. Currently a member of the league women voter and active member for The West Alameda Art and Entertainment District as part of the vision of revitalization of the west end.
Tracy Zollinger L.Ac. feels that the arts open us up to the world and allow us to experience different cultures, talents, and joys. Her passion for serving youth and her community are paired perfectly at Rhythmix where she can enjoy both coming together.
In Memory and Appreciation of Michael Racela: 1959-2014
As a founding board member and secretary from 2006-2010, Michael was an important voice in creating Rhythmix's vision and mission.
In 2007 he was the stage manager of our grand opening extravaganza, helping us open our doors to the public.
Michael was our original Rhythmix Bingo ball caller and we will fondly remember his crazy characters (Lenny Leisure-suit and the accountant just out of San Quentin).
Michael was a class act, eager to contribute. He must have completely used up that generous heart of his.
Thank you Michael! We will miss you.