ahava silkey-jones

Board President
Vice Provost, School of Creative Arts, Entertainment and Design, Dallas College

Ahava Silkey-Jones is an accomplished community leader with an extensive national portfolio in arts administration, school administration, and nonprofit leadership. She has a passion for civic engagement and building equitable access to high-quality arts experiences.  Ahava is currently serving as Vice Provost for the School of Creative Arts, Entertainment and Design at Dallas College serving over 20,000 students annually.  Ahava is a member of the 2022 Business Council for the Arts Leadership Arts Institute Cohort serving the city of Dallas and 

is a Co-Founder and Board President of the Professional Theatre and Dance Youth Academy and serves as a Board Member for the ROHO Collective, supporting artists of color in Minneapolis. Ahava served as a Commissioner with the Minneapolis Arts Commission from 2020-2023 and was a 2021 Policy Fellow with the Humphrey School of Public Affairs.  Ahava holds an Ed.M. in Arts in Education from Harvard Graduate School of Education, an M.A. in Educational Leadership from Roosevelt University, and a B.A. from DePaul University.

Johnny Figel

Board Vice President
Senior Consultant, Latz & Company

Johnny Figel currently works as an Associate at Latz & Company, a professional services firm specializing in fundraising and non-profit organizational development. Outside of this experience, Johnny serves on the governing board for Madison Street Theatre and the Young Professionals Board for Beat the Streets Chicago. He also supports Erika’s Lighthouse as charity runner for their Chicago Marathon Team Resilience.

Jazmine Reynolds

Board Member, Secretary
Principal Event Manager, GCM Grosvenor
Jazmine’s work with GCM Grosvenor involves planning and managing large conferences, meetings, and other corporate events of sizes from 25 to 1,000 attendees.

Robbie Balan

Board Treasurer
Founder, Lead Designer, OffBalans Branding
Robbie founded OffBalans Branding in 2009, designing websites from the ground up, developing product packaging, and creating visual corporate identities. With her degrees in architecture, fine arts, and product design, Robbie is adept at tackling projects across disciplines for a wide range of clients from engineering firms to personal care companies to non-profits.

Cherie Balan

Board Member, Development
Retired Communications Consultant
Cherie Balan is a brand and marketing consultant with a focus on Chicago non-profits. Through her work with the Arts and Business Council of Chicago she has developed brand strategies, marketing plans, and strategic plans for a variety of arts organizations. Her work on Grant Review Committees for Impact Grants Chicago has helped provide major grants for deserving non-profit organizations. Cherie’s marketing expertise was developed as an Account Planner in Chicago’s advertising community, including over two decades at ad agency FCB where she developed communications strategies and worked on product development, trend forecasting and brand stewardship with a wide range of clients.

Dianna Gladstone

Board Member
Business Intelligence Analyst, Cabinetworks Group

Jarred Brown

Board Member
Assistant Director, UChicago Charter School Donoghue Campus
Jarred has twenty-two years of experience in the field of education. He has worked at several Chicago schools on the south side, beginning with teaching and moving into administration. Jarred’s administration positions have included Asst. Principle at Lionel Hampton Fine Arts and Performing Arts Elementary and Director, UChicago Charter School, Woodson Campus. Jarred is currently the Assistant Director for UChicago Charter School, Donoghue Campus.