BOARD OF DIRECTORS
WPA’s Board of Directors comprises local artists, arts patrons, lawyers, designers, realtors, and business professionals. The Board sets policies, ensures adherence to the mission, and oversees the administration of the organization.
Frederick P. Ognibene, M.D. is a collector of contemporary art and strong supporter of local artists. He lives in Washington, DC and works at the National Institutes of Health Clinical Center in Bethesda, Maryland as Deputy Director, Educational Affairs and Strategic Partnerships. Dr. Ognibene has been a member of the Board of Directors of WPA for over 12 years, has served as the co-chair of the annual WPA Art Auction for three years, Chair of the Governance and Nominating Committees, and is currently serving a three-year term as Board Chair. Dr. Ognibene began collecting contemporary art by local emerging and mid-career artists in the early 1980′s and has expanded his collection to include well over 250 works by regional, national, and international artists. He takes pride in getting to know the artists whose work he owns and has been very supportive of the careers of several DC-based artists.
Paula J. Bruening is an attorney and Vice President for Global Policy at the Centre for Information Policy Leadership, Hunton & Williams LLP, where she focuses on international information policy and security issues, including privacy, cyber security, and the responsible management and use of data as it travels around the globe. She has also worked extensively on issues of free expression and First Amendment rights on the Internet. Through her work she travels extensively to Asia, Latin America, Europe and the Middle East. Her fascination and love of art began in classes she attended sitting on the gallery floors at the Cleveland Museum of Art when she was eight. Today she is building a collection of works by contemporary artists, and her photography is represented in corporate and private collections. When she is not developing public policy or supporting WPA, she studies painting and drawing at the Washington Studio School and participates in its atelier program.
Elise Hoffmann is a Principal in the firm of Marshfield Associates, Washington, DC. Ms. Hoffmann has worked as a securities lawyer, legislative counsel, and investment professional since graduating from law school in 1983. Until 1987, she practiced corporate securities and banking law. From 1987 to 1995, she served as finance counsel to the Subcommittee on Telecommunications and Finance, U.S. House of Representatives. Since 1995, she has worked as a portfolio manager and research analyst at Marshfield Associates, where she has been a principal since 1997. Marshfield manages over a billion dollars for 400 clients, both institutional and individual.
Marvin Morris is the Managing Partner of Bedrock Global (BG), a boutique firm that advises on project financing strategies, and connects the resources of governments, private companies and financial sponsors to structure successful projects. Prior to forming BG, Mr. Morris practiced public finance law with the law firm of Manatt, Phelps & Phillips LLP, and as Special Counsel to the Chief Financial Officer of the District of Columbia. Mr. Morris also has over 15 years of experience as an advisor to private investment consortiums and municipalities in the Republic of South Africa.
Jessica Naresh is co-owner of The Art Registry, an art consulting and events firm in Washington, DC. Her introduction to the contemporary art world was as an intern at Casey Kaplan, NY. After receiving a Masters Degree from Christie’s Education in New York, she moved to Washington, DC, where she worked first for the WPA as the Auction Coordinator and then at a local gallery. She has curated numerous exhibitions in galleries and alternative art spaces in the DC area. She has served on the WPA Auction Committee since 2006.
William C. Paley is the President of the William C. Paley Foundation. William C. Paley is the son of William S. Paley, founder of CBS, noted art collector and connoisseur of fine living and Barbara “Babe” Cushing, the daughter of pioneering neurosurgeon and Pulitzer Prize-winning biographer, Dr. Harvey Cushing. Mr. Paley is also president of 2023 LLC, an addictions, alcohol, and family therapy practice in Washington, DC. From 1980 to 1984, Mr. Paley acted as president of his own emerging electronic media consulting firm, Paley Communications. He supports a variety of nonprofit organizations, serving on the Board of Directors for other local arts institutions as well as the Museum of Television and Radio in New York City and Los Angeles. He is a Director of the William S. Paley Foundation and the President of William C. Paley Foundation.
Mary Margaret Plumridge is the Director of Marketing and Communications with Akridge, a Commercial real estate firm providing acquisitions, development, leasing, and property management services in the greater Washington region. Prior to joining Akridge, Ms. Plumridge worked as a graphic designer for the Bomstein Agency and the American Pharmaceutical Association. Ms. Plumridge is a member of the Jubilee Support Alliance Auxiliary Board and the Greater Washington Board of Trade Marketing and Communications Network. She is also active with the Georgetown Ministries Homeless Shelter and occupies a leadership role at Christ Church Georgetown.
James F. Ritter is a Special Counsel in the Corporate Practice Group of Sheppard, Mullin, Richter & Hampton LLP. Jim has over 25 years’ experience in negotiating a wide variety of financing arrangements, including senior secured loans and mezzanine and other subordinated debt, acquisition financings, working capital financings, equipment leasing and other vendor finance transactions, letters of credit and venture capital and other equity investments. He represents businesses seeking and providing access to capital in a number of industries, with particularly extensive experience in the aerospace, communications, defense, energy, health care and private equity industries. A graduate of the University of Virginia School of Law (JD 1986) and Dartmouth College (A.B. 1981), Jim is admitted to practice in California and the District of Columbia.
Robert J. Shapiro has collected contemporary American and European art since his early-twenties. He currently supports his art habit by running Sonecon, a private firm that provides economic analysis and advice to officials and executives of U.S. and foreign businesses and governments. He has advised, among others, President Bill Clinton, Vice President Al Gore, Jr., British Prime Minister Tony Blair, then-U.S. Senators Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton, and senior managers of many Fortune 100 companies. Currently, Rob is also an advisor to the International Monetary Fund, a Senior Fellow of the McDonough School of Business at Georgetown University, and chairman of the U.S. Climate Task Force. Before establishing Sonecon, he was Under Secretary of Commerce for Economic Affairs from 1997 to 2001. Prior to that, he was co-founder of the Progressive Policy Institute. He also was the principal economic advisor to Bill Clinton in his 1991-1992 campaign and a senior economic advisor to Vice President Gore, Senator John Kerry and then-Senator Obama in their campaigns. Rob also has been a Fellow of Harvard University, the Brookings Institution, and the National Bureau of Economic Research.
Jocelyn Sigue is a freelance media producer, and performer. Her broadcast producing credits include the long running television program America’s Most Wanted, and the nationally syndicated educational program Teen Kids News. Jocelyn spent a decade reporting for news organizations in cities nationwide including her native San Francisco, before moving to Washington, DC in 2008. She is also a published children’s book author.
Judy J. Sherman is an independent curator and the Principal of j fine art, a corporate art consultancy that focuses on the role and importance of artistic works in organizational culture and branding. Her love of art began while at the University of Virginia where an initial course in art history inspired a journey toward a lifelong passion and appreciation for the visual arts. She enjoys strong relationships with the regional arts community and cherishes the opportunity to work with and support artists. Judy is involved with Commercial Real Estate Women (CREW) and CoreNet. Prior to launching her own business, Judy was an art consultant for two local galleries and practiced law in the areas of labor and employment. This will be her third year serving on the planning committee of the WPA Art Auction and Gala, and her second as the table sculpture curator.
Robert Shields is the Principal of Robert Shields Interiors Inc., which has been offering full design services to Washington area clients for the past fifteen years. Additionally Mr. Shields has been awarded projects in London, East Hampton and various other cities around the world. Before beginning Robert Shields Interiors Inc., Mr. Shields worked as a decorative arts painter to leading Washington designers. In 2010 before joining the Board of Trustees, Mr. Shields served as a member of the WPA Auction Committee.
Lauren Silva-Pinto is the producer in the Washington Bureau of ORF, Austrian Radio and TV. She is responsible for daily news coverage as well as longer stories (up to half hour documentaries) about the United States. She has a BA from the University of California, Berkeley and a Masters in Journalism from Columbia University. Before moving to Washington, she worked for both ABC and CBS News in New York. She and her husband Fernando owned the DC gallery Momento for two years and enjoy collecting pieces by WPA artists as well as a variety of Brazilian painters.
In her position as producer she particularly relished covering the lawsuit and subsequent restitution of 5 Klimt paintings stolen by the Nazis from the Bloch-Bauer family of Vienna. Maria Altmann, the niece of Adele Bloch-Bauer, was in her late 80′s when the Austrian government returned the works to her. The stunning portrait of her aunt is now the centerpiece of the Neue Galerie collection in New York.
Andres Tremols is a fine artist and graphic designer. Born in Washington, DC of Cuban descent, Mr. Tremols spent his childhood and adolescence in Central and South America. His work has been widely exhibited nationally and internationally and is included in both private and public collections in Europe as well as North, Central, and South America. Mr. Tremols is a founding partner of Vivo Design, Inc., which specializes in branding/identity, marketing collateral, and integrated interactive services. His graphic design work has been published in PRINT, CA Magazine, HOW, Corporate Identity in America, AR 100 and has been included in numerous exhibitions such as AIGA 50 and The Art Director’s Club.
Kim Ward is a cultural arts professional with extensive experience in management and organizational leadership. She currently serves as a commissioner for the Arlington County Arts Commission and chairs the Arlington County Public Art Committee. Prior to becoming actively involved in her community’s cultural life, Ms. Ward served as Executive Director of the Washington Project for the Arts from 2005 to 2009. Ms. Ward received her Bachelor of Science degree in Business Administration (Finance major) from Auburn University. She is a Chartered Financial Analyst and previously worked as Vice-President for a national bank’s capital investment management group managing endowments, foundations, pension plans, and fiduciary trust instruments. While her love of arts and culture is paramount, her favorite place to spend time is running, hiking, or cycling in the outdoors.