All youth in foster care are Seen&Heard
Seen&Heard exists to develop the professional character of youth in foster care through performing arts training
FACULTY & BOARD
CEO & Faculty
Regan graduated from NYU with a BA in English and Acting in 1999, During her first 5 professional years, she launched DARE Dance Los Angeles, an after school arts enrichment program. From 2002-2003, she taught drama at Crossroads Elementary School in Los Angeles.
In 2014, Regan became a foster parent, and in 2016 she became a Court Appointed Special Advocate or ‘CASA.’ The following year, she launched a successful foster care campaign called ‘invisible(s).’ During the campaign, invisible(s) sent 70 foster youth to summer camp, packed and distributed 1,000 duffel bags to DCFS offices, recruited 200 volunteers to work with foster youth, and raised over over a quarter million dollars for foster related organizations.
DR KRISTIN PAGLIA
CEO PS Arts
Dr. Kristen Paglia has been in a leadership role at P.S. ARTS for nearly a decade. In addition to overseeing the quality, content, and evaluation of P.S. ARTS’ education programs, Dr. Paglia works to keep educational equity and excellence for all children at the center of everything at P.S. ARTS. Dr. Paglia is an active member of the state and national discourse around public education reform and has a seat at the table in numerous policy, advocacy, and planning groups. In 2013, Dr. Paglia was appointed to a special joint task force by California State Superintendent Tom Torlakson to help create “A Blueprint for Creative Schools,” which was published in 2015. Dr. Paglia has taught courses on arts education, and arts-based strategies for teaching special education students at UCLA and Claremont Graduate University.
Recently, Dr. Paglia was honored to present her talk, It takes two to tango, and other lessons we learn from the arts about partnership, at TEDxUCLA. Dr. Paglia holds Masters’ Degrees in World Arts and Cultures from UCLA and Arts Education from Harvard University. She also earned a Doctorate from Harvard in cognitive developmental psychology and has extensive experience developing arts programs and designing curriculum in urban public and independent schools.
CEO Claris Health
Talitha Phillips has served as the leader of Claris Health, a Los Angeles based nonprofit providing medical, mental health and support services. For nearly two decades, Claris has served at-risk youth, pregnant women, and families with children under the age of five. Talitha was originally introduced to the agency as a client who witnessed their life-changing work firsthand. As CEO, Talitha is primarily responsible for business and strategic development, vision casting, fundraising and donor and community relations. Prior to her appointment, she served as Executive Director spearheading the transition from a small resource center to a licensed medical clinic and growing the agency budget from $90K to over $1.5M. Before joining Claris Health in 2001, Talitha worked at the United States Senate in Washington D.C. Talitha holds a B.A in Organizational Communication from Pepperdine University. She also dedicates her time to equipping nonprofits in business and program strategies, frequently speaks at fundraising and other events around the nation, and has lead numerous teams to Uganda to work with orphans and victims of violence and human trafficking.
Attorney Russ August and Kabat
Irene Lee is a partner at Russ August & Kabat, where she focuses her practice on all aspects of intellectual property, including patent, trademark, copyright, trade secrets, right of publicity, and technology licensing.
Irene has been featured in WTR 1000 – The World’s Leading Trademark Professionals and selected by peers and clients in Managing Intellectual Property’s Top 500 IP Stars and Top 250 Women in IP. Irene was recognized as a Southern California Super Lawyer from 2013-2018, as one of Southern California Top 50 Women from 2016-2018, and one of Southern California’s Top 100 Super Lawyers in 2017 and 2018. In 2017 and 2018, the Los Angeles Business Journal named her one of the Most Influential Women Lawyers in Los Angeles. In 2018, Los Angeles Business Journal named her one of the Most Influential Minority Lawyers in Los Angeles and one of the Leading Intellectual Property Lawyers in California.
VP Financial Controller at Indian Paintbrush Productions
After graduating with a BA from UC Berkeley, Kristen got her start in accounting at KPMG Los Angeles, and transitioned to working in film production in 2004. In her fifteen years in film, her credits include titles such as “The Grand Budapest Hotel” and “Me and Earl and the Dying Girl”. Kristen also currently serves as the chairperson of Pacific Crossroads Church’s finance committee, and has been a deacon since 2014. Hawaii born and Texas raised, Kristen enjoys beachy vacations and watching Sunday football with friends. Kristen is thrilled to be joining the Seen&Heard team.
VP of Operations & Faculty
Matthew graduated from Denver University with a BA in Theatre, where he produced and directed several plays with DU and Denver area companies.
In 2006, Matthew leveraged the skills he acquired in theater to embark upon a successful sales career with a healthcare startup, InTouch Health. Matthew was recognized for excellence in developing efficient training processes, innovating sales strategies, and leading a high functioning performance team each year of his InTouch tenure. When he resigned from InTouch, he was managing all operations and sales for the US Southwest and $15 million in annual revenue.
Erika has been in the improv community since high school and has trained at the Groundlings, Upright Citizens Brigade and performed stand-up at comedy clubs, including the World Famous Comedy Store. Erika has a BA in Human Development and Psychology and believes that laughter is the BEST medicine – from reducing stress, boosting the immune system, finding healing, improving memory, and just making you feel good.
Erika is passionate about youth finding their own voice to share their story, point of view, experience, beliefs, and feelings. Currently, you can find our creative entrepreneur working closely with Seen and Heard students, cultivating their professional character through performing arts training. She also runs her own small business Define with Erika her online children’s activity program. We are excited to have Erika join the Seen&Heard team!
Miriam Cortez-Cáceres is an artist from Los Angeles, CA. Born to undocumented immigrants from Mexico and El Salvador, Miriam explores the narratives of her parents’ upbringings and traumas by translating their experiences in her artwork. Creating surrealist paintings, drawings, and stop-motion animations, she deconstructs the politics of her family’s ancestry.
Miriam currently works for the nonprofit organization Peace4Kids, a program in Los Angeles serving youth in the foster care system ages 4-26. As an alumna of foster care, Miriam draws upon her personal experience to help advance an agenda of equity for youth impacted by trauma. An advocate for social change, she frequently facilitates Peace4Kids classes, utilizing art as a tool to assist youth in finding their voice.
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