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2019 Summer Leadership Intensive


Meet our impact team.

Keynote Speakers

Keynote Speakers
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Dr. Susan R. Madsen is the Orin R. Woodbury Professor of Leadership and Ethics in the Woodbury School of Business at Utah Valley University. She is also a Visiting Fellow of the Faculty of Economics and Business at the University of Zagreb (Croatia) and a Fellow of The Leadership Trust Foundation in Ross-on-Wye, England.


Dr. Madsen has been heavily involved for much of her career in researching the lifetime development of prominent women leaders. She has personally interviewed a host of women university presidents, U.S. governors, and international leaders, as well as studying many aspects of women and leadership more broadly. Susan has conducted related research in the U.S., the six Arab Gulf countries, China, and Eastern Europe.

Overall, Susan has authored or edited six books and has published nearly 200 articles, chapters, and reports. She is a globally recognized speaker in local, national, and international settings. 


Susan is the founder of numerous successful networks, including the International Leadership Association’s (ILA) Women and Leadership Affinity Group, and she serves on many nonprofit, community, and association boards and committees. She has received numerous awards for her teaching, research, and service.


She founded the Utah Women and Education Project in 2009 and continues to work with key Utah stakeholders on related efforts as the Director of the Utah Women & Education Intiatitive. In August of 2013, she founded the Utah Women & Leadership Project that she continues to direct today. These efforts have led social change in the state for advancing girls and women in Utah.

Orin R. Woodbury Professor
Utah Valley University
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Sally co-founded Hale Centre Theatre in 1985 with her husband, Mark, and his grandparents, Ruth and Nathan Hale. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in speech and theatre education from Brigham Young University and taught high school for two of Utah’s school districts.


In addition to being a featured actress, her broad-based experience also includes choreography for BYU and high school performing groups. She has directed, musically directed and choreographed countless comedies and musicals produced at HCT. Sally also has written six full-scale musicals, all of which have been produced at HCT and other theatres throughout the country.

As executive producer of HCT, she oversees all areas of the production process including elements of design direction. Recently, she has produced critically-acclaimed productions of Matilda, The Wizard of Oz, Newsies, The Scarlet Pimpernel, The Music Man, An American in Paris and the regional premieres of A Gentleman’s Guide to Love and Murder and Tuck Everlasting.


Sally also produced Forever Plaid and AIDA, the inaugural productions on the Sorensen Legacy Jewel Box Stage and Young Living Centre Stage at HCT’s new home, the Mountain America Performing Arts Centre. She played an integral role in the design and conception of the new theater that is home to 70 full-time and 150 part-time employees, who help put on ten non-stop consecutive productions annually.


Vice President, Executive Producer

and Artistic Director

Hale Center Theatre


A two time Enlightened 50 (E-50) recipient from the Community Foundation of Utah, Crystal is a certified Utah Change Leader, was was named one of Utah Business Magazine’s 40 under 40 in 2013, and has been featured as a Utah’s Educated Woman of the Week and profiled in the publication, IN Utah This Week. Crystal is the Executive Director of Utah Cultural Alliance, the statewide advocacy voice for the arts, humanities, and cultural industries of Utah.


Crystal serves on the boards, advisory councils, or steering committees of Salty Cricket Composers Collective (co-founder and board chair), Americans for the Arts’ SAAN Council (State Arts Advocacy Network), Utah Women & Politics PAC, LDS Dems of America, LDS Dems-Utah, BYU Political Affairs Society - UT chapter (co-chair), Utah Arts & Cultural Coalition, Alliance for a Better Utah, Musinia, UTOPIA Early Music, and Planned Parenthood Association of Utah.


Crystal chairs the School Community Council of Emerson Elementary, which is the decision making body for the school. Past work experience: Crystal spent eight years as a marketing, campaign, and event planning consultant at Brand.Pink and was the Audience Development Manager at Utah Symphony | Utah Opera for seven years before that. Crystal is a composer and coloratura soprano. She earned her bachelors in music theory with minors in humanities, economics, and marketing as an undergrad at Brigham Young University and earned her masters in musicology and composition from the Aaron Copland School of Music (Queens College, City University of New York).


Executive Director

Utah Cultural Alliance




Program Director, Salt Lake County Zoo, Arts & Parks

Kirsten Darrington currently serves as the Director of the Zoo, Arts and Parks program. Previously, she worked as Assistant Division Director and Change Leader Program Administrator for the Utah Division of Arts & Museums.


In her positions for the State of Utah, she fostered leaders, worked with advisory boards, and managed the distribution of Federal and State arts funds. Prior to her time at the State, Kirsten worked with several local arts groups including Ririe-Woodbury, Utah Shakespeare Festival and Utah Symphony|Utah Opera.


In addition to Kirsten’s professional experience, she holds a Bachelor of Arts from Westminster and a Master of Fine Arts from Southern Utah University in Arts Administration.

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Principal trainer and consultant for Leverage Communication Workshops 

The principal trainer and consultant for Leverage Communication Workshops, LLC, Liz trains business executives to improve their written and oral communication skills. She has trained at American Express, VISA, Intermountain Health Care, and LDS Motion Picture Studios.

Liz teaches similar professional communication workshops to BYU MBA students who have gone on to work for companies such as Adobe, Amazon, Union Pacific, Price Waterhouse Coopers, Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft, and Vivint.


Since 2000, she has taught as an adjunct faculty at BYU's Marriott School of Business. A highlight of her work at the Marriott School is coaching students who compete at international business case competitions. She has coached eight teams, five of which have won, at competitions sponsored by CIBER (Center for International Business and Education Research) and CUIBE (Consortium for Undergraduate International Business Education). 

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Creator and Host of Livlyhood 

Britt is champion of women in the workplace. She is the Creator and Host of Livlyhood - a community, forum, and resource for professional women. She created Livlyhood to celebrate working women and to help them find joy in their jobs.  By night, she runs Livlyhood and freelance writes for several publications. 


By day, Britt is a Vice President at an award-winning marketing and public affairs firm in Salt Lake City. She loves working with clients to help them refine their message and encourage people to engage civically.

Britt has also been the Communications Director for a congressman, governor, and other foundations. She served as the Department of State Public Information Officer, on-camera official spokeswoman and speechwriter for the Secretary of State and agency of over 600 employees.


Since then, her clients have included Microsoft, Pfizer, Children's Miracle Network Hospital, Subway, and Extra Space Storage.

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Classical pianist, educator, and Mundi project 

Dr. Ruby Chou is an arts executive, classical pianist, and educator. Ruby advocates for open access to pianos, music education, and innovative performances as the executive director of Mundi Project, a Utah-based nonprofit community music organization.

She is one of 14 speakers selected out of 364 applicants for TEDxSaltLakeCity 2019 and will be sharing with the community at Kingsbury Hall about how intergenerational learning fosters social empathy and mitigates social isolation. Mundi Project is launching Utah’s first intergenerational music program at Neighborhood House in October.

As an educator, Dr. Chou mentors 21st-century musicians as adjunct professor of piano and music entrepreneurship at Weber State University and specializes in teaching youth and adults in intergenerational learning environments. Ruby performs locally and nationally with professional, amateur, and young musicians. She also serves on the board of directors for Utah Nonprofits Association.

Dr. Chou earned a doctoral degree in Music and Human Learning from The University of Texas at Austin and a master’s degree in piano performance from Manhattan School of Music in NYC. Ruby immigrated to SLC from Taiwan at age six and speaks Mandarin Chinese.


Owner of ConsciousSpeaking 

Drawing from 35+ years professional experience in theatre as an actor and director, Valerie combines presentation delivery techniques, psychology, and the latest communication research to help professionals develop a strong and influential speaking style.

She has successfully coached leaders in global politics, business, law, finance,
main stage sales presentations and product pitches, conference keynotes, digital marketing, youtube channel promotions, website videos, IT technology/management, computer visualization, healthcare, science, engineering, medicine, the arts, TED Talks, urban planning, national rodeo queen competitions, marriage ceremonies, suicide prevention, job interviewing, and others to invigorate and sharpen the value of their communication efforts, and enhance the quality of experience their audience is having.

She is the owner of a public speaking and presentation skills consulting business that provides private speaker coaching, education & career training, and workshops on confident and creative communication.

She is a presentation skills specialist (ad hoc) for Pathway Associates and holds a BFA Theatre, MFA Arts Administration, and ESL Linguistics from the University of Utah.


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Melanie Harper has been playing the harp for over 20 years. She told her parents she wanted to play the harp when she was 3, and after some convincing, started lessons when she turned 8.  At the age of 16, she was invited to perform at the World Suzuki Convention in Torino, Italy.  She graduated from the University of Utah with a Bachelor of Music in Harp Performance in 2011, studying with ShruDeLi Ownbey. 


Shortly after graduating, she married the love of her life and became a "Harper." She worked for Lyon & Healy West (premier worldwide harp maker) in harp sales from 2007-2016.

Melanie performs regularly with the Salt Lake Choral Artists, Salt Lake Symphony, West Valley Symphony, Draper Philharmonic & Choral Society, and several other ensembles. She is the harp coordinator at The Grand America Hotel and plays once a week during afternoon tea.  

She loves teaching the harp and maintains a studio of 15 students.  She is Suzuki certified, and works with the Suzuki Association of Utah and the Utah chapter of the American Harp Society to organize annual conventions for teachers and concerts for local student harpists. Melanie resides in Bluffdale, UT with her incredible husband Dustin, 3 yr old daughter Evelyn, and 1 yr old son Henry.




Steinway Artist Hilary Demske is receiving widespread critical acclaim as a "pianist of rare technical finesse and musicality" (Deseret News).   She regularly appears across the globe as a soloist and collaborative pianist, and is regularly invited to perform in prestigious venues across multiple continents.  Recent performances include recitals in Germany, Poland, Hungary, the Czech Republic, Switzerland, Austria, Belgium, Turkey, Greece, Canada, Indonesia, Malaysia, Australia, Tasmania, Mongolia and Taiwan.  She has performed in China annually since 2011, appearing in over 30 cities on multiple tours.   


An avid performer of contemporary music, Hilary’s debut CD ‘Henry Martin: Selected Piano Music’ includes highly praised premieres including ‘New Prelude and Fugue XVI’ and ‘Sonata No.4: At Midnight’s Hour’.  Hilary holds a Bachelor of Music degree from The Peabody Conservatory, a Master of Music degree from The Juilliard School, a Doctor of Musical Arts from The University of Michigan, and an Artist Diploma (Meisterklasse diploma) from the Hochschule für Musik in Munich, Germany.  Her principal teachers include Julian Martin, Logan Skelton, Margarita Höhenrieder, and Samuel Wong.


Hilary is currently an Associate Professor at Utah Valley University in Orem, Utah.  As the Director of Piano Studies, she directs the piano major program and teaches piano literature, piano pedagogy, and chamber music.   




Hailed by Gramophone for her “shining” voice “with extra depth to the sound,” soprano Emily Workman sang the role of The Governess in Benjamin Britten’s The Turn of the Screw at the Beethoven Easter Festival in Warsaw, Poland. A recording of the premiere was released under the DUX label and nominated as, “Best Opera Album of 2016,” by the International Classical Music Awards.


Other recent performances include Haydn’s Creation with the Boise Baroque Chamber Orchestra, Brahms’s Ein Deutsches Requiem with St. George’s Choral Society in New York City, and she has been a guest soloist with several Universities nationwide. Ms. Workman is a graduate of Yale School of Music’s prestigious opera program, where she received her Master of Music. Her most frequent operatic roles include Antonia in Offenbach’s Les contes d’Hoffmann, Zemfira in Rachmaninov’s Aleko, the title role in Puccini’s Suor Angelica, Countess Almaviva in Mozart’s Le Nozze di Figaro, Mimì in Puccini’s La Bohème, Haydn’s Scena di Berenice and The Creation, and Mahler’s Symphony No. 2.

She is the winner of the 2015 Phyllis Curtin Career Entry Prize from Yale University, First Place winner of the Young Artists in Voice Competition, 2013 Concerto Competition winner from Brigham Young University, and First Place winner of the National Opera Association’s Collegiate Opera Scenes Competition. Ms. Workman is the new Director of Vocal Activities at Dixie State University and is preparing to perform the role of Mimì in Puccini’s La Bohème with St. George Opera.

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Michaella Calzaretta recently completed her second season as Chorus Master and Assistant Conductor at Utah Opera.  Under her leadership, the opera chorus has garnered more and more recognition with each production.  Of her Moby-Dick chorus preparation, Opera Today extolled “Maestro Mechavich is aided mightily by Michaella Calzaretta’s superb choral preparation.  Her large chorus was flawless in tonal beauty, dramatic engagement, and clarity of diction, even when performing busy stage movement.” 


In a review of Die Fledermaus, Opera News praised “The Utah Opera Chorus just keeps getting better with chorus master Michaella Calzaretta’s expert preparation, singing and acting with unrestrained panache.”  Ms. Calzaretta is completing a Doctorate in Choral Conducting at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana, where she studied with Walter Huff, Betsy Burleigh, and Dominick DiOrio. 


She was the Music Director for the University Gilbert and Sullivan Society of Bloomington, as well as the Music Director for New Voices Opera, a student-run organization that commissions and produces operas by student composers.  Ms. Calzaretta holds a Bachelor of Music in Vocal Performance from Simpson College and a Master of Music in Choral Conducting from the University of Missouri- Kansas City. 

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Jennifer McGrew is owner and co-manager of McGrew Studios in Salt Lake City, where she and her colleagues create custom costumes, mascots, sets, props and effects for the entertainment industry. Their work includes services and items for film, television, commercials, advertising, corporate events and live performance. They also make patterns and prototypes for other product developers, as well as broker factory contracts when clients are ready to scale up.

Jennifer has developed and taught college courses in writing, education, performing arts and costume technology for 10+ years. She considers herself more of a mercenary since higher ed's full colonization by consumer business models, but still uses her superpowers for good. When invited, Jennifer performs as a public intellectual and she hosts at least three college or high school interns each semester through McGrew Studios.


Jennifer received a BA in English from Weber State University, an MFA in costume design from Utah State University, and an MA in performance studies from New York University. 

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Jessica Heaton got an early start in arts leadership when she did much of the ground work to start a dance program at the brand new high school she attended in California. She received her B.S. in Exercise and Wellness and a minor in Contemporary Dance from Brigham Young University, where she also performed with Kinnect and dancEnsemble and served as Assistant to the Director under Pat Debenham.


In 2010, Jessica founded Wasatch Contemporary Dance Company, a nonprofit arts organization and professional performance group, and has served as its Owner and Artistic Director since its foundation. Jessica has worked diligently to increase professional dance in Utah County, dedicating countless hours to both the administrative and artistic demands of the company: grant applications, fundraising, networking, collaborating with artists of all kinds, choreographing, and above all, training dancers to reach their greatest potential.


During her years as company director Jessica has had the privilege of learning from and collaborating with such professionals as Jake Casey, Camille Pitcher, Roxanne Gray, Kate Monson, Keely Glen, Graham Brown, Linda Smith, Dina Smirnova, Kristen Jeppsen-Groves, Carley Conder, Eric Handman, and Charlotte Boye-Christensen. When Jessica isn’t in the studio with WCDC, she likes to enjoy the outdoors with her husband, two children, and their Goldendoodle. 



Graphic Design


Analisa has been working in the graphic design industry for the past 10 years. She graduated with a BFA in graphic from Brigham Young University in 2008. While there, Analisa was hired by the university to design their promotional materials and campaigns. Her current specialization is in branding, editorial design, and web design.


Currently based in Salt Lake City, Analisa works as an art director at Hint Creative - a boutique creative agency, specializing in branding and design. They have partnered with Nike, Fender, Backcountry, Cotopaxi,  American Eagle Outfitters, Aerie, DC Shoes, Skullcandy, GNC, Museum of Arts and Design, Harvard University, HSN, The Grand America Hotels & Resorts, Rodan + Fields and more.

Analisa’s past experience includes both in-house and agency. She has worked with clients such as Intel, Rio Tinto, 3form, 1-800 Contacts, Luxottica and Deseret Book. Throughout her career, she has worked with larger clients such as Fender Guitars, Nike, and Luxottica, as well as smaller local clients like The Grand America Hotel and Cotopaxi. Her work has been recognized by Communication Arts, Graphis, Print Magazine, the Dieline, and AIGA. 



Stop-motion animation


Cami Kwan is a stop motion animator from Portland, Oregon, whose passions are education, philosophy, and creating quality children’s entertainment. She graduated in 2015 from the Rochester Institute of Technology with a degree in Film and Animation before moving to Los Angeles and working at Bix Pix Entertainment on seasons three and four of the Emmy-winning children’s program Tumble Leaf.


She then worked as a freelance animator and armaturist before joining her two business partners to start their own independent animation studio, Apartment D Films, where Cami now works as a producer/director. Since then, they have worked with clients such as Hot Wheels, Polly Pocket, Mattel and Nickelodeon to create a broad spectrum of children’s narrative series. Using Apartment D’s uniquely styled mix of anime and Saturday morning cartoons, Cami’s goal is to bring the art of stop motion animation into the mainstream, and continue to create high-craft, high-energy, high-quality children’s media.

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