Meet the MoAD team!
Linda Harrison was appointed as the Executive Director of MoAD in November 2013. She has over 20 years of leadership experience in the for-profit and non-profit sectors. Ms. Harrison’s professional experience in corporate management and high value real estate provided her with an outstanding background in executive leadership for MoAD; she is especially skilled in sales, marketing/outreach, and strategic planning.
Prior to joining MoAD, Linda founded two San Francisco businesses, worked as a Vice President for Eastman Kodak, a Fortune 500 company, and served on multiple Bay Area nonprofit Boards of Directors. Among her board roles, she served as President of Frameline, presenters of the San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival, one of the country’s largest film festivals.
Linda also served on the Board of EARN, a San Francisco nonprofit that helps low-income American families achieve financial stability. She is President of the Emeritus Board of Frameline and serves on the Advisory Board of Horizons Foundation, a San Francisco nonprofit that actively secures the LGBT community’s future by promoting planned giving and building the LGBT Community Endowment Fund.
Linda enjoys living in San Francisco’s Russian Hill neighborhood with her wife, Ellen. They love attending film festivals and traveling on ships with funny names to far away places.
Director of Education
Lovisa Brown has over 20 years of experience working in educational programs in a variety of non-profit organizations in the Bay Area as well as programs in Central and South America. At MoAD, she leads the educational programs that enhance the patrons and visitors experience at the Museum. Her department helps to connect youth, educators, and the public to the historical, cultural, and intellectual contributions of the worldwide African Diaspora.
Lovisa manages a number of MoAD programs, including Behind the Lens, Scholarly Voices, School and Group tours, the Diaspora Curriculum Project, Education Workshops, and the Museum’s Intern and Docent programs. She also helps develop teacher learning aides. Lovisa strives to develop creative ways to help others discover their connection to the African Diaspora. She is passionate about her work at MoAD and hopes to discover something new every day.
Lovisa was also the Education Manager at the International Museum of Women. She has been an educational consultant with many Bay Area cultural institutions, including the Contemporary Jewish Museum, the de Young, and the Asian Art Museum.
When not at MoAD, Lovisa enjoys sharing meals with friends, discovering new places, and watching great indie films.
Emily A. Kuhlmann
Emily has been employed at MoAD since 2011. She has worked on past exhibitions such as Choose Paint! Choose Abstraction! Celebrating Bay Area Abstract Artists (2012) and Crosscurrents: Africa and Black Diasporas in Dialogue, 1960-1980 (2013).
Emily received her B.A. from the University of California, Irvine in Art History with a minor in Women’s Studies. After falling in love with art history, she immediately continued her education back in Northern California, where she graduated with an M.A. in Visual and Critical Studies from the California College of the Arts. Her research interests include performance studies and critical race art history. Concerned with accepted norms of race, class, and gender, Emily explored the work of William Pope.L, Wu Tsang, and Adrian Piper in her thesis Making Visible Bodies: Artistic Interventions of Recognition and Responsibility.
K.C. Price is MoAD’s Deputy Director. Prior to joining the staff in July 2014, he was a dedicated volunteer for MoAD. As Deputy Director, K.C. works closely with the Executive Director to help fulfill the Museum’s mission by ensuring administration, fundraising, and program management are on track each year. He also works closely with the entire staff, Board of Directors, and supporters, to help MoAD reach its next level of growth.
K.C. has over 15 years experience in director level positions within the nonprofit arts sector. Most recently, he served as the Executive Director of Frameline, presenters of the San Francisco International LGBT Film Festival, a position he held for five and a half years. Prior to Frameline, he was the Managing Director of the Ninth Street Independent Film Center, a San Francisco SOMA arts center where seven film arts organizations reside and collaborate, including its three owner partners: Frameline, the Center for Asian American Media, and the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival. K.C. managed and grew the consortium partnerships for five years.
Growing up in North Carolina, he received a B.A. from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, then headed off to D.C. where he received his M.A. from George Washington University. K.C. has lived in San Francisco for over two decades now, settling here to gather some moss and be a part of the Bay Area’s extraordinary arts communities.
Petrina “Trina” de Chalus
Director of Retail & Visitor Experience
Trina has always been dedicated to the promotion and preservation of Black art, so she is thrilled to share her enthusiasm and knowledge in her position at MoAD. As the Director of Retail and Visitor Experience, Trina seeks to create an environment that is welcoming, educational, and fun – while inspiring people to learn more about the art and craftsmanship found throughout the African Diaspora.
A proud Detroit native, Trina was exposed to art while in elementary school. Some of her fondest memories include visits to The Detroit Institute of Arts Museum where she first saw work by Diego Rivera, Alexander Calder, Alberto Giacometti and Romare Bearden. Drawn to folk and craft artists, Trina began her own explorations of art through batiking, a process well known in West Africa and the Georgia and Carolina Sea Islands.
Trina has traveled extensively, following her passions for art and the social sciences. Nepal, Thailand, Trinidad and Tobago, Belize, South Africa and Mozambique are just a few of the places her interests have taken her. Trina re-visited batiking while learning to carve stone and assist in limestone printmaking during her time as a resident artist on the farm of Nicholas Mukomberanwa, a renowned Shona stone sculptor.
Trina’s professional career spans almost two decades of administrative work in advertising, high-end post production photography, custom art framing, merchandising, and interior design. At home, Petrina surrounds herself with art from around the African Diaspora – Cuba, Haiti, Belize, Oakland, CA (courtesy of her 5 year old son!) and much more are all represented.
Linda Spain de Bruin
Chief Financial Officer
Linda joined MoAD in March 2013. Her financial career began as a cost accounting instructor at the University of Texas in Austin. Since then she has logged over 25 years as an accomplished financial and operational manager in the private and non-profit sector. As CFO, Linda successfully organized and grew a consumer product company to a multi-million business catering to Fortune 500 retailers.
She has also managed a cross-cultural exchange program and an international economic policy program. Linda’s expertise includes annual budgeting, financial modeling, cash flow forecasting, lending and legal negotiations, and audit management. Linda is also adept at creating order out of chaos and streamlining processes, making her an ideal member of FENG, the Financial Executives Networking Group. Before diving into the world of finance, Linda studied the German, Spanish, French, Arabic, and Japanese languages.
Behind the Lens Coordinator
Indiia is a teacher at heart, having worked in education for 16 years. At MoAD, she works alongside Lovisa Brown in the Education Department. Right now, Indiia is focusing at MoAD on writing curriculum and facilitating workshops for tween girls. Prior to MoAD, Indiia spent two years as the co-founder and teacher for a program called Yes To Arts, providing free arts programs for students in low-income neighborhoods.
Outside of work, Indiia is a musical theatre actress. When she’s not performing, she is a huge supporter of the Bay Area’s theatre scene.
San Francisco native Kitsaun King has spent 25 years working in the music business. She has worked in many capacities including: marketing, PR, art direction, merchandising and licensing, website development, fan club management, newsletter production and special projects. Prior to that, Kitsaun managed a vegetarian restaurant in San Francisco for 10 years.
Kitsaun also served on the Board of Directors for Artists for A New South Africa (ANSA) and she made a trip to South Africa as part of the Board delegation. There, Kitsaun visited the sites of some of the programs that Artists for a New South Africa supported and funded. She attended Desmond Tutu’s 75th birthday, and met Mr. Nelson Mandela. In her spare time, Kitsaun has a passion for travel, reading, and the arts.
Elizabeth Gessel, Ph.D.
Elizabeth leads MoAD’s Public Programs department; and she is a critical thinker with excellent research, writing and communication skills. She has been developing and running public programs at MoAD since 2010. She has launched new program series on spiritual practices, folktales, sacred music, and dance. With a Ph.D in history from the University of California at Berkeley, Elizabeth is experienced in the educational and community organizing field, having worked with educational reform organizations and public school volunteers.
Elizabeth participated in a Museum Studies program at the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation. Since then, she has worked with museums developing and producing educational curriculum, leading school tours, and working with community non-profit organizations. She brings a level of leadership and experience to MoAD, having worked with educational institutions and community groups managing projects and programs.
Elizabeth likes almost any activity she does with her family who include her two sons, Milo and Henry, and her dog, Lucy.
Katie Allen serves as the Executive Administrator of the Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD). In her role, she supports the Chair of the Board of Directors and the Executive Director in the oversight of ensuring effective governance practices. She also oversees policies, procedures and programs that are critical to ensure an efficient and effective operation. Prior to joining MoAD Katie was a senior manager with United Airlines. She retired from United after an illustrious 32-year career.
Katie is very active in the San Francisco Bay Area community. She serves on the Kian Jordan Rose Board for Hurler’s Syndrome, served as a Board Member for the Mendocino Woodland Association, and was a member of the Jack & Jill Family Camp Advisory Committee for over 20 years. She has been an active member of Allen Temple Baptist Church for 40 years, serving on the Deaconess Board for 25 of those years. As an active member of The Links Incorporated, Katie has served in many capacities in her local chapter, on the Western Area Executive Council. She has also served on several National Governance committees. Katie is a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority.
Katie’s passion has always been music. She studied classical piano for 14 years, and taught piano for over 20 years. Katie holds a Bachelor’s degree in International Relations from San Francisco State University. She is married to Rodger Penn Allen, a retired Deputy Fire Chief. They are the proud parents of three adult children and the proud grandparents of one grandchild.
Tarl Leonard has been the Facility Manager at MoAD since February 2012, where he brings a passion for helping to create a friendly and functional environment in the Museum.
Prior to joining MoAD, Tarl worked in a variety of different related fields, including building custom homes as a licensed general contractor, event management, and facilities assistance at UCLA. During his time at UCLA, he interfaced with the Clinton administration’s Secret Service, ran A/V at the FBI violent crime seminars, and acted as the point person for visiting dignitaries such as Tony Blair. His contracting clients included Tyler Perry and the creator of P9X.
Henry S. Francisco
Project Manager for I've Known Rivers: The MoAD Story Project
Henry S. Francisco is originally from Los Angeles, California. He is the Project Manager for I’ve Known Rivers (IKR): The MoAD Story Project. IKR is an oral history project that collects, publishes, and archives “first voice” narratives into volumes about people of African ancestry. Since 2009, he has produced, organized, and hosted multiple public programs for MoAD.
Henry is a multi-disciplinary artist in spoken word, film, and photography. He is a media arts teacher and basketball coach in the San Francisco Unified School District, receiving his MA in Education: Equity & Social Justice and a single subject credential in social science from San Francisco State University.
Social Media Coordinator
Julia manages MoAD’s social media presence online and has been with the museum since January 2012. She loves working in an environment that allows her to learn new things every day and share her knowledge with our online followers. She was first introduced to the museum by Board member/Professor Sarah Manyika while studying African Literature at San Francisco State University. Julia is particularly interested in the ways art and literature can intersect and the various modes used to tell these stories. She is currently completing her Master’s degree in Literature at San Francisco State University.