MESA, Ariz. (Oct. 25, 2018) – The i.d.e.a. Museum announced its 2018-19 board of directors, officers and honorary members. The board’s leadership will continue to focus on building the museum’s impact in the community and early education efforts through supporting early learning, nurturing creative thinking and engaging families.

The new board executive committee are Chair and Community Volunteer Dawn Giles, a longtime advocate and the First Lady of Mesa; Lora Lassiter, Vice Chair and Public Relations & Special Events for Mesa Community College; Erica Snyder, Vice Chair and Events Manager for the Downtown Mesa Association; Sean M. Lunny, CFP, Treasurer and Portfolio Manager for Stoker Ostler (a part of BMO Financial Group); Chris Tompkins, Secretary and retired Piper Fellows Coordinator for the Virginia C. Piper Charitable Trust; Sunnee D. O’Rork, Executive Director of the i.d.e.a. Museum and Rob Schultz, Member at Large and Assistant Director of the Mesa Arts and Culture Department.

“The i.d.e.a. Museum is growing. We envision a fabulous future with some incredible plans for our community,” said Sunnee O’Rork, museum executive director. “Board members and officers are selected for their expertise and commitment to making a difference. I’m thrilled with our team. They’re passionate and will take our vision for the future and make it a reality.”

The board is made up of individuals committed to the arts, education and community development. They focus on fundraising, advocacy and partnerships to support the success of the museum.

“We’re on a mission to create a positive impact for our community, and we won’t back down from our vision,” says Board Chair Dawn Giles. “We’re ready to take the museum to the next level of amazing experiences for families throughout the Valley, and for instilling a love for learning in our children.”

Board members have a wealth of experience in development, education, engineering, marketing, public policy, technology and entrepreneurship. Returning board members include:

  • Thomas Assante, a project manager for McCarthy Building Companies
  • Randy Blount, president of Blount Contracting, Inc.
  • Joshua R. Boyle, partner and attorney of Rowley Chapman & Barney, Ltd.
  • Dr. James Driscoll, assistant superintendent of Mesa Public Schools
  • Debra Duvall, Ed.D., former City of Mesa teacher, principal and superintendent
  • Greg Heap, senior vice president of Wells Fargo Commercial Banking
  • Samantha Hammond, arts and digital films advocate
  • Scott Higginson, owner, FourSquare Group & FourSquare ART
  • Anthony L. Luizzo, J.D., MBA, Ph.D., retired business professor and lawyer
  • David Luna, Ed.D., council liaison and vice mayor of the City of Mesa
  • Elaine Miner, clerk and governing board member for Mesa Public Schools
  • Tony J. Wall, president of 3W Management
  • Shawn S. Jordan, Ph.D., associate professor for the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering at Arizona State University. Jordan is on sabbatical through June 2019.

Honorary board members are:

  • John O. Whiteman, founder of the Arizona Museum for Youth (rebranded as the i.d.e.a. Museum in 2014) and retired chairman and CEO of Empire Southwest.
  • Elaine G. Morrison, education and arts advocate.
  • Jennifer Duff, owner of Jef International, Inc., and previously served as board chair.
  • Corrine Brooks, retired owner of Pepper Travel and longtime arts advocate.
  • Carmen Guerrero previously served as board chair. She’s a musician, artist, teacher, and community arts advocate.