By Marian Hubler
Bread & Roses has recently gone through a transition with Board and staff. We said a fond farewell and a big thank you to departing Board Members Chris Gorog, Steve Meckfessel and Philip Pillsbury. Each contributed invaluable expertise and support for our ongoing program. They were also all musicians who played at our institutional shows and organizational events.
At their last board meeting in May, Phillip shared, “What a joy it was to be involved in supporting an organization that is bringing hope through live music. I was deeply touched by my experiences at our institutional shows and will cherish forever the joy that I saw on the faces of the people in our audiences.”
Chris also reflected what he felt after serving as a board member for seven years. “It has been a pleasure to be involved with such a great team. Bread & Roses has a deep soul and is such an iconic organization for the Bay Area. With its critical mission and significant history, we are fortunate to be the shepherds and must continue to work hard to make sure the future is as impressive as the past.”
This summer, we welcomed three new board members to our team: Shaina Kerrigan, John A. Amster and Burt Toler, Jr. We are fortunate to have these dynamic and talented individuals help to pick-up the reins as board leaders at Bread & Roses. All have some prior association with us. Shaina recently piloted an online poker game to raise funds for Bread & Roses. John’s band Dark N’ Stormy has done two fundraising events to benefit our program.
Shaina Kerrigan -- Shaina is the founder and CEO of Molly J., an artisanal CBD confections company. She previously worked in the tech industry as a Director at Yelp for eight years, managing sales and marketing from a small start-up to a billion dollar company. Prior to that, she spent five years in event management at major corporations including Google, BMW, Lucasfilm and more. Through every stage of life, Shaina has turned to music for therapy, celebration and connection. She lives in Mill Valley with her husband and two children.
John A. Amster -- John is the founder and CEO of Rowan TELS Corporation and has been a leading innovator in the IP industry for the past 20+ years. Prior to Rowan, John was a co-founder and CEO of RPX Corporation. He also worked in strategic positions at Intellectual Ventures, Ocean Tomo and InterTrust Technologies. He received his J.D. from Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law and his B.A. from Middlebury College. He and his wife Colleen live in San Francisco with their three children. A keyboard player and singer, music has been ever-present in his life.
Burl Toler Jr. Burt is the second eldest of six children. He was born in San Francisco where he attended St. Ignatius College Preparatory. He then attended UC Berkeley where he received his degree in Architecture in 1978. He was also an All-Conference linebacker and team captain for the California Golden Bear Football team. Burl has spent his entire career working in the San Francisco Bay Area as an architect and senior project manager for Bechtel, UC Berkeley and the City and County of San Francisco. He and his wife Susan Tamayo-Toler reside in El Sobrante. They have five children and five grandchildren.
Bread & Roses also said goodbye recently to two dedicated staff: Carolyn Gauthier and Jordan Moore. Carolyn joined Bread & Roses team in 1999 as a producer. She retired this spring from her position as VP of Programs to spend time being a grandmother and on other pursuits. Jordan worked as Development/Communications Associate and now has a job at an Oakland ad agency.
A big welcome to new Development/Communications Associate Samantha Dueñas and Producer Phillip Percy Williams who have joined our staff. Samantha is an all-around creative contributor, website guru and social media maverick. An accomplished singer/actor/entertainer, Phillip brings great style to his role as a producer and a special sensitivity to the needs of our audiences.
Shaina Kerrigan and her husband, Mark Jones at the Bread & Roses Fall Benefit at the Sweetwater, 2019. Photo by Peter Merts
John Amster headshot. Courtesy of John Amster.
Burl Toler, Jr. and his wife, Susan Tamayo-Toler at the "Night Under the Stars" benefit house concert, 2021. Photo by Marian Hubler.
Samantha Dueñas and Phillip Percy Williams, 2021. Photo by Marian Hubler.