Gianna Chachere, Executive Director and Founder
A tenth-generation New Orleanian and graduate of Simmons College in Boston, Gianna Chachere served as Producing Director of the Hamptons International Film Festival from 2006 to 2014. During the last 20 years, she lived in New York and Los Angeles working with various arts and higher educational institutions including New York University, The New School, and the Two Boots Pioneer Theater. Chachere directed several film and music festivals including Slamdance Film Festival and Don't Knock the Rock Film and Music Festival in Los Angeles. Chachere began returning home to New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina where she served as Director of Development for Artspot Productions and Director of Patois: The New Orleans Human Rights Festival, where she currently serves on the Board of Directors.
Chachere serves on The New Quorum's Board of Directors, along with these esteemed colleagues:
Guitarist/Composer, Jonathan Freilich has been an active part of the New Orleans music scene since his arrival there in 1989. A sideman for notable locals such as Kermit Ruffins, Michael Ward and The Reward, and Sun Ra trumpeter, Michael Ray, in 1992 he co-founded the New Orleans Klezmer All-Stars (NOKAS), a pioneering klezmer ensemble that infused that music with the vibrancy and energy of the funk, jazz and brass music of New Orleans. To date he has had opportunity to play with most of New Orleans' greatest musicians from across all genres. A graduate in composition from California Institute of the Arts, he formed Naked On The Floor and eventually The Naked Orchestra seeking outlets for his compositions in other styles and forms. Naked on the Floor (quintet) and the Naked Orchestra (18-24 piece creative orchestra) play Freilich's original compositions exclusively and play regularly in New Orleans.
Born in Ann Arbor, MI, Shawn Hall is a visual artist, collaborator, and designer who has lived and worked in New Orleans since 1997. Hall was a founding member of Press Street’s Antenna Gallery in New Orleans as well as an owner and studio manager of Piety Street Recording, the Bywater studio that closed in 2013 where she worked with artists ranging from James Blood Ulmer and Vernon Reid to Elvis Costello and Allen Touissant to The Happy Talk Band. She holds an MFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art, and local exhibitions include shows at the Contemporary Art Center and the Ogden Museum of Southern Art. Hall’s work has been shown in Miami, Chicago, NYC, Dallas, Houston, and France and she’s a part of the permanent collection of the Ogden Museum of Southern Art in New Orleans, Linklaters Corporate collection in NYC, and numerous private collections throughout the United States/Europe.
An MBA graduate from Tulane University’s Freeman School of Business, Maria Ludwick served as Associate Director of the Louisiana Public Health Institute, where she was responsible for overseeing a broad portfolio of programs designed to improve health and well being of Louisiana residents. Ludwick oversaw a portfolio of large-scale health care capacity building projects in New Orleans including the post-Katrina $100 million federal Primary Care Access and Stabilization program. An avid art collector, Ludwick is now an Associate with The Cerner Corporation, a leading U.S. supplier of health care information technology solutions.
A thirty year resident of New Orleans and graduate of Wesleyan University, Benjamin Lyons is a record producer and instigator of the independent recording label Valid Records–dedicated to presenting the creative possibilities of the New Orleans music scene. Lyons has produced recordings by artists such as the legendary Kidd Jordan, Hamid Drake, Rob Wagner, Jonathan Freilich, and Frank Gratkowski.