Harlem Renaissance, Manhattan
At a young age, Erika’s family instilled in her the importance of service, creativity, and growth through constant learning. Over the past decade, Erika has channeled those values into her career as an arts administrator, youth development professional, teaching artist and performer in New York City and her native Washington D.C. area. Erika’s life-changing experiences growing up as a young artist propelled her to leadership roles within her community and attending George Mason University, where she obtained a B.A. in Music.
She’s used her drive to connect and support people through her administrative work in arts education. Previous to Opening Act she worked at The New Victory Theater (New York City) and Levine Music (Washington D.C.) where she developed operations and support systems and taught as a teaching artist and workshop facilitator within the programs. This allowed Erika to dive into arts education from multiple perspectives and develop a 360° approach to her work. Shortly after completing her M.S. in Arts Administration from Drexel University in 2015, Erika joined the staff of Opening Act as the Director of Operation (later becoming Director of Operations and Communications) and joined the teaching artist roster the following year. It was her great honor to serve as Acting Executive Director during the Fall of 2018 and step up into the Deputy Director role Fall of 2019.
Erika’s role at Opening Act represents the perfect marriage of her values: Building the foundation needed to create critical programming, communicating the values of the organization to outside partners, and using the knowledge she’s gained through her education to push forward new strategies. Erika has also created a larger platform for her work with Opening Act and arts education as a board member for both the American Alliance for Theater and Education and the NYC Arts in Education Roundtable, and a member of the Arts Education Advisory Council of the Americans for the Arts.