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Board Members’ Bios

Mary Lu Nunley

MARY LU NUNLEY served on the Arizona Historical Society Board of Directors including terms as president and vice-president. In her positions with the city of Phoenix Water Conservation Office, she worked with Valley cities to increase awareness on where our water comes from and how to protect those resources. At Arizona’s Children Association, and with the Governor’s Community and Family Programs, she developed educational handbooks and videos for families and community organizations. Mary Lu also served on Congressman Jim Kolbe’s campaign staff and in his district office for more than 16 years. Now retired, she will continue to be involved in a variety of efforts to keep Arizona as the greatest place to live. Community outreach and education are the running threads through Mary Lu Nunley’s interests, both personally and professionally. Her family, a wide range of professional work, and the community strongly influenced her understanding how important culture is to developing a healthy community. Helping a community grow is always one of her goals when joining a program or project. Mary Lu was appointed to the Arizona Humanities board of directors by the governor.

Jim Blasingame
Vice Chair
Professor, Department of English, College of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Arizona State University Tempe

As a professor at Arizona State University, JIM BLASINGAME focuses on young adult literature, Indigenous curriculum, censorship, secondary reading and writing pedagogy, preparing pre-service teachers, and cowboy poetry. He also works with the ASU chapter of the US State Department’s International Leaders in Education Partnership, for which he helps visiting teachers from around the world to create professional development modules to use with teachers in their home countries. Dr. Blasingame is the executive director of the Assembly on Literature for Adolescents of the National Council of Teachers of English, and has served as its president and co-editor of The ALAN Review, a journal devoted entirely to young adult literature. He is an assistant to Henry Quintero and Simon Ortiz on the RED INK Indigenous Initiative for All: Collaboration and Creativity at Work. Dr. Blasingame has published over 100 interviews with poets and authors of young adult literature and over 200 book reviews in VOYAJournal of Adolescent and Adult Literacy, The ALAN Review, and English Journal.

Dr. Blasingame was the 2018 ASU College of Liberal Arts and Sciences Zebulon Pearce Professor for the Humanities, a 2018 Pat Tillman Veterans’ Center Professor, and the 2017 Arizona Humanities Dan Shilling Public Humanities Scholar. He was a 2014 ASU Doctoral Mentor of the Year, and the 2008 ASU Parents’ Association Professor of the Year. He was the 2008 International Reading Association Arbuthnot Award winner for outstanding professor of children’s and young adult literature.  He has given presentations and/or performed cowboy poetry at the National Council of Teachers of English convention, the International Reading Association, the Western States Conference on Rhetoric and Composition, and the Graz University International Summer School at Seggau Castle in Austria. Before coming to ASU in 2000, Dr. Blasingame spent twenty-four years in secondary education as a high school teacher, coach, bus driver and principal.

Karl Kendall
Deputy Director of Collections and Programming, Phoenix Public Library

KARL KENDALL has worked for the Phoenix Public Library for the past 17 years.  In his current role as the Deputy Director of Collections and Programming, Karl oversees the coordination of programs, services, and the purchasing of library materials across this diverse system of 17 Library locations.   Prior to his current position, Karl managed the Century, Cesar Chavez, and Agave libraries, overseeing the opening of the latter two.  Karl holds a Bachelor’s degree in History from Arizona State University and a Master’s degree in Information and Library Sciences from the University of Arizona.  Married with three young children, Karl’s main passions are music, baseball, and, of course, reading.  

Eshe Pickett 150x150Eshé Pickett
Cloud Automation Engineer, Intel Corporation

ESHЀ PICKETT is a Software Architect at the Intel Corporation in Chandler, AZ with the Internet of Things Group; she has been with the company since 2005. In her role, she focuses on cloud-to-POS workloads and system software operations in the store. Eshe participates in STEM outreach, specifically targeting women in engineering. She received her Bachelor’s degree in Computer Science from Northwestern University and her Master’s degree in Computer Science from the University of Chicago.

Eshe is an active community member who strongly advocates for civic and civil engagement. She is a graduate of Valley Leadership, mentored for 6 years with Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Arizona, was a Precinct Committeeman (PC) in Legislative District (LD) 18 from 2008-2018, and is presently a Democratic PC in Legislative District 17. She served as the Recording Secretary for LD 18 from 2010-2014 and is currently on the Communications and Technology Committee.

julie codell 150x150Dr. Julie Codell
Member at Large
Professor, Art History and Film, Barrett Honors College Faculty, Arizona State University

JULIE CODELL is Professor of Art History at Arizona State University and affiliate faculty in English, Gender Studies, Film and Media Studies and Asian Studies. She has a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from Indiana University Bloomington, an MA in Art History from Indiana, an MA in English from The University of Michigan and a BA in English from Vassar College. She was Vice Chair of the Montana Humanities Council while teaching at the University of Montana, Missoula, and a grants evaluator for the NEH, the Australian Research Council and the National Humanities Center.  Her research and teaching interests are 19th-century European culture and the press, the British empire, 19th- and early 20th-century India, life writings and film. She wrote The Victorian Artist, and edited Transculturation in British Art; Power and Resistance: The Delhi Coronation Durbars; The Political Economy of Art; Imperial Co-Histories; and co-edited Orientalism, Eroticism and Modern Visuality in Global Cultures; Encounters in the Victorian Press, and Orientalism Transposed. She received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Getty Foundation, Kress Foundation, Huntington Library, Ransom Center, and Yale Center for British Art. She has been president of 5 Victorian studies societies, board member of 8 professional organizations, and 6 scholarly journals.

Dr. Eve Krahe
Member at Large
Dean of Graduate Programs, School of Health Services Administration, College of Health Professionals, University of Phoenix

EVE KRAHE serves as the Dean of Graduate Programs in the School of Health Services Administration (SHSA) at the University of Phoenix, overseeing the experience and outcomes of approximately 1500 students. Prior to joining the University, Eve was the Director of the Undergraduate and Graduate Healthcare Innovation Programs at Arizona State University (ASU) and held the rank of Associate Professor.

Dr. Krahe is a member of the Board of Directors of the American Association of University Administrators and a member of the Board of Directors of the Arizona Humanities Council. She is a founding member of the Upsilon Phi Delta Health Administration Honors Society chapter at the University of Phoenix, and a founding member of the ASU Center for Interprofessional Education in healthcare. She has participated as an invited judge at the ASU Herberger Design School’s Health and Healing Environments Charrette, and is a member of the Society for Ethics Across the Curriculum (SEAC). She continues to sit on doctoral committees at ASU and elsewhere. Each year, she convenes the SHSA Industry Advisory Council, comprised of senior leadership from across the health sector – including architecture, sustainability, philanthropy, health systems, and analytics. Her academic background is in complexity science, anthropology, international relations, and comparative religions.

Ryan BruceRyan Bruce
Immediate Past Chair
Director, KISJ Community Media and 2182 Recording Company

RYAN J. BRUCE is the Director of KISJ Community Media and 2182 Recording Company. From 2008 to 2018, Bruce served as the Executive Director of The Bisbee Radio Project and began his career more than 19 years ago at WFHB Community Radio in Bloomington, Indiana followed by a number of years on Capitol Hill working on legal and policy directives at the National Federation of Community Broadcasters, which represents more than 400 community radio stations across the country. He assisted in the coordination and convergence of the first Latino and Native American community radio conferences. Bruce is responsible for the creation of the KBRP Youth Media Project, Borderlands Community Media Foundation, and Copper Chronicle Radio Program. Mr. Bruce is also the owner of Bruce & Associates, Post-Soviet Depression Press, and Solfa Music and Books. He is always looking for your unused books, vinyl and instruments!

Dr. Jennifer C. Bonilla, Ph.D., FACHE, SHRM-SCP

JENNIFER BONILLA’S extensive career in the  healthcare and education sectors providing integrated facilities management services has spanned North America, and includes representing two European corporations, leading their respective North American businesses.  She previously led  private-equity backed SFE, LLC headquartered in Scottsdale, AZ as CEO,  and formerly was  CEO for ISS Facility Services – North America.  She also  held the roles of  Division Healthcare President of Sodexo, LLC; and President – North America for Pitney Bowes Management Services.

Jennifer’s academic career includes serving as the University of Nevada – Las Vegas’s (UNLV) Registrar, providing primary enrollment, registration, and commencement services to more than eight colleges including the  Schools of Medicine and Dental Medicine, and she was also previously the Executive Program Director for the Health Care Administration Programs in the School of Public Health at UNLV. Jennifer led the College of Healthcare Administration through first-time accreditation status with CAHME, the national governing body, making it the first accredited online program in the State of Nevada. She has also been a graduate healthcare finance faculty member at Arizona State University in the Edson College of Nursing and Health Innovation since 2014.

She holds a Ph.D. from Iowa State University of Science & Technology with research in the area of clinician burnout, employee engagement and turnover intention.  She also holds a Master’s of Health Innovation(MHI) degree  from Arizona State University, and is recognized by the Society of Human Resource Management with its SHRM-SCP designation.  Jennifer is a board-certified Fellow (FACHE) of the American College of Healthcare Executives (ACHE). Jennifer is passionate about children’s well-being and literacy, healthcare access and quality and is committed to lifelong learning.  Jennifer is also a board member of Houston-based BullseyeEngagement, a cutting-edge software company supporting talent development and retention initiatives for major corporations serving diverse industry sectors.

Dr. Alain-Philippe Durand
Dean of the College of Humanities, University of Arizona

ALAIN-PHILIPPE DURAND is Dean of the College of Humanities, Professor of French, Honors College Distinguished Fellow, and affiliated faculty in Africana Studies, Latin American Studies and LGBT Studies at the University of Arizona. His research interests include French and Brazilian literatures, French Cinema, Hip-Hop, and the promotion of the Humanities disciplines in the professions. He is the author and editor of four books: Black, Blanc, Beur. Rap Music and Hip-Hop Culture in the Francophone WorldA Techno World. New Electronic Spaces in the French Novel of the 1980s and 1990s (preface by Marc Augé, published in French); Novels of the Contemporary Extreme (co-edited with Naomi Mandel), and Frédéric Beigbeder and his doubles (published in French). He has published chapters and articles in journals such as PMLAThe French ReviewRomance NotesContemporary French CivilizationL’Esprit créateur, and Romance Quarterly, among others. He is Associate Editor of the journalContemporary French Civilization. The French Government awarded Durand the Palmes Académiques. The University of Arizona awarded Durand the Five Star Faculty Award, the Richard Ruiz Diversity Leadership Faculty Award, and the African American Community Council’s Distinguished Faculty Award. The French publication France-Amérique named him among its list of fifty French talents living in the United States.

Andrew Krahe
Learning and Development Technical Administrator, Central Arizona Project

ANDREW KRAHE is currently serving as technical administrator in Learning and Development at Central Arizona Project.  His oversight includes the coordination, dissemination, and recording of Manager, Supervisor, Safety, and Field training delivered to CAP’s approximately 500 full-time employees who are distributed across the organization’s Pumping Plants, Headquarters, field offices, and 336 miles of canal system. Prior to this role, Andrew was the co-founder and operations director of an international membership-based medical continuing education organization headquartered in Arizona with international presence in Canada, India, and China.

Andrew received his bachelor’s degree from the University of Michigan in Sociocultural Anthropology with a focus on Medical Anthropology.  His personal and professional goal has always been to translate this academic understanding of dialogue and culture into the corporate learning and development environment. He is a lifetime member of both the Sigma Alpha Lambda National Leadership and Honors Organization and the Delta Epsilon Iota Academic Honors Society.  He holds technical Certifications in the Perigon® Method of Process Mapping and the SumTotal Learning Management System. He also has extensive experience with customer relationship management.

Dr. Tanae Morrison
CEO of Morrison Education Group, Inc. / Sun Valley Charter School

TANAE MORRISON is an educational change agent. An Arizona native hailing from Tucson, she has methodically and strategically forged through the ranks of statewide educational leaders to find herself among the top educators in her field. Tanae earned a B.A. in Sociology, an M.A. in Educational Psychology, an M.A. in Educational Leadership, and a Doctoral degree in Educational Leadership respectively and is now setting the educational system in Arizona on fire by becoming one of the most highly regarded women in business in the state. Tanae has been a driving force in the Arizona educational system and has not wavered from her passion for rigor and excellence in the academic development of students wherever she has served. Dr. Morrison has been in the educational field for over 20 years beginning as a teacher assistant, and progressing through special education, student advocacy, teaching, school counseling, and now is the CEO of Morrison Education Group, Inc. dba Sun Valley Charter School founded in 2009. A mark of excellence many cannot claim.

Sun Valley Charter School emerged because Dr. Morrison saw that students in the Laveen/South Mountain community were being underserved. Dr. Morrison committed to make a change in this community. With the help of enthusiastic believers in her mission, Tanae brought the school’s program to a high need area because of a strong conviction that all students can learn when given the right tools along with love and support. Over the course of nine years Dr. Morrison has employed a diverse group of passionate educa-tors beginning with 10 employees to now over 35 employees. Sun Valley is currently ranked among the highest in its service area by the Arizona Department of Education. Morrison Education Group is now extending its reach through a new school campus pro-ject to improve the academic outcomes for more than 750 young scholars and employing over 50 faculty and staff all while positively impacting the local community. This is due in part to Dr. Morrison’s strong character, excellent interpersonal communication skills, relentless desire for excellence and a genuine love for those she serves. Dr. Morrison is a respected member of the Phoenix business community, an active member of Delta Sigma Theta Incorporated, which is an international service organization, is involved in ongoing community outreach through Pilgrim Rest Foundation. She is a well- respected pillar in the community.

Debbie Nez-Manuel

DEBBIE NEZ-MANUEL’S professional accomplishments have profoundly impacted the humanities and Arizona communities. She earned her Master’s of Social Work, and advanced degree in Nonprofit Leadership, from Arizona State University. Nez-Manuel is a proactive community leader, and also a public servant. Nez-Manuel currently serves as the Co-Chair of the “MMIWG” Data Sharing Committee, the committee charged with developing a state-wide plan to examine and reduce the murder and missing of Indigenous women and girls (MMIWG).  Her expertise and leadership on the Study Committee was instrumental to the passage of HB2570 signed by Governor Ducey. Nez-Manuel remains an active and engaged community leader, who mobilizes community members to be strong, productive, healthy, and resilient people. She serves as a Consultant to promote equity and social engagement among Native American communities and peoples across Arizona.

Edgar Rafael Olivo
CEO/Business Leadership Educator and Economic Development Advisory, Compass Computer and Business School, LLC 

EDGAR RAFAEL OLIVO is an award-winning bilingual business communication expert, international corporate trainer, author and speaker whose work is regularly featured on Univision, Telemundo, CNN Latino, NPR, Phoenix Business Journal and many other media platforms across the country.  He founded Compass CBS, a computer and business school that delivers innovative leadership and training solutions to top businesses in North and Latin America in order to help grow and develop strong, harmonious, productive and inclusive work communities.

A passionate advocate for economic development, community, culture and education. Edgar has invested much of his philanthropic efforts as an executive board member for grant-giving organizations, social-arts focused charter schools, financial advisory boards, and social justice projects.

Edgar hosts a weekly social media show called “Hablemos de Negocios con Edgar Olivo” or “Let’s Talk Business with Edgar Olivo” with Univision Arizona. The show is for Spanish-speaking professionals who wish to establish and successfully grow in their profession and business.

Edgar is certified in business, finance, data analytics, corporate training, and executive coaching. He holds a business communication degree and applied business data analytics certificate from the W.P Carey School of Business at Arizona State University.

Edgar is the son of Mexican immigrants in the United States and is the eldest of eleven siblings. When he is not working, you can find Edgar on his ranch in Northern Arizona searching for fossils and assisting his husband build his natural history museum.

Dr. Kari Paulson
VP Marketing & Corporate Affairs, Southwest Foodservice Excellence (SFE)

KARI PAULSON brings over 20 years of experience in Marketing and Innovation leadership within retail and foodservice segments, including at General Mills and Cargill.  Having won 5 top performance awards at Fortune 500 companies and a General Mills retail promotional patent, she is inspired by the discovery of deep market research insights that fuel creativity, strategic innovation and sustainable growth.  Today she serves as the VP of Marketing and Corporate Affairs for Southwest Foodservice Excellence (SFE), a Scottsdale-based K-12 nutrition company that brings fresh-from-scratch meals and expansive menu options to K-12 students in 15 states and over 120 school districts.

Dr. Paulson holds an MBA in Marketing, as well as Doctoral and BA degrees in the respective fields of musical arts and communications. Her musical interests span across multiple genres, having earned her doctorate at the U of MN in classical voice performance with an emphasis in African American musicology.  Before her career in marketing, she earned her living as a singer and pianist in Minneapolis, touring internationally and working in venues ranging from musical theater, to dinner clubs, opera houses and commercial recording studios.  In addition, with a passion for child nutrition and education worldwide, she has been a longtime advocate and volunteer for international and local programs focused in these areas. She is so pleased to be part of the AZ Humanities Board, working together to support the flourishing of arts and humanities within our local communities.

Dr. Almira Poudrier
Principal Lecturer, Arizona State University

ALMIRA POUDRIER is principal lecturer in the School of International Letters and Cultures at Arizona State University. Her research interests include Greek history and religion, particularly the material culture of religious space and cult described in Herodotus. A specialist in teaching first-year Latin, she teaches many of the lower division Latin courses at ASU as well as frequent courses in ancient Greek and Roman language, myth, culture, the classical tradition, and comparative literature. As faculty sponsor of Solis Diaboli (the Classics club on campus), she organizes the yearly Fall Forum in Classics, and several other outreach activities both on and off campus. She organizes the annual international poster contest at the SILC Language Fair. She also serves as vice-president of the Central Arizona Society of the Archaeological Institute of America, which brings monthly lectures on archaeology and material culture from national and international scholars to the Valley. She recruits volunteers for and occasionally participates herself in “mudslinging,” a monthly conservation activity at Pueblo Grande Museum. As the organizer of the Arizona Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies (ACMRS) Medieval Latin Research Group, she leads weekly reading sessions in translating medieval and Renaissance Latin authors. In her free time, she enjoys reading and watching futuristic science fiction and space opera, hiking in the desert with her dog, Fridays for Future Climate Strike rallies, and true crime podcasts.

Martin Stamat
Executive Director, Glen Canyon Conservancy

MARTIN STAMAT has worked in and on public lands for the past 9 years.  In his current role as Executive Director of Glen Canyon Conservancy, he oversees a philanthropic nonprofit that educates visitors to public lands in northern Arizona and southern Utah including Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, Rainbow Bridge National Monument, Vermilion Cliffs National Monument, and Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument.  Before his current role, Martin worked in the Glen Canyon river corridor as a daily river guide on the Colorado River. Martin earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Appalachian State University of Boone, NC. He lives and works in Page, AZ, where he is frequently outside on the public lands he loves.

emerson yearwood 150x150Emerson Yearwood
Associate General Counsel–Regulatory Affairs, Cable One, Inc.

EMERSON YEARWOOD has been a member of the legal team at Cable One, Inc., since joining the company in October 2000.  As Associate General Counsel & Director of Regulatory Affairs, he is primarily responsible for managing the company’s regulatory compliance and reporting for Cable One’s video, internet and VoIP services.  In addition, he also directly supports General Counsel and Assistant General Counsel in a wide variety of legal matters. Prior to joining Cable One, Emerson gained five years of cable industry experience with Falcon Communications and the Cable Services Bureau of the Federal Communications Commission.  He holds a J.D. from UCLA, an M.B.A. from the Yale School of Management, and a B.S. in City Planning from MIT.  His past board experience includes serving as the Chairman of the Black Alumni of MIT. Emerson is a native of Barbados and was raised in the Bronx, NY.  He enjoys travel, hiking and the occasional game of golf.