Categories: Meet the Team! Tags: , , , , , , ,

Artsy Advisors


Our team of Artsy Advisors is composed of highly connected Creative Industry leaders
who believe in the power of the visual, performing, and culinary arts to bring
people together. Their insight and creative brilliance help us to design unique
and unforgettable programs for the San Diego community.


CHARLOTTE CAGAN is a non‐profit executive with extensive experience in organizational development, strategic planning, fundraising, community engagement and institutional revitalization. She has led six non-profits to achieve their mission, vision, and goals, including an 11-county food bank and a city women’s commission. She has provided leadership for four museums in organizational rejuvenation, financial stabilization, and growth, community engagement, and re-branding.  She has developed strategic alliances, coalitions, and public/private partnerships, and she has a broad range of experience that spans arts and culture, education, human service, business, and government. Cagan has also been a consultant to cultural, educational and business organizations in marketing, fundraising, event planning, strategic planning and organizational development. She has served on numerous nonprofit boards including arts, environmental, human services and leadership development organizations. Cagan has a B.A. in political science, magna cum laude, from Cornell University with post-graduate study at Harvard and Columbia universities as well as continuing studies at Stanford University.

VICTORIA L. HAMILTON serves as the Arts and Culture Advocate at the Jacobs Center for Neighborhood Innovation in San Diego. She was the founding director of the City of San Diego Commission for Arts and Culture where she led this nationally recognized multi-million dollar local arts agency for 24 years. At the Commission, she achieved unanimous approval of a plan for 2% for public art in capital improvement and 1% in private development as well as for the Penny for the Arts Blueprint for increased arts and culture funding.

With over 30 years in the field of arts administration, she is recognized for her pioneering leadership and work on public policy, cultural tourism, grantmaking and cultural diversity initiatives. Victoria has served as President of United States Urban Arts Federation and California Assembly of Local Arts Agencies; been a panel member for the National Endowment for the Arts and California Arts Council and on public policy committees at state and national levels. She currently serves as Vice-President on Californians for the Arts board, Co-chair of the San Diego Regional Arts and Culture Coalition and as a member of the Balboa Park Conservancy and NTC Foundation. She has received numerous awards including the Ray Hanley Innovation Award given by the United States Urban Arts Federation for “outstanding individual contributions to arts and culture in American cities,” and the Selena Roberts Ottum Award given at the Americans for the Arts Annual Convention “for outstanding contributions in the local arts agency field.”


Allison Andrews – CEO, Fashion Week San Diego

Cathy Breslaw – Cultural Correspondent, Vanguard Culture

Clara Carter – Strategic Meeting Manager, Multi-Cultural Convention Services Network

Steven Churchill – CEO, The Art of Photography Show

Arlene Damasco – General Manager, Gilbert Castellanos Band

Chi Essary – Vanguard Culture Board Member & Social Media Director

Miguel Gongora Jr. – Cultural Correspondent, Vanguard Culture

Tara Graviss – Executive Director, Arts for Learning San Diego

Mark Lovett – Organizer,  TEDx San Diego & Vanguard Culture Board Member

Vanguard Culture

Vanguard Culture is an online media entity designed for culturally savvy, socially conscious individuals. We provide original interviews and reviews of the people, places, and events that make up San Diego’s thriving arts and culture community, as well as curated snapshots of the week’s best, most inspiring and unique cultural and culinary events. We believe in making a difference in the world, supporting San Diego’s vibrant visual and performing arts community and bringing awareness to important social and community causes.