Department of Diversity, Equity, and Community



Chip McNeal

Charles Chip Mc Neal is an award-winning arts educator and dance specialist with a background in musical theater, television and film. He is a certified Integration Learning Specialist with expertise in social-emotional learning, cultural competency, and culturally and linguistically responsive pedagogy. Mc Neal’s expertise is at the intersection of arts, education and social justice, and he is currently and Ph.D. candidate in transformative studies in education with an emphasis on emancipatory pedagogies. McNeal lectures worldwide on organizational change, human consciousness and healing-informed teaching practices.
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Ryan Marchand

Ryan Marchand is an actor, stage director and theatre-maker. He is experienced in new work development, devised theatre and traditional Japanese Noh and Kyogen theatre. Marchand works with inner city youth facilitating a range of culturally responsive capacities. He has also worked extensively with leading Bay Area tech, finance, and governmental institutions in workforce development. Marchand is a fervent believer in, and witness to the transformative power of the arts, and he is able to leverage all of his skills and talents in his work at San Francisco Opera.
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Hannah Dworkin

Hannah Dworkin is an accomplished educator, performer, director and choreographer who has dedicated her career to bringing the arts to children throughout the Bay Area and beyond.  She has extensive experience creating new works for young audiences and developing educational programming for mainstream and special day classes.  In addition to Dworkin’s work at SF Opera, she is a professor of teacher education at the San Francisco Conservatory of music and lectures regularly in best practices in classroom management and healing informed teaching practices.  Dworkin holds a California Multiple Subject Teaching Credential and an MA in Music and Music Education from Columbia University’s Teachers College.


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Cole Thomason-Redus

Fifth-generation San Franciscan, educator, conductor and composer, Cole Thomason-Redus serves as a Program Manager for the company’s Department of Diversity, Equity & Community. As a member of the San Francisco Boys Chorus, he performed in sixteen productions with the company between 1987-1994 and went on to train boy choirs for numerous SFO productions. His diverse credentials include Director of Education for the renowned vocal ensemble, Chanticleer, Curator of Classical Music for Apple, Inc., Classical Music Analyst for the Music Genome Project at Pandora Media, Inc., and over two decades of teaching for schools and organizations throughout the Bay Area.
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Chelbi Harvin-Dickens

Chelbi Harvin Dickens (she/they) Chelbi is an interdisciplinary artist with a background in dance, theatre, and music. They are dedicated to arts education and have worked within academic and artistic institutions in Washington D.C., New York, and California. Chelbi specializes in bold ideas that elicit the implementation and expansion of DEI initiatives. In their work, Chelbi focuses intently on devising creative ways to build safe, affirming space for marginalized communities, with particular emphasis on intersectionality, social justice, and reform. Chelbi is driven by the belief in artistic storytelling as the most powerful form of communication, education, and expression. Beyond their professional work, they have an intense love of reading, writing, photography, film, fashion, and painting. Chelbi’s mission is to illuminate ways for institutions to reflect, respect, and collaborate with the communities that they serve and expand community access to institutional resources. 


Our work will not be possible without the continued dedication and support from our DEC facilitators. We express our sincere gratitude for their work.
Jordan Amann, Executive Assistant to the General Director
Katherine Baltrush, Associate Operations Director
Michael Bragg, Music Planning Associate and Opera Librarian
Maude Engstrom, Individual and Leadership Giving Associate
Farrah Hammond, Marketing Associate
Radhika Kataria, Human Resources Coordinator
Ellen Presley, Board Relations and Special Projects Manager
Joanna Taber, Strategic Initiatives Manager
Aileen Tat, Leadership Giving Officer


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Clara Choi

Clara Choi is a Korean-American immigrant from Koreatown, Los Angeles. She currently is an Ed.M. Candidate in Arts in Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education. Clara believes that arts should be a right, not a privilege. She strives to realize the power of arts to transform people's lives, as it has unquestionably changed hers. Now she wants to use her passion, knowledge and experience to bring arts to the most diverse audiences as possible. Clara has a special passion for serving youth, especially those from underserved communities, like her own.


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Diversity, Equity and Community Suggestion Form

Diversity, Equity and Community Project Request Form