Six panel members review 18 grant applications for organizations wishing to receive funding allocated by the Prince William County Government.
These six individuals bring significant levels of experience to the grant review process in areas such as financial management, grant analysis, public relations and marketing, arts education, arts funding and arts performance.
This year's Review Panelists:
Currently, the Division Manager for the County’s Treasury Management Division, Mr. Scarbrough has been in Prince William County’s Finance Department for 13 years and has a wide variety of experience within the finance and securities disciplines in both the public and private sectors of over a period of 29 years. Assets under management exceed $1.0 Billion. His depth of knowledge in the field of finance belies his wide scope of interests outside of his profession. Among these is a love for gardening, landscape design and plant propagation which led to his creation and management of the Microsoft Network (MSN) Gardening Forum during MSN’s 1995 debut. Additionally, he is profoundly appreciative of his parents’ persistence in seeing him through many years of music lessons that results, from time to time in the tapping of his inner rock star. After living in Naples, Italy and Wiesbaden, Germany for many years during his youth, he has somehow managed to resurrect an appreciation for culture and art despite the trauma of being required as a six-year-old to personally visit what he still recalls as being
every last Cathedral on the European continent. Mr. Scarbrough holds a B.S. in Commerce with a concentration in Finance from the University of Virginia, and earned a Master in Public Administration (MPA) from George Mason University.
Chalet Jean-Baptiste is currently a full time English Professor at NVCC. She is also the co-chair of the Minority Mentoring Program, aimed at helping minority students become successful in academia and, ultimately, their intended career. Along with improving her community and involvement in education, theatre and arts has always been her first love. She was also on the Board of Directors for CAPAC, an arts and theatre company in Prince William County. She also is the author of Black Dresses Stain and wrote and directed the play, The Sound of Love's Fire. She has a Masters in English from Long Island University, a Masters in Communication from NYIT, and is currently pursuing her doctorate at GMU for Writing and Rhetoric.
Cheryl Saggers is a retired Prince William County Art Teacher. She has completed her ROP, Retirement Opportunity Program in the County and is now substituting for the district on Mondays and Fridays. Cheryl is an artist but no longer has her art business license with the county. She still continues to paint. She is a member of the PWAS, Prince William Art Society and the NCC, National Capitol Chapter of Decorative Painters. Cheryl is art scholarship chairperson for the NCC, which gives a $500 award to a graduating senior from the Maryland and No. VA area. She also helps VFW post 1503 with their Patriotic Poster contest every year.
Susan Landess is currently the Sales Manager for the Hylton Performing Arts Center in Manassas, VA. She has been in this position since shortly after the building opened in May of 2010 and has created a strong rental program that makes the facility available to all types of performing groups and event renters. Her background includes work as a choreographer, in theatrical production and lighting design, and arts management in various capacities. Before coming to the Hylton Center, she spent 10 years as Executive Director for Kathy Harty Gray Dance Theater in Alexandria, VA, handling all business aspects of the company including marketing, financials and grant applications. Ms. Landess has served on grants panels for the Virginia Commission for the Arts, the Montgomery County Arts Council and the District of Columbia Arts Commission.
Leslee Gearhart is a graduate of The Washington Academy of Ballet and Florida Southern College. She is a former professional dancer the Washington Ballet Company, Harkness Ballet Company New York City, The National Ballet Company Washington DC. Leslee is the Founder/ Director of The Manassas Dance Company Founder/Director and the Manassas School of Dance. She is currently the Character Dance Instructor for the Russell School of Ballet and Fairfax Ballet Company.
Since 2008, Christi Esterly Schwarten has guided the Fairfax Choral Society, through her strong administrative leadership, to the forefront of Washington choral organizations. Ms. Schwarten joined FCS as Managing Director in 2008, and soon became Executive Director as the organization continued to flourish and expand. Ms. Schwarten received a Bachelor of Arts in Theatre and Political Science, with minors in Music and Writing, in 2006 from Baldwin Wallace University and her Master's Degree in Arts Administration in 2014 from The University of Akron. Prior to joining FCS, she served as the Promotions Coordinator for the Downtown Akron Partnership, the Education Intern for the Asolo Repertory Theatre, an Educator for Weathervane Playhouse and as an Assistant at The University of Akron in theatre and art gallery management. In addition to serving as Executive Director of the Fairfax Choral Society, Ms. Schwarten has served as the Co-Chair of the Emerging Arts Leaders DC Steering Committee and as a part of Leadership Fairfax Class of 2015. She is a strong arts advocate in the community and has served on grants panels for the Alexandria Commission for the Arts, Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County, Arts Council of Fairfax County, and the Virginia Commission for the Arts. Ms. Schwarten's favorite activities are singing in choir, playing handbells, assistant coaching a Special Olympics swim team, and spending time with her husband, Steve, and daughter, Penelope.