Corcoran board is diverse, dedicated

The Corcoran Gallery of Art and the Corcoran College of Art and Design are governed by a board of 14 trustees, 13 of whom have a vote. At a time of financial crisis, the board is playing an unusually active role, alongside senior staff, in rethinking the mission of the Corcoran. Corcoran leaders say this board possesses a good mix of expertise — legal, financial, nonprofit, educational, artistic — to help set a new course for the institution.

Here are the trustees:

Harry F. Hopper III, 58, Alexandria, chairman, joined the board in 2006 and became chairman in 2009. He is a partner at the venture capital firm of Columbia Capital. Forbes ranked him No. 96 on the Midas List of top technology venture capitalists. He and his wife, Maria, collect contemporary art. They have given $250,000 to $500,000* to the Corcoran.

Frederick Knops, 47, Alexandria, treasurer, joined the board in fiscal 2007-08. He is a former senior vice president at the consulting firm of Booz Allen Hamilton, specializing in technology clients. He has given more than $150,000 in tech support to the Corcoran.

Sarah “Sally” Chapoton, 72, Chevy Chase, secretary, joined the board in 2002-03. A longtime Corcoran supporter and society fundraiser, she is a former vice president of community development at the National Symphony Orchestra and a former NSO board member. She and her husband, John “Buck” Chapoton, have given more than $200,000.

Carolyn Alper, 85, District of Columbia, rejoined the board in 2011 after decades of supporting the Corcoran on and off the board. Corcoran College alumna, artist, designer and patron of the arts, she was a founding member of the Foundry Gallery. She is on the board of the Phillips Collection and has given more than $1 million to the Corcoran.

Anne Edwards, 62, Alexandria, joined the board in 2006. She is on the board of the Delaware College of Art and Design. She and her husband, Augustus, have given $250,000 to $500,000.

Michela English, 62, District of Columbia, joined the board in 2011. She is president and chief executive of Fight for Children and was formerly president of Discovery Consumer Products and senior vice president of the National Geographic Society. She has served as chairman of the board of Sweet Briar College and is on the board of the D.C. Preparatory Academy.

Shannon Finley, 45, District of Columbia, joined the board in 2011. She is a partner in the lobbying firm Capitol Counsel and a former political consultant and adviser to Sen. Max Baucus (D-Mont). She was executive director of the American Indian College Fund.

Kathryn Gleason, 55, District of Columbia, joined the board in 2011. She is a former senior partner at the law firm of Morgan Lewis. She collects art, is a trustee at the Hirshhorn Museum and serves on the trustee committee on education at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Eleanor “Sis” Hedden, 81, District of Columbia, rejoined the board in 2011 after years of prior involvement — on the board, chairing the annual ball and in other capacities. She and her late husband, John, have given more than $500,000.

Julie J. Jensen, 57, Chevy Chase, joined the board in 2005-06. She is an officer of foundations that support charities to help disadvantaged youth. She has given more than $500,000 to the Corcoran.


Henry Thaggert. (Astrid Riecken/FOR THE WASHINGTON POST)

Saree Pitt, 57, District of Columbia, joined the board in 2009-2010. She is on the board of the Sitar Arts Center for children in the District and chaired the Corcoran’s Women’s Committee for two years, when the committee raised more than $1 million for the Corcoran.

Frank LaPrade, 46, McLean, joined the board in 2011. He is chief enterprise services officer and chief of staff to the chief executive at Capital One. He is on the board of directors of Venture Philanthropy Partners, which invests in nonprofits that serve low-income children.

Henry L. Thaggert, 47, District of Columbia, joined the board in 2011. A lawyer for a defense contractor, he is an art collector, patron and curator. He has served on the advisory boards of George Mason University’s School of Art and the Smithsonian’s National Museum of African Art.

Nancy Smith (ex officio), is a non-voting trustee whose position on the board is always held by the chairman of the Women’s Committee.

* Some giving levels are expressed in ranges on the Corcoran’s lifetime donor honor roll.

READ: Corcoran board holds key to museum’s fate

Jennifer Jenkins contributed to this report.

David Montgomery joined The Washington Post in 1993. He currently writes general features and profiles for the Sunday Magazine, Sunday Style and Sunday Arts, with a focus on the Latino community and Latino arts.
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