AEMS Welcomes Incoming Board and Emeritus Board Members

August 3, 2021


Announcement of New Board Members

At the end of the 2021 Fiscal Year, Arts Education in Maryland Schools (AEMS) welcomed three more new members to the AEMS board of trustees. With a range of professional and artistic backgrounds and experiences, AEMS looks forward to working with these talented and dynamic individuals on the future of our organization and work.

The incoming board members are:

  • Sheila Gibbs, Of Counsel, Kramon & Graham
  • Laura Malkus, Development Associate for Stewardship, Friends School of Baltimore
  • Ashley Monroe, Distribution Construction Coordinator, Baltimore Gas & Electric

About our new board members:

Sheila Gibbs

Sheila Gibbs practices in the firm’s litigation group. She focuses on business litigation and government contracts. Sheila represents individual clients, as well as corporations. She has also represented clients in the defense of medical-malpractice and toxic tort claims and in corporate litigation. In addition, Sheila has experience preparing homeowner association documents for developers of residential housing projects. Before joining with the firm, Sheila practiced law in Chicago in the areas of business litigation and personal injury.

Sheila Gibbs

Laura Malkus

A lifelong performer, Laura Malkus holds a B.S. in Theatre from Towson University and studied at the Professional Actor Training program at the Lee Strasberg Theatre and Film Institute in New York CIty. She is a veteran of Baltimore’s small stages, and has been a playwright, a producer, a deviser, a singer/songwriter and a theatre teacher. Laura’s passion, however, is deeply rooted in the impact of small, community arts organizations.With a twenty-year professional career in fundraising and administration in schools and at organizations like Chesapeake Shakespeare Company, Young Audiences of Maryland, and Arts Education in Maryland Schools Alliance, Laura has deep knowledge of traditional operational strategies, and profound interest in new and innovative ones. As the Vice-President of Fells Point Corner Theatre, Laura Malkus is on a leadership team breathing new life into a venerable, thirty-six year old independent theater. In addition to leading fundraising efforts at FPCT, Laura serves as Director of Communication, and is leading their Strategic Planning process. Laura also holds a graduate certificate in Cultural Entrepreneurship from Northeastern University.

Laura Malkus

Ashley Monroe

Ashley Monroe grew up in an eclectic environment with two creative parents that leaned into using art as a way to express your feelings and ideas. Since leaving the nest, Ashley has combined her creativity and passion to help others.She is dedicated to helping her community and seeing it thrive. She has volunteered for an array of organizations ranging from HIV/AIDS prevention to incarcerated youth diversion  planning programs. Ashley holds a B.S in History and Biological Science from Florida A&M University and a Master’s in English from Bowie State University. She works for BGE where she has been for three years.

Ashley Monroe

AEMS is delighted to be working with these amazing new trustees, and we are excited to see where their vision and leadership takes the organization.

Emeritus Board Status

AEMS also announces the inauguration of the Emeritus Board Member status. Emeritus Board Members are individuals who have contributed significant service to the AEMS board and the field of arts education advocacy. Emeritus members will support our mission by amplifying our work in their personal and professional networks and advising staff and trustees based on their specific expertise as needed.

AEMS is proud to announce our inaugural Emeritus Board members:

  • Karen Footner
  • Susan Magsamen
  • Mary Ann Mears, AEMS Founder
  • Brian Sullam
Karen Footner
Susan Magsamen
Mary Ann Mears, AEMS Founder
Brian Sullam

AEMS is excited that these Emeritus Board members are continuing their relationship with us. The fight for equitable access to arts education in Maryland goes on!

About AEMS

AEMS is committed to ensuring that all students in the state of Maryland have access to high quality arts education by mobilizing power to communities through advocacy programs, professional and leadership programs, and resource building and sharing. We envision a public education system in Maryland that supports, cultivates, nurtures, and uplifts ALL students’ creativity through a robust arts education experience so that they can thrive in a healthy society.

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