Learn about our history, our people, and our purpose
Learn about our history, our people, and our purpose
Let us introduce ourselves
Serving the Bay Area since 1983, Humanities West Explores History and Celebrates the Arts through time and across the globe, bringing you illuminating lectures and dynamic performances that focus on the people, places, and events that have shaped, and still inform, modern cultures.
Each season Humanities West presents a number of programs in which leading scholars and artists present lectures, performances, readings and discussions to audiences in San Francisco’s Marines’ Memorial Theatre. These one- or two-day events represent an opportunity unique not only to the Bay Area, but also to the entire United States. In cooperation with other institutions, such as the Mechanic’s Institute Library and the Commonwealth Club of San Francisco, additional public lectures and panels are presented to further expand upon program topics.
Patricia Lundberg, Ph.D. (Executive Director, Officer) (2007) (ex officio) has been Professor of English and Women’s Studies on the Indiana University Northwest faculty since 1989, and has served as Interim Associate Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs, as well as interim Dean and Associate Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. Now Professor Emerita, prior to joining Humanities West she served as Founding Executive Director of the Center for Regional Excellence and the Center for Cultural Discovery and Learning. Her doctorate is from Loyola University Chicago, where she also earned a BA Summa Cum Laude and a Masters in English. She is the recipient of several grants and awards and has post-doctoral training from Harvard in leadership. She also serves on the Boards of Directors of the Lundberg Institute and Ars Minerva.
The Board of Directors of non-profit arts organization Humanities West announced today that Cynthia Pham Gordon, its current Associate Director, will succeed Patricia Lundberg as Humanities West’s Executive Director effective March 1, 2018.
Before joining Humanities West in 2012, Cynthia Pham Gordon had worked for more than 14 years in marketing, corporate finance and consulting, including with Proctor & Gamble and Brigham and Women’s Hospital. She has a B.A. from the University of Massachusetts in American Studies and a J.D./MBA from Harvard University.
Dr. Lundberg has served as Humanities West’s Executive Director for the past eleven seasons after a long career as an English Professor and Dean at Indiana University Northwest. When Dr. Lundberg informed the Board in September that she would be stepping down this year, the Board began its search for a new executive director, reviewing dozens of applicants in a process which recently culminated in the appointment of Cynthia Pham Gordon.
Now in its 34th season, Humanities West has presented more than a hundred weekend lecture and performance interdisciplinary programs for the public, and myriad related lectures, salons, and book discussions. Through the generous support of its patrons, Humanities West has distributed thousands of complimentary weekend program tickets to teachers and students.
George Hammond (2007) is an international mergers and acquisitions attorney and the author of four novels, a collection of short stories, and six books on various philosophical issues. He has lectured on many different topics in various forums, including at Humanities West seminars and at the Commonwealth Club. He has a B.A. from Dartmouth College in Russian Literature and a J.D. from the University of Wisconsin.
Margaret C. Hauben, Ed.D. (Vice-Chair) (2011) is a consultant in education and project management who served as Assistant Superintendent of the Oakland Public Schools, as well as Adjunct Faculty member at Mills College, Holy Names College, and John F. Kennedy University. She has also served on the boards of Chabot Space & Science Center, Oakland; the California State Parks Foundation; and the School of Education, College of William and Mary, Virginia among other non-profit organizations. Margaret currently serves as a board member with the San Francisco Zoo. She is a docent at the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco and a volunteer with the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.
Theresa Nelson (Vice-Chair) (2010) is the co-founder of Humanities West, and has re-joined the Board of Directors, after serving as a musical advisor on the HW Advisory Council and performing on HW programs. Theresa is the Principal of Theresa Nelson & Associates, a consulting firm dedicated to advising nonprofits on fundraising, board development, and strategic planning. She was an adjunct professor in University of San Francisco’s Institute for Nonprofit and Organization Management and a lecturer at UC Berkeley’s Haas School of Business Nonprofit program, and presents workshops for nonprofit organizations and conferences. Theresa is an active vocal soloist with the California Revels and Solstice Ensemble and appeared in opera productions with SF Opera Cabaret and Holy Names College. She co-produced a CD, “Lullaby My Sweet One,” with early music specialist Shira Kammen. Theresa is Vice-Chair of the Board of Children’s Fairyland in Oakland. She has an MBA in Nonprofit Management from Golden Gate University, and BS in Marketing with a minor in Humanities from University of Illinois Chicago.
Eric Apfelstadt, PhD (Art History)
Director, Center for Global Initiatives, St Mary’s University (Los Angeles)
Fred Astren, PhD (Jewish and Mediterranean Studies)
Chair of Jewish Studies, San Francisco State University
Meryl Bailey, PhD (Art History)
Assistant Professor of Art History, Mills College
Monika Collins (Director of Development)
The Sciencenter, Ithaca NY
Rebekah Compton, PhD (Art History)
College of Charleston (South Carolina)
Walter Denny, PhD (Art History)
University of Massachusetts Amherst
Max Grossman, PhD (Art History)
University of Texas El Paso
Patrick Hunt, PhD (Archeology, Multidisciplinary Humanities)
Shira Kammen (Early Music Performer)
Paul Karlstrom, PhD (Art History)
(Retired) Director, West Coast Region, Smithsonian Archives of American Art, Huntington Library
Douglas Kenning, PhD