2020-2021 BOARD OF DIRECTORS
Originally from northern New Jersey, Matt has lived most of his adult life in California. After graduating from UC Santa Cruz he joined Out magazine in New York from its inaugural issue, working in advertising and leading their online media team. He returned to California to attend USC, earning his MBA in product marketing, and then his PhD in consumer psychology. He is currently Professor of Marketing (Consumer Psychology) in the Department of Marketing at Mihaylo College of Business, Cal State Fullerton. He has published numerous research articles for academic journals and business-trade and -advice publications. At the same time he has always enjoyed writing fiction, and has done so in fits and starts since childhood. He has finally just finished writing his first novel, and is in the final editing process. He has found tremendous value and camaraderie as a member of the PSWG to help him through that journey.Matt has a passion for geography and weather, and can often be found pouring over Google Earth or scouring radar images and weather alerts. He lives in Palm Springs, a truly inspirational place for writing, with his loving husband and adorable pooch Ollie.
Incoming EXECUTIVE VICE-PRESIDENT
Charlotte Hunter-Copper, PhD retired to the Coachella Valley after working 30+ years as an archaeologist. Dr. Hunter worked for the National Park Service in Hawai`i and in Joshua Tree National Park and the National Forest Service in Arizona and New Mexico before joining the Bureau of Land Management in Sacramento. In the BLM, she acted as the State Director's principal advisor on all cultural resource activities within California. She also served as Native American Coordinator developing and providing guidance on the development of critical relationships with Native American Tribes in California. Dr. Hunter provided consultative services statewide on Native American issues, conservation archeology, and paleontology. She also served in a leadership role in the development of Programmatic Agreements to ensure National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) compliance. She was the principal liaison within the State Office on cultural resource issues for matters related to long-term planning and environmental coordination (i.e., Environmental Impact Statements, Resource Management Plans, and similar studies), developed and ensured full compliance with cultural heritage statutes, regulations, and policies and wrote briefs for the White House. She particularly enjoyed sharing her experience in cultural resources management with Tribes in honor of her Cherokee ancestors.
Kristina VanKirk Hoffman was born and raised in Northern California. After studying Art History and Political Science at UCLA and Barnard College, she directed Robert Berman Gallery in Santa Monica from 1984-1988 and Ace Gallery in Los Angeles from 1988 – 1997. During that time, she wrote press releases for each exhibition, coordinated exhibitions, acted as docent to museum tours, provided information and loans of artworks to major museums, placed artworks in significant collections and contributed an article to Flash Art Magazine. She then returned to the Bay Area and began her art consultant/interior design business. During that time she volunteered, chaired the annual fundraiser, and then became the President of Marin Charitable serving at-risk youth. In 2012 she and her husband moved to Sonoma, California where she served on the board of the Sonoma Valley Museum of Art and was the Chairperson for their annual fundraiser. She was also a contributing writer to Valley of the Moon Magazine. She is passionate about education, fundraising, writing and contemporary art.
Incoming DIRECTOR OF PROGRAMS
Eduardo Santiago's first novel Tomorrow They Will Kiss was an Edmund White Debut Fiction Award finalist and won Latino Book Award for Best Historical Novel. His second book, Midnight Rumba, won the New England Book Award - Best Fiction. His short stories have appeared in ZYZZYVA, Slow Trains, and The Caribbean Writer, and the upcoming Palm Springs Noir. His nonfiction was published in the Los Angeles Times, The Advocate, and Out Traveler Magazine. His screenplay, Proof Sheet (co-written) is currently in post-production. Mr. Santiago teaches creative writing at UCLA Extension and Idyllwild Arts Summer Program. He is two-time PEN Fellow and the founder and curator of the Idyllwild Author’s Series.
DIRECTOR OF EDUCATION
Cynthia’s background has been almost completely focused on education, having received her B.A. in English from the University of Tennessee and an M.A. and Ed.M. in English and History from Columbia University. She has held teaching and administrative positions in a series of East Coast schools, each time increasing her teaching loads and levels of responsibility. She worked as a speech and grant writer for Princeton University. Cynthia is also a Fulbright Exchange Fellow, spending a year at the Antwerp International school in Belgium teaching the International Baccalaureate curriculum and researching World War I and World II landscape memorials. Following that experience, she created a short documentary video, Remembrance and Reconciliation based on Carl Sandburg’s war poem, Grass. Additionally, Cynthia contributed a chapter and video to the iBook, Bringing the Great War Home, produced by University of North Carolina, Virginia Tech, and The American Battle Monuments commission.
TREASURER, MEMBERSHIP, SECRETARY
Incoming DIRECTOR OF MARKETING
Jan Mansfield has had a long career based on her roots in journalism. Starting out as a political and business reporter for The Canadian Press she then transitioned into a successful career as a freelance writer for various sports and business publications and providing coverage of major events including the 2004 Athens Olympic Games and World Endurance Championships in Dubai. She provided her services as event planner and media consultant/trainer to various high profile events including the 2010 World Wheelchair Rugby Championship, the Rick Hansen Foundation Wheels in Motion and Canada Games. She has created a number of publications over the years including a monthly magazine for sports coaches in British Columbia.
IMMEDIATE PAST PRESIDENT:
DESERT WRITERS EXPO
Shelley Smith: Fundraising Coordinator
MEMBER HIGHLIGHTS & MEMBER BOOK PAGE
To: EXECUTIVE VICE-PRESIDENT
To: DIRECTOR OF MARKETING
Jackie Bivens Kaufman: Communications Lead
Brian Rouley: Social Media Coordinator
Ellen Paris: Public Relations Coordinator
David Hamlin: Copywriter:
To: DIRECTOR OF DEVELOPMENT
TBD: Philanthropy Coordinator
Lynn De Turk: Contest Judges
TBD: Special Events Coordinator
Jim McFarlin: Mentoring Coordinator
Kathy Weyer: Romance Mentoring
TBD: Critique Groups Coordinator
To: DIRECTOR OF EDUCATION
TBD: Scholarship Coordinator
TBD: Schools Coordinator