Board of Directors

Portrait

CHAIRMAN
Aaron P. Dworkin

Named a 2005 MacArthur Fellow, a former member of the Obama National Arts Policy Committee and President Obama’s first appointment to the National Council on the Arts, Aaron P. Dworkin is the Founder and President of the Sphinx Organization, the leading national arts organization that focuses on youth development and diversity in classical music.  An author, social entrepreneur, artist-citizen and an avid youth education advocate, he has received extensive national recognition for his vast accomplishments.  His memoir titled Uncommon Rhythm: A Black, White, Jewish, Jehovah’s Witness, Irish Catholic Adoptee’s Journey to Leadership was recently released through Aquarius Press.

He has been featured in People Magazine, on NBC’s Today Show and Nightly News with Brian Williams, CNN’s Airport Network-Innovator Series and Anderson Cooper 360°, named one of Newsweek’s 15 People Who Make America Great , NPR’s The Story and Performance Today (over 2 million listenership),  in addition to articles in The New York Times, Chicago Tribune, Detroit News and Free Press, Washington Post, Chronicle of Philanthropy, Emerge and Jet Magazines and many other media outlets. He is the recipient of the Royal Philharmonic Society Honorary Membership, Harvard University’s Vosgerchian Teaching Award, National Governors Association 2005 Distinguished Service to State Government Award, Detroit Symphony’s 2007 Lifetime Achievement Award, 2003 Michiganian of the Year, Crain’s 40 Under 40 and Who’s Who Awards, BET’s History Makers in the Making Award, AT&T Excellence in Education Award, University of Michigan’s African-American Alumni Council’s 5 Under 10 Award, “Entrepreneur Of The Year” award by the National Black MBA Association-Detroit Chapter, and Interlochen Arts Academy’s 2003 Path of Inspiration Award. He was also chosen as Angel in Adoption, Senator Levin’s 2011 Congressional Coalition on Adoption.

Dr. Dworkin authored an autobiographical poetry collection entitled They Said I Wasn’t Really Black as well as a children’s book entitled The 1st Adventure of Chilli Pepperz. His writings have been featured in Symphony Magazine, Polyphonic.org, Andante, an on-line music industry magazine and others.  He has contributed to the first English edition of Superior Bowing Technique, a treatise by legendary violinist Lucien Capet, and authored the foreword to William Grant Still’s Violin Collection published by WGS Music. Dr. Dworkin founded and served as Publisher and Editor-in-Chief of The Bard, a literary magazine with a readership of over 40,000 throughout southeast Michigan.

A passionate advocate for excellence in music education and diversity in the performing arts, Dr. Dworkin has been a frequent keynote speaker and lecturer at numerous national conferences including Aspen Ideas Conference, Dance USA National Conference, The League of American Orchestras, National Association for Schools of Music, National Guild for Community School of the Arts, National Association of Music Merchants, Chautaqua Institution, National Suzuki Association, Americans for the Arts, American String Teachers Association, Ithaca College and the National Association for Negro Musicians.  Dr. Dworkin served as commencement speaker at the Curtis Institute of Music, University of Michigan, Longy Conservatory as well as twice for the Bowling Green State University.  In May of 2013, Curtis Institute of Music, a legendary institution ,bestowed an Honorary Doctorate upon him.

He has served as a panelist on various arts committees, including the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, the MetLife Awards for Excellence in Community Engagement, the National Assembly of State Arts Agencies, the National Association of Arts Presenters, Chamber Music America, The National Endowment for the Arts, Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, Surdna Foundation Arts Teachers Fellowship Program, as well as serving as a member of the University of Michigan School of Music Dean Search Committee.

He has produced and recorded two CDs entitled Ebony Rhythm and Bar-Talk, in addition to and producing and directing the independent film entitled Deliberation.  He has also transcribed works for electric strings and developed Electric String 201, a college-level preparatory course in electric string performance.

An accomplished electric and acoustic violinist, Dr. Dworkin received his Bachelors of Music and Masters of Music in Violin Performance from the University of Michigan School of Music, graduating with high honors.  He attended the Peabody Institute, the Philadelphia New School and the Interlochen Arts Academy, studying with Vladimir Graffman, Berl Senofsky, Jascha Brodsky, John Eaken, Renata Knific, Donald Hopkins and Stephen Shipps.

In his role as a visionary leader, Dr. Dworkin has led two phases of strategic planning with The Sphinx Organization.  He also served as the Co-Chair of the Arts and Cultural Education Task Force for the State of Michigan designing the required arts curriculum for Michigan schools and serves as Co-Chair of the Planning Task Force which oversees the strategic merger of ArtServe Michigan (statewide arts advocacy organization) and MACAA (MI Assoc. of Community Arts Agencies).  In addition, Dworkin serves on other strategic planning committees including the League of American Symphony Orchestras.

Dr. Dworkin currently serves on the Board of Directors of the League of American Orchestras, National Association of Performing Arts Presenters, National Society for the Gifted and Talented and Artserve Michigan. He is also serves on the Knight Foundation’s Arts Advisory Board, Advisory Board of ASTA Alternative Strings Awards, Rachel Barton Pine Foundation and the Avery Fisher Artist Program, Editorial Board of Downtown New York Magazine and Independent Sector’s NGen Awards Committee.

Dr. Dworkin offers a uniquely strong organizational, fundraising and administrative background combined with an unwavering passion for music and its role in society.  As Founder and President of The Sphinx Organization, he has built an infrastructure and led fundraising efforts totaling over 15 million dollars overseeing a staff and faculty of more than 40.  With over $150,000 in prizes and scholarships awarded annually, the Sphinx Competition showcases the top young musicians of color of the highest artistic caliber and features top professional minority musicians through the all Black and Latino Sphinx Symphony.  The organization also impacts groups underrepresented in classical music through its educational and community programming including the Sphinx Preparatory Music Institute and Sphinx Performance Academy which reach over 35,000 youth each year.

A lifelong musician, Dr. Dworkin is an accomplished acoustic and electric violinist, a spoken-word and visual artist. He has strong interests in politics, world history and issues of economic and social injustice.  In addition to various genres of music, he enjoys travel, movies and culinary arts.


Portrait

VICE-CHAIRMAN
Afa Sadykhly Dworkin

Ms. Dworkin has worked with the Sphinx Organization since 1999. In her current role, she handles oversight and programmatic design of all artistic and educational affairs, in addition to all fundraising of the organization. She is responsible for curricular direction and artistic content of all programs, including the Sphinx Competition for young Black and Latino string players, the annual national tour and the annual Carnegie Artists Series, in addition to overseeing the development efforts for the organization.   During her tenure, she has also developed and maintained a comprehensive national database of minority musicians, coordinated the program content of an interactive educational CD-ROM utilized in schools nationwide and launched key partnerships with over dozens of symphony orchestras around the country, including the Cleveland Orchestra, Boston Pops, Baltimore Symphony, and others.  Ms. Dworkin formerly served as the editor for The Quarter Note, Sphinx’s quarterly newsletter.  She is responsible for research and written of the content for the Sphinx Journeys, a radio show recognizing the contribution of composers and artists of color to the music field.

She has appeared as a speaker and presenter at national conferences, including Chamber Music America (opening address), the National Association for Schools of Music, the League of American Orchestras, ICSOM, Americans for the Arts, University of Michigan’s MLK panel discussion, Bowling Green University, Central Michigan University, Lorraine College Signature Artist Series, San Francisco Symphony’s National Orchestral Forum, and various media outlets, including The Toledo Blade, Interlochen Public Radio, Greensborough Public Radio and Michigan Radio.  Ms. Dworkin has also participated as a multi-year orchestra grant review panelist for the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, Association of Performing Arts Presenters Young Performers Career Advancement panel, as well as the MetLife Awards administered by The League of American Orchestras.  She has also participated in the educational institution research panel hosted by Surdna Foundation, and most recently, adjudicated the Artistic Excellence category grants for the National Endowment for the Arts, a well as Charlotte Arts and Sciences Council grants, Independent Sector’s American Express NGen awards, Florida and Oklahoma State Arts Council grants and Atlanta Symphony’s Talent Development Program juries.  She served as a contributing writer to Polyphonic.org, an on-line industry source, as well as Michigan String Teachers Association magazine.

Ms. Dworkin is a member of the Advisory Committee for the Ben Holt Memorial Recital Series hosted by Lawrence University Conservatory of Music, as well as formerly the Board of Trustees of Walnut Hill School for the Arts (the premiere arts preparatory high school).  Currently, she serves as a Trustee for the National Guild for Community Music Education, Serafina Arts (non-profit arts organization), and INTAKE Organization.  She also serves as an advisor for Casa de Lerma Musicale (a music publishing firm founded by preeminent musicologist Dominique Rene de Lerma).

An accomplished violinist trained in the Russian National Conservatory system, Ms. Dworkin graduated with High Honors from the University of Michigan with Bachelor’s and Master’s Degrees in Violin Performance. She has previously served on the faculty of Clarkston Conservatory and was a member of the Ann Arbor Symphony Orchestra from 1994-2000 (entering the orchestra as a freshman in college). In addition to extensive teaching experience, she has performed with several symphony orchestras and chamber groups in Russia, Azerbaijan, Switzerland, Austria and the United States. Ms. Dworkin may be heard as an electric violinist on a CD entitled “Bar-Talk”, featuring the renowned violin duets by Bela Bartok.

She also has international corporate experience, having previously served as a tri-lingual interpreter and an Executive Assistant to the President at ARCO, The International Oil and Gas Company in Baku, Azerbaijan.  Ms. Dworkin resides in Ann Arbor, MI, with her husband and two sons.  In addition to the arts, she is an avid cook and enjoys travel.

MomSECRETARY
Audeen Moore

Audeen Moore is a former editor of various community newspapers and is currently a newspaper columnist and reporter in surburban New York, as well as an administrative assistant for her county’s Emergency Management Office.  She has received several journalism awards, including from the New York State Press Association, the New York State Business & Professional Women’s Association and the New York State Heart Association.  In her work with Emergency Management, Audeen concentrates on grant applications, monitoring and reporting.

She has been married for nearly 30 years to the love of her life, Vaughn.  Their interracial relationship has produced two beautiful, accomplished children.

Audeen has a long-time interest in the nutritional and social needs of families living in America’s inner cities.  She believes those living there deserve to live their lives with dignity, with adequate nutritional resources such as grocery stores, with safe recreational facilities such as parks, with equitable educational and economic opportunities and without fear of police harassment.

Growing up during the turbulent 1960s, Audeen participated in anti-war activities and supports peace initiatives in every conflict.  She also believes that every person — regardless of gender, sexual orientation, race, religious background, nationality or immigrant status — is entitled to all civil rights and the guarantees of our Bill of Rights.

 

MaddieTREASURER
Madeline Moore

Madeline Moore is a public defender in Bronx, NY. It has been her life-long dream to become an attorney and provide quality defense to people who cannot afford their own representation.  She believes strongly that the criminal justice system is broken and is using her profession as a way to make a difference.

Madeline was born and raised in upstate NY in a small village called Maybrook.  She was born to a white mother and black father.  She carries with her many of their qualities such as strength, perseverance, ambition, and always speaking out against that which is wrong and standing up for what is right.

She first realized she wanted to become an attorney when her third grade teacher, Mrs. Tyson, told her that she was so argumentative that becoming a lawyer must be her calling.  Mrs. Tyson was the only black teacher at Madeline’s elementary school and she continued to be a role model and mentor throughout Madeline’s life.

Madeline enjoyed her high school years, but knew she needed to broaden her horizons and get out of her small town. She was encouraged by her brother and mother to apply to The University of Michigan and ultimately she ended up attending U of M in the fall of 2005.

Madeline had a very rewarding experience at U of M. She finally focused in on the area of law she wanted to practice. She participated in Project Community and the Prison Creative Arts Project where she had the opportunity to work with incarcerated youth teaching them dance and creative writing. Getting to know many of these young people and hearing their struggles made Madeline know that she wanted to represent people charged with crimes, especially those who could not afford an attorney. Although she currently represents indigent adults, she hopes to have the opportunity to work with youth in her future because that is where her real passion lies.

After her graduation from U of M, Madeline moved back to NY and received her Juris Doctor degree from Albany Law School.  While studying for the New York State bar exam, Madeline found out that she had an offer for her dream job as a public defender, in her dream location, New York City.

Madeline passed the New York State bar exam and was admitted to the New York Bar in May of 2013. She has been employed as a public defender since October of 2012 and she learns something new everyday. She enjoys her job even more today than she did when she began in 2012.

noahpicsmEX-OFFICIO
Noah Still Dworkin

Noah Dworkin was born in Ann Arbor, Michigan, in 1999. He finished middle school with straight A’s three years in a row, and now attends Community High School. Noah is a violist, with earlier training in violin and piano.  He has spent several summers at the legendary Interlochen summer program.  Noah is also an aspiring cook.

Noah greatly enjoys sports and is a fan of the Pittsburgh Penguins (hockey), and the Pittsburgh Steelers (football). Noah’s mom is a native of Pittsburgh, PA and is a long-term outstanding public school teacher in Ann Arbor, MI.

Noah greatly enjoys spending time with his little brother, Amani, who is six years old. Inspired by his parents’ example and wants to go on and do great things in life. He looks forward to being able to contribute positively to the Dworkin Foundation and learning about inspirational work of emerging organizations around the country.