Cal Humanities

"The understanding of a culture comes from hearing the language, tasting the food, seeing personal interactions, experiencing the traditions, and so much more when it is in context."

— Elizabeth Laval & Candice Pendergrass, Sikh Youth Public History Project

"The understanding of a culture comes from hearing the language, tasting the food, seeing personal interactions, experiencing the traditions, and so much more in context."

— Elizabeth Laval & Candice Pendergrass, Sikh Youth Public History Project


Julie Fry, President & CEO


Julie joined California Humanities as its President and CEO in 2015. Previously, Julie served as a Program Officer for the Performing Arts Program at The William and Flora Hewlett Foundation in Menlo Park, California. She has extensive experience working and volunteering with arts and culture organizations and philanthropic institutions in the US and the UK, and has been deeply involved in arts education advocacy at the national, state, and local levels. Julie earned her BBA in Economics and French from the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, an MBA in International Finance from the University of St. Thomas (Houston), and a Master of Arts in Historic Preservation from Goucher College (Baltimore). 415.391.1474 ext. 302

Brett Connor, Database & Grants Manager


Brett joined California Humanities in January 2016 to manage and provide ongoing strategy and support for our database systems. With over 20 years of database administrator & CRM manager experience, Brett has managed database systems for industries ranging from office products to medical services and devices. Born and raised outside of Chicago, Brett received his BSc in Business Information Systems from Illinois State University, and an MA in Church Music from Concordia University Chicago. 415.391.1474 ext. 308

Felicia Kelley, Senior Program Officer
Felicia Kelley, Project & Evaluation Director


Felicia is based in California Humanities’ Los Angeles office, where she currently manages the Humanities for All Project Grant and Library Innovation Lab programs.  She has been with the organization since 1997, working various programs including California Reads, Community Stories, and Literature & Medicine®. Felicia holds an MA and a PhD in International Relations from the University of Southern California and a BA in Politics from the University of California, Santa Cruz. Before joining California Humanities, she held teaching and administrative positions in higher education and worked on public programming and community education projects with several Los Angeles–area nonprofit organizations. 415.391.1474 ext. 316

Sheri Kuehl, Director of Development


Sheri Kuehl joined California Humanities in 2017. With more than 20 years of experience as a nonprofit fundraiser, she has most recently served as Development Director of The Crucible in Oakland, and prior to that, Alonzo King LINES Ballet in San Francisco. Originally from Wisconsin, she moved to the Bay Area in 2002, and has since worked with numerous organizations to promote arts education and build access to cultural programs. She holds a BA in economics from Gustavus Adolphus College in St. Peter, Minnesota. 415.391.1474 ext. 315

John Lightfoot, Program Officer
John Lightfoot, Director of Media & Journalism Programs


John has managed the California Documentary Project grant program at California Humanities since 2007. Previously, he produced, directed, and taught documentary film for over 15 years in the San Francisco Bay Area and in Minneapolis, Minnesota. John holds an MA in American Studies from Brown University and an MFA in Cinema from San Francisco State University. 415.391.1474 ext. 314

Steven Loscutoff, Administrative Associate


Steven joined California Humanities in 2019 as Administrative Assistant. A Bay Area native, Steven has a background in arts administration from working in communications and development departments at the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco and SFJAZZ. Prior to working in the non-profit field, Steven operated his own art and design business, crafting paper goods. Steven earned his MA in Museum Studies from the University of Leicester, holds a BA in Art History from Arizona State University and earned two Associate degrees from City College of San Francisco in Arts & Humanities and Marketing. 415.391.1474 ext. 305
Beth Segura stands in a garden area.
Beth Segura, Operations Coordinator


Beth joined California Humanities in 2021, after working several years in public education administration and operations. She has lived across the state of California her entire life: in the Sierra Nevada foothills of Northern California, along the coast in Santa Barbara, in the desert of San Diego county, and in the urban San Francisco Bay Area. She has a background in visual and performing arts and is thrilled to support the valuable work of humanities-based programs across the state. In her spare time, Beth enjoys sitting in coffee shops (ideally with a cat in her lap), dancing, and getting lost in a variety of art, literature, and music. 415.391.1474 ext. 312

Lucena Lau Valle, Program Officer


Lucena joined California Humanities in 2018 as an Associate Program Officer in our Los Angeles office. Lucena has a background in arts education and public humanities and is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the Visual Studies program at UC Irvine. Before joining the organization, Lucena worked as a museum educator at the J. Paul Getty Museum and as an instructor at East Los Angeles College. While earning her BA in Art History from San Francisco State University, Lucena gained first-hand experience working with community based arts organizations as a member of the Clarion Alley Mural Project in San Francisco. 415.391.1474 ext. 316

woman in red glasses smiles
Kirsten Vega, Associate Program Officer


Kirsten joined California Humanities in 2019. She manages Civics + Humanities Middle Grades Grants and California on the Ballot. As a liaison for all California Humanities’ statewide grant programs, Kirsten helps cultural organizations find and apply for resources. A native of New England, Kirsten earned a BA in History and Spanish Literature from Bennington College in Vermont and previously worked at Historic New England, Cape Ann Museum, and Alice Waters’ Edible Schoolyard. She enjoys ballet, gardens, and prowling thrift stores for vintage fashion. 415.391.1474 ext. 304

Kerry Young, Communications Manager


Kerri joined California Humanities in 2023 as the Communications Manager. Born and raised in San Francisco, Kerri has a background in public history and promoting community-based programs within the cultural heritage sector. Before joining the organization, Kerri led communications and managed neighborhood programs at preservation organization San Francisco Heritage. She also led the standards-aligned Teaching California project at the California Historical Society, which spotlighted the state’s rich archival resources. Kerri holds an MA in Public History from Royal Holloway, University of London, and a BA in History from the University of California, Berkeley. Kerri’s passion is for community history and she has enjoyed working with several San Francisco Bay Area history-based organizations over the years.