California Humanities is pleased to welcome the newest members of our Board of Directors:


Dr. Cynthia Cotharn is a Los Angeles area physician and actress. Her long history of civic endeavors includes; Past President of the Los Angeles Affiliate of the National Medical Association, and Medical Director for the Substance Abuse Division of Watts Health Foundation. Dr. Cotharn has also completed the Physicians Acupuncture course at UCLA and has many hours of alternative medicine training. Prior to medical school, Dr. Cotharn worked as an account executive with XEROX Corporation, where she received several awards for outstanding achievement. She currently speaks on various topics including Complementary Medicine for Western Medicine Physicians.


Fritz Friedman is Senior Vice President of Worldwide Publicity for two divisions at Sony Pictures Entertainment. The first is Sony Pictures Home Entertainment (SPHE), Sony’s home entertainment distribution arm, and the other is Sony Pictures Worldwide Acquisitions. Since joining Sony Pictures in 1980, Mr. Friedman has overseen the worldwide publicity, corporate communication, and media initiatives for the corporation’s multi-billion dollar a year home entertainment company including some of its most successful campaigns from “Close Encounters of the Third Kind,” the “Spider-man” franchise and “The Social Network” to the “Seinfeld” and the “Breaking Bad”  TV-on-DVD series. A graduate of Vassar College where he was an Asian Studies Major, Mr. Friedman received his Master’s Degree in Communications from the Annenberg School for Communications of the University of Pennsylvania. He began his career in entertainment as an usher at Carnegie Hall and, after deciding to continue in the classical music business,  he became an Associate Manager at Columbia Artists Management Inc (CAMI) for such musical luminaries as Lord Yehudi Menuhin and the Danish Royal Ballet.


Patricia Wynne was appointed to the Fair Political Practices Commission by Secretary of State, Deborah Bowen. Before that, Ms. Wynne served as a Deputy State Treasurer at the California State Treasurer’s office where she oversaw several state financing authorities, including  the California Health Facilities Financing Authority, the California Educational Financing Authority, the California Schools Financing Authority and the California Scholarshare Investment Board. Previously Wynne served as Special Assistant Attorney General at the California Attorney General’s office, working with California courts, regulatory agencies, and with public agencies in a variety of policies areas, including consumer, environmental and election laws.  Prior to that, she worked as policy director to the President Pro Tempore of the California State Senate. She also worked for a decade as a policy analyst for the State Senate Judiciary Committee. Ms. Wynne earned a Bachelor of Arts degree from the University of California at Santa Barbara, then earned her Juris Doctorate from the University of San Diego School of Law.

Recently retired from State service, Ms. Wynne lives in Santa Cruz with her husband.  She has a son attending San Francisco State University, and a stepson living in Santa Cruz.

We look forward to working with Dr. Cotharn, Mr. Friedman, Ms. Wynne, and all our other board members in our mission-based work in pursuit of a state of open mind.