What's Working for Us Speaker Bios


Julie Bartolotto

Julie Bartolotto is the Executive Director of the Historical Society of Long Beach, administering all functions and activities of the institution.  She has held this position since 1996.  She graduated from California State University, Long Beach with a Master's Degree in Oral History and Women's Studies, and a Bachelor's Degree in Sociology.  Ms. Bartolotto has directed many projects and exhibitions including: The Long Beach LGBT History Project, "Long Beach Works," Long Beach Community Studies Conference, "Long Beach Remembers Pearl Harbor," the Annual Historical Cemetery Tour, among others.  She was awarded the Long Beach Rosie the Riveter Foundation's "We Can Do It Award" and was named Long Beach Post's 40 Under 40.  She is an alumni of Leadership Long Beach.

Session:  Innovative Programs
Friday, June 24, 2016 @9:00am


David Shearer

David Shearer is the Executive Director for Claremont Heritage.  In his twenty year career, he has curated and produced over 100 exhibitions relating to decorative arts, architecture, design and photography.  He has worked with many artists, designers, curators and collectors to achieve the highest level of integrity in both content and presentation.  As a design educator, he has conceived and coordinated competitions, seminars, symposia and documentaries.  As the director of a nonprofit organization that travels exhibitions to museums, he has managed projects that cross both personal and logistical boundaries to achieve positive results for both the institution involved as well as the viewer.

Session: Innovative Programs
Friday, June 24, 2016 @9:00am


Adrienne McGraw

Adrienne has served as director of education for several history museums and historic sites in California. She was previously the executive director for Exhibit Envoy, a statewide non-profit that develops traveling exhibitions for small museums. Throughout her career, Adrienne has promoted museum-community engagement and believes in the power of museums to shape civic life and promote a sense of place for all people.

Session: Audience Development
Friday, June 24, 2016 @10:30am


Kris Payne

Kris Payne is a member of the Conference of California Historical Societies (CCHS) Board of Directors, as well as sitting on CCHS Trust Fund Committee. He is CCHS's Regional Vice-President for Regions 38 (El Dorado County) and 16 (Amador, Calaveras, and Tuolumne Counties). Kris is the President of the El Dorado County Historical Society, the El Dorado County Museums Foundation and the Placerville Downtown Association (Main Street merchants). As the Chair of the Historical Committee, he and many volunteers have been instrumental in bringing the World Gold Panning Championships to El Dorado County for 2016. Under his leadership, the Placerville Downtown Association has taken responsibility for coordinating the Parade of Nations as part of the opening ceremonies of the Championship.

Session: Community Partnership
Friday, June 24, 2016 @2:00pm


Ralph Thomas

Ralph H. Thomas is the CCHS Regional Vice President for Region 29, which includes the East San Gabriel Valley. He has served as the President of the San Dimas Historical Society and has over 35 years of experience in strategy and tactical plan development and strategic plan execution.

Session: Community Partnership
Friday, June 24, 2016 @2:00pm


Randi Peshkin

Randi started her career as a software designer in Manhattan, living in a cube and walking a different path daily to remain unseen.  Marriage, Girl Scouts, and relocation changed all that.  She found herself as a Program Manager for a Girl Scout Council, teaching first aid and camping skills.  A transfer to high-unemployment eastern Pennsylvania sent her back to school, which led to a decade as a paramedic. Relocation to California was an opportunity to extend from a mastery of stain glass into learning to blow hot glass, and The Black Cat Gallery was born.  Having a business in a historic town drew Randi into the story of the area and got her involved in historical reenactments.  This year, she was offered the opportunity to play Madame Mojeska, one of the best-loved California stage actresses. 

Session: Community Partnership
Friday, June 24, 2016 @2:00pm


Michael Otten

Michael Otten is the Second Vice President of Conference of California Historical Societies and the Immediate Past President of the Placer County Historical Society.  Michael started as a copy boy for the Sacramento Union in 1957 before finishing high school.  He eventually became a newspaper reporter, covering the courts and political beats for most of his four decades as an award-winning journalist. Now retired, he volunteers as a registered tax preparer for low- to moderate-income taxpayers, as well as his work with historical societies.

Session: Communication
Friday, June 24, 2016 @3:30pm


Paul Rippens

Paul was born and raised in Southern California and worked for the County of Los Angeles Fire Department for 37 years before retiring in 1995 as a Division Chief.  After retirement, he spent eight years as archivist for a local historical society and served as president of the Associated Historical Societies of Los Angeles County (AHSLAC).  He continues his involvement with AHSLAC as Vice President and as their Communications Chairman producing their newsletter and overseeing their website and Facebook page.

Paul has been a board member of the Southern California Association of Foresters and Fire Wardens for 38 years and continues his work for the organization as their newsletter editor.

He has written three books regarding Los Angeles local history and produced a book on the history of San Dimas for their historical society.  He has written several articles for the California Territorial Quarterly, the Los Angeles Corral of Westerners, and for publications in Nevada.

Session: Communication
Friday, June 24, 2016 @3:30pm


Kevin Bash

Kevin Bash is a graduate of UC Riverside (BA) and UC San Diego (MFA) and works as an actor (television, commercials and Regional Theater), as well as owning businesses in his home town of Norco. Mr. Bash has written several books and articles detailing the history of Norco, the Norconian and the Navy in Norco and has appeared in several documentaries, including "California's Gold" with Huell Howser. Kevin currently serves as Mayor in his second term as a Norco City Councilman.

Session: The Politics of Preservation: The Battle to Save the Norconian, US Naval Hospital Corona and the Cold War Missile Laboratories of Norco
Saturday, June 25, 2016 @10:30am


Kerith Dilley

Kerith is a nonprofit leader. Her fundraising work includes restructuring unprofitable events into profitable ones and using quantitative analysis to raise more private funds. She has worked in-house for nonprofits in Los Angeles, raising funds through private foundation grants, individual donors and events.

Kerith works as a consultant for nonprofits throughout the country developing individualized donor segments, identifying prospective donors, and training volunteer and professional leadership to solicit major donors. Her professional background includes capacity-building for national nonprofit causes such as the Community Foundation for Greater New Haven.

She received an MBA from Wharton and a BA in History from UCLA. Kerith is the Board President of the New Star Family Justice Center and a volunteer for 4GIRLS. She lives with her husband, Addison, in Downtown Santa Ana, where they enjoy scrumptious food.

Session: Fundraising
Saturday, June 25, 2016 @9:00am