Pacific Northwest College of Art Announces Changes to its Board of Governors

November 07, 2011


November 4, 2011

Lisa Radon, Communications Specialist
Pacific Northwest College of Art, 971 255 5528

Becca Biggs, Director of Communications
Pacific Northwest College of Art, 971 255 5511

Pacific Northwest College of Art Announces Changes to its Board of Governors

PORTLAND, OR – November 4, 2011 – Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) welcomed Anthony Belluschi, Susan Hammer and Yoshio “Kuro” Kurosaki as the newest members of its Board of Governors. It also noted the transition in the Board’s chairmanship, thanking outgoing chair, Al Solheim for his seven years of extraordinary service, while welcoming incoming chair, Ann Edlen. Solheim will remain as an active member of the PNCA board.

“Al Solheim has provided outstanding leadership as Chair of our Board of Governors, helping to oversee the most dynamic period of growth in the College’s 103-year history,” says PNCA President, Tom Manley. “PNCA would not be where it is today without his commitment to the College.”

Edlen, who worked closely with Solheim in a year-long transition to her new post, said she was both excited and humbled by the tasks of leading the College’s growing board. PNCA Governors steward the College in support of its mission of preparing students for a life of creative practice. The 35-member board represents a broad and diverse sector of the arts, creative and business communities and is deeply committed to art and design education. “The addition of Tony, Susan and Kuro—each bringing deep experience in areas of higher education leadership to PNCA—makes an already strong board stronger still.” Tony Belluschi, with a 40 year career as an architect and urban planner and his long standing Trusteeship at the Rhode Island School of Design, where he served as Board Chair, is expected to help PNCA in the areas of campus planning and board development. Susan Hammer, a highly successful litigator and Partner at Stoel Rives before starting her own Mediation practice, will bring12 years on the Willamette University Board of Trustees and her extensive work with other non-profit boards to assist the College in the areas of academic affairs and development. Kuro Kurosaki’s background in real estate development/property management, philanthropic work on behalf of the Japanese Garden and other causes, and his deep commitment to international exchange, will lend expertise to financial planning, development and overseas student enrollment.

Joining the PNCA Board of Governors in 2008, Ann Edlen’s leadership experience, includes work with the Portland Art Museum, the Creative Advocacy Network, and Self Enhancement Inc, as well as a robust background in marketing management and strategic planning in the private sector. She steps into the role of Chair as the College continues to pursue a bold vision that has more than doubled enrollment, added eight new majors including five MFA level programs, quintupled its endowment, embarked on collaborative partnerships with the Museum of Contemporary Craft, and is poised to renovate the 130,000 sq. ft. Federal Building at 511 NW Broadway as the next step in its campus expansion.

Commenting on the changes at his last meeting as Board Chair, Al Solheim smiled and then delivered his trademark line to old members and new, ”What a great time it is to be a member of the PNCA Board.”

Ann Edlen

Ann Edlen received her Bachelor of Arts in Art from the University of Notre Dame and has worked in marketing management and strategic planning and as a marketing consultant for many years. Edlen remains a steadfast volunteer with various organizations including the Junior League of Portland, Raleigh Park Elementary and Whitford Middle School’s Parent Boards. She is active with Portland State University, the OHSU Center for Women’s Health, and Self Enhancement Incorporated (SEI) where she was the co-founder of SEI’s “Here and Now” event. Edlen has served on the boards of the Creative Advocacy Network and the Portland Art Museum. Most recently, Edlen co-founded a marketing consulting and design company, Joule, which works with Jesuit High School, The Challenge Foundation, Gerding Edlen Management Company and Northwest Capital Management Inc., among others. Edlen first joined PNCA’s Board in 2008. Her current term ends in 2014.

Al Solheim

Al Solheim is the outgoing President of PNCA’s Board of Governors. He is a principal of AWS Real Estate and Hoyt Street Partnership, a real estate development company, and has been integral in promoting the Pearl District. Solheim received a Bachelor of Science degree in Sociology from the University of Oregon. He was recently awarded The John C. Hampton Award by Business for Culture and the Arts. Solheim’s current board affiliations are: Portland Institute for Contemporary Art, Portland Streetcar, Inc., Association for Portland Progress, and the Pearl District Neighborhood Association. Solheim first joined the Board in 1998. His current term ends in 2013.

Anthony Belluschi

Anthony Belluschi offers PNCA over 40 years of international experience in the planning and conceptual design of large-scale commercial, retail, office, hotel and mixed-use developments for owners, developers and design firms. Belluschi has recently been involved in the planning and design of new large-scale urban mixed-use projects in the US and around the world. Belluschi’s former firm, Anthony Belluschi Architects, which he founded in 1984 and merged with OWP/P in 2000, has won numerous design awards from the American Institute of Architects, the Urban Land Institute, the International Council of Shopping Centers and Assopiastrelle (Ceramic tiles of Italy). In 2003, Belluschi left OWP/P to form Belluschi Consulting, an international architectural consulting practice. As Chairman Emeritus of the Board of Trustees of the Rhode Island School of Design (RISD), Belluschi was the first RISD graduate in the design school’s 130-year history to assume the top board leadership position. In 2003, Belluschi was honored with Fellowship in the American Institute of Architects.

Susan Hammer

Susan Hammer graduated from the University of Puget Sound with a degree in Political Science and went on to get a law degree from Willamette University. Today, Hammer is a Portland-based mediator, focusing on business, employment, professional liability and injury cases. She has mediated for over 20 years, is a distinguished fellow in the International Academy of Mediators and is listed in Oregon Super Lawyers and The Best Lawyers in America for Alternative Dispute Resolution. Hammer has taught constitutional law and conflict resolution at Bennington College and Portland State University. Before opening her own practice in dispute resolution services in 1998, Hammer worked for 20 years at Stoel Rives and was the first female president of the Oregon State Bar. Recently, Hammer received Planned Parenthood Columbia Willamette’s (PPCW) first ever award for Transformative Leadership in recognition of her tireless board service and leadership during PPCW’s capital campaign. In addition to serving on the PPCW Board Hammer has served on the Willamette University Board and currently serves on the Board of Ecotrust.

Yoshio “Kuro” Kurosaki

Yoshio Kurosaki was born in Tokyo, Japan, and graduated from Waseda University with a degree in Business Management. In 1995, Kurosaki and his wife Nikki (Feldman) Kurosaki formed Summit Properties, a commercial real estate firm in Portland. Kurosaki is President and CEO of the firm and also serves on the advisory board of Portland State University’s Center on Japan Studies, the Portland-Sapporo Sister Cities Association, the Portland Chapter of the Boys & Girls Club and the Japan–America Society of Oregon. He remains involved with the Japanese Garden Society of Oregon and also helped to found the Oregon Shizen (Nature) Camp, an extension of the Portland Public School’s Japanese Immersion Program at Richmond Elementary School.

About Pacific Northwest College of Art

Since its founding in 1909, Pacific Northwest College of Art (PNCA) has become a leader in innovative educational programs that connect students to a global perspective in the visual arts and design. In addition to its nine Bachelor of Fine Arts degrees, PNCA offers graduate education with an MFA in Visual Studies, a Low-Residency MFA in Visual Studies, an MA in Critical Theory and Creative Research, and an MFA in Collaborative Design, as well as an MFA in Applied Craft and Design developed in collaboration with the Oregon College of Art and Craft.

PNCA is actively involved in Portland’s cultural life through exhibitions and a vibrant public program of lectures and internationally recognized visiting artists, designers and creative thinkers. With the support of PNCA+FIVE (Ford Institute for Visual Education), the College has a partnership with the nationally acclaimed Museum of Contemporary Craft. For more information, visit