Performing Arts Houston announces New Board Members and Elects Board Chair for 23/24 Season

(Houston) – Performing Arts Houston is pleased to welcome seven new members to the organization’s Board of Directors and names Bill Swanstrom as Board Chair.

Bill Swanstrom will serve as the new Board Chair for a two-year period beginning July 1, 2023. Mr. Swanstrom, a Performing Arts Houston Board member since 2010, serves as Co-Chair of Locke Lord’s Energy Practice Group.

Outgoing Board Chair Mark Jodon will remain on the Board and assume the role of Vice President of the Development Committee and Chair of the Development Committee. Mr. Jodon has served on the Board of Performing Arts Houston for eight years. “It’s a true honor to serve this organization as Board Chair and I am looking forward to another great season of working on the Board in my new role,” says Mr. Jodon. “Performing Arts Houston has something extraordinary—a relentless pursuit of artistic excellence, meaningful community outreach, and a team that is passionate about the transformative power of live arts.”

Vijay D’Cruz has been elected as Board Vice Chair for a two-year term and will be joined by Steve Gill on the Foundation for Jones Hall Board representing Performing Arts Houston alongside other Performing Arts Houston Board members Chuck Davidson, and Jim Postl. Emily Kuo will move from her Committee Vice Chair role into her new position as Vice President of the Marketing and Sales Committee. Mari Salazar will serve as Vice Chair of the Finance and Audit Committee, Saul Valentin will step into the role of Vice Chair of the Development Committee, and Deborah Gordon joins the Board as Vice Chair of the Marketing and Sales Committee.

New Board members are S. Kris Agarwal, a partner in Willkie Farr and Gallagher’s Corporate & Financial Services Department and the Private Equity Practice Group; Brian Bravo, Managing Director and Co-Head of Midstream Investment Banking at Jefferies LLC; Deborah Gordon Executive Vice President, Chief Administrative Officer, and Chief Legal Officer for Memorial Hermann Health System; Scott Nyquist, a Senior Advisor and former Senior Partner at McKinsey & Company; Salvador “Sal” Pareja, Managing Director, Global Banking & Markets, Natural Resources Investment Banking at Goldman Sachs; Andrew Smith, Senior Vice President and Wealth Advisor with Truist Bank; Saul Valentin, Chief Executive Officer and Founding Principal at Collaborate.

Returning Board officers and committee chairs include Leah Bennett, Vice Chair of the Education and Community Engagement Committee; Willie C. Chiang, Vice President of the Nominating and Governance Committee and Chair of the Nominating and Governance Committee; Theresa Einhorn, Vice Chair of the Nominating and Governance Committee; Melanie Gray, Vice President of Special Projects; Theresa Mallett, Vice President of the Education and Community Engagement Committee and Chair of the Education & Community Engagement Committee; Curt Karges, Treasurer and Vice President of Finance and Audit Committee and Chair of the Finance and Audit Committee; and Tym Tombar, Board Secretary.

About Performing Arts Houston
Performing Arts Houston (formerly known as Society for the Performing Arts) connects audiences with exceptional artists through diverse performances and learning experiences. We ignite and cultivate passion for the performing arts, exploring the vast landscape of artistic expression to discover new understanding about ourselves, create community, inspire dialogue, and enrich our world. More at

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Media Contact:
Caroline Senter