About DC JazzFest

About DCJF

Since 2004, the DC Jazz Festival® (DCJF) organization has provided enriching and entertaining jazz performances and programs that introduce students and adults from all walks of life to jazz; our nation’s singular original art form. DCJF presents a selection of the jazz genre’s most acclaimed artists as well as emerging artists and provides enhanced exposure for the rich treasure trove of musicians from the Washington, DC area. Throughout the year, DCJF nourishes the community with free music education programs that extend our reach into underserved communities and enhance the quality of life for DC public and charter school students.

Mission

The mission of the DC Jazz Festival (DCJF), a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization, is to:

  • Present internationally world-renowned and emerging artists in celebration of jazz; 

  • Unify diverse communities and enable connections between artists and audience year-round;

  • Advance jazz and music education by providing exciting, adventurous and diverse musical experiences for audiences of all ages and backgrounds in the greater DC area as well as out-of-town visitors;

  • Provide performance opportunities for DC-based jazz musicians; and

  • Highlight DC as a major and vibrant center for jazz; and as a premier cultural destination

Our signature programs are the annual DCJazzFestTM, presented annually since 2004; the year-round DCJF Music Education Program, established in 2008; the Charles Fishman Embassy Series, established in 2012; and DCJazzPrixTMestablished in 2015.

A copy of our 990 for the 2015 fiscal year can be found here.

Goals

DCJF's goals are to:

  • To present exciting, adventurous and diverse programming for all ages and backgrounds

  • To create exceptional festival experiences

  • To provide free, innovative music education programming for children and adults

  • To honor the District’s rich legacy of jazz

  • To develop year-round, multi-year dynamic partnerships

  • To highlight DC JazzFest as a premier destination for jazz

  • To ensure organizational sustainability alongside artistic excellence

Awards

The DCJF Lifetime Achievement Award

Each year, as part of its mission, the DC Jazz Festival honors jazz greats for their lifetime contributions to jazz and humanity. The DCJF Lifetime Achievement Award is bestowed to an individual who serves as a model representative for jazz and has dedicated his/her life to jazz as an art form, an education tool, and a unifying force.

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The DCJF John Conyers, Jr. Jazz Advocacy Award

Each year, as part of its mission, the DC Jazz Festival honors jazz greats for their lifetime contributions to jazz and humanity. The DCJF John Conyers, Jr. Jazz Advocacy Award recognizes individuals and organizations for their devotion and commitment to jazz and the recipients’ efforts to ensure its rightful place in America’s history.

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Board of Directors
Ronald D. Abramson
Ronald D. Abramson

Shareholder, Buchanan Ingersoll & Rooney, PC

Claude Bailey
Claude Bailey

Partner, Venable, LLP

Meryl Justin Chertoff
Meryl Justin Chertoff

Executive Director, Justice & Society Program, Aspen Institute

Elliott Ferguson

President & CEO, Destination DC

Charles Fishman
Charles Fishman

Founder and Honorary Life Chairman, DC Jazz Festival

Peter M. Gillon
Peter M. Gillon

Partner, Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP

David Gorodetski
David Gorodetski

COO & Executive Creative Director, Sage Communications, LLC

Conrad D. Kenley

President and Chief Executive Officer, LCG, Inc.

William A. Kirk
William A. Kirk

Partner, K&L Gates LLP

Bob Marshall
Bob Marshall

Senior VP and National Small Business Development Leader, Wells Fargo

Derrick Banks Mashore
Derrick Banks Mashore

Senior Vice President, CBRE, Inc.

Erik A. Moses
Erik A. Moses

Team President, XFL DC

Stephen Riddick
Stephen Riddick

General Counsel, Tenable Network Security

Harriet Sanford
Harriet Sanford

Former President and Chief Executive Officer, The NEA Foundation

Roger B. Schagrin
Roger B. Schagrin

President, Schagrin Associates

Sunny Sumter
Sunny Sumter

Ex-officio, Executive Director, DC Jazz Festival

Deborah Veney
Deborah Veney

Director of Communications, New Schools Venture Fund

Leslie Whipkey
Leslie Whipkey

Vice President, Wealth Management Advisor, Merrill Lynch, Pierce, Fenner & Smith, Inc.

Carmencita N.M. Whonder
Carmencita N.M. Whonder

Founder & CEO, OF WHONDER

DCJF Team
Sunny Sumter
Sunny Sumter

Executive Director

Willard Jenkins
Willard Jenkins

Artistic Director

Kimberly Homer
Kimberly Homer

Associate Marketing Director

R. Daniel Villarreal

Office Manager & Program Coordinator

Skylar Rea
Skylar Rea

Events and Marketing Coordinator

Lois Gilbert
Lois Gilbert

Social Media Manager

Aqmeri Amen
Aqmeri Amen

Jazz in the 'Hoods Coordinator

Derek Lewis
Derek Lewis

Senior Producer

Ryland Greenhouse
Ryland Greenhouse

Experiential Producer

Kelly Wickliff
Kelly Wickliff

Volunteer Coordinator

TL Benton
TL Benton

Film Intern

Michael Harris
Michael Harris

Events Assistant

Theresa Watson
Theresa Watson

Education Program Intern

Sage Communications, LLC
Sage Communications, LLC

Marketing, Advertising and Public Relations

Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP
Manatt, Phelps & Phillips, LLP

Legal Counsel and Representation

Karen Brooks
Karen Brooks

Executive Assistant