Board Elections

Members of the Western Museums Association (WMA) are invited to vote on the candidates for the WMA Board of Directors (2017-2020 term). The below ballot was created by the Governance and Impact Committee, who reviews all nominations in conjunction with the skills currently needed on the Board of Directors. The following candidates' skills match those needed on the Board at this time.

WMA Board of Directors Nominees (2017-2020 term):

Board Member – 3rd Term
Katherine Hough, Chief Curator, Palm Springs Art Museum
Board Member – 2nd Term
Eowyn Bates, Vice President of Institutional Advancement, San Diego Natural History Museum
Angela Linn, Senior Collections Manager, University of Alaska Museum of the North
Carla Roth, Principal, Roth Projects LLC.
Dana Whitelaw, President, High Desert Museum
Board Member – 1st Term
Sarah Bloom, Senior Manager of Teen, Family, and Multigenerational Programs, Seattle Art Museum
Melanie Fales, Executive Director, Boise Art Museum
Noelle Kahanu, Assistant Specialist, Public Humanities and Native Hawaiian Programs, University of Hawaii at Monoa
Sonja Lunde, Deputy Director of Planning and Programs, Utah Museum of Fine Arts
Jeanette Woodburn, Director for Library Advancement & Public Affairs, Pepperdine University
Dafna Zilafro, Vice President of Marketing, MATT Construction
1st Term Nomination Bios:

Sarah Thomas Bloom
Sarah Thomas Bloom is the Senior Manager of Teen, Family, and Multigenerational Programs at Seattle Art Museum. Over the past five years, she has played a key role in developing and strengthening SAM’s programs across the museum’s three sites: SAM Downtown, the Asian Art Museum, and the Olympic Sculpture Park. Museum education, engagement, and outreach have always been at the core of Sarah’s work, as she is dedicated to working with youth in schools, the museum, and the community. In 2015 and 2017, Sarah’s programs with youth were selected as finalists for the National Arts and Humanities Youth Program Awards. Prior to joining SAM, Sarah held positions with the Getty, The Norton Simon, and the Pacific Asia Museum in Los Angeles. A native of Alexandria, Egypt, Sarah received a BA from Boston University and an MA from the University of Colorado in Classical Art and Archaeology.


Melanie Fales
Melanie Fales has served as Boise Art Museum’s Executive Director since 2008, focusing on education, community engagement, and partnerships.  Fales began her career at BAM in 1996 as Art Educator and later was named Curator of Education.  She also served as Interim E.D., leading successful national re-accreditation.  Fales holds a B.A. in art with emphases in painting and art history and an M.A. in education concentrating on art museum education from Boise State University.  With a Rotary International Graduate Scholarship, she pursued art history/museum studies at the Ecole du Louvre, Paris, France, and completed an internship at Musée d’art Américain, Giverny.  


Noelle M.K.Y. Kahanu
Noelle M.K.Y. Kahanu has been involved in the museum field for nearly 25 years, beginning in the mid-1990s when she served as counsel to the US Senate Committee on Indian Affairs on issues ranging from NAGPRA to NMAI’s establishment. She spent 15 years at Bishop Museum, where she held various positions of increasing responsibility, from project manager to Director of Community Affairs. Noelle is currently a specialist at the University of Hawaii, where she writes grants, teaches courses on museum studies, and conducts community outreach. Of Hawaiian descent, she received her JD from the William S. Richardson School of Law.


Sonja Lunde
Sonja Lunde is an experienced arts administrator and museum professional skilled in providing leadership, strategic vision, and managerial oversight of programmatic and planning initiatives in support of the Utah Museum of Fine Art’s institutional mission. As part of the UMFA’s executive team, she oversees the curatorial, collections and exhibitions, design, and education and engagement departments and is responsible for managing collaborative, cross-departmental work strategies with the aim of creating rich and meaningful experiences for all museum visitors. From 2014-2016, she served as President of the Utah Museums Association’s Board of Directors and led a strategic planning process with the aim of improving the quality and scope of the organization’s reach across the state of Utah. In 2015, Lunde participated in the Getty Leadership Institute’s NextGen executive education program.


Jeanette Woodburn
Jeanette Woodburn has spent the past ten years fundraising for museums (LACMA and SFMOMA) and other cultural institutions (Stern Grove Festival and Pepperdine Libraries).  She holds a B.A. in History from Stanford, and both an M.A. in Museum Studies and an M.B.A from John F. Kennedy University.  Currently transitioning to the exciting lifestyle of a fundraising consultant and business owner (Holistic Fundraising), she spends her free time volunteering with Junior League of Los Angeles, needlepointing, and fighting a losing battle against her overflowing bookshelves.


Dafna Zilafro
Dafna has been working closely with museums and has been an active member of WMA for over 10 years. She oversees marketing at MATT Construction, a general contractor that works on some of California’s most iconic architectural & unique buildings, with 50% of the company’s portfolio in the museum and non-profit sector. Dafna has spent half of her career in the architecture & construction industry and half in consumer products global branding.  She is on the board of the Architecture + Design Museum, the Management Committee for the Urban Land Institute, on the AIA Los Angeles Awards Committee, and has served on boards for the LA Stage Alliance and the Consumer Electronics Association.  She has a BA in Human Services from the University of Oregon and an MBA from UCLA.