President Karen Karpowich

Karen Karpowich has been a leader in both the corporate and not for profit communities. She is a Founding Trustee of The Way of The Rain, an arts, education, and environmental initiative, created by the painter and performance artist, Sibylle Szaggars Redford. Karen helped to create its operating structure and board development plan. The group performed in Abu Dhabi honoring former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, at The Salk Institute and at Carnegie Hall with appearances by Robert Redford, former Vice President Al Gore and the Pulitzer Prize winning author N Scott Momaday. As Chief Executive Office for the St. George’s Society she instituted a new branding and marketing campaign while overseeing their most successful annual fundraiser, the English Ball, honoring Sir Martin Sorrell. At the Financial Women’s Association, she restructured the operating team and advanced their social media profile. As President of the New York Women’s Agenda (NYWA), she collaborated with a coalition of over one hundred women’s groups representing over 100,000 individuals advocating for the economic empowerment of women and families. She chaired NYWA’s Star Breakfast attracting 1,000 attendees annually with honorees that include; Hillary Clinton, Michael Bloomberg, Barbara Walters, Jane Fonda, Gloria Steinem, Ken Chenault, Ron Perlman and Billie Jean King. While on the board of the New York Women in Communications she chaired the Strategic Planning and Scholarship Committees. Karen was the founding Chairperson of the Board of Directors for She’s the First, a girl’s education and empowerment organization. In her commercial career she served as the Senior Vice President for two New York ad agencies, Scali, McCabe Solves and Ketchum Advertising and as the Vice President for iVillage, the first women’s internet company. As a poet, Karen’s work appeared in the Red River Review, Mudfish, In the Orange Room and in the anthologies, An Eye for an Eye Makes the Whole World Blind and If the World Was Your Classroom What Would You Teach a Girl. Her poem, In Central Park was featured at The Symphony Space event commemorating the 10th anniversary of 9/11. Her other works include, A Poem Against the War that inspired the creation of a new symphony by the Dutch composer, Harrie Janssen. Karen and her husband Ian Calderon are native New Yorkers and they reside in Manhattan.

Timothy Cowan

Timothy Cowan has been a serial entrepreneur in the Technology sector and is currently heading a product development and technology consultancy in New York City. His philanthropic interests have spanned supporting Central Park (through the Central Park Conservancy), veterans, cancer research and improving education. Tim believes that inclusion of Arts education, particularly music education, helps students to be more well-rounded, better in certain disciplines like mathmatics and more confident.

Tim holds a bachelor’s in finance from Colorado Technical University where he graduated Magna Cum Laude. He also holds numerous certifications in various technologies and Organization Change Management functions.

Beau Dannemiller

Beau currently leads market research and PR Strategy for a creative agency based in Atlanta and Manhattan. With nearly a decade of communications experience and 15 years of experience in building and growing internal and external business units, he has a passion for promoting growth and profitability while refining process. Prior to entering the communications industry, Beau was a professional baseball player with the Colorado Rockies and Los Angeles Dodgers.

Beau’s key to success was finding a piano and learning to play songs by ear. A skill he picked up in minor league baseball as he was looking to alleviate some of the stress from the day to day competition to keep his job. To this very day, you can find him in his basement playing music on his guitar or keyboard after a stressful day.

Beau credits his success to his competitive spirit and passion for networking. “It’s amazing what you can learn when you take a moment to step into someone else’s shoes and listen to their story as if it was your own. Go Buckeyes”

Justin Frazer

Justin Frazer worked and trained as a musician, Chef and Healthcare executive.  During college,  Mr. Frazer performed as both a pianist and flutist in jazz bands and worked as a house musician for local dance/theater companies.  Immediately, after college, Mr. Frazer moved to Heidelberg and Berlin, Germany where he spent five years as a professional musician playing in various bands and accompanying professional theater and dance performances.

When Mr. Frazer returned to the United States, he started his training to become a chef. For the next three years, he worked and trained as the Chef Tournant at Sandrine’s Restaurant in Cambridge, Massachusetts under the tutelage of French Master Chef, Raymond Ost.  He was also fortunate to be selected to complete a three month apprenticeship at a Michelin Starred restaurant in Strasbourg, France under French Master Chef, Jean Christophe Langs.

Eventually Mr. Frazer enrolled in the University of Connecticut for his Law Degree and MBA. However, after passing the NYS Bar Exam, Mr. Frazer selected to not practice law and once again return to cooking by taking a position  at Patois, one of the pioneer French bistros on Smith Street in Brooklyn.   While cooking at Patois, Mr. Frazer sought ways to use his  law degree and MBA to serve the community as a whole.  He eventually was hired as a Policy Associate at a small trade association that represents NYC community Mental Health clinics. During his tenure at the trade association, Mr. Frazer  published an article on fiscal challenges to Mental Health Clinics in New York State, spoke before the NYS Assembly about issues facing community mental health clinics and served as the youngest member on the on Mental Hygiene Task Force to the NYS Assembly.   As his career in public health developed, he transferred from community mental health to working in Government Sponsored Managed Care (Medicaid and Medicare).  After fourteen (14) years in the industry, he most recently served as the Vice President of Business Solutions for Empire BlueCross BlueShield where his responsibilities include overseeing the entire Medicaid operations for the corporation and assuring that current systems are functioning, compliant and cost effective.

In addition to music, cooking, and public health,  Mr. Frazer currently serves on the Managed Care Committee to the Leake & Watts Board of Directors where he advises the Board of the various changes to NYS Public Health Laws. Mr. Frazer is fluent in German and a fervent ice hockey player who is fortunate to play every week. He has been on skates since he was six years old and played on his college team at Skidmore College.

Conor Grimes

Conor Grimes

Conor currently works as an analyst for an investment fund in midtown New York. He began studying piano when he was five and minored in music during college, whereafter his career went down a very different path into finance. Conor came across Piano Outreach of New York in 2004 and has been involved since, helping primarily with the financial and strategic aspects of the organization. Growing up on Long Island and living in NYC now, he still plays piano casually and is thrilled to be a part of such a worthy cause so close to his home. Prior to his current position, Conor worked in both investment banking and private equity. He received his AB in Economics with a minor in Music from Dartmouth College and an MBA from Harvard Business School.

Jim Kao

Jim has a unique background in music and business. He is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and is currently the Head of Internal Audit at Oscar Health. To remain involved in the music industry, Jim volunteers his time with music-related non-profits. He is a strong supporter of music education and believes there is intrinsic value in studying music.

Jim started playing the piano at the age of five and cello a few years later. He developed a passion for music and earned a Bachelor’s in Piano Performance from the University of Georgia where he won the school’s concerto competition performing the 1st movement of Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3. In addition to his piano studies, Jim has performed in the cello section with a number of symphony orchestras, including a tour through China with the Metropolitan Youth Symphony Orchestra of Atlanta.

Jim lives in NYC with his wife and enjoys cooking, playing basketball, and traveling.

Benjamin Kowal

With an undying passion for storytelling, Benjamin Kowal has been working in the marketing, public relations, and advertising industry for over a decade. To advance his understanding of how people communicate, he pursued a degree in communication from San Jose State University. Never one to stop learning, Ben then completed a master’s degree in public relations from Iona College. It was this move that brought him to the city he loves, New York.

New York provides Ben with endless opportunities to engage with people and to continue advancing his mission to tell the world’s stories. It is here that Ben found DEFINITION 6. After ten years of consulting and running three different businesses, DEFINITION 6 provided him with a chance to experience the agency life and to interact with a far greater range of clients than ever before.

When he is not working, Ben can be found studying public relations and marketing ethics, continuing to plot his eventual takeover of the corporate world, spending time with his family, and renovating his home.

Joshua Tye

Joshua Tye is a service driven leader with values centered around faith, family and community. His professional background spans many facets to include education, non-profit, business intelligence, strategy, innovation and customer experience; of which he’s led twenty five billion dollar business units. Notwithstanding his significant professional accomplishments, his most notable achievements are forging community relationships to drive economic empowerment for refugees and native citizens.


Joshua’s leadership has been complemented by values driven team engagement and developing leaders at all touch points. His ability to define and execute strategies as well as always keeping people at the heart of his work is what positions to be a successful part of the team. Joshua is excited to join the team and help to execute on the mission wholeheartedly.

Li-Yuan Su

Li is currently Head of Change Management for Rabobank, North America, where she leads and manages finance related projects, supporting simplification and efficiency in process redesign and systems changes.

She holds a Bachelors degree in Accounting and Finance from Monash University in Australia, is a Chartered Accountant, as well as a certified Black Belt in Lean and 6 Sigma.

Li has over 10 years of finance experience commencing her career in Australia with Australia and New Zealand Bank (ANZ) in Treasury, where she managed regulatory reporting and assessed the health of the bank’s Balance Sheet. She later moved to Hong Kong to join the Treasury team with SABMiller, with responsibility for cash and risk management. She is now in New York and has worked in various consulting roles prior to her current position.

Li is passionate about learning, education, and diversity. During her free time, she enjoys good food, tennis, and photography.