Civita Institute Committees

Descriptions, Committee Chairs, and Members: 2021

The Board of Directors guides all committees, and all committees report to the board. The board president coordinates with each committee chair and is an ex-officio member of all committees. Most committees are standing committees that are on-going. Some are temporary, serving a specific board request, then retired.


Archive and Collections Committee
Responsible for preserving, cataloguing, scanning, and making available the existing collection in Civita for online and in-situ use; scanning and preparing archives housed at the corporate office in Seattle for transport to Civita; coordinates with the Facilities Committee on best practices for preserving the archival collection in Civita.

Acting Committee Chair: Stephen Day
Chair-in-Training: Cathy Dempsey
Members: Open

Communications Committee
Responsible for all general communication of the Civita Institute via website, newsletters and e-blasts, Facebook, and Instagram.

Committee Chair: Sharon Mentyka
Members: Open

Continuing Education Committee
Responsible for face-to-face and online sessions approved by the American Institute of Architects for professional Learning Units; coordinates a series of sessions during the afternoon of the annual fundraising event; uploads video of sessions to the Civita Institute’s online offering of AIA Learning Units.
Committee Chair: Nancy Josephson (primary POC with AIA)
Members: Stephen Day (secondary POC with AIA)

Diversity, Equity, and Community (DEC) Committee
Works to actively promote diversity, equitable communities through the mission of the Civita Institute.
Committee Chair: Clark Pickett
Members: Dan Beert, Cathy Dempsey, Sharon Mentyka

Educational Programs Committee
Responsible for coordination of educational programs in Civita including outreach to prospective hosts and coordination of memberships by all participants in the Civita Institute; coordinates scheduling.
Committee Chair: Stephen Day
Members: Nancy Josephson

Event Committee
Responsible for guiding the annual fundraising event and up to three additional social events during the year including a volunteers’ appreciation event and a mixer with other Seattle-based Italian nonprofits.

Committee Chair: Steve Butler
Members: all board members

Facilities Committee
Responsible for oversight of all Civita Institute facilities in Civita including board-approved expenditures for maintenance and capital improvements; coordinates all activities with the board’s liaison Bella Lazio Servizi (Laura Burla); coordinates the safe use of space for the Civita Institute archives in Civita including an annual facilities work party in Civita; collects all forms for member-stays to prepare expectations of guests; coordinates the calendar for use of all houses and coordinates that calendar; communicates with members staying in Civita, as needed.

Committee Chair: Stephen Day
Members: Nancy Josephson, Christina Wallace, Robert Wallace

Cantina Restoration Committee
In the fall of 2018, the Board began discussions about restoring the medieval, rock-cut cantina beneath Casa lo Studio as a supplemental space for the creative pursuits and meetings for Fellowships, Educational Programs, Creative Retreats, members and guests. Following a donation of $15,000 by Dave Hoedemaker to jumpstart restoration, the Board instigated a capital campaign in February 2019 for an additional $25,000. The Cantina Restoration Committee is currently exploring the mechanical, electrical, and architectural options to maximize comfort and utility while minimizing visual impact within this ancient space.

Committee Chair: Nancy Josephson
Members: Stephen Day
Fellowship Committee
Responsible for management of annual application process via café including selection of objective jury, communication with applicants and selected Fellows; coordinates the new Fellows welcome party; coordinates scheduling of Fellows’ stays with Facilities Committee; coordinates Fellows’ presentations.

Committee Chair: Open
Members: Iole Alessandrini, Stephen Day

Friends of Civita Institute (FOCI)
A group of major donors providing $500 or more per year; Friends may be advisory about fundraising; and is recognized as is a committee of the board.  

Friends of Civita Institute Chair: Nancy Josephson (or current president)
Members: all board members

Membership and Outreach Committee
Responsible for outreach and generating enthusiasm among members and supporters; tracks contact information; manages membership levels, benefits earned and used by members, and is responsible for communication about membership renewal.

Committee Chair: Stephanie Bower
Members: Sharon Mentyka

Treasurer Committee
An adjunct to the Treasurer; responsible for preliminary review of monthly bank statements, balance sheets, and quarterly profit and loss statements; leads discussion setting annual budgets; assists communication of financial information to the board and beyond.

Committee Chair: Cathy Dempsey
Members: Clark Pickett, Dan Beert, Nancy Josephson


New Director Outreach Committee
Responsible for outreach to potential new directors; develops an ‘open call’, an application, and quantifiable criteria for evaluation; conducts interviews for Board of Director review and selection of new directors.

Committee Chair: Nancy Josephson
Members: Anita Lehmann, Iole Alessandrini, Plamena Milusheva, Stephen Day

UNITI Committee
Develops periodic concepts to unite members and supporters through submittals of art to be shared on social media and The Civita Institute website.

Committee Chair: Open
Members: Sharon Mentyka, Nancy Josephson


AZX Committee
Responsible for design and installation of ‘Astra in Civita’, a video in three parts on the life of Astra Zarina and her impact on Civita di Bagnoregio; responsible for any ongoing communication with the Museo Geologico e delle Frane and/ or the Comune di Bagnoregio who were partners in the development of the installation and are now responsible for its operation.

Chapters Committee
Created to advance outreach to supporters living outside of the Pacific NW for purposes of community and fundraising. A Southern California Chapter took initial steps before withdrawing. The Northeast Chapter representing nine states on the northeast coast was active for 5 years from 2014 – 2019 and selected several Civita Institute Northeast Chapter Fellows before withdrawing; the Civita Institute now offers the fellowship program nationally and the chapters program has been discontinued.

Governance Committee
Created for considerations of the corporate legal structure during the process of receiving the Zarina-Heywood property in 2008 - 2013; developed a rotating presidential succession in 2013; discontinued 2015.
One Road Capital Campaign Committee
Tasked with generating revenue from 2010–2012 for the purposes of 1) transferring ownership of the Zarina-Heywood property to The Civita Institute; 2) repairing roofing and improvements to the Sala Grande; 3) creating the Astra in Civita exhibit in the Palazzo Alemanni in Civita di Bagnoregio, 2019, our legacy; a total of $80,000 was raised and has been fully spent on these three activities.