Board of Directors

Dennis Smith

Board President

Dennis Smith, Esq., has worked with public and nonprofit agencies for nearly twenty years as a director, general counsel, and financial analyst. His experience across the sectors includes business planning and financial analysis, budget projections, financial monitoring and auditing; legislative and regulatory analysis and policy development; fraud and employment discrimination investigations; legal and risk analysis; program design and implementation; and personnel and contract management. Dennis has consulted with nonprofit organizations on topics such as federal and state nonprofit incorporation, mergers, asset/liability acquisitions, and corporate dissolutions.

Dennis served previously as Procurement Manager at the Oakland Private Industry Council where he had responsibility for administrative and financial oversight of over $8 million in annual contracts from the U.S. Department of Labor, State of California Employment Development Department, and the City of Oakland. He was also responsible for programmatic planning, compliance monitoring, and the provision of technical assistance to over 50 community-based non-profit agencies. Most recently, Dennis was Director of Operations at the Youth Employment Partnership, Inc. (YEP), an award winning, youth employment program in Oakland. In twelve years, Dennis helped grow YEP from a single service program with an annual budget of $200,000 to a multi-service organization with an annual budget of over $4 million. The program currently serves 1,000 youth each year.

Dennis has served as a trustee for various arts and human service organizations, and as a member of several commissions and community collaboratives. He received his BA in Legal Studies/Jurisprudence from the University of California, Berkeley, and his JD from the University of San Francisco. Dennis is also a professional recording and touring bassist specializing in jazz and world music.

David Riemer

Board Vice President

David Riemer is one of the leading marketers in the Internet industry. He spent the last decade developing and bringing great products to web users worldwide. Following his career as an ad agency President with J. Walter Thompson, David brought his strategic and marketing leadership to two start-ups and an internet titan, Yahoo!. In various roles at Yahoo!, David managed marketing for virtually all of Yahoo!’s products across their customer base of 500M users. David is now advising emerging Internet and consumer technology companies and serving as an executive in residence at the Haas Business School. He earned his undergraduate degree from Brown University, and an MBA from Columbia University. David was introduced to Destiny through his children Taryn (a dancer) and Jesse (a martial artist). David leads the External Committee for the Destiny Board (Marketing, PR and Fundraising).

Josh Harrington

Board Treasurer

Josh Harrington joined the Destiny Arts Center Board of Directors in 2012 after volunteering for nine-months through the UC-Berkeley Board Fellows Program.  Josh focuses on financial sustainability, investment initiatives, and operational best practices as Treasurer and Chairman of the Finance and Operations Committee.  He is currently the Director of Research for RBO & Co., an investment management firm in St. Helena, CA.  Previously, he worked as an independent investment consultant to hedge-fund, mutual-fund, and  private equity clients. He spent 6 years as an analyst and portfolio manager at TIAA-CREF, a not-for-profit investment management firm serving the educational and non-profit industries.  Josh began his career as an equity research associate at Sanford C. Bernstein & Co. in New York City. He earned an MBA from the Haas School of Business in 2012 and undergraduate degree in Finance and Banking from the University of Missouri– Columbia.  Additionally, he is a CFA charterholder.


Zoanne Nelson

Board Secretary

Zoanne Nelson joined the Board in 2012 after attending and being inspired by Destiny’s annual performance and Friendraiser events for several years.  Zoanne has over 20 years of project management experience and is currently the Program Director at the University of California Office of the President in Oakland, where she is managing an initiative with the Procurement Office to save $200 million annually.   Zoanne was previously the Associate Director of the University of California San Francisco Program Management Office, where she led a number of systems implementation projects to reduce costs, create efficient processes, and improve compliance.   She started her career at UCSF as the Deputy Director for the Center for AIDS Prevention Studies which is the world’s largest research center dedicated to social, behavioral, and policy science approaches to HIV.  Prior to moving to the Bay Area, Zoanne was a Senior Manager for Price Waterhouse in Washington DC, where she led a number of projects in developing countries for the US Agency for International Development, including a 3-year assignment in Russia following the fall of the Berlin wall.    Zoanne has an MBA from American University and undergraduate degrees in Business Administration and Economics from the University of Delaware.

Rick Butler

Rick Butler is a four time Emmy Award winning documentary filmmaker with over 35 years experience as a director and cameraman for a broad range of network television, corporate, documentary and philanthropic projects. He has directed four documentary films for KQED (San Francisco), documentary content for five Pixar DVDs and traveled to five continents in the course of pursuing his goal of making films that help make the world better. He has two documentary projects currently in production. Rick and his wife, Shakti, have been either a parent, foster parent or grandparent to five Destiny kids over the past 15 years and have thus, directly and profoundly benefited from the programs and community that make Destiny such a valuable community asset. Their oldest grandchild was a member of the Destiny Arts Youth Performance Company for 3 years and their youngest is a Destiny Teddy Bear. Rick feels proud and fortunate to be a member of the Destiny family. Rick also serves on the Board of World Trust Educational Services, Inc., an organization dedicated to creating social media that builds transformative pathways towards a more just and equitable society.

John Stormer

John Stormer was most recently VP of Marketing and Business Development at TimeBridge, a company that built web applications to help busy professionals schedule and run effective meetings. TimeBridge was acquired by MerchantCircle in September. Over his 20-year career in marketing and operations, John has successfully launched leading-edge consumer services in long-distance telecom, digital wireless communications and high-speed Internet access at global corporations and early-stage start-ups. Prior to TimeBridge, John was SVP of worldwide marketing for Sendmail, a leader in enterprise email security and collaboration. Prior to Sendmail, John was VP of marketing at NorthPoint Communications, a national provider of DSL services, where he was responsible for expanding its network to 30 metropolitan markets, building a channel of more than 160 ISP partners and taking the company public in May 1999. Before NorthPoint, John was the first director of consumer marketing at SprintPCS, where he built its foundational marketing strategy. John also held several director positions at Sprint Corporation. John received an M.B.A. from Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University and a B.A. in history and economics from Westminster College in Fulton, MO.

I can spot a Destiny Arts dancer from a mile away...they view performance as a forum for expressing the best parts of themselves.

Linda Carr
Dance Director, Berkeley High School