Marshan Moultry (he/him), Cofounder, Artistic Director
Marshan is an accomplished musician with 30 years of choir conducting, vocal coaching, and service/ministry experience. He moved to Seattle from California after serving for 14 years as the Associate Pastor of Worship & Music at Quail Lakes Baptist Church in Stockton, where he grew and led a 140+ member choir, praise team, orchestra, and band. He also supervised the Worship Arts staff of directors that led a children’s choir, orchestra, drama, multimedia, and dance departments.
Marshan has served as Co-Pastor and Minister of Music for Liberation United Church of Christ in Seattle, Choir Music Head for Interlocken International Summer Camp in Hillsboro, NH, and as the Associate Choir Director for the Marin City Community Choir. In addition, Marshan has led choir and ensemble tours in Kenya, South Africa, Romania, Spain, Italy, and Costa Rica.
Marshan has a dual B.A. in Vocal Music and Pastoral Counseling from University of the Pacific and an M.A. in Relationship and Pastoral Therapy from Seattle University. Marshan is an Individual, Couples and Family Therapist in private practice where he works primarily with BIPOC communities, building strategies to manage mental health diagnoses, self-empowerment, identity, and healing from racial, familial, occupational and relational trauma.
When not working, Marshan enjoys hosting dinner parties, traveling internationally, and occasionally doing nothing while lying on a beach.
cindy ogasawara (she/her), Cofounder, President
Service is a way of life for cindy, who has been a hospice volunteer, crisis counselor, meal deliverer, fair-trade-store worker, wedding celebrant, and Peace Corps Volunteer in Mongolia.
RLCA represents a happy marriage of two of her biggest interests: music and DEI (diversity, equity and inclusion). cindy has sung in gospel choirs, played organ, piano and handbells in churches, been a trombonist in marching and jazz bands, and is learning how to play the drums in her 50s.
In her “day job” at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, cindy designs and implements transformative, accessible DEI experiences that enable her colleagues to progress toward their DEI strategic priorities and outcomes.
cindy has also had life-changing work experiences in other sectors – including a two-year stint in the Peace Corps, working on a multi-million-dollar court case in Idaho, and three austral summer seasons in Antarctica. She and her husband created their family through adoption and have two amazing children.
Shelton Dowd (he/him), Associate Artistic Director
Shelton is a passionate and accomplished singer and songwriter who has shared the stage with notable artists, including Shirley Caesar, Dorinda Clark Cole, Ernest Pugh, Kelontae Gavin, Shawn Bigby, John P. Kee, Miranda Curtis, Joshua Rogers, and many others. His journey in music began at a young age, cultivating his vocal talents through exposure to both gospel and choral music during his formative years in the church choir. In 2015, he marked his presence in the music industry with the release of his debut EP album ‘Try God,’ which features a captivating blend of soulful melodies and thought-provoking lyrics. This work, celebrated for its unique sound and powerful messages, is available on various digital platforms. In 2016, he achieved a significant milestone by winning the prestigious Dorinda Clark Cole Showcase, where he stood out among emerging talent in gospel music. This accolade catapulted him into the spotlight, earning recognition from industry elites and fans alike. Beyond music, Shelton’s dedication extends to the concept of EQUITY. He passionately believes in the unifying thread that binds all individuals on their unique journeys, and he endeavors to infuse this message into every song, touching the very soul of humanity with the symphony of our shared experience.
Mary Forbes (she/her), Vice President
Mary has been a shower, karaoke, and choral choir singer since she was a child – notably performing and competing in small groups at jazz and choral music festivals across the Pacific Northwest as a teenager, and as a lead soloist for the Kitchener-Waterloo Children’s Philharmonic Choir and the Bainbridge Choral into young adulthood. She moved to the Seattle area from Toronto, Ontario when she was 11 years old, and has not moved from the Pacific Northwest in the 19 years since. She hails from ancestors who migrated to Canada many generations ago from Scotland, Cornwall, and Western Germany. However, she has felt deep connection with traditionally African American musical genres of gospel, jazz, and blues since she was a child. In her day-job she works as a Process Designer and Project Manager for software projects at the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, where she actively advocates for diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging at the workplace. She describes herself as a daydreamer, student of life, and cat mom.
Willie Mullins (he/him), Board Chair
Willie Mullins is an East Coast native, born and raised in Connecticut. He received his BA from Columbia University in New York City, where he majored in English with a minor in African American Studies. He went on to attend The American Academy of Dramatic Arts and upon completion remained in New York, developing a career in theatre and music. In addition to performing, Willie is also the Head of the Styling Division for the agency Big Leo Productions, which represents photographers and stylists in the commercial photography industry. Relocating to the Seattle area in 2015, Willie has remained with Big Leo while also developing a commercial acting career locally. He is currently represented by Seattle’s TCM Talent and is in the midst of partnering with local artists to develop new music, as well as projects for both the stage and screen. He resides on Mercer Island with his husband.
Tracy Bowens (she/her), Vice Chair
Tracy Bowens has served on the board of directors with Seattle Women’s Chorus (SWC) and Seattle Men’s Chorus (SMC) for six years. She is also a former singing member of SWC and has been active with Seattle Choruses for 8 years. Since joining the SWC board, she has participated in the search for the organization’s Executive Director and Artistic Director. She is currently co-chair of the Equity, Diversity & Inclusion Committee for the Seattle Choruses and serves as liaison to GALA Choruses (GLBT choral movement).
Kara Laverde (she/her), Board member
Kara is a (rare) northwest native. A social worker by training, she’s worked in primary care, family court, and with several local domestic violence nonprofit organizations. Currently Kara works as an organization development consultant helping individuals, teams, and organizations become more effective through a focus on learning and leadership development integrated with diversity, equity, and inclusion. She’s served on the boards of the King County Coalition Against Domestic Violence and Program for Early Parent Support. Kara received her BA from Smith College and MSW from the University of Washington. Kara’s a mom to two young adults and two old cats.