Chris Dunlap, Chair
Chris is a business a legal and business professional whose career has focused mainly on technology. Chris graduated from Seattle University’s JD/MBA program. Prior to that he spent 4 years as a project manager in Boeing’s Global Networking group. After volunteering with the workshop commitee for three years, Chris joined the WLA board in November 2015. Chris isn’t an artist and has no artistic talent, so serving with the WLA is his way to give back to the artistic community.
Mark Warnick, Vice chair
Mark S. Warnick is a senior corporate counsel at Amazon.com, Inc., where he has worked as a trademark lawyer since 2011. He previously worked as a trademark lawyer at Wilson Sonsini Goodrich & Rosati in Palo Alto, which he joined in 2002 after graduating from the University of Chicago Law School. Prior to law school, Mark worked as a news reporter for several daily newspapers, including the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, the Chicago Tribune, and the Los Angeles Herald Examiner. He also has a bachelor’s degree in history from the University of Washington and a master’s degree in journalism from Northwestern University.
Ashleigh Rhodes, Treasurer
While attending University of Washington School of Law, Ashleigh used her previous experience as an executive and personal assistant to help with client intake for the Washington Lawyers for the Arts’ clinic program. After graduating from UW in June 2016, Ashleigh joined the WLA Board and is working to increase the referral attorneys available for Washington State artists who need more assistance than can be provided at clinic appointments. Ashleigh focused on intellectual property law while at UW, completing an advanced writing requirement on rights of publicity and receiving the Seed IP Law Group Founders Scholarship. She is currently serving as law clerk and bailiff for a King County Superior Court Judge and will practice as alitigation attorney when her clerkship ends.
Ashley Wong, Secretary
Ashley is an in-house corporate lawyer with experience in the areas of technology, intellectual property, corporate governance, and healthcare. Ashley is a native of the greater Seattle area. Currently working at Blue Nile, Ashley graduated from the University of Oregon School of Law in 2015. As a musician and art lover, Ashley is thrilled for the opportunity to serve the artist community as a WLA board member.
Amee Bhavsar, Administrative Director
With roots in the great state of Iowa, Amee is a global traveler and bookworm, disciple of dance and lover of secret gardens. Prior to joining Washington Lawyers for the Arts, Amee held positions in government, non-profit, corporate, media and entertainment organizations, focusing on public relations, project management, and bridging partnerships. A dreamer and doer, sh is affectionately known as a cross between Sherlock Holmes and Curious George, with strong passion for gender equity and female empowerment, youth education and food justice. Amee is also a writer and freelance photographer, specializing in the arts, literature, food culture, recipes, and the overall social zeitgest. Amee holds a B.A. in English Honors from the University of Iowa, an M.A. in Media Studies and M.S. in Media Management from The New School in New York City.
Julia Rome, Board Member
Julia works in Development at Museum of Glass. She received her M.A. in Art History and Visual Culture at Richmond University in London. While working in commercial galleries and art publishing in London, Julia became deeply interested in the manner in which contemporary art is exhibited in galleries and institutions. After returning to the U.S., she followed this interest and has worked in the arts throughout Seattle and Los Angeles for the past 9 years. Julia is very passionate about the mission of WLA and engaging with artists whenever possible. When she isn’t exploring the northwest's plethora of museums and galleries, Julia enjoys volunteering and learning new recipes. She currently resides in Tacoma with her husband, Drew, and dog, Hank.
John Halski, Board Member
John Halski is counsel at Perkins Coie LLP in the Trademark, Copyright, Media, and Brand Protection Group. John advises clients ranging from Fortune 500 companies, to presidential campaigns, to two-person start-ups, in industries ranging from computer software to politics to fashion. His practice is focused on trademark clearance, registration and enforcement, as well as consulting on all areas of intellectual property, including copyright protection, fair use, and domain name enforcement. John holds a law degree from Columbia Law School and he is a member of the Washington and New York State Bar Associations. He has been a member of the WLA Board of Directors since 2017.
Melinda Raebyne, Board Member
Great art doesn't just capture the moment, it allows you to feel it. This is foundation for Melinda’s work; “When the audience feels the story you are telling, they become a part of it, vested in it, and even motivated to take action.”
After almost ten years of acting in other people’s films, Melinda decided to make her own films; films spoken from her heart, told in her own voice. Melinda is interested in making films that examine important social issues while giving a voice for those who are suffering from the pain of social injustices. She understands what it feels like to hide in a veil of façade in hopes to just fit in.
In March 2016 Melinda Raebyne received the Right Now Today Humanitarian Award for her work on Asylum. Asylum was Melinda's first film. A narrative short that looks at mental trauma brought on by domestic violence. She served as the Event Director with the Seattle Latino Film Festival in 2013 and 2014. During the Summer of 2016, she was asked to be a filmmaker mentor for Tacoma’s Grand Cinema Film Camp. Currently, Melinda is working on two projects; “Stories of Us” and “For Sale”. “Stories of Us” is a collection of stories from people who make up the landscape of America. The hope is to build a bridge of compassion to show how we connected to one another through like experiences. “For Sale” will be an exhibit that invites viewers into the life of a person who’s a victim of human trafficking with the goal of bring to light of this issue that has infested the US and other countries all over the world.
Laura Hamje, Board Member
Laura Hamje is an oil painter working in Seattle since 2004, and is represented by Bryan Ohno Gallery. Laura received her BFA from the University of Washington in 2008 and has worked as a staff accountant for 12 years. Laura co-founded/operated Blindfold Gallery (2012-2014), which specialized in showing work by emerging artists and hosted free poetry/music/art events. Laura is eager to serve the arts community again by joining WLA.
Sara Shapland, Board Member
Sara Shapland is an associate attorney with Allegiant Law Group in Seattle. Her practice focuses on civil litigation, evictions, mediation, and foreclosures. When not engaged in law practice she enjoys reading, Netflix, listening to music, playing piano, and spending time with friends and family. Having joined the board in February 2015, Sara is excited to give back to the arts community and is looking forward to service on the board.
Tara Atkinson, Board Member
Tara Atkinson is the author of two books– Boyfriends (Instant Future) and Bedtime Stories (alice blue books). Her work has appeared in Hobart, City Arts Magazine, Fanzine, HTML Giant, The Iowa Review, and elsewhere. She co-founded the independent literature festival APRIL (Authors Publishers and Readers of Independent Literature) and served as its Managing Director from 2011 to 2016. She received her BA in English from the University of Iowa and her MFA in Creative Writing from the University of Washington and currently works as an Operations and Accounting Manager at an economic consulting firm.
Greg Dember, Board Member
Greg Dember is a musician and songwriter who, for a couple decades, has been performing music in and near Seattle, in too many bands to list. With seven studio albums under his belt, the most recent titled North of the Night Street, Greg has developed relationships with local musicians working in a variety of genres. Greg was one of the founders, the music coordinator, and general programming coordinator of the Vashon Island Earthfair, a festival that drew artists, musicians, thought leaders, healers, craftspeople, and attendees from up and down the West Coast. He also writes about music and the arts, and is currently working on a book about metamodernism (the cultural phase replacing postmodernism) and co-edits a blog about the same topic called "What is Metamodern?." Greg earns his living as a freelance software developer, creating database-driven custom systems for small businesses. He received his B.A. in psychology from Yale, in 1987. He hopes to spread the word about the fabulous services the WLA provides to as-of-yet-unreached corners of the arts communities.
Shelby Ehlert, Board Member
Shelby is an in-house attorney at Chihuly Studio, where she focuses on intellectual property and licensing while also advising the Studio on gallery representation agreements, artwork exhibitions, and general business matters. She’s also an associate attorney at McNeese & Trotsky, PLLC, a personal injury law practice located in Bellevue. Shelby obtained her bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Washington and law degree from Seattle University School of Law