Join THEMUSEUM as the Director and Founder of the Harmony Project of America, Margaret Martin, and the artist behind Whose Reality Is It?, Joan Sanger, as they discuss the importance of creativity in brain development – particularly in light of our tech saturated lives.
Martin has worked for many years researching the impact of music on young learners, particularly looking at the topic from a socioeconomic stance. As the prevalence of technology continues to remove children from day to day, Martin stresses the need for communication on young brain development, the social structures that effect this, and how creativity can play an important role.
Sanger has worked for many year at the University of Waterloo teaching creative thinking, teamwork, and communication. Sharing both her professional and personal experiences about “going offline” she makes connections about the valuable learning and creativity that can be born from these actions.
About Margaret Martin:
Margaret Martin overcame early challenges, including teen pregnancy and parenting, domestic violence and homelessness with her two children, to enroll at LA City College as a freshman at the age of thirty-three. She went on to earn a doctorate in Public Health from UCLA in ‘Community Health Science’, and a master of public health degree, also from UCLA, in Behavior Science/ Health Education, and Population and Family Health.
She founded Harmony Project in 2001, which has provided instruments and tuition-free group and private music lessons to thousands of the most vulnerable children in Los Angeles as a means of positive youth development and social inclusion. Harmony Project currently maintains numerous full-time youth orchestras, and works to develop youth music ensembles throughout LA’s low-income gang reduction zone neighborhoods.
On November 4th, 2009, Dr. Martin accepted the Coming Up Taller Award from First Lady Michele Obama at the White House on behalf of Harmony Project. Administered by the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities and the National Endowment for the Arts, Coming Up Taller (now called the National Arts & Humanities Youth Program Award) is the nation’s highest honor for an arts-based youth program. On October 20th, 2011, Dr. Martin received the 2011 Presidential Citizens Medal from President Barack Obama for founding Harmony Project. The Presidential Citizens Medal is the second highest civilian honor the U.S. government bestows. Today Dr. Martin is a member of the board of the LA City College Foundation.
About Joan Sanger:
Joan Sanger received a BA from Wellesley College in Psychology. After graduation, she returned to her native Texas on a grant to photograph Central Texas. She later graduated from the University of Texas Law School in 1983. After studying in England and managing a successful political campaign, Joan became the staff attorney for Texas State Senator Chet Edwards.
She began working for State Treasurer Ann Richards and initiated and designed the Treasury ethics program. She advised the Ms. Richards on public policy positions and later drafted most of the issue papers for Ms. Richards’ successful bid for Texas Governor in 1990.
Joan began her own ethics training firm in 1989 and has provided services to 23 Texas state agencies. She moved to Canada in 1994, part time, and designed and taught a leadership, communications and entrepreneurship course at the University of Waterloo in Canada.
Recently, Sanger has been working with THEMUSEUM to develop her first photography based art exhibition, Whose Reality Is It? This exhibition is a humorous social commentary on handheld devices, with a serious undertone pointing to the challenges of modern human interaction.
Admission: Pay What You Can (PWYC), with a suggested donation of $10.