IJA Board Elections

IJA Board of Directors Candidates

Meet the IJA Board of Directors Candidates! The names of nominated IJA Board candidates are shown below, in the order nominated. Click on a name to go to the nominee’s candidacy statement, or scroll down the page to see all the statements.

Vote for up to four candidates in 2020.

Nominated Board Candidates and Their Candidacy Statements

The names and candidacy statements of nominated IJA Board candidates are shown below, in the order nominated. After reading the statements, please see the Voting Directions.

John Doe

I want to help the IJA….

Hi my name is Chris Garcia, aka Draco the Juggler. I’m a professional juggler who originally began juggling under the guidance of Matt Hall in 2003. Juggling has been a major part of my life and I have learned many different props including toss (ball/club/ring), cigar box, contact, yoyos, spin-tops, flow props (poi, rope dart), balancing props (unicycle, rola bola), and my all-time favorite prop the diabolo.

I’ve been a long-time follower of the IJA and feel that my efforts to spread the love of juggling is in alignment with the IJA’s motto “to render assistance to fellow jugglers”, and I would love to further be able to do so as a board member. I think my diverse skillset as both a juggling performer/teacher and engineer would prove valuable to the IJA.

In high school and college I was part of my schools’ juggling clubs as president, and in college the club and I organized the first 4 Santa Cruz Juggling Festivals. Upon graduating UCSC with a BS in Computer Science & Game Design I worked in the tech industry for a number of years as a programmer making video games, and doing juggling gigs on the side. Since 2017 I’ve pursued juggling and freelance work full time through my own business. To this day juggling still plays a major role in my life; I love performing, and teaching those around me how to juggle. I’ve won a few awards as a juggler, some being the CA diabolo champion, the Humboldt Juggling Fest most inspirational juggler, and the Pocono JuggleFest best trick award. I have also had the honor of being invited to perform & teach at various juggling festivals around the world, often go to schools to teach juggling, have taught as an instructor at circus camps, and more often than not have taught the interested spectator in the park. You can find out more about me on me websites www.dracothejuggler.com and www.cdgarcia.net

My name is Matan Presberg, I have been working on the IJA Social Media team since the Fall of 2017, and have served on the Board of Directors for the last two years. I have found my work for the IJA to be one of the most fulfilling professional experiences of my lifetime, and feel that I have been able to provide a lot of value to the organization. For those two reasons, I am running for a second term on the board. 

My passion for juggling, and what I have gotten out of being a part of the community motivates me to help organize within the community, and promote juggling outside of the community. The IJA as an organization has enabled that work in a meaningful way, and I intend to continue my volunteer work regardless of my status on the board. I think that the relationships I’ve built with other IJA volunteers, and my role on the Social Media team put me in a strong position to help move the IJA forward in a direction that is good for the organization and the juggling community at large.

When I first joined the IJA in 2001, it was the place for all things juggling. Through reading “Juggle Magazine,” I joined a juggling club, attended my first regional festivals, and learned about Kris Kremo, with whom I later apprenticed. Without the IJA, I wouldn’t have attended Ecole de Cirque de Quebec, performed in 15 countries, or competed in Moscow’s Nikulin Circus Festival. Right now, I don’t know if the IJA could do the same thing for a young juggler. I very much want it to.

If I were on the IJA Board of Directors, I’d work for outreach and social activism. On the outreach front, I’d work on editing our online content to be stronger all around and encourage the return of a printed IJA magazine, which would give our members the feeling of receiving a gift and would be a give away item to attract new members.

In terms of social activism, I’d build on what I learned in 2010 when I taught for South Africa’s Zip Zap Circus, which attracts students from the Townships as well as from wealthier backgrounds. Zip Zap students have competed in Paris’s Festival Cirque de Demain while the program has simultaneously improved the lives of Township students living with HIV. Through its clear goals and social outreach, Zip Zap is also able to attract the world’s best circus artists to coach for free.

Inspired by Zip Zap, the IJA could do more to reach out to the local community during festivals, for instance, by holding a parade through the host city, and teaching workshops in communities of color. By using our craft in part for social activism and community building, we would be giving professionals a reason to want to share their expertise and time with us. Awareness of having used their skills in juggling for the social good would increase our members’ pride in our organization. In turn, communities would be proud that they were chosen as IJA festival sites.

I would be honored to pursue these goals on the IJA Board of Directors. Thank you very much!!

In 2014, a clown invited me to go to a juggling festival. So I begged the boss at my corporate job for a week off and drove down to Purdue. What I found was one of the most creative, inclusive, interesting and welcoming group of humans I have had the pleasure to know.

Two years ago I joined the organizing team of my local juggling festival. The mondo juggling festival. One year ago I was appointed to a one year term on the IJA board.

During that year I have been exploring ways to increase the IJA’s capital.  The first action I have taken is to create a merchandise store that will allow us to sell a t shirt for our online festival.

If re-elected I would have the following goals for a second term:

1. Find additional ways to fund the IJA including; expanding our merchandise in the online store, adjusting our options for accepting payments in more countries and investing existing grant capital with the help of knowledgeable partners.
2. Use what we learned this year in the online festival to continue offering parts of the festival online.

I am announcing my candidacy for the IJA board of directors because I want to help more people experience this wonderful community. I’m still at that corporate job and I want to use the skills I’ve learned in event planning, training, marketing and graphic design to make this community known to as many people as possible.

I would be honored to continue serving on the board and humbly ask for your vote.

I’ve been an IJA board member for the last two years, and the Chair for the last year. In that time, my contributions have been both public-facing and internal.

I coordinated and directly contributed to the IJA tutorial series. While you’ve probably seen some of the 11 tutorials released, ranging from cigar box shuffle stacks to 3 ball inverted box to 4 ring kickups, you may not have realized that they are all available in at least four different languages! This involved recruiting and coordinating translators who generously donated their time to this great project. This unites our communities and benefits us all!

Internally, I’ve focused on fairness, inclusivity, and general administration. I developed a protocol for expelled members to re-apply for membership, and a metric for evaluating those applications. I’ve authored bylaw changes to reflect both technological shifts (email is finally official) and cultural shifts (dated gendered language is out).

Though I’ve made many administrative improvements, my greatest contribution in this area has been to empower other board members. This includes running meetings with due diligence (but without them going for too long!), refining ideas and motions put to the board, and helping on many committees.

I see the IJA’s future as more international than ever. Through breaking down language barriers, leveraging social media, and better utilizing our regional representatives, I believe we can provide better service to our community. Let’s learn from, teach, and celebrate each other!

If I can use my experience as a performer, writer, competitor, coach and enthusiast to be of service to the IJA Board I’d like to give it a whirl!
I’ll start by sharing some ideas. Then I’ll tell you about what I’ve done. You can find more at my website, www.cindymarvell.com.

Here are some suggestions. Career Guide: a listing of professionals and what they offer (festivals, cruise ships, corporate work, parties, teaching). A reciprocal list of employers. There could be a charge to receive or be included in these. College Resource Guide: ways to utilize juggling in higher education. Study Guide for Teachers: ways to combine juggling with school curriculums.

Youth Column: articles written primarily by teenagers. Cyber Help Room: online responses for technical tips. Should a branch of the upcoming online competitions continue for those too far? A book about the IJA, its history and influence in the field. Skill Pods: teams of members to realize specific goals. Inclusion: What challenges do performers face when it comes to race, gender, orientation and other diversity? Business cards marketed with IJA inclusivity logo.

I got my start after seeing my Dad juggle 3 balls. Later I was coached by Tony Duncan and Michael Moschen, and by others who took time to throw things my way. I note the role we play for youth having been a young professional and Juniors competitor. As I graduated from Oberlin College with honors in English, the editor of “Juggler’s World” asked me to write stories by way of serving the juggling community. Soon I was subject also, winning the Lucas Cup in 1989.

In addition to working solo in Japan I became engaged in a series of teams from the Pickle Family Circus to champs Darn, Good and Funny, culminating in my work with Lazer Vaudeville for over 15 years. I represented the company at booking conferences. In 2004 we founded the Boulder Circus Center, a circus training studio in Colorado. I became a juggling Mom: my son Theo is 14. I hope I can use my experience to work on behalf of the IJA.