I summon Aristotle and Aurelius and what soul I will, and they come all graciously with no scorn nor condescension. So, wed with Truth, I dwell above the veil.
— W.E.B. Du Bois


The Santa Fe Soul Festival presents African-American performing, visual, and other African-American art forms to the Santa Fe community.

The specific objectives are:

To present and teach African-American music and dance.

To present and teach African-American visual art forms.

To provide opportunities for disadvantaged area residents

to attend performances and classes.


Our Board



Madeleine Wright, Ph.D

Founder and President

Madeleine Wright, Ph.D., president of the board, founded the African Dance Society in Houston and organized dance workshops at Houston Community College.  Dr. Wright hired guest artists from major dance companies such as the Katherine Dunham Company, Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater, Dance Theater of Harlem, Philadanco, The Chuck Davis African Dance Ensemble as well as independent dance teachers Blanch Brown, Professor Kariamu Asante of Temple University and Mark Sunkett of Arizona State University. She also mentored Professor Shani Sterling, who founded the Akwaaba Dance Festival at Houston Community College creating a more than thirty year legacy of African and African American Dance to Houston. Dr. Wright plans to use her experience and skill at collaboration to continually expand the Santa Fe Soul Festival.


Gregory Ghent

Collector and Curator

Gregory Ghent

After completing coursework in Arts Management at Golden Gate University in San Francisco, Gregory became very active in many Bay Area arts organizations.  For eight years he was president of the Friends of Ethnic Art, an educational non-profit that sponsored monthly programs and events.  

He was elected chair of the advisory board of the Saint Mary’s College Art Museum, Moraga, CA, where he curated exhibitions and catalogs that featured African art, including the award winning African Alchemy: Art for Healing in African Societies.  For many years, he was a board member of the San Francisco Museum of Craft and Folk Art where he produced the exhibition and catalog for Emblems of Passage which featured masterpieces of African art.  He also served as chair of the board of Gamelan Sekar Jaya in Berkeley, CA.  Currently Gregory is a professional art appraiser and curator of the African art collection at the Crocker Art Museum, Sacramento, CA.  

Aside from several other museum catalogs, he has published in African Arts and Arts d’Afrique Noire magazines.  

For many years, he rented a house in Accra, Ghana, where he studied firsthand the music, dance, and visual arts of West Africa.  He remains an enthusiastic student and supporter of ethnic arts, now from his home in Santa Fe.



Flor de Maria Oliva

Interpreter & Publicist

Flor de María Oliva

Flor was born in Guatemala, has lived in Santa Fe for more than three decades, and currently works as an interpreter, after being the editor of The Santa Fe New Mexican’s Spanish language publications. She is Santa Fe Soul Festival's publicity consultant.



Marilyn Hill

Philanthropist and Native New Mexican

Marilyn Hill

Marilyn is a native New Mexican who has spent her entire adult life in public service.
Born and raised in Las Cruces, Marilyn earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration and a master’s degree in public administration from New Mexico State University. She began doing research on black life in New Mexico during college and has been involved in many organizations that promote historical education and community service.  She was Deputy Cabinet Secretary for several state agencies and she was the Deputy State Treasurer .She was an adjunct professor at a local college; a past president of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc. – a public service organization; a Big Sister in the Big Brothers Big Sisters program; and she has works in the Habitat for Humanity building program.  



Kathy Roberts

Former CEO and Owner of Teseros Consignment

Kathy Roberts

Kathy is the retired CEO of Santa Fe Trust Company and currently owns Teseros Consignment Store and has extensive experience with finance and fundraising.  



David Clough


David Clough

David was raised in Maryland and educated in North Carolina and New York.  He has a Masters degree in beekeeping from Cornell University.  A few years ago, he made Santa Fe his home and enjoys the colorful diversity of its people and places.  He recently published Transitional Abstracts, a soul-searching memoir of his life in which he describes his success in balancing a career in New York City with a deep spirituality, leading to Self-realization.  


Elise Gent

Member Ex-Officio & Founder of the Railyard Performance Space


Elise Gent

Elise an ex-officio member has taught dance in Santa Fe for over twenty years and owns the Railyard Performance Space, which will serve as a venue for the Santa Fe Soul Festival. She has sponsored and supported several Santa Fe Dance and Drum Festivals and numerous guest artists, Elise consistently collaborates with Santa Fe dance and music groups to provide an attractive state of the art facility at a very affordable price.