Artist Advocacy Foundation | About Us
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Our Vision

Mission Statement – “We Aspire to Inspire”


It is the aim of the Artist Advocacy Foundation to facilitate inspiration. We do this by creating environments and opportunities for artists and audiences to connect in ways that are rewarding, and that enhance a mutual appreciation of each other. The Artist Advocacy Foundation looks to support, produce and promote artists, events and programs that aspire to inspire; specifically, ones that may not have the funds to carry out their work without financial assistance. Our support is separate and apart from commercial considerations, and is intended as a community-building, culture-enhancing and consciousness-raising effort.


Ron Colone- Executive Director & Carole Ann Colone- Associate Director


Alan Blakeboro


I was born and raised in Santa Barbara County, graduated from UCSB in 1976 and Berkeley Law in 1980. After a brief stint clerking for a federal judge in Hawaii, I worked for a large law firm in Los Angeles for four years before returning to Santa Barbara and beginning practice there in 1986, where I was lucky enough to meet my wife Carol. I have been a partner in the firm of Reicker, Pfau, Pyle & McRoy since 2000, and the firm’s managing partner since 2004. My law practice focuses primarily on litigation, real estate, employment and public pension law. I have advised and assisted many non-profits over the years and, along with Frank Blundo, was one of the founding directors of the Santa Ynez Valley Charter School.


Perhaps more relevant to my service to the Artist Advocacy Foundation, I have been a life long lover of the arts and music, and in particular the style of music at various times referred to as folk, acoustic and American roots music. My interest in this style of music dates back to the 1970s, when I spent many more nights at the now nearly forgotten Blue Bird Café in Santa Barbara, listening to folk, bluegrass, blues and country, than I did studying. Such time well spent, supplemented by the purchase of obscure LPs, occasional field trips to McCabe’s guitar shop in Santa Monica and the Golden Bear in Huntington Beach, and an attempt, futile in retrospect, to master the guitar, led me to think that maybe I too could contribute in some way to this style of art. Unfortunately, I instead learned the following equation: no talent + writer’s block + a B.A. in philosophy = law school. Most of us are better off as benefactors than artists, and I am no exception.


My real heroes from this era were not those who stuck with music and made it big, but those who stuck with it knowing they probably wouldn’t ever be conventionally successful; they kept at it because they loved the experience and because sharing art in music was just something they had to do. Given this background, when the opportunity arose in the early 2000s to sponsor and support Tales from the Tavern, I jumped at it. Being able to serve the Foundation is a further extension of this mission; those who have devoted their life to music, and to communicating profound thoughts and feelings through this medium, deserve our thanks and support. Becoming an instrument to achieve this goal is an endeavor I truly look forward to.

Steven Reden


I was born and raised in west L.A. I attended University of Arizona Pharmacy School, graduated in 1970, and have worked as a pharmacist ever since. My wife, Joan and our two children moved from LA and have lived in Santa Ynez since 1987 after six years in Santa Barbara.


My interests are family, baseball, tennis, Formula 1 racing and enjoying Porsches. I also like to read mysteries and fiction. I have served as a director on two non-profits. One was a foster home for teenage girls, which was mostly funded by the state and the other was People Helping People, which provides “under one roof” services for individuals and families who are experiencing difficult times. These programs range from after-school care to help with housing, utilities and food and the many details of living. It also includes domestic violence programs to help women and children try to break the cycle of abuse.


I am very hands-on with our independent drugstore and enjoy working and the challenge of being in business. The importance of community is played out daily in a centrally located, friendly atmosphere where more than health is dispensed.


Supporting Tales From the Tavern has been very rewarding and I am excited about Artist Advocacy Foundation and the great potential for this organization.

Anthony DiBattista


Having no artistic or musical ability should disqualify me from sitting on this board. But I do have a great desire to help and to see this model spread to the East Coast eventually. My day job is a superintendent of schools in New Jersey and in the evening I work as a professor of Medieval and Renaissance history at Rutgers University. I try to spend as many weekends as possible in a cabin in Woodstock New York that my friends and I built. Woodstock seems to be an ideal place to stage something similar to “Tales”. I also work with a number of national and state level history organizations (specifically attempting to improve history education in urban schools).


Looking forward to continuing to work with everyone on this venture.

Suzi Trubitz


Trubitz was born in New York and attended both Parsons School of Design and Boston University School of Fine Arts. She then worked on Madison Avenue and became an art director. Now settled in the hills of California, Trubitz finds herself inspired by more organic materials, such as wood in combination with other components. She enjoys the challenge of manipulating seemingly impossible materials into the intricate patterns of nature. The metal sheets that require operating welders, plasma torches, grinders and other shop equipment seem to energize her. The challenge also requires patience and restraint, for one cut through the metal, her material of choice, could destroy a pattern that has taken weeks, even months to create.


Trubitz is a self-professed student of life, who lives and creates with intense conviction and freedom. In addition to numerous corporate and private collections in the United States, Europe, and Israel, her works have been seen in museums, movies and TV.


“As an artist I have known the up and the down sides of an industry that feeds off of your creativity,” said Trubitz. “I am happy to be a part of an organization that will respectfully help artists realize their dreams.”


Colleen Pobur

Bio coming soon.