About Jack Straw Cultural Center

Jack Straw Cultural Center is the Northwest's only non-profit multidisciplinary audio arts center. A community-based resource since 1962, we provide a production facility that is unlike any other in the region for local artists who work creatively with sound. Jack Straw focuses on annual artist residencies through our Artist Support Program, our Writers Program, and our Gallery Residency Program; art and technology education for all ages; arts and heritage partnerships; and radio and podcast production. Our full-service recording studio is also available for a range of arts projects.

Jack Straw Cultural Center exists to foster the communication of arts, ideas, and information to diverse audiences through audio media. We provide creation and production opportunities in audio media, including radio, theater, film, video, music, and literature.
Dedicated to the production and presentation of all forms of audio art, Jack Straw 1) produces high quality, innovative audio presentations; 2) commissions independent artists of all disciplines to create sound and audio productions; 3) provides arts and technology education programs for youth and adults; 4) collaborates with arts and heritage organizations to integrate sound and music into their programs; and 5) presents audio productions through events, exhibits, radio, film and the internet.

The Jack Straw Foundation was founded in 1962 by a group of educators, artists, and journalists with the goal of starting KRAB-FM, one of the first non-commercial radio stations in the country. The station's main purpose was to be a forum for the discussion and presentation of science, arts and public affairs programs. KRAB was formed at a time of progressing technology, when relatively few FM receivers existed and community radio was unheard of. The first day KRAB was on the air, its transmitter blew up and was rebuilt. Broadcasting from locales ranging from an old donut shop to an abandoned firehouse, KRAB struggled and thrived for twenty-two years. Its signature was unique and audacious programming. The Jack Straw Foundation also started KBOO in Portland, Oregon and KSER-FM in Lynnwood, Washington and assisted in the development of KDNA in Granger, Washington.

When KRAB's frequency was sold in 1984, the Foundation continued to produce and present innovative and neglected sonic arts. In 1989 Jack Straw moved into its current facility on Roosevelt Way.

The Jack Straw Foundation was named after a leader of the English Peasant Revolt of 1381. These insurgent peasants traveled throughout southern England, gathering followers, opening prisons, killing lawyers and telling stories.

Learn more about Jack Straw.

Board of Directors

Dominic CodyKramers (President, 2013) is a Seattle-based theatre sound designer and educator. He has been a full-time faculty Instructor at Seattle University’s Fine Arts Department since 2006, where he teaches classes in Audio Production, Creating with Sound, and Theatre Sound Design. He designs sound for all the SU theatre productions, mentors sonically-creative students in their music and theatre production endeavors and manages the department’s Digital Music Lab and Recording Studio.

Laurel Sercombe (Vice President, 2003) is the Archivist for the Ethnomusicology Program at the University of Washington in Seattle, a position she has held since 1982. She received her Ph.D. in Ethnomusicology (UW) in 2001 and has published several articles and essays on western Washington Coast Salish song traditions.

Erin Craver (Treasurer, 2010) is the accountant for National Council for Eurasian and East European Research, Executive Service Corps of Washington, and Little Bit Therapeutic Riding Center. She has also been an active member of area PTAs as a treasurer and fundraiser.

Kathleen Flenniken (Secretary, 2008) is a poet, editor, and teacher. Her first collection of poems, Famous (University of Nebraska Press, 2006) was named an ALA Notable Book. She teaches writing in the public schools and is an editor at Floating Bridge Press.

Greg Bishop (2001) is an Architect and Designer. He is the principal of Greg Bishop Architecture Design.

Patricia Campbell (2005) is Professor of Music at the University of Washington, and author of books on music for children and world music pedagogy. She is active as Vice President of the Society for Ethnomusicology, and is co-editor of the Global Music Series published by Oxford University Press.

Lou Oma Durand (2010) is the director of the Washington State Department of Services for the Blind. She has worked with people with disabilities for over 30 years. She also founded Wordscape and Writing on Air, non-profit organizations focused on literary arts, performance, audio and video production.

Robert Harrahill (2002) is development director at Hamlin Robinson, an independent non-profit school that served first-eighth graders with dyslexia and other language related issues.

Joan Hsiao (2014) is a social studies teacher with Historian in Residence and teaches in elementary schools in Seattle Public Schools.

Kerry Itami (2018) is a Seattle based abstract artist. She also teaches music, composition, and theory. She works as an Art Coordinator at Ryan James Gallery.

Jim Pridgeon (2010) is a Seattle artist who has had over 40 solo and group exhibitions. He is also a research administrator at the University of Washington.

Christopher Weber (2012) is the Programming Manager at One Reel. He has channeled his background in music booking, film production, visual arts curating and event production into a two-decade career as a multi-disciplinary arts programmer.


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