Nigar Hale

Nigar Hale

Chair

Hale is founder and president of Blue Pepper Strategies, Inc., an innovative marketing solutions provider for small businesses. At its core, Blue Pepper believes in the importance of driving the excellence of a brand experience throughout the customer journey, from discovery to fulfillment. Hale's experience spans acquisitions, marketing and sales management in both the publishing and chamber of commerce realms. Her passions include history, storytelling and the movies. Hale is thrilled to contribute her expertise toward making the world aware of the Wharton Studio Museum's mission to celebrate Ithaca’s place in early cinema history.


Amina Ahmad

Amina Ahmad

Amina Ahmad

Treasurer

Amina Ahmad is a Senior Accountant at Sciarabba Walker & Co, LLP. She is a graduate of Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University, and has taught at Ithaca College as a lecturer in the department of Accounting and Business Law. Amina is an avid photographer, and an enthusiast of offbeat movies and quirky cinema.


Constance Bruce

Constance Bruce

Constance Bruce

Vice-Chair/co-Founder

Bruce is currently a member of the Advisory Board of the New York WILD Film Festival, and was the festival’s Executive Director from 2019-2020. Bruce was Director of External and Academic Events at NYU Shanghai from 2015-2019. Prior to that she lived in Ithaca, NY, where she was Director of Communications for the Ivory-Billed Woodpecker Research Project and then Director of Institutional Outreach for the Cornell Laboratory of Ornithology. In her early career, Bruce lived in Washington, D.C. and was part of the executive team that launched the National Geographic Channel worldwide. She has also worked in various capacities for independent film production companies in the US and Europe.


Anne Gossen

Anne Gossen

Anne Gossen

A former curator at Morven Museum & Garden in Princeton, N.J., Gossen now writes articles and grants for a portfolio of national clients including Scholastic Art Magazine. She received her A.B. in the History of Art and Architecture from Harvard University and her M.A. in Early American Culture from the University of Delaware. Since moving to Ithaca, Gossen has served as chair of the Tompkins County Strategic Tourism Planning Board and led the County’s first Heritage Tourism Plan. She is currently writing a book about an early 20th-century American muralist.


Clifton Hood

Clifton Hood

Clifton Hood

Clifton Hood is professor of history at Hobart and William Smith Colleges. He specializes in American history and has written books about the New York City subway system and the New York City upper class. Currently he is working on one book about imposters in America and another one about Pittsburgh.


Peter Littman

Peter Littman

Peter Littman

An attorney in Ithaca for over forty years, Littman now specializes in helping injured workers deal with insurance companies. As a youngster, he watched hundreds of black & white movies from the 30s and 40s, and particularly loved the noir genre. Film became a lifelong passion. Littman has served on the Board of the Elizabeth Ann Clune Montessori School for over twenty-five years, the Country Club of Ithaca Board for nine of its last twelve years as a private club, and on the Board of the NYS Trial Lawyers Assn. for three decades. Littman’s vision for the historic Wharton Studio is to help it become a regional go-to attraction in Stewart Park, and to see it grow in the Finger Lakes film world.


Tessa Ruddan

Tessa Ruddan

Tessa Rudan

Tessa Rudan was born and raised in Ithaca, and, as a "hometown girl," has acquired a personal passion for local historic preservation, particularly the rehabilitation of iconic structures, such as the original Wharton Studio building, Picnic Pavilion, and carousel in Stewart Park. Tessa has over 30 years of professional experience in both the profit and nonprofit sectors, with a primary background in business management and real estate development. In 2008, she founded Rudan Properties and Management, a family small-business partnership. Tessa has earned degrees from Cornell University (A.B. '89) and Harvard University (A.L.M. '07), with concentrations in the history of art, architecture, and museums.


TRUSTEES EMERITI

Peter Bardaglio, Chair

Peter Bardaglio

Peter Bardaglio

Bardaglio is president of Black Oak Wind Farm, LLC and Seneca Strategic Consulting, LLC. He was provost and vice president of academic affairs at Ithaca College, interim vice president and academic dean at Goucher College, and member of the history department. Bardaglio serves on numerous local boards and is a former board member of The History Center in Tompkins County.


Cody Danks Burke, WSM Trustee

Cody Danks Burke

Cody Danks Burke

Danks Burke is a senior investment officer at the Cornell University Investment Office where he manages the University’s endowment investments in real estate and natural resources. Prior to joining Cornell, Mr. Danks Burke was an associate at the New York City Investment Fund and special assistant to the president of the John D. & Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. He also served as press secretary and later deputy chief of staff for Colorado Congressman David Skaggs and his successor Senator Mark Udall.