An experienced and dedicated Board of Directors with varied backgrounds and a diverse set of skills help guide the the strategic direction and provide oversight of the Sacred People Foundation. The foundation’s Board of Directors is passionate about improving the quality of life for Native Americans, as they volunteer their time and expertise to help the Sacred People Foundation achieve its mission both efficiently and with integrity.
2017 Board of Directors
John La Rock
Over twenty years ago, after a long and successful career as a creative director on Madison Avenue, I decided I wanted to use my skills to give back. I co-founded an advertising agency whose sole purpose was to create and distribute public service advertising. PlowShare Group is now the second leading provider of Public Service Advertising in the country, delivering billions of dollars of donated media for our clients, who include the American Red Cross, World Wildlife Fund, Wounded Warrior Project, Save The Children, and Special Olympics to name a few. In all of my years at PlowShare working with charities, I never encountered anyone representing Native Americans. When I retired, I created a foundation to continue my work of giving back. The cause I chose is Native Americans. The Foundation I created is called Sacred People.
Marta La Rock
Marta La Rock has been building brands as a strategist for over 25 years. Creating great ideas is her true passion. Marta is the CSO North America of Geometry Global, the world’s largest and most international brand activation agency. Marta is proud to be one of the original instructors at Miami Ad School's Boot Camp for Account Planners where she has taught for over 12 years. She was elected to and completed Omnicom University’s Senior Management Program and the Maestro Program at WPP. She was inducted into the YWCA's Academy of Women Achiever’s, has served on the 4A's APG Committee and has been an APG Awards Chair, Judge and conference speaker. Marta is proud to serve as the President of the Sacred People Foundation, She also serves on the advisory board of lettrs, which she positioned as the #1 Fan Mail App. She has a PhD in Mathematics Education from NYU and began her career as a math teacher. She lives in Darien, Connecticut with her husband, John, and daughters, Jess and Paris. She strives to live according to a Maya Angelou quote, "They will never remember what you said; they will only remember how you made them feel."
Carol Schuster is a global brand and marketing expert, building brands for leading Fortune 500 companies. She founded Schuster Consulting Group, dedicated to helping companies build their businesses and brands as they enter new markets Carol started her career at J Walter Thompson in Germany helping American brands enter the Europe market. She was one of the first marketing executives to enter Eastern Europe In 2011, she worked in China, where she had been doing business for more than twenty years, helping American luxury brands enter this dynamic new economy. Drawing on her professional, as well as her cross cultural background, she brings her own personal values of curiosity, adventure, creating connections and continuous learning to her approach to business. Carol is committed to the arts as a means for greater self-expression. An avid collector of contemporary art, she enjoys discovering new artists and views art as a means to see the world from a new perspective. Carol received her MBA in Global Management from Thunderbird Graduate School of Global Business and first went to Beijing as a Graduate Student. She attended University of Illinois, where she received a Liberal Arts Degree in Germanic Language & Literature and a minor in Chinese and Economics. She is American and also speaks German, Chinese and French. While life may take her around the globe, she lives in the city she loves, New York.
Glen J. Belush is the sole member of Glen J. Belush Certified Public Accounts. The Firm provides various bookkeeping, accounting, internal control, tax planning, and business consultation services throughout the greater Fairfield, Litchfield and New Haven County areas. Glen started his own practice in 1986. His areas of expertise include consultation on financial reporting and operational systems, personal and corporate tax planning, business management and controllership responsibilities. Glen holds a B.S. (cum laude) in Accounting from the University of Connecticut. He is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accounts, the Connecticut Society of Public Accountants, the National Association of Internal Auditors, and the American College of Forensic Examiners. He has several Non-Profit Charitable Organizations as clients. In 1997, Glen started the Non-Profit Charitable Organization, The Children’s Open Charitable Trust which provides college scholarships to children who have lost a parent and have shown great character during their period of loss.
Karl S. Maruyama is the principal of Maruyama Design, LLC, a design consultancy in Wilton, Connecticut. Prior to forming his own consultancy he was Vice President of Corporate Practice at Tom Fowler, Inc. an award winning design firm in Norwalk, Connecticut where he has designed communications for a number of Fortune 500 companies. He has garnered numerous awards and inclusions into domestic and international juried design shows such as the Connecticut Art Directors Club, New York Art Director’s Club, Print’s Regional Design Annual, AIGA Design Annual, Graphics Design, Graphics Poster, and Graphics Ephemera. He has been published in Graphis, Rockport Publications, CADC Annual, Type Director’s Club Annual, New Your Art Director’s Club Annual, Print’s Regional Design Annual. Karl’s volunteer experience includes being a board member of Turning Wine Into Water, a group that holds wine events to build wells and sanitation facilities in the poorest sections of Africa. He also supports the Stamford Shelter for the Homeless. He holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts Graphic Design, from the University of Hawaii. Karl has always been interested in the development of consciousness and the betterment of the human condition. He sees design as a tool to convey better ideas to the population by creating awareness, and thus bring about change.
Larry Robins is a successful director, cameraman and creative director of commercial and artistic film projects since 1986. He is a member of the Director’s Guild of America His short film entitled ‘Untitled’ won the best short film award at the Yale Film Festival in 1969 and is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art. Larry owned and operated Robins Productions, a successful commercial photography studio in New York City. His editorial photographs and covers include work for Time-Life Photography, Zoom, Camera, American Photographer, Redbook and numerous other magazines. Larry was the first president and a founding member of a trade group Advertising Photographers of America in NYC. His film work includes projects for companies such as infiniti automobiles, Kraft, Kimberly Clark, Novartis, Coldwell Banker, ESPN, Montefiore Medical Center and other multi-national clients. Other creative work includes PSAs for not-for-profit accounts including World Wildlife Fund, US EPA Radon, 4H, and Norwalk Community College. Larry has been an Executive Board member of the Vermont Film Commission He attended the University of Michigan. Larry lives with his wife, Maria and their three children – Sam, Sarah and Henry and two boxer dogs in Sunapee, NH.
Torsten Gross is a 15-year veteran of the marketing and entrepreneurial world, currently in the role of Executive Planning Director at JWT. From traditional and digital to media and innovation, spanning start-up to monolith agencies, Torsten has run the full strategic marketing gamut. His last position was as Chief Marketing Officer of McIntosh Labs Torsten founded Partners & Partners, a NY based marketing strategy and creative consultancy. He has been the SVP, Group Planning Director at Deutsch overseeing Microsoft’s global marketing strategy and was at R/GA as Group Planning Director where he ran a portfolio of clients including Verizon, AARP and PwC. Torsten is on the board of Proximity Insight, Sail to Prevail, Momentum Accelerator as well as Sacred People Foundation.
Tata spent decades in advertising and marketing as a strategic planner, and brings strong communications skills together with respect and appreciation for cultural values, attitudes and social relationships in an increasingly complex, globalized and transnational context. Having grown up as a TCK in Asia, the Middle East and East Africa, she functions with ease and expertise in cross-cultural, multilingual settings, with strong interest in social justice and equality through literacy development, multilingual education and promotion of human rights. A graduate of Barnard College, Tata earned her TESOL Certification and an MA in Anthropology and Education from Teachers College, Columbia University, and currently teaches as an adjunct professor at the Institute of American Language and Culture, Fordham University.