Heather Shayne Blakeslee is the publisher and editor-in-chief of RQ. She has a 20-year career as a nonprofit and small-business executive who has served in a myriad of positions with arts, social justice, and environmental advocacy enterprises including Poets & Writers, Bread & Roses Community Fund, Friends Center, Green Building United, and Red Flag Media, where she was both COO of the company and editor-in-chief of its sustainability magazine, Grid. Blakeslee is also an award-winning singer-songwriter who leads the folk-noir and Americana band Sweetbriar Rose. She is the founder of Red Pen Arts, a consultancy that provides strategy, operational, and editorial support to social entrepreneurs and the arts and culture community. Clients include Jazz Philadelphia and the Queen Village Neighbors Association, among others. She is also a guest host at Philadelphia’s Erotic Literary Salon and the Vice President of the Board of Directors of the Philadelphia Folk Song Society.
Walter Foley is RQ’s copy chief, whose other projects with Red Pen Arts include the Queen Village Neighbors Association magazine and the Governor’s Woods Foundation. Foley has written and/or edited for Chico Enterprise-Record, Patch.com, and Grid, Decibel, and Magnet magazines. He credits his parents’ homeschooling skills for cultivating an indomitable reading habit, and he thanks curmudgeons and hippies for shaping his approach toward journalism and music, respectively.
Angel Hogan has performed as part of the Black Women’s Arts Festival, Literary Death Match, Moonstone Presents, First Person Arts and the Philadelphia Fringe Festival. She has worked with ArtWell, was a Contributing Editor to Philadelphia Stories, and a review panelist for the Philadelphia Cultural Fund. As a teaching artist, Angel is most interested in initiatives that use storytelling as a vehicle for tolerance, peace, and community building. Her first film, By Law, By Love, was completed in March of 2019. See more at: www.angelhogan.com
Lauren Earline Leonard is an associate editor with RQ. She is a Philadelphia-based writer, director, and producer who founded Earlie Bird Productions in 2017. For her first two shows, she co-wrote and directed V2: Creation Myth (February 2018) and mounted the original Mother/Daughter (September 2018) as part of Philadelphia’s FringeArts festival, where she worked in the past as part of its External Relations team. Leonard has also worked with Flashpoint Theatre Company’s Cloud Nine. As a board member and president of the Queen Village Neighbors Association, Leonard forged partnerships with Paradigm Art Gallery to bring the work of artists Calo Buscanigua, Kid Hazo, Kelly Kozma, and My Dog Sighs into public spaces as a means of enhancing quality of life. Billy Penn and the Knight Foundation named her to their 2016 Who’s Next Community Leaders list of people under 40 making Philadelphia’s communities and neighborhoods better every day. Leonard’s written work has appeared in the Philadelphia Inquirer, Passyunk Post, greenlimbs, and the QVNA magazine. Leonard holds a B.A. in theater from Temple University.
Diana Lu is a contributing food editor and the “Constellations” columnist for RQ. She is the senior manager, strategic communications, for Internet Essentials at Comcast. Recently, she oversaw community outreach and engagement online and in real life for WHYY’s PlanPhilly. Lu has spent more than ten years in the nonprofit and public sectors working on urban development issues including environmental justice, design-based manufacturing, and community and economic development. Her work has been recognized by the Pennsylvania Downtown Center, the University of Pennsylvania School of Design, and Gov. Tom Wolf’s Commission on Asian Pacific American Affairs, and she has served as director of partnerships and outreach for Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses, a public-private initiative focused on strengthening businesses in Greater Philadelphia through revenue generation and local job creation. She has lived and relied on public transit in Los Angeles, Chicago, Brooklyn, San Francisco, and Paris, but became a proud SEPTA rider in 2009. She holds a master’s in city planning from PennDesign and a B.A. in Urban Studies and French from Vassar College.
Joshua Mehigan is the poetry editor of RQ. His first book, The Optimist (Ohio UP), was a finalist for a 2004 Los Angeles Times Book Prize. In 2014 Farrar, Straus & Giroux published his second book, Accepting the Disaster, cited in the TLS, New York Times Book Review, and elsewhere as a best book of the year. Mehigan is currently visiting artist-in-residence at Northwestern University, and has served as a visiting writer at schools including Amherst, Johns Hopkins, and Goethe University Frankfurt. He has received fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts (2011) and the Guggenheim Foundation (2015). Poetry magazine awarded him its 2013 Levinson Prize.
Michael Wohlberg is RQ’s artistic director. He's a sought after illustrator, especially in the metal community, and a graduate of the University of the Arts. Since his mom didn't teach him Spanish, he's decided to learn Japanese instead, all the better to haunt video game parlours in Tokyo. Most importantly, he's the proud owner of Henry, the world’s most amazing dog.
Alex Yarde is a contributing culture editor at RQ. She is director of marketing and sales at Red Flag Media, where she is the event lead on its bicoastal Metal & Beer Fest; she has also served in various leadership positions with Green Building United. Yarde is a native of Philadelphia and a proud product of its public school system who has become an autodidact, world-traveler, foodie, craft beer aficionado, and a critical consumer of pop culture.