Christine Miles served as Director of the Albany Institute of History & Art from 1986 through 2011. Prior to joining the Albany Institute, Miles was director of the Fraunces Tavern Museum in New York City.  Earlier in her career, she held positions as curator, researcher, and project director at The Octagon Museum of the American Institute of Architects Foundation in Washington D.C.; the South Street Seaport Museum in New York City; the Museum of the City of New York; and the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York City. During Miles's term as Director she guided the Albany Institute through numerous advancements and challenges which resulted in increasing the museum's capacity and public profile.  In 2001, the Institute completed a capital campaign to fund a $17 million construction, and renovation project that created state-of-the-art collections storage facilities, installed technology and substantially enhanced the museum's research capacity, educational, exhibition and public spaces.  Technology has made exhibitions and objects in the collections accessible and educational offerings have grown to include videoconferencing, home school programs, weekend programs, Vacation Art Breaks, and summer programs. A wide range of exhibitions, lectures, gallery talks, demonstrations, and performances are held each year, as well as popular community-wide events. 

As Director, Miles expanded the museum's funding support base, contemporary collections, and oversaw the publication of the Institute's first book documenting its collections, 200 Years of Collecting (Hudson Hills Press, 1998); and the mounting of numerous nationally and internationally recognized exhibitions, including Thomas Cole: Drawn to Nature (1993); Matters of Taste: Food and Drink in Seventeenth-Century Dutch Art and Life (2002); the 350th Anniversary Celebration of the Founding of Albany (2002); Rodin: A Magnificent Obsession (2005); Excavating Egypt (2006), and Hudson River Panorama: 400 Years of History, Art, and Culture (2009).

Miles currently serves on the boards of the Historic Albany Foundation and Albany County Convention and Visitors Bureau, and has served on the boards of numerous civic and arts organizations including WMHT Public Television;  the Albany-Colonie Regional Chamber of Commerce, the University at Albany Foundation; the Albany Local Development Corporation, Capitalize Albany, Sage Presidents Council, and Lower Manhattan Cultural Council. She is a past president of the Museum Association of New York State and the Gallery Association of New York State. Miles has served on funding panels for the National Endowment for the Humanities, National Endowment for the Arts, Institute of Museum and Library Services, and New York State Council on the Arts.

In 2012, Excelsior College awarded Miles a Partner in Lifelong Living Award. In 2008, the Albany Roundtable selected Miles to receive its prestigious Good Patroon Award for her commitment to making the Albany Institute a broadly accessible cultural and educational resource.  In 1996, she received the Women of Excellence Award from the Albany-Colonie Chamber of Commerce.

Miles has an MA in American Culture from The George Washington University in Washington, DC and a BA in Art History from Boston University. She attended the Museum Management Institute of the Getty Foundation at the University of California, Berkeley.   She was a fellow of the Winterthur Summer Institute, University of Delaware in Newark, Delaware.

Jeffrey Mishkin '69 is a Partner at the law firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher and Flom, LLP where he specializes in sports law.  From 1992-2000, he served as Executive Vice President and Chief Legal Officer of the National Basketball Association, overseeing every aspect of the NBA's legal affairs, including litigation, labor relations, commercial transactions, legislation and enforcement of the league's intellectual property rights.  He continues to serve the NBA as its chief outside counsel.  At Skadden, his sports practice also includes representation of the National Football League, National Hockey League, PGA Tour, United States Tennis Association, Arena Football League, Madison Square Garden, New Jersey Nets, and many other sports organizations. 

Mr. Mishkin was an adjunct professor of professional sports and the law at Cardozo Law School from 1984 to 1989.  He has lectured regularly on sports topics at Harvard, Yale, Stanford, Cornell and numerous other law schools.  Mr. Mishkin has also published extensively in the field of sports litigation in publications such as the New York Law Journal and National Law Journal.  Mr. Mishkin was chair of the committee on Federal Courts, Association of the Bar of the City of New York from 1989 to 1992.  From 1983 to 1986 he was Secretary of the Committee on Entertainment and Sports Law.

In 1999 Mr. Mishkin received the Rockefeller College Distinguished Alumni Award.  He currently serves as co-chair of the Rockefeller College Advisory Board.  Mr. Mishkin earned his BA in Political Science from the University at Albany in 1969. While at the University at Albany, he was the President of the Student Association, President of the Senior Class and President of the Myskania Honorary Society.  He created and chaired the first Telethon, was active in the Debate Club and the Drama Club, and was elected to Who's Who and Sigma Tau Beta Fraternity. He received his JD from Cornell Law School in 1972.


Bruce Plaxen is a personal injury attorney in Maryland and the founder of the firm Plaxen & Adler, P.A.  Mr. Plaxen has been on the Board of Governors for the Maryland Association for Justice (formerly the Maryland Trial Lawyers Association) since 1993 and has chaired almost every committee and held every office, including President of the Maryland Trial Lawyers Association. Currently, he is Chairman of the Maryland Association for Justice Political Action Committee and works closely with their lobbyist and legislative committee in Annapolis to insure that the rights of victims are protected. Mr. Plaxen has also received a Distinguished Alumnus Award from the Nelson A. Rockefeller College of Public Affairs and Policy from the State University of New York at Albany. This award was given in recognition of his pro bono efforts assisting the families of victims of the September 11 terrorist attacks in New York, Maryland and Virginia. Mr. Plaxen helped organize the largest pro bono project in history. Each and every family of a 911 victim was offered absolutely free legal representation and assistance in securing victim compensation. In addition, Plaxen has received the prestigious Wiedemann Wysocki Citation of Excellence given by the American Association for Justice for his efforts on behalf of civil justice throughout the United States. This past May, in recognition of his work locally, Mr. Plaxen was awarded the MTLA 2007 President's Award.

For the past four years, Mr. Plaxen has served on the Board of Governors for the American Association for Justice (formerly the Association of Trial Lawyers of America). Bruce Plaxen has served on the Executive Committee of the American Association for  Justice and is active on many nationwide AAJ Committees including the National Finance and the Organizational Review Committee. Mr. Plaxen was elected President of the Council of Presidents which includes all presidents of each trial lawyers' organization throughout the country. He is a frequent speaker and lecturer for the Maryland Association for Justice.

Mr. Plaxen received his BA in political science from the University at Albany in 1979. He holds a law degree from the American University Washington College of Law in 1982. D.C.

David Salmonsen '79 is director of congressional relations and legislative counsel for the American Farm Bureau Federation in Washington, D.C. He is responsible for covering dairy, livestock, trade and other farm program-related issues.  Prior to his current position, he served as a governmental relations specialist on regulatory affairs for the American Farm Bureau Federation. Prior to the American Farm Bureau, he worked in the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets, where he served as the executive assistant to the commissioner. 

The Farm Bureau is an independent, non-governmental, voluntary organization governed by and representing farm and ranch families united for the purpose of analyzing their problems and formulating action to achieve educational improvement, economic opportunity and social advancement and, thereby, to promote the national well-being. 

Mr. David Salmonsen is a recognized expert in his field and a member of the Office of Sustainability Programs, which sponsored the Citizen Panel Consensus Conference in 2003.

In 2003 Mr. Salmonsen became a member of the Rockefeller College Advisory Board. Mr. Salmonsen received his BA in political science from the University at Albany in 1979.  He holds a law degree from American University in Washington, D.C.

Howard Shapiro is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Finance and Commerce (1961), where he earned a B.S. in Economics, and its Law School, where he received his Juris Doctor cum laude (1964).  After serving as an attorney with the Federal Power Commission in Washington, and as an Assistant District Attorney in Manhattan in the Homicide Bureau, he served as Assistant Counsel and First Assistant Counsel to Governor Nelson A. Rockefeller and then as Chairman of the New York State Commission of Investigation.  From 1973 until 1998 Mr. Shapiro was affiliated with the law firm of Helm, Shapiro, Anito & McCale.  Beginning in 1975 he served as the Director and General Counsel of the Energy Association of New York State, whose members were the major investor-owned electric and gas companies in New York State.  In December 1992, Mr. Shapiro was named as the Association's first President and on December 4, 2000 he was elected as President and Chief Executive Officer.
Over the years, Mr. Shapiro has been active in the Albany community having served on the Board and as President of Equinox Inc., a human services organization,  for more than 15 years.   Equinox operates a domestic violence shelter, a youth shelter and a drug and other substance abuse counseling center along with several other important programs.  He now serves on the Advisory Board of the Rockefeller College of Public Affairs & Public Policy at the University at Albany, State University of New York and on the Board of the Government Law Center at the Albany Law School.
Mr. Shapiro retired from the Energy Association in October 2005 and now is engaged in the practice of law and energy consulting on a part-time basis, along with his community service activities.   He enjoys swimming, golfing, hiking, biking, playing tennis, traveling and spending time with his family, especially watching his children and grandchildren grow.

Paul Travis '75 is Managing Partner of Washington Square Partners, a real estate development advisory firm in New York City, which he founded in 1994. Washington Square Partners is one of several in the Arete group of firms dedicated to providing "complete real estate assistance" to major corporate developers. Throughout his career, Mr. Travis has worked as a consultant to corporate, non-profit institutions and government entities to reconfigure real estate assets and solve land use issues. He is also a partner in Kingsbridge Development Partners, a real estate development firm.

Prior to founding Washington Square Partners, Mr. Travis served as Chief Operating Officer for Forest City Partner Companies in New York City. In this capacity, he was responsible for the development and leasing of MetroTech Center, a 4.5 million square foot complex in downtown Brooklyn, NY.

Mr. Travis previously worked as Director of Real Estate for The Price Company and served as Senior Vice President of the New York City Public Development Corporation. At PDC, he directed the 42nd Street Development Project in Manhattan NY, and was responsible for dozens of commercial and industrial development projects throughout the City.

Mr. Travis is a member of the Friends of the Library and the Urban Land Institute. He serves on the board of directors of Playwrights Horizons, and Milano Graduate School at the New School University.

Mr. Travis received his BA in Political Science (cum laude) from the University at Albany in 1975. He earned his Masters in Urban Affairs/Policy Analysis from the New School for Social Research in 1977.

Mr. Brian J. Wing, MPA '73 recently retired from the New York State Department of Health, where he was serving as Interim Executive Deputy Commissioner managing the office during the transition to the Spitzer Administration.  Previously he was the department’s Deputy Commissioner, Office of Medicaid Management where he was responsible for the overall management of a diverse program serving more than 4 million New Yorkers with an annual budget of $46 billion.  Included within the scope of his duties was the development and implementation of program policies regarding eligibility, services, and financing, management of the network of medical providers, claims payment, and program quality assurance.

Prior to his positions in the Department of Health, he was the Vice President for Electronic Payment Services at ACS, State and Local Solutions, which is a premier service provider of diversified business process and information technology outsourcing solutions. Formerly, Mr. Wing was commissioner of the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, one of two independent Offices in the new Department of Family Assistance, which is the former Department of Social Services (DSS).  Previously, he had served as DSS Commissioner, having been nominated by Governor George E. Pataki in 1997.

During his long career at the Department of Social Services, Mr. Wing held various positions. As executive assistant in the Office of the Commissioner, he was responsible for overall administrative management of the Office of the Commissioner. He was a member of the Federal Electronic Benefits Transfer (EBT) Task Force, where he also coordinated the development of an EBT system for the department's public assistance and food stamp programs.  For ten years he served as Director of the DSS Local District Liaison Unit.

Before coming to the Department of Social Services, Mr. Wing was the executive director of the New York Public Welfare Association and executive administrator in the New York State Assembly.

Mr. Wing is a member of the Rockefeller College Advisory Board, where he serves on the Career Services Committee. In 2003, Mr. Wing received the Rockefeller College Distinguished Alumni Award. Mr. Wing earned a Masters of Public Administration degree from the University at Albany in 1973, and received a Bachelor of Arts degree, cum laude, from the University at Buffalo.