Jonathan founded Cinnabar in 1982 in a small Hollywood back lot. As Cinnabar gained a reputation for getting the job done and solving problems in a creative, collaborative way, it rapidly became one of the entertainment industry’s leading fabrication and special EFX companies.
Beginning as a welder/mechanic building floats for the Pasadena Rose Parade, Jonathan’s background includes a political career in the 1970s, working for then-California Governor Jerry Brown to help implement key Brown initiatives such as the Office of Appropriate Technology and the California Conservation Corps. Jonathan’s lifelong dedication to conservation has driven him to adopt sustainability concerns into his company’s work product, implement technical innovations in sustainable specimen display, and work to support resource-conserving behaviors from the shop floor to all phases of a project.
In recent years, Jonathan has focused Cinnabar’s bold approach to content delivery to producing, designing and fabricating museum exhibitions that engage, entertain and educate modern audiences.
Jonathan is a frequent speaker on panels addressing sustainability issues, audience engagement and storytelling in museums. He is a board member of the Western Museums Association (WMA) and the Ojai Valley Museum. Jonathan was one of the first people in Southern California to drive GM’s electric EV-1 car. He is an avid gardener.
As Chief Operating Officer of Cinnabar, Kip, with 28 years of experience in construction, fabrication, and management, oversees the operational, contractual, financial, and legal aspects of completing projects.
An avid builder, he became a site carpenter directly out of high school and, shortly thereafter, a project superintendent. Kip attended Montgomery College for Construction Management in Rockville, Maryland. Having actively participated in multiple associated trades, Kip understands what is necessary in bringing a construction project to completion. He became General Manager of a well known and respected high-end residential and custom commercial builder, Walter E. Lynch & Company, in Washington DC where he remained for 12 years.
Kip was also an integral part of the project management team handling the construction and subsequent renovation of the Jack Kent Cooke Stadium for the Washington Redskins in Landover, Maryland, giving him the additional learning experience of dealing with the legendary Mr. Cooke on a daily basis.
As Cinnabar’s most senior client-facing representative, Basil brings his experience working in high-pressure, high-performance environments to managing Cinnabar’s ongoing client relationships. He is adept at working with large groups of stakeholders and project participants to arrive at consensus-based decisions that maximize a project’s success.
Basil joined Cinnabar four years ago after spending six years as a professional journalist first at The New York Times in Paris, then with the Reuters News agency in New York.
Basil’s journalism experience has ingrained in him the ability to distill large amounts of information into clear, simple and direct ideas, allowing him to make decisions based on a project’s core merits. His experience has also taught him that good and regular communication, both internal and external, is key to keeping a project on the right track.
As a highly experienced financial planner and manager, Leslie oversees Cinnabar’s financial analysis, planning and forecasting, budget implementation and management, financial reporting and tax planning. She works with the management team to provide recommendations for procedural and systematic improvements to ensure that company objectives are being met. During a brief hiatus away from Cinnabar, Leslie worked with Playground Media Group in Santa Monica and LT-LA Communications in West Hollywood. She has 33 years of accounting and financial experience in various industries including construction, entertainment production and post-production services, publicity and marketing, and IT/Technical Staffing.
Jeannie LommaSenior Project Manager
Jeannie is one of the most experienced senior-level project managers in the specialty show-set fabrication industry. With an educational background in design, architecture and film and a post-graduate degree from UCLA, Jeannie brings over 20 years of experience to exhibitions and projects for numerous institutions. She possesses a deep understanding of the key processes and components of complex, multi-faceted projects and, from inception to completion, ensures a project’s efficient execution. Jeannie has been Cinnabar’s Senior Project Manager on three projects with a budget of over $5 million, and one project with a budget over $15 million.
While carefully balancing the project’s creative aspects, Jeannie is responsible for rigorous financial management, project budget performance and a diligent adherence to schedules. A strong collaborator and proven performer in the management of large teams with diverse groups of participants, over the past 19 years Jeannie has been instrumental in planning and directing Cinnabar’s most distinguished and noteworthy projects, both in the United States and abroad.
Arus ManukyanGraphics Manager
Arus leads the creation and maintenance of all graphics production-ready files, proofs, samples and reviews. She oversees graphics production and quality control of printed materials, performs vendor check-ups and coordinates closely with shop fabricators and installers.
Arus’s background as a print shop manager strengthens her ability to maintain vendor relationships. Her knowledge of print materials and machines creates a variety of options through our creative process while her urgency to details helps keep our graphics organized and pristine. By thinking outside the box, Arus is able to come up with innovative solutions that are both quality and cost effective.
Juan CorralTechnical Director
Juan’s background as a specialty fabricator for motion picture special effects and theme park attractions proved a rigorous training ground for his current responsibilities as Design Director. Juan is responsible for technical design, project layout and the direction of multi-discipline fabrication teams. He combines an extensive understanding of fabrication methodologies and materials with expertise in using digital tools such as SketchUp and AutoCAD, allowing him to translate designers’ schematic concepts into buildable, affordable elements. As a skilled practitioner of the design-build process, Juan takes a holistic approach to problem solving so that his collaborations with designers yield technically elegant results, while incorporating critical aesthetic and economic parameters. Developing solutions for key fabrication issues without compromising the designer’s intent is essential, yet Juan is able to execute this while also integrating other design attributes, such as sustainability and exhibit flexibility criteria, within schedule and cost constraints.
Paula NestonTechnical Design Manager
Paula has over 21 years of experience in creating immersive environments through design and fabrication. Prior to joining Cinnabar in 2018, Paula spent the last 5 years focused on design with BRC Imagination Arts and The Hettema Group. During the last 3 ½ years as a Show Set Lead at BRC she was involved in concept ideation for projects and continued through every aspect of the design process including construction drawings, AV + lighting + facility integration, set fabrication, production and installation until opening day for the Hebrew Bible and New Testament Theater permanent exhibits which opened in 2017 at the Museum of the Bible in Washington D.C.
For the proceeding 15 years Paula worked as a Technical Design Lead and Manager for Lexington Scenery. Paula managed the design development of many of projects from schematic design through to installation by incorporating art direction, developing construction methods, integrating structural engineering, material selection, while managing a team of technical designers to align with schedules, milestones, and budgets. During her time at Lexington some of the noteworthy projects include The Thinkery in Austin, Children’s Museum of the Upstate in Greenville, Museum of Science and Industry Chicago, Disney California Adventure, Disneyland Hong Kong, and Universal Studios.
Paula holds a Bachelors of Architecture from the Southern California Institute of Architecture in Los Angeles.
Andrea WhittierProject Manager
Andrea has managed many small and medium-sized exhibit projects at Cinnabar, and often plays a supporting role on larger projects by focusing on their most specialized and artistic elements. As a scenic artist, prop and model maker, seamstress and fabricator, Andrea is deeply familiar with the process of historical recreation and scenic finishes. She is particularly adept at collaborating closely with designers to achieve highly accurate, well-constructed and durable props and reproductions. Having working at Cinnabar for over 30 years, Andrea has developed a unique expertise of materials and techniques to create sculptures and props using a wide range of processes, from molding and casting to fiberglass to foam to resins and pigments. Andrea has an arts degree from CalArts.
Pixie HearnProject Manager
Pixie is a dedicated and efficient Project Manager with over 17 years of experience in entertainment design and construction. Her experience in all phases of development, fabrication, and installing museum and retail environments, as well has her education in Fine Art and Design at Otis College of Art and Design, has given her a thorough knowledge of all aspects of management and production. This understanding, as well as her rigorous attention to detail, has given her a proven record in delivering projects on time and within budget, while maintaining the quality and vision of the client throughout.
Alexandra DeMilnerProject Manager
With a Master’s in Fine Art from Yale University, and experience in both construction and management and art production, Alexandra brings great insight to the complexities of exhibit production. Since joining Cinnabar in 2011, Alexandra has played a vital role in coordinating and managing work flow, managing schedules and communications to ensure projects run efficiently. She excels at anticipating project needs and navigating the multiple requirements that are a part of achieving successful project outcomes.
Jason O’MaraSenior Estimator
Jason, having started as a detailer/technical designer, is now one of Cinnabar’s most talented Project Managers. Jason is a highly skilled technical designer and fabricator, with considerable experience managing complex projects. He has worked as an associate and designer at architecture firms Marmol Radziner and Kennedy & Violich, among others.
Jason has a mastery of digital tools such as AutoDesk, Revit, AutoCAD and Rhino which supplement his big picture understanding of large scale fabrication, General Contracting and managing multiple vendors on a schedule.
As Project Manager, Jason oversees Cinnabar’s most technically challenging specialty projects, often involving new, untried materials and production techniques. Jason’s own designs incorporate a sophisticated understanding of sustainable building techniques and materials. Jason is a LEED certified Green Associate.
Jeff CrockerProject Manager
Jeff joined Cinnabar in 2015 as a Project Coordinator and has since worked as one of our most organized Project Managers. His experience as a Production Manager and Producer for television and media has allowed Jeff to remain organized while managing complex information on constantly changing projects. Working with Jeannie, Jeff has managed budgets, schedules and deliverables on two large, quick turnaround Cinnabar projects.
Julia RobinsonProject Manager
Julia brings nine years of experience in project procurement, planning, execution, risk mitigation, and fulfillment to her role as Project Manager at Cinnabar. Her attention to detail and organizational skills allow her to manage multiple complex projects. Her primary focal points include building and preserving client relationships, as well as maintaining quality, scope, and cost on her projects.
Julia has a Master of Arts in Museum Studies from George Washington University. After working at the Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History for two years, Julia joined exhibit fabrication firm Capitol Museum Services, where she served as a project manager of museum exhibit projects for two years.
Brian WhittierTechnical & Engineering Director
Brian has been with Cinnabar since 1983, serving as technical and engineering director and specializing in structural, mechanical and electrical systems. As a rule, Brian looks for the simplest, most efficient approach to any challenging or complicated engineering and fabrication process. Brian also has a thorough understanding of the requirements of multi-media installations allowing our exhibits and multimedia components to comply with building, electrical and ADA codes, and to be designed and installed with robust enclosures that can withstand the rigors and daily wear of intense use by large groups, while providing exhibition staff easy access for maintenance.
Randy MorganScenic Manager
From executing large murals to models and miniatures, Randy’s keen eye and aesthetic have been essential to establishing Cinnabar as the premiere fabricator of themed environments. Randy joined Cinnabar in 1994 and has led projects ranging from museum exhibits to motion pictures and art installations. After attending Art Center College of Design, Randy began his career in the motion picture business honing his skills as a scenic artist. There he mastered the art of faux finishing, concepts of color mixing and matching, and the elements of color design. These skills, combined with his knowledge of creating and managing budgets with emphasis on deadline and client satisfaction, complement his leadership role as Scenic Manager.
Richard PackMetal Shop Foreman
Richard supervises Cinnabar’s 8-person metal shop, overseeing materials purchases, inventory and machine upkeep. He coordinates with Project Managers, the Technical Design team and other Cinnabar personnel to properly sequence and integrate all metal work within a particular project.
Rich is certified with the Los Angeles City Department of Building and Safety in Structural Steel Manual and Semi-Automatic, as well as Light Gage Steel. With a degree from Mt. San Antonio College’s Welding Program, Rich is a highly trained metal worker. Rich is fluent in all aspects of metallurgy and welding processes and techniques including: SMAW, MIG, TIG, ARC, ACA cutting and gouging, Oxy-Acetylene welding and cutting, Plasma Arc cutting, and Brazing. Rich is very skilled in metalworking tools and working methods including blue print reading, drawing, layout and fitment. He is able to operate tube benders, notchers, end mills, lathes, drill presses, hydraulic iron workers, sheers, brakes, rollers, power saws, grinders, and most items found in the industry.
His experience fabricating roll cages and racing chassis for cars and trucks, has developed his thorough understanding of life safety, metal tolerances and durability.
Lance SpellerbergShop Manager
As Cinnabar’s first-ever Shop Manager, Lance oversees all of the Cinnabar fabrication departments, including Scenic, Sculpture, Logistics, Carpentry and Metal. He ensures that shop floor space is properly allocated, that materials are being ordered, and that all departments have the necessary information to keep work flowing.
Lance spent 10 years as a lead fabricator, where he oversaw the in-shop fabrication of all types of built elements from casework and cabinetry to integrating graphics and AV equipment into complex interactive exhibits. Lance has led teams of up to 25 fabricators on large projects. He coordinates closely with our Technical Designers and Project Managers to keep every aspect of a project on schedule, on budget and properly sequenced. Lance is a master carpenter and wood worker whose expertise ranges from CNC milling to highly custom cabinetry.
Thomas DisneyFacility & Logistics Manager
Thomas Disney comes to Cinnabar a veteran of the stage. He received his BFA in 1985 and worked as a lighting designer and scenic designer, holding many credits in Union houses. Thomas joined the Cinnabar team in 1994, beginning as one of the “Cinnabarbarians” on the floor, and has since served in a variety of capacities over the years. Currently, he is our Logistics and Facilities Manager, or, he’s just trying to keep the incoming parts ahead of the outgoing parts.