James H. Gellert

Co-Founder and Executive Chairman
Rapid Ratings International, Inc.

Thank you to everyone who joined us to celebrate the transformative power of an arts-rich education.

If you were unable to join us, you can still support our mission with a donation. Help close the opportunity gap—together, we can engage students and improve outcomes. Funds raised provide essential support for Young Audiences’ work and support the thousands of teachers and artists who work in our underserved classrooms and communities. Your donation supports children who are often left behind in the traditional classroom environment. We thank you for your help in ensuring that the arts continue to enrich students’ lives and inspire them to believe in the life-changing power of their own education.

If you have any questions, please write to David Falk at DavidF@ya.org

Young Audiences is proud to honor

James H. Gellert

Co-Founder & Executive Chairman
Rapid Ratings International, Inc.

James H. Gellert is an entrepreneur, ex-banker, amateur musician, supporter of arts and education, lover of sports, and proud father of two.

Throughout his career, James has served as CEO for multiple technology firms and worked for investment banks such as Deutsche, UBS, Barclays, and Howland Securities LLC, which he co-founded.

James is the Co-Founder and Executive Chairman of Rapid Ratings International, Inc. RapidRatings provides Financial Health Ratings, the leading assessment of public and private company financial health, enabling many of the largest companies and financial institutions in the world to effectively manage risks associated with suppliers, customers, and other third parties. 

While at RapidRatings, James has repeatedly testified on ratings industry and regulatory reform before the Senate Banking Committee, House of Representatives Financial Services subcommittees, and the US Securities and Exchange Commission. His expertise is frequently sought by major media outlets such as The Wall Street Journal, The Financial Times, The New York Times, Bloomberg TV, CNBC, Yahoo Finance, and others.

James is a member of numerous corporate boards and advisory committees and is active in the nonprofit and educational worlds, including serving as a National Board member of Young Audiences Arts for Learning. He was elected to the National Board in 2005 and currently serves as Board President, Chairs both the Executive and Benefit Committees, and Co-Chairs the Planning Committee. Previously, he served as Chair of the Finance Committee and Board Secretary. James graduated from Connecticut College, attended Doshisha University in Kyoto, Japan, and graduated from St. George’s School in Newport, RI, where he started the Joseph H. Gellert Memorial Scholarship in honor of his grandfather.

James plays competitive tennis and golf. He also has played blues harmonica for several bands in and around the Tri-State region. He lives in Brooklyn, NY, and Woodstock, NY, with his fiancé, Greta Moseson, and has two sons, Hutchinson and Sebastian (“Starsky”).

Musical Guests

Young Audiences’ 2023 National Benefit Gala included a special performance by ARKAI

Violinist Jonathan Miron on the CR Violin and cellist Philip Sheegog make up ARKAI, an award-winning electroacoustic duo that has inspired audiences around the world through their genre-defying string music. Graduates of The Juilliard School, their past engagements have included performances at The MET, Joe’s Pub, City Winery, US Air Force Academy, Rockwood Music Hall, 54 Below, Lincoln Center, Musikfest, Chateau Marmont, Carnegie Hall and TED. They recently opened for Oscar and Grammy-winning musician Jon Batiste at YPO EDGE hosted in NYC’s Javits Center.

As creative collaborators, ARKAI was commissioned by the Museum of Chinese in America to compose a work for their exhibition Responses: Asian Americans Resisting the Tides of Racism. Other commissions have included a piece for Silver Lining Ltd’s Impact 5X initiative — a global economic justice project supporting hundreds of small business owners from underserved communities around the world.

Alongside performing, ARKAI creates artistic programs that connect and uplift communities. During the COVID-19 pandemic, their initiative SupportNYC has helped raise over $80,000 in monetary support for small businesses and organizations like the MET Orchestra Musicians, Harmony Project, D’Addario Foundation, and Shakespeare Dallas through fundraising performances, spreading hope and healing to communities across the country through the power of the arts. ARKAI was recently honored with the 2021 Robert Sherman Music Education and Community Outreach Award presented by WQXR, The Juilliard School, and The Harold W. McGraw Family Foundation in recognition of their work through SupportNYC.

ARKAI was selected by the U.S. Department of State and the Association of American Voices to participate in the ‘21-22 American Music Abroad season. Through this program, ARKAI has engaged in exchange programs with underserved audiences around the world with little or no access to American music, demonstrating the power of cultural diplomacy as a tool to bring people together.

ARKAI is currently creating its debut album, Aurora, in collaboration with seven-time Grammy Award-nominated producer Joel Hamilton.

For more than 70 years, Young Audiences Arts for Learning has engaged countless millions of students through learning experiences that foster creativity, self-expression, and cultural understanding, raise student achievement in other subject areas, and help develop 21st-century skills like critical thinking, collaboration, and problem-solving.

Founded in 1952, Young Audiences is the nation’s largest arts-in-education provider, reaching more than 5 million students and families in rural, suburban, and urban communities in 26 states.

When Young Audiences teaching artists step into classrooms, they open doors to joy, creativity, and discovery. Here, students connect to curricular content through visual and digital art, music, media arts, theater, and dance. Through the arts, educators and school districts ignite a passion for learning and unlock the greatness within each child.

The Young Audiences Arts for Learning affiliate network draws upon the talent of more than 2,000 teaching artists from all artistic disciplines, the dedication of 50,000+ teachers, and the leadership of hundreds of board volunteers and passionate staff members.

On behalf of the entire Young Audiences Arts for Learning family, we thank you for your generous support.

If you were unable to join us on October 24, you can still support our work.

If you have any questions, please contact David Falk at davidf@ya.org.