Culinary Arts

 Claudia Boyd – information coming soon!

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Beth Gray – information coming soon!

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Kaitlin Moen – information coming soon!

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 JN PICJillian Naveh

Jillian has had an eclectic background working as a farmer, farm to table chef, and experience working for multiple non-profits focused on food justice. She earned a degree in Culinary Arts Business Administration from SUNY Delhi. Other past experience includes: cooking for a prepared food CSA delivery service on a farm, working for The Sylvia Center as a cooking instructor in NYCHA community centers in Brooklyn, working for the Department of Education to get more healthy local food into NYC public schools, and as an outreach coordinator at Capital Roots through Americorps VISTA. Currently she is working with the Office of Children and Family Services as a culinary teacher at different juvenile detention centers in the Hudson Valley.

Dance & Fitness

 


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David Allen – facebook.com/dahveedaloka

David (dah-VEED) Aloka was born and raised in Latin America — Puerto Rico, Colombia, Venezuela — and brings that heritage to Latin dance instruction. Having studied social Salsa, Bachata, and Argentine Tango for nearly ten years in New York City, Boston, and LA, david has been teaching salsa workshops and classes in the Capital Region since 2013. Beyond personal dance practice, david also makes music with Ensemble Congeros and the Berkshire Bateria, while working with dance companies, musicians, and theatrical groups to develop body-movement controlled performance technology.

Vivian Hwang has fifteen years of Latin ballroom competition and performance experience, having trained in Boston and Albany with world-renowned ballroom coaches. In recent years she has focused on social dancing styles — particularly salsa and swing. Vivian has taught ballroom at the collegiate level, and has also choreographed for community musical theater productions. She particularly enjoys working with dancers new to partner dancing, and helping them develop skill and joy in their dancing.

David
and Vivian also offer private lessons and choreography by appointment for special events in Bachata, Merengue, Cha Cha, Rumba, Swing, Foxtrot, and Waltz.


Marta Banks

With more than 20 years of experience teaching Tai Chi, Marta Banks is the owner of the Asian Arts Group Center for Study and Practice which opened in 2007 in Albany. Its goal is to enhance quality of life through expanding awareness of the benefits of tai chi. She is an eight time international Tai Chi gold medal winner and teaches various ages and levels of experience.

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428315_345081145515134_1954334634_nMaria Bowers

Maria Bowers – I have a certification in Om yoga.  I also practice Tai Chi Chuan and have a black belt in Seido Karate.  My yoga classes are a fusion of the grace of tai chi and the intensity of Karate.  Om yoga is practiced with attention to precise alignment, moving with the breath and mindfulness.    In the last 3 years, I have taught Yoga at Samaritan Shelters to teenagers in detention.  I have also taught at The Breathing Room in Delmar and lead workshops.

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Jason & Amber 2Jason Fenton –  fentonjason@hotmail.com – Albany Swing Dancing.com (info@albanyswingdancing.com)

Jason has been social dancing for over 15 years.  He first took Ballroom Dance lessons at Arthur Murray Studios and has been an instructor in Swing, Latin and Ballroom Dance around the Capital District for over 10 years.  He currently organizes and promotes Swing and Ballroom Dance events throughout the Capital Region through Albany Swing Dancing.com, the Arts Center of the Capital District and the Dance Flurry organizations.  He has been instructing Swing at the Arts Center from 2009 to the present.  In the past, he taught regularly at the Fuze Box Dance Club in Albany, Club Helsinki in Hudson and at the Saratoga Savoy Dance Studio, in addition to instructing at the Capital District First Friday Swing Dance, the Dance Flurry and at Jacob’s Pillow.  He currently hosts a weekly Lindy Hop Swing Dance at O’Brien’s Public House, Troy which he has run for over 7 years. His goal is to share the joy of social dancing with his students.

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BD photo3Jessica Lennon

Jessica Lennon (Jalilah) has been a student of Middle Eastern Belly Dance since 2004, and is a consummate student of the dance, continually taking classes, workshops, and learning from other dancers and teachers. Jessica has studied with a number of international superstars of dance including Zahra Zuhair of Los Angeles, Morrocco and Tarik Sultan of New York City, Diana Tarkahan of Cairo, Egypt, and Sabrina Fox and Petite Jamila of the international touring troupe The Bellydance Superstars.  Jessica’s own teacher, Habiba, is known as the Capital District’s authority in belly dance.

Since 2006 Jessica has been a featured performer in Habiba’s Belly Dance Troupe. She has performed at Saratoga’s First Night, Troy’s River Street Festival and Victorian Stroll, The Arts Center of the Capital Region’s Fat Saturday for the Arts, Middle Eastern Dance Showcases in North Hampton, MA, and alongside the Bellydance Superstars in Club Bellydance at Troy’s Revolution Hall.  In addition, Jessica has performed at numerous cultural events and other local fundraisers.

In addition to teaching at The Arts Center of the Capital Region, Jessica actively teaches belly dance for Girl Scout troops as well as adult belly dance classes in Clifton Park.  For more information about performances or classes please contact Jessica at jlennon03@hotmail.com.

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Nicole MastrionniNicole Mastroianni

Nicole Mastroianni is a Certified Integrative Life Coach, Motivational Dancer, Transformational Movement Facilitator and performing artist who inspires others to attract love, abundance and success while living a dream come true. She is a Dreamer, Seeker, Lover, Foodie, and Holistic Entrepreneur. She uses an integrative model of experiential learning, connecting communities to participate in personal innovation using creativity, dance, music and play. She says, “My mission is to support 100,000 people to create abundance while living their dreams come true and discover the magical enchantment life has to offer everyday”

 

 

 Digital Art & Design

mccarty_snapshot_daDavid Allen – preform.io

david allen is an Hispanic American visual artist, musician, and programer with fine arts degrees from Pratt Institute and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Drawing from experience as both a game developer and as a traveling performer during childhood abroad, david’s art weaves threads of movement into experiential patterns using kinesthetic interfaces.

 

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michaelroach-headshotMichael Roach – michaelroachcreative.com

Michael Roach is a marketer, creative consultant, and multifaceted artist. His career has allowed him to create content, provide value to businesses, speak to audiences about marketing, design, and technology, and work on award-winning documentaries. Avid, industry-leading audio and video-editing software company, recognized Michael for his use of their software to create a multimedia concert performance that combined the wonders of the cosmos with illustrations, video, and original music. Currently, Michael consults small to midsize businesses, works as a marketing manager for a global software company, and serves as a board leader of a Capital Region professional marketing organization.

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jameyStevensonJamey Stevenson – jameystevenson.com

Jamey Stevenson is a designer and programmer with over a decade of experience creating video games for handheld, mobile, desktop and web. He is the founder of Tech Valley Game Space, an inclusive game development community and co-working studio in upstate NY, and is also the proprietor of Spoony Bird, an independent game development studio devoted to serving up flighty experiments in bite-size portions.

 

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gaetano-vaccaro-squareGaetano Vaccaro –  Sunangel.media –  TainaAsili.com

Gaetano Vaccaro is a filmmaker, musician, and educator who is committed to making meaningful contributions to community through his work, and has been supporting non-profit organizations, small businesses and artists with media and design for over a decade. Since 2009, he has been an arts instructor to youth in music, film and new media with the award-winning program YouthFX. He also developed curriculum and taught media arts in the classrooms of Albany High School through Proctor’s MediaWorks for 5 years.

The short films he has created with his most recent work as director of photography and editor for the nationwide Rock Against The TPP music tour have received hundreds of thousands of views on social media. The last two music videos he shot and edited have received national media attention with features in Mic.com, The Source, Yes! Magazine and more. His work with YouthFX has helped young people to create films that have been screened at more than 40 film festivals throughout the world.

In addition to his film work, Gaetano Vaccaro is a professional guitarist and songwriter with Taina Asili. Throughout his music career he has recorded 4 albums and performs throughout the U.S., Canada, and Europe.

 

Drawing & Painting

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Carol Coogan – www.carolcoogandesign.com

Carol Coogan makes her living as an artist, illustrator, graphic designer, writer, instructor, and trained SoulCollage® facilitator. She created the Times Union’s “Backyard Naturalist” newspaper feature in 2006, which she’s been writing and illustrating since. She is also the opinion & editorial illustrator for the The Altamont Enterprise weekly, and a member of the Crane & Co stationery freelance illustration team. Her artwork has been displayed in many group and solo exhibitions in and around the Capital District. Carol has kept sketchbooks and visual journals her whole life, using them regularly as part of the process of development of ideas and designs for her professional work, and also for her own personal creative expression.

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Deb BaylyDeborah Bayly

Deb received her masters at SUNY Albany and is represented by West End Gallery from Corning, NY. Her most recent work can be viewed at http://www.westendgallery.net/photo-gallery/artist-gallery-deborah-bayly.

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Robert CarstenRobert Carsten – www.robertcarsten.com

Robert Carsten, studied at the Art Students League of New York, is a graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, and was a Rotary Technical Scholar to the Academia di Belle Arti in Carrara, Italy. He is an advisory board member and signature member of the Pastel Society of America, past editor of PSA’s Pastelagram and annual exhibition catalog, and is a contributing writer toPastel Journal and The Artist’s Magazine. Robert is a master pastelist in the Pastel Society of America, a Master Circle Pastelist in the International Association of Pastel Societies, a lifetime honorary member of the Southwest Florida Pastel Society, and a signature member of the Connecticut Pastel Society. His works have won numerous awards including Best of Shows at national exhibitions. Robert is a national and regional exhibitions juror and awards judge and a workshop instructor, internationally. He was invited as one of four artists to teach pastel painting to 100 teachers in China in spring, 2016 and is exhibiting in the 2nd international Biennial Exhibition of Pastel in Suzhou, China in autumn, 2016. His pastel paintings have been shown in many museums and galleries including the Butler Institute of American Art, the Bennington Museum, the Mattatuck Museum, the D’Amore Museum, the Noyes Museum, the National Arts Club, and are collected worldwide. His work was selected to be part of the Butler Institute of American Art’s exhibition The Pastel Society of America at Forty/ In Honor of Flora Giffuni in 2013 and theThird Pastel Invitational Exhibition in Taipei, Taiwan. His art has been featured in The Artist’s Magazine, The Pastel Journal, American Artist’s Workshop Magazine, American Art Review Strokes of Genius/The Best of Drawing as well as in Pure Color/The Best of Pastel, Best of America Pastel Book, Fine At Tips, Painting Techniques and Professional Advice, Richeson 100 (cover image), Best of Acrylic 4, and more.

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David Dowd is an accomplished figurative artist and teacher.  He has studied painting and drawing at the University at Albany, the College of Saint Rose, and the Arts Students League in New York City. Over the last 10 years David has been teaching visual art in NYC and around the Capital Region.

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Carol Bollinger Green

Carol Bollinger Green offers intuitive painting, drawing, and watercolor classes at The Arts Center of the Capital Region, and Hudson Valley Community College, both in Troy, NY, as well as outdoors at SoulSpace, Greenwich, NY.  She received a BFA in illustration from Syracuse University and an MA in painting and drawing from The University at Albany.  Nature inspires Carol’s creative expression, bringing together direct observation and intuitive sensing.  She lives in the quiet, rural farmlands of Washington County, NY.

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Jillian Hirsch –  www.jillianhirsch.com

Jillian Hirsch is a ceramic artist living in Troy, New York. She received her Bachelor of Fine Art with a concentration in Ceramics and Art Education from the New Hampshire Institute of Art in 2012. In 2013, Jillian was certified to teach K-12 Art Education in both New Hampshire and New York State. She has been a Visiting Artist and Adjunct Professor of Ceramic Art at The Sage College of Albany and currently is an instructor at The Art Center for the Capital Region. Jillian is also a core member at the Sanctuary for Independent Media, a local grassroots community arts organization.

Jillian’s uses both participatory and studio practice to celebrating and exploring environmental and social narratives. Her professional career has focused mostly on the design and facilitation of highly participatory, large-scale mosaics murals with collaboration from community members and nonprofit partners. Currently, Jillian is creating a body of work that focuses on the health and wellness of Hudson River.

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Monica Bill Hughes

Monica Bill Hughes is a visual artist who lives and works in Albany, NY. She received a BFA (Magna cum Laude, 2007) from The College of St. Rose in Albany, NY. Monica is currently pursuing her MFA at The State University of New York at Albany (SUNY). Her work has been shown in Richmond, Virginia at Virginia Commonwealth University’s Anderson Gallery, The Perrella Gallery at Fulton-Montgomery Community College, and at Collar Works Gallery in Troy, NY among others. Ms. Bill Hughes is the recipient of the Hy Rosen Excellence in Painting and Drawing Award as well as a Teaching Assistantship from the University at Albany. She has been featured as a spotlight artist on the blog created by 1 Op Collective (Newark, NJ) and most recently in Fissure, an online exhibition through Gallery Ell, Brooklyn, NY. Monica is also teaching some Summer Camps.

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Madison LaVallee lives, teaches, and makes art in Upstate, New York. She works primarily in sculptural and installation modes, but incorporates drawing and painting as part of her process. LaVallee received duals degrees, a BFA and BS in Art Education, from SUNY New Paltz (2012), and graduated with her MFA in Sculpture from the University at Albany (2015). She was the recipient of University at Albany’s Distinguished Thesis Award, received the Grandma Moses Alumni Association Grant, Graduate Student Association Grant, and was awarded an Assistantship in Teaching. Currently, LaVallee teaches Intermediate Sculpture at UAlbany, classes at the Arts Center, the Roarke Center, Opalka Gallery, Albany Art Room, Oakwood Community Center, and classes in her studio. She was the summer 2016 artist in residence at the Arts Center for the Capital District. Madison is also teaching some Summer Camps.

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Zhong-hua Lu- Luzhonghua.com

Zhong-hua Lu was born in 1958 in Shandong Province, China, at the time of The Great Leap Forward, a government program of industrialization and collectivization that resulted in a devastating famine. Starting at age five, Zhong-hua learned the basics of traditional brush painting and martial arts as a small child from his father and five uncles. Chairman Mao sent many urban youth to work in the countryside as part of the Cultural Revolution (1966-1976). Zhong-hua was appointed to be a village schoolteacher at age sixteen, before he had grown a beard. Traditional arts, philosophies, and customs were maligned as counter-revolutionary and those who carried this knowledge banished or killed. Zhong-hua secretly continued to practice painting on scavenged bits of paper until Chairman Mao died in 1976.

Zhong-hua participates in art festivals throughout New England. He has taught traditional Chinese arts at Mass MOCA, Williams College, The Capital Region Art Center, The Chinese Community Center, and his home studio. Zhong-hua received an Individual Artist grant in 2005 for painting. The question of how Eastern and Western painting traditions meet fascinates him. Today, some of his best work is oil on canvas, inspired by the landscape of the Rensselaer Plateau. Zhong-hua is a 2015 NYFA finalist in Folk and Traditional Arts.

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Ira Marks – iramarcks.com

Ira Marcks is a Troy, NY based cartoonist and educator. For a time he was a regular contributor to Hugo Award Winning sci-fi/fantasy magazine,Weird Tales. Ira’s work has earned him a collaboration with Vimeo founder, Jake Lodwick, an interview in the PBS series ‘A House for Arts’ and a thoughtful blog post from comic theorist and Understanding Comics author, Scott McCloud.  He has also shared his teaching work at the National Art Education Convention. Ira is also teaching some Summer Camps.

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Kurt Przybilla

Kurt Pryzbilla is an inventor, writer, producer, and educator. He is co-creator, writer and producer of the Molecularium Project at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute where he has produced and co-written Molecules to the MAX!, a 3D animated film for Giant Screen IMAX theaters, Molecularium, an award winning digital dome feature, and NanoSpace, a game-based online theme park to teach kids about atoms and molecules that was selected as Best of the Web 2013 by the Center for Digital Education. He invented Tetra Tops®, the world’s first spinning top with more than one axis of spin, which were inspired by the works of Buckminster Fuller and have been featured in the New York Times, Popular Science, Baby Einstein, Child and Discover Magazine, as well as at the Smithsonian Institute. He is also co-founder of the Bamboo Institute which seeks to develop and design innovative ways to utilize bamboo to help solve a wide range of problems facing our planet. Kurt is also teaching some Summer Camps.

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Marion Reynolds
Marion Reynolds is a painter and writer/ illustrator who lives in Troy and maintains a studio at the Illium Building in downtown Troy. She recieved a BA in studio art (High Honors, Cum Laude) from Middlebury College,  an MFA in painting from Queens College CUNY, and a certificate from the Center for Art Safety in NYC. She has had numerous one-person and group shows in New York City and nationally, including Mercer St. Gallery and Wisteria Gallery in NYC, and McGuffey Art Center and Second St. Gallery in Charlottesville Va. She is the recipient of a Greenshields Foundation Grant, and has been reviewed in Art in America. She has taught drawing and painting to children, teens, and adults for over 15 years at The McGuffey Art Center in Charlotteville VA, Douglass Street Artspace in Brooklyn NY, and at the Art Center of the Capital Region in Troy. This is what one former student says about Marion’s teaching:
Marion is a generous, thoughtful and prepared teacher. In Marion‘s drawing and painting classes I was both encouraged and challenged to see in new ways and to explore new techniques and processes. She was one of my early teachers and by far the most influential to this day.” –Lee Halstead

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Armando Soto

Armando Soto studied at Pratt Institute in New York, receiving a BFA in painting, drawing, and art history. He also studied bilingual special education at the Bank Street College of Education. For many years Armando taught in lower Manhattan for a community organization called Arts Resources for Teachers and Students that collaborated with teachers in developing art projects within the school district. Soto is a collaborative member of the Action Alley Project in Troy, a community group that focuses on creating neighborhood murals created by local youth assisted by an area artist. He has also assisted with art projects at PS.1 in Troy. Armando has consistently shown at the Martinez Gallery since 2004. Currently he is monitoring the Open Studio and teaching Abstract Painting, and Drawing Studio Concepts at The Arts Center. He enjoys meeting and helping people that enjoy developing their creative skills. Armando is currently a member of the Fulton St. Gallery and works out of his studio at the Ilium Building in downtown Troy, which hosts artists’ open studios every Troy Night Out.

 

Fiber Arts

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Megan Ingalls Stasi –www.meganstasi.com

Megan Ingalls Stasi is an artist, avid sewist, occasional theater designer and aspiring art teacher trying to escape an accidental career in the music industry. She resides in Albany, NY with her tall husband, their daughter, and their embarrassing number of pet cats. She holds a BFA from Hofstra University, a BS in Visual Art Education from SUNY New Paltz, and an MFA in Scenic Design from Northwestern University. She is a NYS certified K-12 teacher in the Visual Arts.

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Jeannie Thomma

 As an accomplished fiber artist, intuitive artist (aka tarot consultant!), master teacher, inspirational creativity coach and former gallery owner, Jeannie Thomma brings a rich understanding of the obstacles and fears that artists face on the journey to self-expression. 

Jeannie’s hand-felted wool works of art have been widely shown throughout New England in private, public and non-profit venues, including the award-winning galleries at Silvermine Arts Center where she has been a guild member, The Kershner Gallery, Ironwood Gallery, Wesleyan Potters, Erickson Davis Gallery and Zoe & Flloyd Gallery which she founded in 2006.  With numerous solo and group shows to her name, she is recognized for both her sculptural and wearable art works.  The former have been featured and sold through the national artisan catalogue, Uno Alla Volta.

Jeannie’s experience as an artist, teacher and gallery owner lead to her work as a creativity coach and author.  Brave Artist is the heartfelt guide to unmasking your creative brilliance that Jeannie has faithfully practiced herself for twenty years. In the pages of Brave Artist, Jeannie generously shares the wisdom she has gathered from more than two decades in the arts, providing her readers with keen insights, practical knowledge and transformational tools for how to live life as a brave and thriving artist.  Artists will also find wonderful “Fuel for Your Creative Core” in Jeannie’s second book: Meditations for Artists. 

Click Here! to check out Jeannie’s website and full bio.

Jewelry

IMG_3201Morgana Fall

I am a creative. I love working with my hands, love the process of transforming raw materials into a finished product. This applies to many areas of my life, from gardening, to beekeeping, to cooking, to making jewelry!

I have always been drawn to both art and science. I find them both fascinating and not mutually exclusive. I have a degree in Ceramic Engineering and worked in the field for over 10 years. Recently, I found myself ready for a change, a new direction. So I jumped. I quit my job and opted to follow my passion for silversmithing and creating jewelry. I have been taking classes at my local arts center for the past 7 years, learning the craft and running open studios for other students. Overtime, I have been able to build a studio in my own basement, which has enabled me to follow my wild, creative side! Morgana is also teaching some Summer Camps.

Here’s to adventure! www.moonandbone.com

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Maria Fusco Levin

Maria trained at Studio Jewelers Ltd, an accredited jeweler’s trade school in NYC.  After completing their 720 hour program, she was hired by jewelry manufacturer, Ed Levin as a process designer.  Her work there entailed writing production instructions, creating tools with a tool and die maker and training craftspeople to produce new designs.  With the experience she gained working in a production shop, she moved on to work as a professional goldsmith doing repairs and custom fabrication in the jewelry studio at JK Bloom Jewelers in Troy for 7 years.  In 2010, she left her full time career to be a stay at home mother and 6 months later she joined the faculty at the Arts Center as a part time instructor.  In her 5 years of teaching at ACCR, she has developed and presented several new workshops and has revamped the syllabus for advanced level jewelry classes.

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Nancy Miller – www.nancymillerjewelry.com

Nancy Miller handcrafts her uniquely textured wearable art jewelry designs in her streamside Saratoga Springs studio. She has been making jewelry since 1993. Building on a background in traditional jewelry fabrication techniques developed through classes taken at the Arts Center of the Capital Region, she has enjoyed experimenting with a wide variety of metal clay techniques since 2001. She takes advantage of the unique characteristics of metal clay which accepts textures readily, forms fluid curves and invites spontaneity during the design and construction processes.  Nancy’s designs reflect influences from nature, commonplace objects, different cultures, historical references and a sense of humor. Nancy seeks to create versatile yet uncommon jewelry that will complement the personal style of the wearer and become favorite pieces that are worn often.   

In 2004 Nancy developed and continues to coordinate an entirely volunteer run summer time jewelry program for seriously ill children at the Double H Hole in the Woods Ranch, one of the camps founded by Paul Newman. She also frequently teaches at several locations including the Arts Center of the Capital Region which is where she began teaching in 2001.  The classes all focus on learning to work with various types of metal clay to make jewelry designs.

 

Mixed Media

Mo2

Maureen Cummins – www.maureencummins.com

Maureen Cummins has cranked presses from California to the Eastern Arctic and produced over thirty limited edition artist books. She has created projects based on slave narratives, the Salem Witch trials, turn of the century gay love letters, and patient records from McLean Hospital, the oldest mental hospital in America. She is represented in over one hundred permanent public collections and has received over a dozen grants and funded residencies, including the prestigious Pollock-Krasner award.

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tamara2-166x300Tamara DeMartino

Tamara Shoebridge DeMartino has a BFA from Rochester Institute of Technology and an MFA from SUNY Albany. Tamara has been a teaching artist at The Arts Center since 2009 where teaches printmaking, photography, mosaics, fiber arts, painting and drawing to children, teens, adults and developmentally disabled adults. She works out of the studio in her home primarily as a mosaic artist, working on commercial and residential commissions. Recent awards include a Community Art Grant with Dyken Pond and the Brunswick ARC Community Partner Award 2011.

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Armando Soto

Armando Soto studied at Pratt Institute in New York, receiving a BFA in painting, drawing, and art history. He also studied bilingual special education at the Bank Street College of Education. For many years Armando taught in lower Manhattan for a community organization called Arts Resources for Teachers and Students that collaborated with teachers in developing art projects within the school district. Soto is a collaborative member of the Action Alley Project in Troy, a community group that focuses on creating neighborhood murals created by local youth assisted by an area artist. He has also assisted with art projects at PS.1 in Troy. Armando has consistently shown at the Martinez Gallery since 2004. Currently he is monitoring the Open Studio and teaching Abstract Painting, and Drawing Studio Concepts at The Arts Center. He enjoys meeting and helping people that enjoy developing their creative skills. Armando is currently a member of the Fulton St. Gallery and works out of his studio at the Ilium Building in downtown Troy, which hosts artists’ open studios every Troy Night Out.

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img_4170Megan Stasi

Megan Ingalls Stasi is an artist, occasional theater designer and aspiring art teacher trying to escape an accidental career in the music industry. She resides in Albany, NY with her tall husband and their embarrassing number of pet cats. She holds a BFA from Hofstra University, a BS in Visual Art Education from SUNY New Paltz, and an MFA in Scenic Design from Northwestern University. She is a NYS certified k-12 teacher in the Visual Arts.

 

Other Specialties

 

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERACarol Coogan – www.carolcoogandesign.com

Carol Coogan makes her living as an artist, illustrator, graphic designer, writer, instructor, and trained SoulCollage® facilitator. She created the Times Union’s “Backyard Naturalist” newspaper feature in 2006, which she’s been writing and illustrating since. She is also the opinion & editorial illustrator for the The Altamont Enterprise weekly, and a member of the Crane & Co stationery freelance illustration team. Her artwork has been displayed in many group and solo exhibitions in and around the Capital District. Carol has kept sketchbooks and visual journals her whole life, using them regularly as part of the process of development of ideas and designs for her professional work, and also for her own personal creative expression.

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sphereKurt Przybilla

Kurt Pryzbilla is an inventor, writer, producer, and educator. He is co-creator, writer and producer of the Molecularium Project at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute where he has produced and co-written Molecules to the MAX!, a 3D animated film for Giant Screen IMAX theaters, Molecularium, an award winning digital dome feature, and NanoSpace, a game-based online theme park to teach kids about atoms and molecules that was selected as Best of the Web 2013 by the Center for Digital Education. He invented Tetra Tops®, the world’s first spinning top with more than one axis of spin, which were inspired by the works of Buckminster Fuller and have been featured in the New York Times, Popular Science, Baby Einstein, Child and Discover Magazine, as well as at the Smithsonian Institute. He is also co-founder of the Bamboo Institute which seeks to develop and design innovative ways to utilize bamboo to help solve a wide range of problems facing our planet. Kurt is also teaching some Summer Camps.

Photography / Film & Video

KimCluneKim Clune – http://kimclune.com – http://ytkphotography.com

“From grand landscapes and cityscapes to creatures great and small, each impresses upon my eye a sense of great wonder. As I travel this planet, I aim to immortalize more than the visual, infusing also a sense of love, peace, discomfort or urgency, aroma, sound, the sun’s warmth or a winter chill. My greatest joy is witnessing the enormity of this incredible world – even in the smallest of expressions or subjects.”

Fascinated by fine art photography since her first college class in the late 80s, Kim has not put her camera down since. A strong desire to take every piece of the world home with her has led Kim to photograph the wild grizzlies of Alaska, teeming wildlife in the Galapagos Islands, sunset on San Diego’s reflective skyline, Manhattan’s glittering city lights, abandoned places off the beaten path, and a beautiful commitment of love exclaimed in the desert at Burning Man. Of all these things, Kim finds nothing more magical than witnessing love shared between people, capturing life’s sweetest events as photographer and videographer for YTK Photography.

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Benj Gleeksman

I grew up on a sheep farm in central NJ and have been interested in creating artwork ever since I was a wee tyke. During high school and college, I was heavily involved in the skate and punk scenes in my area, and I started to work on fanzines and fliers for shows and skate events. I graduated with a fine art degree from Skidmore college in 1996, and started picking up some graphic design skills while continuing to draw and paint on the side. Since then I have lived and worked in Denver, New York City and presently Saratoga Springs, NY where I am an Art Director for a major educational publishing company. I continue to paint, skate and manage an active freelance roster on the side. I also teach design part time at the Arts Center of the Capital Region in Troy, NY and am pursuing an MFA from Academy of Art University.
His website is http://mistergleeksman.com.

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Katherine Wright

Katherine Wright – katherine@ytkphotography.com – www.ytkphotography.com

Katherine Wright is a professional creative working in the mediums of photography, videography, design, marketing and is a highly sought after educator. She has taught thousands of photographers from amateurs to professionals. Katherine is renowned for her extensive photographic knowledge both technical and artistic. Based out of New York’s Capital Region, she teaches virtually everything photographic including traditional wet lab, digital lab, basic to advanced shooting techniques, lighting techniques, post production workflow, professional business practices, and exhibition practices.
Katherine’s commercial work is noted for her lighting, storytelling and ability to capture the natural essence of her subjects. In her personal work, she explores women in myth in conjunction with alternative process. Katherine’s images are included in many private collections and she has been exhibited in various galleries on the east coast. In addition to her many commissioned photographic endeavors, Katherine conducts workshops and lectures both privately and with many institutions in New York.
In her spare time, Katherine enjoys films, cooking, sewing, hiking traveling and volunteering her creative skills to many non-profit organizations in the Capital Region.

Pottery

 

Sarah Pratt – information coming soon!

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Nancy Steckel

Nancy Steckel

Nancy Steckel is presently creating stoneware clay sculpture in both abstract and realistic forms.  A native of California, she graduated from Fullerton College with an art major, studied at The Art Center School in Los Angeles, the Silvermine Guild in New Canaan, CT and studied Pottery with Takao Sakuma in NY.   She taught and sold pottery and sculpture at her studio for many years.  She taught at Putnam Arts Council and Carmel Adult Education and at The Arts Center of the Capital Region.  She has taken part in numerous shows including the American Crafts Council, Silvermine Guild, Sommerstown Gallery, Schuylkill County Council for The Arts, Kent Art Association, and The Arts Center of the Capital Region, plus many others.

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Erin White has 15 years of experience making wheel-thrown pottery. Erin began studying Ceramics in Michigan and Ohio before moving to the Capital Region. She started learning from our Arts Center’s master potter John Visser in 2007. She became a Studio Assistant in 2013 and is now teaching Beginning Wheel classes and helps with events and open houses. She focuses on teaching the basic bowl, cylinder, and plate forms in her beginner class and aims to be a patient and enthusiastic instructor who considers the individual learning styles and goals of her students.

 

 

Printmaking

160717-SungheePark-1

Sunghee Park – www.sungheepark.net

Sunghee Park is a printmaker who resides in Niskayuna, NY. She grew up in Seoul, Korea and holds a B.A. in painting (’74) and an M.A. in art history (’79) as well as an M.A. in printmaking from SUNY Albany (’95). She has been teaching etching and lithography at The College of St. Rose for the last eight years, and is currently teaching monotype and etching courses at The Arts Center of the Capital Region. Her works are represented by Kiesendahl and Calhoun Art Ltd in Beacon, NY. Sunghee is also teaching some Summer Camps.

Sculpture

Maddi Plaster Wrap PhotoMadison LaVallee
Madison LaVallee lives, teaches, and makes art in Upstate, New York. She works primarily in sculptural and installation modes, but incorporates drawing and painting as part of her process. LaVallee received duals degrees, a BFA and BS in Art Education, from SUNY New Paltz (2012), and graduated with her MFA in Sculpture from the University at Albany (2015). She was the recipient of University at Albany’s Distinguished Thesis Award, received the Grandma Moses Alumni Association Grant, Graduate Student Association Grant, and was awarded an Assistantship in Teaching. Currently, LaVallee teaches Intermediate Sculpture at UAlbany, classes at the Arts Center, the Roarke Center, Opalka Gallery, Albany Art Room, Oakwood Community Center, and classes in her studio. She was the summer 2016 artist in residence at the Arts Center for the Capital District. Madison is also teaching some Summer Camps.

Stained Glass

Theresa Faul – information coming soon! Theresa is also teaching some Summer Camps.

 

Summer Camp Instructors

Tracy Henry – more information coming soon!

Jane McCambley – more information coming soon!

Jeanine Mitchell – more information coming soon!

Stephanie Palazeke – more information coming soon!

Victoria Tucker – more information coming soon!

 

 

Theater & Performance

Portraits finissants ENC 2015

Aaron Marquise

Aaron was born and raised in beautiful Round Lake, New York. He grew up performing in his living room, in restaurants, and anywhere that there was an audience. As a child, he performed most notably at the former New York State Theatre Institute in Troy, NY where he spent his senior year of high school as an intern. Always knowing he would continue a career in theater, Aaron went on to study a BA in Musical Theatre with a minor in Playwriting at Marymount Manhattan College in NYC. After discover the circus world, Aaron auditioned at the prestigious National Circus School in Montréal, Canada where he graduated in 2015. Since joining the circus world Aaron has had the opportunity to perform in Quebec, France, Switzerland, and most recently Germany. He is the founder and Executive Artistic Director of the Capital Region’s only contemporary circus production company: Marquise Productions. Previous performances include a guest performance at the 2015 CBS 6 Melodies of Christmas, Light Up Troy, Running, YOL, and Aaron’s solo contemporary clown show This Is Not A Test. www.marquiseproductions.com Aaron is also teaching some Summer Camps.

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Roberts Headshot

Jackie Roberts

Jackie Roberts is the artistic director of the ell project at the Arts Center of the Capital Region, a regional theater dedicated to developing and producing the plays of women 50 and over. Jackie has been a member of Blacksmyths, the African American writers, collective at the Mark Taper Forum; and a finalist for the Sundance Playwriting Festival and the Eugene O’Neill Festival. She was a panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York State Council on the Arts as well as a grant recipient. Her plays have been performed at the Sledgehammer Theater in San Diego, The Cleveland Public Theatre and schools around the country including the Mary McDowell Friends School/A School For Students With Learning Disabilities. Her article “Healing Myths from the Ethnic Community, or Why I don’t teach August Wilson” is available in the journal Theater Topics. She received her graduate degree from the Yale University School of Drama. As an actor, she flourished for several years working in the theater, where she received a Southern California Theatre Critics Award and a NAACP Image Award. Jackie also spent several years on the Warner Brothers’ sitcom, The Steve Harvey Show, Fox’s Party of Five as well as NBC’s The West Wing.

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Jon South

Jon South studied acting at ESIPA and the Herbert Berghof Studio in NYC. Over the past 30 years he has performed in numerous plays and musicals throughout community theaters, as well as with Capital Repertory, C-R Productions at Cohoes Music Hall, and Hudson Stageworks. Most recently, he was seen at the Arts Center as Charles in Troy Civic Theater’s production of “Blithe Spirit.” Jon has taught acting with Knowledge Network and Schenectady Adult Continuing Education since 2006, and is happy to now have extended his classes to the Arts Center of the Capital Region. www.facebook.com/actingclassalbany

 

Woodworking

Robert Kehn

Bob’s passion for woodworking, building and craftsmanship began in the early 1980s as a self taught furniture maker. He decided to refine his skills with classes at the Art Center (previously known as the Rennselaer County Center for Arts). He then applied and graduated in 2003 from the prestigious Woodworking Program at The College of the Redwoods in Fort Bragg, CA. It was here that he learned the combination of properly tuned hand tools, a deep appreciation for the chosen material and a calm, sensitive approach to design, all combine to set the tone for his work.
Bob has been teaching at the Art Center since 2004. His attention to detail and passion for woodworking are passed down to his students. He not only teaches the use of hand and power tools but stresses to his students the appreciate the woods feature so its in harmony with their design. He is always eager to share his woodworking knowledge and enthusiasm for the craft to current and future woodworkers.
He is currently a member of the Northeastern Woodworkers Association. Bob placed First in the 2004 Showcase for Furniture – Cases, Cabinets and Desks and placed Second in the 2007 Showcase for Tables.

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George Rutledge

George Rutledge

I have been carving wood for over 40 years.  Examples of my work may be seen in Fine Woodworking’s Design Book 2 and Design Book 7.  From the fall of 1978 to the spring of 1981 I studied woodworking and design full time with the renowned Woodworker, Author and Educator Ian J Kirby.  Through Ian, I trace my lineage as a craftsman directly to the English Arts and Crafts Revival.   The natural beauty of wood, Shaker and Japanese design, and of course the Arts & Crafts movement have all informed the development of my personal style.  I have 36 years of experience as a professional woodworker and designer in all phases of the trade from commercial millwork and residential furniture and cabinetry to industrial trade show production, laboratory equipment design and production with the odd woodcarving commission along the way.  I served as President of the Northeastern Woodworkers Association from May of 2012 to May of 2013.  In 2011 I cofounded the NWA Wood Carvers Special Interest Group and was its President until September 2016.  My work has been recognized in a variety of categories taking ribbons at the NWA’s annual Showcase event in Saratoga Springs.  It has been my pleasure for the past 20 years or so to share my love and knowledge of woodworking locally through teaching and writing for the Arts Center and the NWA.

Writing

BernardAmadorBernard Amador, Ph.D. –  www.bernardamador.com

Bernard Amador, Ph.D. is the founder of the Capital District Screenwriters Meetup and author of 8 screenplays and 4 published books. He holds a doctorate in psychology and works as a supervising crime victims caseworker.

 

 

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Cara Benson (2) (1)Cara Benson – www.carabensonwriter.com

Cara Benson is a writer whose work has been published in The New York Times, Boston Review, Best American Poetry, Brooklyn Rail, and many other venues. Her first book, (made), reached the Small Press bestseller list, and she has received a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship in Literature. Benson teaches Creative Writing for Prescott College and is a manuscript consultant and writing coach for Grub Street in Boston. “Teaching writing fuels my own work. I love sharing my experience and doubly enjoy posing the questions I face in my own writing to my classes. I’m always invigorated by this process.”

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Robin Catalano head shotRobin Catalano – http://robinwriter.com/

Robin Catalano has always believed in the power of storytelling, and has applied her creative approach to content creation to writing for magazines, books, blogs, websites, social media, and a wide variety of print copywriting projects. As the Managing Editor of Digital & Social Media for the Annie Selke Companies, she developed the popular decorating and lifestyles blog Fresh American Style, and the companies’ robust online presence. As an editor, she has worked on dozens of magazines and more than 350 books for publishers including Penguin Random House, Workman, and Simon & Schuster. She lives, reads, and writes voraciously in upstate NY, and welcomes your take on the Breaking Bad finale, color symbolism in The Hunger Games, and why young-adult authors should run the Supreme Court.

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susan_720Susan Comninos
Susan Comninos, who’s leading the Advanced Poets Workshop this fall, is both a journalist and poet. Her journalism’s appeared in The Atlantic Online, The Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune, Christian Science Monitor, Haaretz English Edition and Jewish Daily Forward, among others. Over the past 12 months, her poetry’s appeared in the Harvard Review Online, Subtropics, Malahat Review, The Common, Hobart, Southern Humanities Review, The Good Men Project, The Tishman Review and Spoon River Poetry Review. Previously, it appeared in TriQuarterly, Quarterly West, The Cortland Review, Nashville Review and Tulane Review, among others. In 2010, it won the Yehuda Halevi Poetry Contest run by Tablet magazine. This year, it won a Tishman Review staff favorite prize and a VQR Writers’ Conference scholarship award. It’s forthcoming in J Journal: New Writing on Justice, The Journal for Compressed Creative Arts and Opossum. Susan earned her BA in English from Cornell University and an MFA in creative writing from The University of Michigan. She’s taught creative writing at The University of Michigan, RPI, Schenectady JCC and The Arts Center of the Capital Region, among others.
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lady at the lakesmaller (1)Olivia Dunn

I’m a writer and a teacher living in Albany, NY. I’m interested in grammar, humor, metaphor, and sincerity. I’m working on a collection of essays that explore the places in a city that people are forced to go, such as: the gas station, the grocery store, and the DMV. I hold an MFA from the University of Iowa’s Nonfiction Writing Program and a BS in Film & Television from Boston University. I’ve worked as a waitress and a set decorator but now I’m a Visiting Professor of English at Skidmore College as well as a creative writing instructor at The Arts Center of the Capital Region. I’m also a writing coach. In the past, I’ve taught grammar to English Language Learners at  Kirkwood Community College in Cedar Rapids, critical thinking to undergraduates at the University of Iowa, and creative writing at the Albany Public Library. You can read more here and at okdunn.com where I keep a blog of observational micro-essays. Email me at okdunn@gmail.com Olivia is also teaching some Summer Camps.

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Stephen Leon

Stephen Leon is a writer, editor, writing teacher, and volunteer soccer coach living in Albany, NY. He has published numerous articles in publications from the Boston Globe to Soccer America to the alternative newsweekly Metroland, where he served as editor for 25 years. He also has taught journalism to high school and college students. A graduate of the masters program in journalism at Northwestern University, Leon currently works as a freelance editor and writer. Some his writings are available at stephenleon.net; information on his editing services can be found at editsharp.com.

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Julie Lomoe

Julie Lomoe

Julie Lomoe brings a wealth of mental health and home health care experience to her mystery novels. Her work as an art therapist at a psychiatric hospital inspired her to turn to fiction as a creative outlet. She later founded and ran ElderSource, Inc., a Licensed Home Care Services Agency in upstate New York. A vocal advocate for the rights of mentally ill and elderly consumers, Julie is a member of the National Alliance for the Mentally Ill and of the Mental Health Players, an improvisatory theatre troup. Julie graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Barnard College, then received an MFA from Columbia University. A pioneering resident of SoHo, she exhibited her paintings and prints at the Museum of Modern Art, the Brooklyn Museum, the 1969 Woodstock Festival of Music and Art, and in many Manhattan galleries. She received an MA in Art Therapy from New York University before moving to upstate New York to pursue a career in mental health. Julie enjoys reading her poetry at open mics in New York’s Capital Region, and has been featured poet at many venues including the legendary Caffe Lena in Saratoga Springs. She lives in Rensselaer County with her husband Robb Smith and her two cats, Beep and Lunesta. She is the administrator for the Memorial Society of the Hudson-Mohawk Region, an affiliate of the Funeral Consumers Alliance.

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0401_518L_gingersMarion Roach Smith

Three weeks out of college, I went to work for The New York Times. Four books and countless magazine and radio essays later, the lessons learned at that great newspaper – getting it right and making it short – inform every piece I write. My most recent book, The Memoir Project, A Thoroughly Non-Standardized Text on Writing & Life, came out with Grand Central Publishing in 2011.

 

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Roberts HeadshotJackie Roberts

Jackie Roberts is the artistic director of the ell project at the Arts Center of the Capital Region, a regional theater dedicated to developing and producing the plays of women 50 and over. Jackie has been a member of Blacksmyths, the African American writers, collective at the Mark Taper Forum; and a finalist for the Sundance Playwriting Festival and the Eugene O’Neill Festival. She was a panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York State Council on the Arts as well as a grant recipient. Her plays have been performed at the Sledgehammer Theater in San Diego, The Cleveland Public Theatre and schools around the country including the Mary McDowell Friends School/A School For Students With Learning Disabilities. Her article “Healing Myths from the Ethnic Community, or Why I don’t teach August Wilson” is available in the journal Theater Topics. She received her graduate degree from the Yale University School of Drama. As an actor, she flourished for several years working in the theater, where she received a Southern California Theatre Critics Award and a NAACP Image Award. Jackie also spent several years on the Warner Brothers’ sitcom, The Steve Harvey Show, Fox’s Party of Five as well as NBC’s The West Wing.

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Colleen_Paratore_SBColeen Paratore

Coleen Murtagh Paratore is the author of 17 picture book through young adult novels, including the best-selling The Wedding Planner’s Daughter (Simon and Schuster), now a six book series and optioned for a movie: the New York Public Library “Best Book of the Year,” Sunny Holiday; the 2012 Mom’s Choice Gold Award winner and Amazon “Top Ten Picture Book,” BIG; and the critically acclaimed autobiographical novel, Dreamsleeves, set in circa 1970’s Troy, NY. A full-time writer and teacher, Coleen is on the Advisory Board of the Rutger’s Council on Children’s Literature, and a member of the Society for Children’s Book Writer’s and Illustrators and the Children’s Literature Connection. She is also an elected trustee of the Troy Public Library. For more information visit: www.coleenparatore.com.

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Barbara_Slate

Barbara Slate – http://barbaraslate.com

Barbara Slate, pioneer among women in the comics industry, has written hundreds of comic books and graphic novels for DC, Marvel, Archie, Disney: Barbie, Beauty and the Beast, Pocahontas, Archie, Betty and Veronica. Created Angel Love, Yuppies from Hell, Sweet XVI. Getting Married and other Mistakes. Profiled in A Century of Women Cartoonists, Barbara teaches sequential art using her critically acclaimed textbook You Can Do A Graphic Novel (Britannica).


 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAMichael Welch

Mike Welch lives and writes in Albany, NY.  He received a Master’s degree in English Literature from Albany University in 1997. It proved so useful that he now works for the State of New York in a well-paying but basically soul-destroying job. His essays have appeared on WAMC, and he has read many times at the Arts’ Center’s Bookmarks series. His essays appeared weekly from September 2004 to December 2015 online in The Crime Writers’ Chronicle. He sincerely believes everyone has a valuable story to tell. Writing keeps him sane.