Hometown: Cascade, Idaho
Currently: Seattle, Washington
Notable Achievements; Galena Park ISD Bilingual Teacher of the Year, Red Cross Spirit of Service Award, Patent for a Photosynthetic Bioreactor used to treat wastewater, once fought a raccoon with her bare hands
Most Memorable Performance: Crispen Spaeth’s “Dark Room Trio” where the dancers were entirely in the dark and the audience was able to watch the performance with night vision goggles.
Current Art Endeavour: Trying to learn “Dream a Little Dream of Me” on the ukelele.
Influential Art Teacher: Mr. Bill Leaf. As a teacher, Mr. Leaf led all of the bands and choirs in town, from 5th graders to seniors, and he nurtured my love of music (though, sadly, the saxophone never really did take.) It is now that I am deeply thankful for the work he did as an administrator as well. He wrote all of the grants that made arts integration and truly innovative instruction a possibility at our rural school– it was largely invisible work, but it made a significant difference.
Currently: Seattle, WA
Most Memorable Performance or Art Piece Currently Inspiring You:
Ragtime at the 5th Ave Theater last year. Incredible moving and still inspiring my work today!
Current Art Endeavour:
Making hip-hop dance a regular part of my life again.
Influential Art Teacher or How Arts Learning Influenced You:
Mrs. Bruening-Wright (“Bee-Dub”) was both my calculus AND my hip-hop dance teacher in high school. Through her instruction and subsequent dance classes, groups, and experiences, hip-hop became a source of expression and community for me for many years. That’s why my “current art endeavor” is to get back into it!
Currently: Auburn, WA
Notable Achievements: I started working for my first non-profit (environmental advocacy) when I was 6 and I’ve been heavily involved in at least one since.
Most Memorable Performance: The first time I saw Wagner’s Ring Cycle in Seattle in 1995. The music and performance were incredible and seeing that opera made me fall in love with Seattle and move here.
Current Art Endeavour: Working with the Emerald City Supporters to create “tifo” – the massive painted displays at Sounders FC soccer matches.
Influential Art Teacher or How Arts Learning Influenced You: I got my first piano teacher when I was about 3-4 years old and studied piano with her through junior high. I always learned and played just for enjoyment, but took great strength from it through the trials and tribulations of being a kid. To this day, I have to have a piano in my house and playing is one of the best ways I have to relieve stress on a bad day, or just relax on a good day.
Currently: Ocean Park, Washington
Notable Achievements: Media Arts Cadre Member, OSPI, 2017- present
Regional Visual and Performing Arts Lead (Region 6), California County Superintendent’s Educational Services Art Initiative, 2014-2016
Teacher of the Year, Whitmore Charter School of the Arts and Technology, 2011
Current Inspiration: I am currently inspired by Shepard Fairey’s work. His “We the People” series is incredibly inspiring as an artist and an educator. I have developed a class at my middle school site called AIM: Arts, Identity and Mindfulness where we explore the idea of identity now and in the future, and how students can use the arts to channel emotions.
Art Endeavour of the Moment: I am currently developing and teaching an art program at Hilltop Middle School in Ilwaco, WA. I teach AIM: Arts, Identity, and Mindfulness, Art 1, Advanced Art, Digital Art, and Engineering and Design. In personal art endeavors, I do freelance graphic design and love to paint when I can. I have started to dabble in using craft beer as a painting medium.
Influential Art Teacher or How Arts Learning Influenced You: The arts have always been a focus in my life. In high school, I sang in the choir and show choir, danced on the dance team, performed in school musicals, and took every visual arts class I could. In college, I majored in Art Education as well as Elementary Education. I have been in education for 19 years. I am a big proponent of STEAM (don’t forget that A!) and arts integration. I have had the privilege of working with The Kennedy Center for the Arts to be trained in Arts Integration and have developed professional development in STEAM. I am so excited to be able to help ArtEd Washington in their continuing development of ALIC.