Watershed Board “Passes the Torch” to New Leadership Team

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Joyce Cohen, Paul Stark, and Chris Gustin

Watershed is fortunate to have a dedicated group of extraordinary people who serve on our Board of Trustees and Advisory Council. At a recent meeting in St. Petersburg, Florida, board members were graciously welcomed to the St. Pete ceramics community by friends affiliated with the Morean Center for Clay, the Morean Arts Center, and the Chihuly Collection.

Our board held two days of meetings and “passed the torch” of leadership from Paul Stark to Joyce Cohen. We thank Paul for his years of service as board President and are thrilled to welcome Joyce to her new role!

Joyce Cohen joined the Watershed Board of Trustees in 2015. She spent many years as Assistant Professor of Art History at Simmons College in Boston, MA, and retired from teaching in 2012. At Simmons she taught popular courses on contemporary art and created a class focused on the collections in several of Boston’s preeminent museums. She also developed an arts administration major that connected students with diverse performing and visual arts organizations in New York City. Her research focused on self-taught artists and new relationships between art and craft, with her work largely centered on women artists in the mainstream like Kiki Smith, and “outsider artists” including Gayleen Aikens, Clementine Hunter, and Nellie Mae Rowe. Joyce also served on the Collections Committee and the Board of Trustees of the Fuller Craft Museum and was Advisor to the Foundation of Self-Taught Artists. Prior to her tenure in the academic world, Joyce worked as a partner with Aptekar/Cohen Arts Management, helping collectors acquire art for corporate spaces and private collections.

We are also delighted that long-time board member JoAnn Schnabel is our new Vice President. JoAnn is a ceramic artist and Professor of Art at the University of Northern Iowa. Her work includes modular pieces often inspired by natural forms and sculptures that reference the vessel tradition. She has exhibited nationally and internationally, and her work is included in numerous public and private collections.

In addition to these leadership changes, the board welcomed three new trustees:

  • Patricia Harrington of Portland, ME – currently maintains a ceramics practice, retired from planning and management positions in the private and public sectors
  • Don Ridley of Phoenix, AZ – ceramic artist and Department Head for Ceramics at the Phoenix Center for the Arts
  • Sharon Townshend of Durham, ME – ceramic artist and long-time Watershed board member (including roles as past president and secretary)

and three new Advisory Council members:

  • Susan Beiner of Phoenix, AZ – ceramic artist and Lincoln Endowed Chair of Ceramics at Arizona State University
  • Lynn Peters of Worth, IL – ceramic artist and Professor at Moraine Valley Community College, Palos Hills, IL
  • Hope Rovelto of Portland, ME – ceramic artist, print maker, and owner of Little Chair Printing

We also bid farewell to Trustees Jim Lawton and Tim Zajac, and Advisory Council members Alexandra Forst, Shawn O’Connor, and Melissa Stern. They have all contributed their time, talents, and resources to supporting Watershed over the years and will be greatly missed.

See a full list of Watershed Trustees and Advisory Council members.