As we begin a new year, Watershed’s Board is pleased to welcome two new trustees into the fold as we bid a grateful farewell to three board members who have provided their talents, guidance and insights over many years.
New Trustee Janna Longacre brings decades of experience as an artist and educator to the Board. Janna uses clay, along with manufactured and found materials, to create sculptures and installations that shift the viewer’s perception through abstract narratives. For 47 years, Jana has taught at the Massachusetts College of Art and Design, where she developed courses that provide opportunities for students to study in Cuba, Vietnam, and Brazil. Her most recent course, Objects that Change Lives, addresses problems and solutions related to food, water, sustainability, health, and shelter.
Janna earned a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design and an MFA from the University of Michigan. She has exhibited nationally and has received funding from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Massachusetts Artist Foundation. Her work has been published in Art in America, American Ceramics, Sign of the Times, New York Times, and Boston Globe.
Incoming Trustee John Mullaney is a retired philanthropy and nonprofit executive who has spent most of his professional career helping diverse organizations craft, articulate, and implement their missions. In his capacity as director of a private foundation, he guided a variety of nonprofits, foundations, and government agencies to address complex policy issues. Prior to his 21 years in philanthropy, John held a variety of roles at the Institute for International Development and the Latin American Scholarship Program of American Universities at Harvard University. He has had the honor of working for local and state-wide constituents while serving on numerous boards.
John holds an MA from Georgetown University and completed his undergraduate education at Boston College. His ceramics credentials consist of one adult education course at Merrymeeting Adult Education and YouTube University. He looks forward to the day he succeeds in throwing a cup on a wheel. He remains an ardent fan of those who can and is honored to be in a position to help artists succeed.
Trustees who completed their terms of service at the end of 2023 include Beth Ann Gerstein, John Smith, and Sharon Townshend. John joined the board in 2022 upon moving to Maine’s midcoast, bringing valuable insights from his previous work as Director of the RISD museum. Beth Ann and Sharon have each served on the Watershed Board for decades, stewarding the organization through numerous changes and developments. Beth Ann joined Watershed’s advisory board in 2001, became a trustee in 2003, and served as Secretary and subsequently Vice President. She is currently Executive Director of the American Museum of Ceramic Art in Pomona, CA. Sharon first joined the Watershed Board in 1997 and has held a variety of positions during her tenure, including Secretary, Vice President, and Co-President. She maintains an active studio practice and will continue her board work with TEMPOart in Portland, ME. We are so grateful for Sharon and Beth Ann’s long-standing leadership, commitment, and vision that has shaped Watershed’s present and future!