Executive Director: Fran Rudoff

Fran Rudoff joined Watershed in March 2013 as a seasoned leader with extensive experience directing non-profit organizations. Prior to Watershed, Rudoff served as executive director of KIDS Consortium for fourteen years. There, she collaborated with state education agencies, school districts, and other organizations to integrate service-learning (application of academic knowledge and skills to solve community problems) into K-12 school culture and practice. She secured and managed numerous federal, state, and foundation grants, and diversified KIDS Consortium’s funding stream, enabling the organization to have greater entrepreneurial strengths and become more self-sustaining.

Rudoff has also worked for several state agencies in Maine directing regional planning, land use, and resource management efforts. Through her role as the Director of the Maine Coastal Program in the State’s Planning Office, she worked on a project to protect the Damariscotta River Estuary.

Before moving to Maine in 1986, Rudoff lived and worked in Washington, D.C. for a decade, holding positions at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Justice Department and the Congressional Office of Technology Assessment.

Rudoff is a graduate of the University of Rochester, with a B.A. in Environmental Studies, and of the University of Pennsylvania, with an M.A. in Regional Planning. While not a professional ceramist, she has worked in clay for many years and has a deep appreciation for the medium. She is the past president of Temple Beth El in Augusta, Maine. She lives in Litchfield, Maine and enjoys gardening, vegetarian cooking, hiking, and cross-country skiing.

Studio Manager: Reeder Fahnestock

Among his many duties, Studio Manager Reeder Fahnestock acts as an interface between the resident artists and the facilities by maintaining the kilns and equipment and providing safety and technical information and oversight for staff, assistants, and volunteers.

He received his B.F.A. from the Kansas City Art Institute. He also attended Kansas State University, where he studied with Yoshiro Ikeda, was awarded the Strecker-Nelson Gallery MFA Scholarship, built a new wood kiln, and taught beginning and advanced ceramics. Most recently, he was the inaugural artist in residence at Pinon Hill Pottery in La Veta, Colorado. He was also an artist-in-residence for two years at Pope Valley Pottery in the Napa Valley in California. His son, Ri, is studio shop manager at the University of New Hampshire in Durham and recently came in second in a hotly contested National Wife Carrying Competition in nearby Sunday River.

Director, Outreach & Communications: Claire Brassil

Claire directs Watershed’s marketing and messaging, photographs artists at work, and designs digital and print collateral. Additionally, she works with artists to organize Watershed’s residency sessions, workshops, and exhibitions.

Before joining the Watershed staff, Claire created the art program and served as lead art teacher at Girls Prep, the first New York City charter school for girls. Additionally, Claire worked as the studio manager for the Supporting Women Artists Project (SWAP) artist collective in Brooklyn, NY, managed a gallery that showed work by emerging international artists, and collaborated with a pioneering art lawyer on projects for Christie’s, the World Monuments Fund, Alliance for the Arts, One Laptop Per Child, and a number of private clients. Claire earned an A.B. in Women, Feminist, and Queer Studies from Vassar College and an M.F.A. in Painting from Cranbrook Academy of Art. Additionally, she has taken part in residencies at Vermont Studio Center, the Lerman Trust in Laceyville, Pennsylvania, and Kloster Bentlage in Rheine, Germany, and has exhibited work nationally and internationally.

Associate Director, Development & Special Events: Courtney Norian

Courtney joined Watershed in June of 2015, bringing with her experience in fundraising, event planning, and marketing. Courtney manages Watershed’s fundraising efforts and organizes Salad Days and other fundraising events.

Prior to coming to Watershed, Courtney worked in Boston for Dana-Farber Cancer Institute as member of the development marketing department and then as the associate director of the Boston Marathon® Jimmy Fund Walk. During her time at Dana-Farber, she helped the Jimmy Fund Walk become the highest grossing, single-day, fundraising walk in the nation, raising nearly $8 million in 2013. Early in her career, Courtney also worked for a small advertising agency outside Philadelphia and produced television shows for Warner Bros./Telepictures in New York City.

Courtney is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania with a B.A. in Communications. She hails from Wyndmoor, PA and currently lives in Bristol, ME with her husband, Matt, and her children Peter, Nate, and Harper.

Donor Relations & Major Gifts Manager: Courtney Brecht

Courtney assists with major gifts and the capital campaign, helps strategize fundraising efforts, and manages gift processing and the donor database. She has been working in the non-profit arts sector for more than fifteen years. With experience ranging from studio manager for the art department at Bowdoin College, to development and fundraising for MacDowell, the country’s oldest artist residency, she has always worked to support artists and the creation of new work.

Courtney graduated from Bowdoin College with a B.A. in Environmental Studies and Visual Arts, and earned an M.F.A. in Painting from Hunter College, CUNY. At Hunter, she received the Leeman Boksenbaum Scholarship for foreign study and in 2008 studied painting at the Frank Mohr Institute in Groningen, NL. In 2017, after 11 years in New York City, she returned to Maine to settle in the Mid-coast. She lives with her husband and two children in Camden.

Finance & Operations Manager: Tamsen Brooke Warner

Tamsen is thrilled to be the newest member of the Watershed team. Prior to Watershed, she worked at the Waterville Opera House for seven years in various roles, including executive director, stage manager, and scenic painter. Tamsen is a graduate of the University of Connecticut and has also worked with the Ogunquit Playhouse, The Muny in St. Louis, and Connecticut Repertory Theatre.  While she’s not a real ceramist, Tamsen loves to play in the mud and make wheel thrown pots for fun.  She resides in Augusta with her partner Ryan and two very spoiled cats.