Happy New Year from the Outgoing President

It has been a very busy and productive year for the Wrightwood Arts Center (WAC). Please see the graphic below that summarizes our accomplishments. We are grateful for your generous support and participation, which played a pivotal role in our achievements.

Working with the community, our volunteer board and members have helped us create a new chapter for WAC. We are inspired to continue our momentum on all fronts, from producing a 2023 Wrightwood Arts & Wine Festival, creating visibility for Wrightwood and our arts community, building the local community of members and artists, and increasing outreach to underserved communities.

It has been my pleasure to serve as founding president of the Wrightwood Arts Center since its inception in 2019. As 2022 comes to a close, I am stepping down as president and leave the organization in capable hands. Tim Benge will assume the role of president after serving for 2 years as vice-president, and Jamie Crooke Powell, a new board member, will serve as vice-president. I will continue to serve on the board of directors as past president.

With a doctorate in musical arts, Tim Benge has a long history of arts leadership and nonprofit management since the mid-1990s. His career began as a musician and later progressed to serve as a high school/college music educator and music administrator. Tim’s non-profit experience includes his tenure as Executive Director of the California Alliance for Arts Education where he shaped and implemented scholarship programs for young artists.

With a master’s degree in fine arts, Jamie Crooke Powell is an artist, educator and administrator, whose practice is service-based, socially engaged and participatory, which often includes performance, graphic design, installation art, and sculpture. She has over 10 years of experience working with nonprofits and arts education in varying capacities from artist to director. As founder of Drawing Together, Jamie has initiated programs to bring the arts to Wrightwood Elementary School students.

Please join me in welcoming these talented artists as they serve the Wrightwood community through the Wrightwood Arts Center.

We invite you to partner with us by making a year-end donation. With your invaluable support, we will fulfill our commitment to offer the gift of the arts and creativity to our community and the region.

With appreciation and season’s greetings,

Joan McCandless


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