Allison Halstead Reid, Executive Director

A longtime Vashon resident, Allison Reid brings more than 25-years of career experience in the non-profit sector to her role as VCA’s Executive Director. An avid supporter of the arts and education, Reid began her career as Founder and Director of Seattle’s award-winning performing arts organization, AHA! Theatre. On Vashon, she has served as VCA’s Interim Executive Director, as both Director of Development & Marketing and Director of Advancement at Harbor School, as Principal of the event planning and fundraising consulting group, FortunaLux, and as a board member for several island non-profits. Her talents in development, event management, marketing and communications, and volunteer engagement are outmatched only by her dedication to the arts, education and the community of Vashon Island. She is a graduate of The Evergreen State College where she received her Bachelor of Arts degree.

Crissy Baker, Event Manager

Crissy attended both the University of Washington and Central Washington University, graduating with degrees in Psychology and Human Resources. She brings with her the experience and benefits from leading teams at large corporations such as Microsoft and Starbucks headquarters. After some time in the corporate world, Crissy was ultimately drawn to the fantastic arts environment at Vashon Center for the Arts. Coupling Crissy’s passion for the arts, with being one of the most tenured staff members at VCA, she seemingly has had engagement in many of the program areas that VCA offers- class registrations and dance instruction, event production and management, and program director. She provides a great look into the past, present, and future of Vashon Center for the Arts. If you see her around town and want to know more about VCA, she welcomes the opportunity to discuss classes, programs, events and more.

Ian Bell (he/him) – Marketing Director

Ian joins the staff of Vashon Center for the Arts as Marketing Director, having been a freelance design and marketing associate for VCA since 2021. Before coming to VCA, Ian spent five years with the Bureau of Fearless Ideas (a non-profit after-school writing and creative learning center for students ages 6-18) where he was Creative Director. Ian studied design at the School of Visual Concepts and earned a bachelor’s degree in Theatre from Bennington College in Vermont. Since 1994, Ian built a long career in the regional theater as a producer, director, and award-winning actor at Re-bar, Empty Space Theatre, Seattle Children’s Theatre, ACT Theatre, and Seattle Repertory Theatre, to name a few.

Jesse Bell, Technical Director

Jesse returned to Vashon Center for the Arts in 2021, after a temporary relocation to the Gulf Coast to focus on family; while working as Director of Events for Encore Global in the Tampa Bay region. Prior to that he worked as Technical Director at VCA from 2016- to mid 2018, coming aboard towards the end of construction of the Katherine L. White Hall. Jesse has worked in the live events industry for 18 years; including concerts, theatrical and corporate events. Prior to moving to Vashon in 2016, Jesse spent 9 years working as a Director in the corporate events industry for Encore Global, primarily in the Seattle area and Florida. While finishing college in Orlando, FL he worked freelance in local venues, theaters, concerts and show productions, always open to any gig in the field; doing everything from stage rigging to pyrotechnics, spot op, stagehand, venue runner, and as an audio engineer. Working in these diverse settings helped build his wide range of technical skills. Jesse holds a Bachelors of Arts in Mass Communication from the University of Central Florida and a Bachelors of Science in Recording Arts. Jesse has been drawn to the arts since a young age and feels strongly about accessibility of the arts to all people and the positive benefits that creative outlets have on individuals and the community.

Stephanie Johnson Blomgren, VAIS Program Manager

Stephanie joined the VCA staff in 2016 as a helper in the Late Start Arts program, gradually supporting the broader goals of the Arts Education department. Today she manages the Vashon Artists in Schools program—an integrated arts partnership with Vashon Island School District. Stephanie has a background in Literary Arts, with a Masters of Fine Arts in writing; before pursuing that creative passion, she built a successful freelance creative design and copywriting career, supporting non-profits, local and global. She is mom to one VCD dancer & one Suzuki student—both of whom make life more brilliant.

Tami Brown, Finance Manager

Tami Brown came to VCA as Finance Manager in early 2021.  With over 20 years of accounting experience, she has broad knowledge across multiple industries including construction, restaurant, television production, and the arts.  Having lived most of her life on Vashon, her family has deep rooted history all the way back to 1877.  She is excited to be contributing to the arts in our community.

Katie Doan, Accounting Specialist

Katie has lived on Vashon since the Spring of 2021. She and her partner set out on Vashon in the pursuit of engaging in regenerative agriculture. Katie wanted to further integrate into the community – so when the opportunity to work at VCA opened up to her – she grabbed it! Katie studied biology at Boise State University and political science at Southern Oregon University – holding an Associate’s Degree and Bachelor of Science. She’s also pursued a certification as a Functional Nutritional Therapy Practitioner, believing it is complementary to growing nutrient dense foods for the community. Katie’s passion for art is as an observer. Being able to bear witness to the creativity and bravery of art often brings her to tears, especially when watching anything performative – it has since she was a child attending plays, musicals, opera and beyond with her mother.

Wendy Finkleman, Blue Heron Education Center Director

Wendy joined VCA in 2010, after working in the field of education for over 15 years. Wendy worked in student services for University of Cincinnati, Western Washington University and the Art Institute of Seattle and spent a decade at Antioch University Seattle as an academic advisor and part-time adjunct faculty. In addition to being an accomplished photographer and running a portrait photography business, Wendy likes to explore different art mediums; her current favorites are felting, mosaic and encaustics.

Joy Ghigleri, Registrar/Office Manager of Blue Heron Education Center

Joy started at Vashon Center for the Arts as a student in the dance and theatre programs in 2014. She found a deep love for the arts and, after graduating from Vashon High School, she attended Pacific Lutheran University where she earned a BFA in Acting and Directing. During her time at PLU, she was a member of the national collegiate theatre honor society, Alpha Psi Omega, and became the president of PLU’s Theta Pi chapter during her senior year. She worked with APO and PLU to direct a theatre for young audiences’ production and produce and teach educational theatre workshops for students in elementary school, middle school, and high school. She also studied in London for a semester and worked as an intern at Theatro Technis where she helped develop a staged storybook reading program for preschoolers and managed the theater’s social media. Joy moved back to the island in 2020 and accepted her current position as Blue Heron Registrar and Office Manager in 2021. Joy is also a teaching artist at VCA and has been teaching theatre and tap dance since 2017 and 2018 respectively.

Cyra Jane, Grant Writer & Marketing Support

Cyra Jane moved out to Vashon in 2014 to build a studio at the Beall Greenhouses and joined VCA as grant writer and marketing design support in April of 2020. She has a Master’s degree in Professional and Technical writing and has worked in book design, editing and grant writing for art collectives for nearly 15 years. An artist in her own right, she is a stone carver, sculptor, painter, and installation artist ( Before starting work at VCA, she was featured in the gallery in a 3-woman show in 2019.

Allie is a Vashon Island native who has spent the past 20 years working in the arts, with the last 15 in arts non-profits. Allie grew up attending classes at the Blue Heron and working with island artists in classroom residencies and values these interactions with the arts in her early childhood as being the cornerstones to her future education and work life. After graduating from Vashon High School, Allie went on to study Art History in college, which took her all over Europe studying drawing, painting and sculpture. Since then, she has worked in art galleries and photography studios, but has found her true love in the non-profit arts sector, where she has found her greatest passion of all: working to ensure everyone has access to the arts in their schools and communities. Allie spent the past 16 years in Portland working for arts non-profits focused on arts education, and brings that knowledge and excitement to Vashon, where she moved back with her husband and two children in 2022.

DANIEL MEISNER, Patron Services Associate
Daniel comes to VCA after twenty-three years as Gallery Director for Glasshouse Studio.  Seattle’s oldest glassblowing studio.  Raised in Wisconsin by a five-time Polka Music Hall of Fame recipient and art teacher.  He grew up surrounded by music, art and culture.  After continuing his education in Graphic Design and Fine Art, he moved to Seattle where he embraced the vibrant arts scene.  He brings with him years of experience in customer service and corporate relations.  A Vashon resident since 2007.

Lynann Politte, Gallery Director

Lynann Politte has been a promoter, director, producer, CoHousing community member, business coach, mother, grandmother, sister, activist, feminist, and marketing strategist. She produced and directed The Vagina Monologues on Vashon in 2002 and 2003 to sold-out audiences. Lynann has an MBA and her work experience includes launching a women’s jewelry line, working in the fashion industry, being a international corporate planner, producing a syndicated radio show, managing internationally tours, and leading conference workshops. She’s lived on and loved Vashon since 2000.

Kathi Ray, Groundskeeper

Biography coming.

Jill Venturi, Administrative Director

Jill returned to Vashon Center for the Arts in 2018 after 2½ years championing the Island’s senior population fundraising for the Vashon Community Care Foundation. She previously served for six years in a development role at Vashon Center for the Arts for the campaign to build the Katherine L White Hall. Before moving to Vashon Island in 2005, Jill spent eleven years as creative manager for advancement communications at Pepperdine University in Malibu, CA for the $300 million Challenged to Lead capital campaign. She holds a bachelor’s degree in graphic communication from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo.

Vadne White, Director of Dance

Biography coming.

Our Mission: Vashon Center for the Arts, a collaborative and community-based organization, provides a center for the arts on Vashon Island, initiates quality arts experiences for all ages and creates opportunities for artists to perform and exhibit their work.

The Board

Marcia Bruya is an experienced business executive and has been an avid supporter of VCA for many years. Newly retired, she was a Senior Associate at Point B and was successful in numerous roles including executive coaching, business process redesign, change management, operational support, technical project leadership and software implementations.

Long time islander, Bruce Morser is an award winning freelance illustrator and frequent teaching artist for Vashon Artists in Schools.

Sean Waldron’s role on VCA’s board of trustees is a natural extension of his lifelong dedication to the arts and his commitment to supporting local talent. With degrees in architecture from Washington State University and the University of Oregon, he honed his craft over a decade designing diverse commercial projects, from healthcare campuses to Seattle’s iconic Pike Place MarketFront. In 2021, Sean transitioned to become a partner at Waldron Designs, channeling his expertise into shaping residential and commercial spaces across Vashon Island and the broader Puget Sound region.

Mark Pinto has been a residential real estate broker since 2003.  He’s currently affiliated with Windermere Chambers Bay, working primarily with clients in North Tacoma, University Place and Gig Harbor.  Prior to his career in real estate, Mark worked as a certified genetic counselor, first at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center in New York and then at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles.

Mark has served on a number of non-profit boards and committees over the years, including Tacoma Arts Live, UW Tacoma, Greater Tacoma Community Foundation and the Pierce County Library Foundation.

Mark and his partner Jeff Williams have lived on Maury Island since 2015.  They currently split their time between the island and a duplex in Central Tacoma.

For the past three decades Kevin McMurdo has worked for and with professional service firms in the areas of marketing, business development, communications and client service. He has been a member of the Oregon State Bar Association since 1986. He retired from his consulting practice in July 2019. A Vashon neighbor since 1997, he has served two earlier terms on the VCA Board, from 2000-2002 and from 2011-2013.

David Armstrong is an American stage director, writer, producer, lecturer, and choreographer. He is best known for his work at The 5th Avenue Theatre in Seattle where from 2000 to 2018 he served as the Producing Artistic Director and Executive Producer, and where he is currently Artistic Director Emeritus.

Bio coming…

Pat Call retired in 2023 after a 40-year career in a variety of technology related positions. With B.A. and D. Phil degrees in Physics from Reed College and Oxford University, Pat first worked as a bench scientist at an industrial lab (RCA Labs in Princeton, New Jersey) and the Solar Energy Research Institute where he was one of the first 10 employees of a new National Laboratory for Renewable Energy (now relabeled as NREL). As an undergraduate Pat was the nation’s youngest licensed senior nuclear reactor operator and was selected in 1971 for the Rhodes Scholarship. In addition to his work as a scientist, Pat has had senior roles in a venture backed startup and managed a data publishing business in the New Ventures portion of US West before moving into educational software. For the last 22 years of his career Pat was a Vice President for education technology publisher Cengage Learning (previously Thomson Learning) where he managed groups up to 500 employees. He has served on the boards of the Harbor School, the Vashon Island Rowing Club, the Westside Water Association and Pacific Research, all on Vashon Island.

Bio coming…

John de Groen is a small business owner interested in the arts. He has performed with the Vashon Chorale, Opera and Drama Dock. John and his wife Beth support all the various arts as well as other not for profit organizations. He previously served as the President of the Board for VCA.

Shannon Flora is an experienced non-profit leader having served on the board for Poncho and as Board President at ArtsWest.  She also served on the state board for Best Buddies, PTA boards with Vashon and Seattle Schools, as well as other organizations serving individuals with disabilities and the arts. Her multifaceted involvement ranges from spearheading arts-related fundraising events, serving an interim ED for ArtsWest, advocacy for disabled students and adults, with all including active participation in community outreach. Professionally she has worked with United Way of King County, and The Seattle Foundation.  She currently administers a private family foundation and is part of a team that is creating social activities for adults with disabilities on Vashon Island (Inclusion Island) . Her passion for the arts extends to her participation on stage with Vashon Chorale (soprano section leader), Vashon Opera, and numerous community theater productions. Her leadership, strategic thinking, and passion for community engagement make her an exemplary board member for Vashon Center for the Arts.

Bio coming…

Bio forthcoming…

Molly Reed and her husband moved to Vashon from Seattle in 2006 after her appointment as Executive Director of Vashon Allied Arts (now Vashon Center for the Arts). A year later, she was charged with leading the effort to create a campus for the arts which included the historic Blue Heron. The collaborative and joint work of Kay White, community members, donors, board members and staff resulted in the opening of Vashon Center for the Arts in 2016. Her previous careers included the founding of Seattle Children’s Theatre, sales and marketing, and ten years as Vice President of Community Relations at US Bank where she experienced the joy of investing more than $10 million in communities across Washington State. She is excited and proud to return to VCA as a trustee to support its ongoing contributions to our beloved community.