Board of Directors
Learn more about the members of our talented and hardworking Board of Directors below!
Bio coming soon!
Bruce joined the Board in December 2016. He is founder and president of Connective Associates LLC and has helped organizations large and small to improve productivity, innovation, and leadership with a network perspective. He co-founded Arlington Porchfest and is especially passionate about designing, facilitating, and evaluating collaborative learning and impact. Bruce is a drummer and pianist and keeps the beat for Spy Pond Groove, a local jazz funk band. He has a PhD from Cornell University and has lived in Arlington since 1995.
Cathy joined the Board in December 2017. She is a visual artist, primarily a painter and printmaker. She has worked as a professional landscape architect and project manager for several high profile design firms in Boston and Cambridge and for the Commonwealth of Massachusetts Department of Conservation and Recreation (DCR) on large scale park projects. She has a master’s degree in Landscape Architecture as well as recently receiving a degree from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts Studio Diploma program.
Emily joined the Board in December 2019. She is an independent photographer and educator. She holds a BA in photography and art history from Hampshire College; an MA in community art education from RISD; and an MFA from the New Hampshire Institute of Art. Emily is represented by Gallery Kayafas in Boston. She teaches photography classes and workshops at the Griffin Museum of Photography, deCordova Museum, and at Lasell College. Learn more about Emily on her website https://www.emilybelzphotography.com/.
John Oliver, Co-Chair
John Oliver joined the Board in December 2020. He is a Senior Assistant Branch Manager at Cambridge Savings Bank, and originally met the Arlington Center for the Arts as their Personal Banker. John graduated with a B.A. in English Literature and a Certificate in Religious Studies from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in 2013. He is the President and Co-Founder of The BeatHeart Foundation, a small Non-Profit based in Reading, MA, whose mission is to celebrate local art and music while promoting addiction awareness and recovery. John is also an amateur drummer.
Julie Brown Neu, Treasurer
Julie Neu joined the Board in December 2020. She is a quilt and fiber artist whose work has been included in several recent ACA group shows and in the “Disarming: Memorial Quilts for Mass Shooting Victims” exhibit in 2019. She is also a digital strategist for Baker Library at Harvard Business School. Julie holds a BA in Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Virginia and a Masters of Theological Studies from Harvard Divinity School. She and her family have lived in Arlington for more than a decade.
Karen Brown, Co-Chair
Karen joined the Board in December 2015. She has worked in arts administration for 16 years in Boston and New York. She currently serves as Director of Performance Operations at Celebrity Series, a non-profit performing arts presenter of music and dance performances that take place at a variety of venues within the cities of Boston and Cambridge. Her most recent work includes producing community-focused, large-scale, participatory outdoor projects (Street Pianos Boston, Le Grand Continental, Let’s Dance Boston). She recently moved from Somerville to Arlington with her husband and son.
Margaret joined the Board in December 2016. She loves old stories and the characters that inhabit them. Her work as a puppeteer includes performing, teaching and presenting public shows. Having a vibrant arts center has made it more fun for Margaret to be an artist and mother in Arlington. She can’t wait to see the new ACA.
Nandana Mewada joined the Board in December 2020. She is an independent consultant with 20 years of experience in the sustainable investing industry having worked in the financial sector and with non-profit groups. An ACA “camp parent”, Nandana is an active resident volunteer for the arts, diversity and learning enrichment in Arlington. She and her family enjoy participating in community-based art projects in Arlington. She holds a Masters degree in Economics from Tufts University.
Nilou joined the Board in December 2021. Nilou occupies a dual role as a design principal and public/visual artist. Her boutique design studio does brand/digital/print work for clients such as the UN, Microsoft, Harvard University, British Art Center, and many others. In contrast her artwork has been exhibited in various galleries from Cambridge to Brooklyn, and beyond. Nilou has been an award recipient of MCC and NEFA grants, and her work has appeared in the Globe, WBUR, Chronicle, and Artscope, among others. She received her MFA in Graphic Design from the Yale University School of Art, and a BA in Studio Art from Mount Holyoke College. She was Arlington’s Artist-in-Residence during Spring 2021 for her public art installation Reflecting On Our Pandemic Experience, much of which she created while occupying a co-working studio space at ACA (nymdesign.com/niloumakes.com)
Patrick Guthrie joined the Board in December 2014. He is an architect specializing in adaptive use of existing buildings and historic preservation. Many of his clients are private not-for-profit organizations and institutions. He is a California transplant who has made his home in the Arlington area for the last twenty years. He currently serves as President of the Arlington Preservation Fund. He has dabbled in ceramics, stained glass, watercolors, photography and playing the recorder. He is making slow progress toward mastery of the mountain dulcimer.
Romy Wilhelm joined the Board in December 2020. She is a board-certified music therapist and Arlington mom. She has worked for ACA’s Young at Art camp as a music teacher since 2015, and has a private practice focused in early childhood and senior populations. Before completing her Master's degree at Lesley in 2011, Romy spent a decade entrenched in operations management for House of Blues and the Paradise Rock Club, as well as international music festivals. She has lived in Arlington since 2009 with her family in their big purple house, and cannot imagine representing a more worthy organization than our beloved ACA.
Sarah Buyer, Secretary
Sarah Buyer joined the Board in December 2020. She is an arts administrator specializing in programming and education. She holds a BA in History and Art History from Wellesley College, and an Mlit in Museum Studies from the University of St Andrews. Sarah currently works in Learning & Engagement at deCordova Sculpture Park and Museum and sits on the Boston Committee for Wellesley Friends of Arts. As the former Director of Education at ACA, Sarah has close ties to the community and mission of the Arlington Center for the Arts.
Thomas joined the Board in December 2016. He is a tax attorney working for a local software company. He moved to Arlington last year with his wife after completing his J.D. at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland, Ohio. He has previously worked as a banker. His undergraduate degree is from the University of Connecticut. Tom plays the tuba and took some acting and directing courses in college. He enjoys the symphony and musicals, and makes it a point to visit as many museums as possible when he travels.
Bio coming soon!