Arts center elects new officers

June 24, 2014

LUDINGTON – Four new board members were elected, officers were selected and a new brand was announced at the annual meeting of the Ludington Area Center for the Arts on June 17.

The annual meeting celebrated 10 years since the formation of the Ludington Area Arts Council and five years since the purchase of the former United Methodist Church of Ludington building and converting it into the arts center.

Elected to serve three-year terms on the LACA board were Thom Hawley, West Shore Community College; Brad Reed, Todd and Brad Reed Photography; Julie Schrader, Schrader Events and Marketing; and Kim Skeltis, Blue Blaze Public Relations. Officers elected during the board organizational meeting were Barry Neal, president; Brad Reed, vice president; Tim McKay, past president; Marion Riedl, secretary, and Steve Bachleda, treasurer. Other board members continuing their terms include Justin Freeman, Andrew Thomas and Heather Tykoski.

Outgoing board members, Brian Madl and Chris VanAntwerp, were recognized for their years of service.

Corinn VanWyck, executive director, introduced the new brand, stating “The message behind our new brand for the arts center is driven by the idea that this arts center belongs to you.  “Find Your Center” is based on the premise that LACA exists to help you find the center of your own creativity and to nurture a larger creative culture in our community.”

VanWyck added that LACA is an arts advocacy organization that exists not only to unlock the creative potential of the individual but also to support arts and culture wherever it may happen. “Arts and culture are the center of what makes a community vibrant.”

The meeting included recognition of 10-year supporters of the LACA, who “had the confidence in LACA, saw value in its message, and have continued to contribute as a Ludington Area Center for the Arts member each year,” said Tim McKay, outgoing president. They included Bill and Anna Anderson, Heinz and Judy Bertram, Bill and Jane Carpenter, Carol Garneau, Ron and Ann Johnson, Bob and Doris King, Bob and Janet Manglitz, Jeanie Mortensen, Rebecca Mott, Bob and Kay Neal, Charles and Glenna Paukstis, Richard and Alison Puffer, Budde and Sheryl Reed, Milan and Dottie Reed, Todd and Debbie Reed, Betty Silander, Marianne Strickland and Joyce Usiak.

McKay also recognized the current ArtStart Society members, explaining these patrons “provide one full fiscal year of sponsorship for art and culture for the Ludington area, creating opportunities to enhance lives through art and to foster a community where arts and culture bring us together, feed our spirit, and fuel our growth.” The ArtStart Society members are Bob and Kay Neal, John and Anita Wilson, Carol Garneau, Dave and Chrissie Hall Fund of the Community Foundation for Mason County, and House of Flavors, Inc.

LACA volunteers were also honored, with VanWyck mentioning that the 10 individuals being recognized that evening had accumulated almost 2,000 hours of volunteer service in 2013.  At a value of $22.55 an hour (according to, that amounts to almost $40,000 in donated time. Volunteers recognized were Dan Blackstone, Cris Wegener, Erin Whitaker, Linda Hummel, Linda Sandow, Kris Campbell, Marty Cupp, Steve Bachleda, Emily Cupp and Marion Riedl.

LACA staff also were introduced and recognized during the meeting, including Christine Plummer, executive assistant/West Shore Art Fair coordinator; Ann Genson, program manager; and Jamie Catlett, arts and culture crusader.



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