Our People

OCA BOARD MEMBERS

Cori Swisher Anderson

Cori Swisher Anderson

President

 

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Cori Anderson is a Utah native, having grown up Park City and eventually migrating to the Ogden Valley. The years that Cori spent earning two Bachelors degrees in Art History and French Language from  the University of Utah, was time well spent. If she learned anything, it was that existing in an art-rich environment makes a world of difference in one’s attitude, perspective and approach to life. She holds certifications in fundraising and proposal writing, which is the focus of most of her professional and volunteer work.

Cori spent the early days of her career fundraising for non-profits and did a short stint selling death to the dying at a hospice agency in the Salt Lake Area, before landing in her current role at R&O Construction. She spends her work days organizing people, ideas, pictures and words.  She spends her free time in the mountains with her husband, toddler and two loveable shelter dogs. Her life philosophy is that the time between worn in and worn out is where the magic happens, so make every day count. Her favorite artist works in all mediums and favors improvised performance art, with an emphasis in exploring emotional reactions to life situations.(She’s three and is the absolute joy of her parents’ life.)

Kelly McLeod

Kelly McLeod

Vice President

 

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Kelly McLeod has worked within Health Care Administration for the past 15 years. Her experience with hands-on project management and implementing operational improvements makes her uniquely qualified as a Producer and Studio Manager. She has been a valuable asset over the years helping raise Cam McLeod Photography production value and streamline the client/creative process. She makes noticeable improvements to production value, client communications, and overall workflow efficiencies.

Kate Bruce

Kate Bruce

Creative

 

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Kate Bruce moved to Ogden from Chicago 35 years ago with her husband Steve Bruce.   From the moment she arrived in Ogden Kate began volunteering and serving on various boards and committees.  Her volunteer efforts have included Junior League of Ogden, The Stewart Rehabilitation Foundation, Handicapped Equestrian Program Freedom Riders, Guardian Ad Litem,  Ogden Symphony and Ballet Association and currently a member of the AHA Board at Weber State University.

It was through her children, Jane and Claire that Kate really became involved in the production and promotion of the arts.  Volunteering at Ogden High School, Kate helped organize a team of parents to raise money for the theatre program and produce several wonderful musical productions. Kate also involved the students from the Weber State theatre program in the productions at Ogden High.  Kate later went on to assist in theatre productions at St. Joseph’s High School as well.
From this background of volunteerism and musical theatre productions, Kate was honored to be asked in 2006 to serve as the theatre representative on the Ogden City Arts Council.  She was later elected as chairman and continued to serve as chairman until her term expired in 2014. Kate is proud to have been involved with many wonderful public art installations in Ogden.   Adventures Crossroads, Water Cycle, Glide, Soar Fly, the airport installation, as well as the Kiesel Ave Project, to name just a few.  In 2014 Kate was honored with the Mayor’s Award for Art Advocacy.
Now after many years of appreciating, supporting and promoting the arts, Kate has found a new passion in creating art.  For anyone who has seen her work, color and happiness are the essence of her pieces.  Kate paints full time and is fortunate to have her art displayed in many locations in Northern Utah and in collectors homes across the country.
OCA-Staff-ThaineFischer

Thaine Fischer

Resource Development

 

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A social entrepreneur, Thaine has an extensive background in real estate acquisitions, development, and management. Most recently redeveloping historic commercial buildings in Ogden’s downtown core.

Founder (1989) of Fischer Villa Resorts he acquired, developed and operated multiple resort hotel locations including Arizona: Mesa, Scottsdale, and Tucson. Thaine sold the company to ResortQuest(NSE:RZT), Arizona in 1999.

In 2006 Thaine and wife Tahna moved to Ogden, Utah and shortly thereafter Fischer Regan Enterprises began joint venturing on the purchase and redevelopment of historic commercial buildings. Using NMTC, HTC and RDA tax credits Fischer Regan Enterprises has successfully redeveloped and stabilized multiple income producing assets.

Other career highlights for Thaine was co-founding the Arizona Chapter of Young Entrepreneurs Organization, now EO. Today, Thaine continues to be involved in the Utah Chapter of EO and various non-profit boards benefiting his community.

Mountain West Architecture

Mark Hilles

Fundraising

 

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Mark is the Owner of Mountain West Architects (MWA) in Ogden with over 35 years of experience in a wide array of building types. Mark and his wife Lita, moved to Ogden in 2000 from El Paso, TX, and have fallen in love with the Wasatch Front. Lita teaches special education in the Weber School District.

 

Mark’s intense design focus on the practice of architecture has evoked a passion for all forms of art and creativity. He has been a creative driver for many renovations and new projects in Northern Utah. MWA has fully embraced the Nine Rails Creative district- with their offices located here. Mark is active in many organizations within the community.

 

His family has been rooted in the arts with his father having a successful architectural practice in El Paso for nearly 50 years. Mark’s uncle, Robert Massey, was a well-known artist and professor of art, at UTEP for about 25 years as well.

 

Mark’s interests include an intense love for outdoor activities- camping, skiing, hiking, traveling the West (and abroad), hunting/fishing, and conservation efforts. Also, dabbles in real estate investment and actually enjoys working in the yard. His Australian Shepherd, Remington (Remi), makes a very energetic travel and play companion and is always ready to roll.

Andy Primbs

Marketing

 

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Eden, Utah. He graduated with a BFA in Visual Communication from Weber State University. His ability to combine technical and art gives him the opportunity to create innovative solutions, and offer key insight where the two overlap. At the root of his design philosophy, Andy believes there is fruit in every moment, more is less, and the glass is always half full. Life is family (three fantastic daughters & his inspiring wife, Emily), friends, adventure, and personal interests. Work which is design (web, print, conceptual), marketing, and branding is woven between the four.

Aniza M. Brown

Aniza M. Brown

Events Director

 

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As Executive Director of Catalyst Campus for Technology & Innovation, Ogden, UT, Aniza is leading the initiative to create a collaborative ecosystem where industry, academia, small business, workforce training, entrepreneurs, startups and venture capitalist intersect with Utah’s aerospace and defense industry. In this role, she is collaborating with the State of Utah, Silicon Slopes, DOD and small businesses to create a sense of community, spark innovation, and stimulate business growth. Catalyst Campus provides the infrastructure for small business to support the rapid innovation of technology to solve operational needs for the warfighter. Previously, Ms. Brown served as the Head of Northrop Grumman’s Ground Based Strategic Deterrent’s (GBSD’s) Agile Transformation Task Force. She served as liaison between Northrup Grumman, the Air Force, and Suppliers on technology modernization opportunities. In this role, she was responsible for leading the initiative to break down communication barriers by migrating towards a cloud infrastructure that enabled collaborative development. She drove agile methodologies and tools into each GBSD segment for increased efficiency.

 

Ms. Brown also worked as the Chief of Corporate Transformation and Federal Women’s Program Manager for the Ogden Air Logistics Complex, Hill Air Force Base, Utah. Ms. Brown was responsible for creating a culture of strategic collaboration, innovation and efficiency. She served as the liaison between the Air Force Enterprise, Hill Air Force Base, and Utah on workforce requirement strategies. Established collaborative partnerships with Silicon Slopes, federal agencies, state and local government, academic institutions, private sector employers, and community leaders. Developed and led the initiative to deploy innovation centers across the state of Utah, with a mission to drive innovation, a culture change towards cross functional teams, increased employment opportunities, implementing Agile/DevSecOps for F-35 and F-16 teams. She also led the civilian workforce strategy team which coordinates Hill AFB activities in established HR policy, development and deployment of HR tools across the Air Force, workforce analysis, nationwide strategic recruiting, branding, social media, mentoring, TEDx events, professional development, and retention initiatives.

 

As the Federal Women’s Program Manager, she served as the subject matter expert on employment needs and barriers for women as they relate to federal employment policies and practices. In this position, she advises senior leadership on the status, progress and concerns of women on the installation. Ms. Brown is responsible for coordinating recruiting locations and events, committee meetings, special monthly emphasis group activities, etc. Each year she analyzes base statistics that detail the hiring and promotion activities for Hill AFB and works on policy changes that can improve any barriers affecting women at Hill Air Force Base. In addition, she worked with the Pentagon to change DOD wide policies on barriers that affect women in the workforce.

EDUCATION: Bachelors of Science in Electrical Engineering, Northern Arizona University, Flagstaff, AZ

Kaceelyn Pouttu

Kaceelyn Pouttu

Treasurer

 

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Kaceelyn Pouttu is an Ogden transplant, born and raised in a small town outside of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho. She came to Weber State University to pursue an education as well as compete at the collegiate level but has since stayed after falling in love with Ogden’s recreational fortune. Kaceelyn received her bachelor’s and master’s degrees at Weber State University and has pursued a career in public accounting at Eide Bailly. Her work has provided a tax background in a vast array of industries including real estate, state and local, and private equity.

 

Her passion is helping small businesses thrive by overseeing and assisting with what most business owners love to hate, i.e. taxes, and allowing business owners to focus on what matters most – running a successful business. She is excited to start devoting her time to give back to the community she has grown to love and is looking forward to being a part of OCA’s growth!

 

In her free time, Kaceelyn can be found running the trails with her puppy, eating out at the many local restaurants Ogden has to offer, or getting in a quick 18 at the Ogden Golf and Country Club.

 

Mercedes Fitchett – OCA Board of Directors

Mercedes Fitchett

Fundraising Director

 

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Mercedes is Peruvian-American and recently moved to the Ogden area with the Department of Defense. She immediately became enamored with the arts, music, outdoors and vibrant entrepreneurial spirit in northern Utah. Her professional background includes multiple assignments with the U.S. government in international trade, finance, economics and national security innovation across multiple geographical areas including Washington, DC to Hawaii to Iraq and now northern Utah. She’s previously served on nonprofit boards focused on sports, education and women and girls’ empowerment. She is a graduate of Pomona College, Georgetown University (Master of Science in Foreign Service), Air War College and the Dwight D. Eisenhower School at National Defense University..

Bonnie Whalen

Events

 

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Bio Coming Soon.

OCA ADVISORY COMMITTEE

Jessica Greenberg

Advisory Committee

 

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Jessica is an Associate Professor of Theatre at Weber State University and a professional freelance theatre designer. Her work as lighting, sound, and projection designer has taken her to many venues around the country, with diverse projects in theatre, dance, opera, and site-specific installation. New York credits include productions at La Mama Experimental Theatre Club, A.R.T.  New York, 59E59, New Opera NYC, and Adjusted Realists. Locally, she frequently works with SB Dance, Salt Lake Acting Company, and Plan B Theatre. Awards include the Design Arts Utah Juror’s Award, the Lowe Innovative Teaching Award, the Lindquist Creative Fellowship, and the WSU Outstanding Mentor Award.

 

She has a BA in Theatre from Hampshire College, a MFA in Lighting Design from the University of Massachusetts Amherst, and is a member of the United Scenic Artists Union Local 829. She spends her free time exploring our beautiful western landscapes with her husband and parenting their fluffy cat and goofy dog.

www.jessicagreenberg.com

Cam McLeod

Cam McLeod

Advisory Committee

 

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Cam McLeod is a commercial and editorial photographer whose work reflects mountain culture, adventurous lifestyles and authentic experiences. His imagery is characterized by its tactile quality, cinematic style with vivid color profiles, lifelike depth and an authentic perspective that equally captures stimulating and subtle movements. His body of work, which extends from adventure photography to environmental portraiture, hinges on narrative experience and McLeod innates ability to build complex storylines from a single frame
cammcleodphotography.com

Olivia Curley

Olivia Curley

Advisory Committee

 

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Olivia Curley is an Ogden resident and corporate and securities attorney with the law firm of Snell & Wilmer LLP. Olivia advises clients on securities compliance, corporate governance, mergers and acquisitions and general corporate law matters. Olivia was raised in Littleton, Colorado and received her BA and JD from Brigham Young University. Olivia and her husband relocated to Ogden in 2017 and are very active in the outdoors and trails networks in Weber County.

Todd Oberndorfer – Advisory Committee

Todd Oberndorfer

Advisory Committee

 

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Todd Oberndorfer is the Arts Outreach Manager & Advisor for WSU’s Department of Visual Art & Design. He is also an Adjunct Art Professor at WSU. Todd is the Program Director of Arts in the Parks, a summer outreach program that began in 2010 and offers opportunities for children and their families to explore visual and performing arts through hands-on activities.

 

Oberndorfer is a founding member of The Banyan Collective media company. He is host of the Nine Rails Arts Podcast and Co-host of Van Sessions at The Monarch (live audience podcast & music series) and the Ogden Outdoor Adventure Show. The Banyan Collective has produced Arts & Adventure podcasts since 2010. Todd Oberndorfer and R Brandon Long, founders of The Banyan Collective, were 2018 Recipients of the “Media Arts” Award at the Ogden City Mayor’s Awards in the Arts.

 

Oberndorfer is Chairperson of the Ogden City Arts Advisory Committee. As an Arts Advocate, he frequently collaborates as a Consultant with Ogden City Arts, Ogden Downtown Alliance, Ogden City Community & Economic Development, and Union Creative Agency. Todd is a Certified Change Leader with the Utah Division of Arts & Museums, a professional development leadership program. He was the recipient of the “Arts Advocacy” Award at the 2019 Ogden City Mayor’s Awards in the Arts.

 

Todd is currently pursuing a Master of Arts in Arts Administration at Southern Utah University. He holds a BFA in 2D Design from Weber State University and combines social activism and art by addressing issues such as clean air and population growth in his printmaking and graphic design work.

Robbin Daffin

Robbin Daffin

Advisory Committee

 

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Robbin Daffin is the owner and creative designer of Hope & Evolution Flower Studio in the Monarch, located in Ogden, UT. She has nearly 30 years of experience as a florist, visual merchandiser, and stylist.

Over this time Robbin has also worked for non-profits Tracy Aviary and Ronald McDonald House and volunteers for Rape Recovery Center, Utah AIDS Foundation, KUER, and various food banks.

Born in Brigham City and raised in Ogden Robbin recently moved back to Ogden with her wife, Mary. She’s lived in New York, the Bay Area, Germany, Salt Lake City, and Sacramento. She comes from a long line of artists and creatives and has instilled this in her artistic children as well.

OCA STAFF

Venessa Castagnoli

Executive Director

 

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Venessa is an Ogden-based artist who graduated from Weber State University with her degree in Fine Arts 3D/Sculpture. She has held several state-wide exhibitions, including a group exhibition at our very own PLATFORMS in 2018 and the Kiesel Avenue Project commissioned by Percent for the Art in 2014. Most recently, Venessa was the Global Events Manager for Tentsile, a small outdoor start-up. Venessa combines a passion needed to make OGDEN CONTEMPORARY ARTS an epicenter of the Arts for our community with established networking, fundraising, marketing, administrative, and managerial skills needed to run our fabulous non-profit.

Lance Garcia

Lance Garcia

Staff

 

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Lance Garcia is a gallery assistant, preparator and event coordinator. He supports the art world through several avenues and works closely with the local art community. Lance has a deep passion for making art accessible and invigorating.

Eden Buxton

Eden Buxton

Staff

 

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Eden Buxton received her BFA from Weber State University in Photography and her MFA from the University of Utah in Film & Media Arts. She believes adamantly in the accessibility of art, and has curated exhibitions on the streets, in a bus and elevators to expand the idea of art accessibility. Her passions include teaching, skiing, cinema, photography and, of course, her amazing wife Devi.

 

Learn more about Our Vision and  Our Center.