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Meet Our Team

Board Members

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Helen Wilson (She/Her)

Founder/Director

Helen is a Fine Artist and educator with a Master of Fine Arts from The San Francisco Art Institute and a Bachelor in English from the United States International University, which she attended in San Diego and Bushey England. She also attended the Free Academy of the Arts in Den Haag, The Netherlands. She has taught Design & Composition, Introduction to Art, Drawing I, II & Figure Drawing, Sculpture I & II, and Foundry at Palomar College. She is the facilitator of the Artists Group Tuesday Nights. Helen is actively pursuing a full and equitable creative life for all.

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Cindy Dodson (She/Her)

Board Member

Cindy’s degree in Sociology and her studies of the Arts has been a benefit to The Art Center and she brings an understanding of how human nature, cultural beliefs, and the arts affect communities. Cindy is involved in social justice action and has taken leadership roles in teaching others about the causes and consequences of social injustice. Her travels throughout Asia have given her a broader appreciation of all cultures. Cindy identifies as mixed ethnicity from indigenous peoples of the Americas.

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Charlene Pulsonetti

Board Member

Website/Media

Charlene received her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the Art Institute of Boston at Lesley University. She has participated in shows from coast to coast, including a solo show at The Gallery at Warner Springs, and has served as Artist-In-Residence at Petrified Forest National Park. Her work can be found in the collections of the Boston Public Library, the Petrified Forest National Park, and the Gila Cliff Dwellings National Park. She is also a self-published author and an award-winning journalist with a background in small business marketing.

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Heidi Schlotfeldt

Board Member

Heidi likes to say she proudly represents the voice of the absolutely amateur artists in the community.  Her degree in Psychology and a Masters in Social Work supports her passion for considering a diversity of perspectives and the impact of art on human beings.  Art is an integral part of her day job as a Middle School History, English, and ELD teacher where she is constantly amazed by the talent, courage, and creativity of young artists and writers.

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Claudia Dufresne

Board Member

Claudia has enjoyed teaching and making art for over 30 years. She began teaching school art programs and was soon working in elementary schools developing art curriculum based on the current area of study. After receiving her BFA in Sculpture Claudia taught classes to both children and adults. Her skills include ceramic and metal sculpture, bronze casting, fiber arts, batik, leatherwork, and jewelry making.

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Hillary Griffith

Board Member

Instruction Coordinator

As the Instructor Coordinator for The Art Center, Hillary creates and maintains the class schedules for multiple concurrent projects. Her background as Director of Operations for nationwide companies combined with her Bachelor of Arts degree and Teaching Certification lend to her ability to appreciate the importance of personal growth and development for everyone. Hillary served as the Julian Star Fest Coordinator for several years, introducing the community to free public star parties. Her work as a Therapy Dog International team (her and her dog) increased her awareness of the significance of community enrichment.

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Dawn Sardinas

Board Member

Social Media Coordinator

Dawn Sardinas graduated with a Bachelor of Music in Jazz Voice and took her first job after university in marketing & promotions for an independent Celtic and World Music record label. She moved to NYC to pursue her singing career and left 15 years later, after establishing a successful martial arts school on the Upper East Side and earning her 5th degree black belt in traditional Taekwon-do. Her entrepreneurial spirit brought her to Southern California in 2014. She continues to train and develop herself personally and professionally, focusing on online marketing and event management.

(Photo credit : Arash Afshar)

Other Team Members

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Helen Buchanan (She/Her)

Website

Helen Buchanan is a graduate from the University of California Berkeley with a Bachelors in Planetary Science. She hopes to continue her education with a masters in engineering so that she can combine her love for the Earth and her desire to find practical solutions. Helen is a hobby artist and seamstress. She enjoys designing and making costumes in her free time.

(Photo credit : Guy Buchanan)

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Marsha Cook

Instruction Assistant

Marsha Cook is a native San Diegan, now living in Ramona.  After 30-years in the environmental field, Marsha is now enjoying retirement and living a creative life.  Environmental issues often influence Marsha’s art and creativity.  She also loves trying new media.  Marsha earned a Professional Certificate in Art and the Creative Process at UCSD in 2018.  Marsha enjoys teaching a variety of classes for adults and children to encourage creativity, recycling with mixed media, book arts, and children’s art camps.  Marsha also volunteers, teaching kids cursive handwriting.

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