For me, serving on the board of Gallery One is a family affair. As a young child growing up in Ellensburg, I can recall tagging along to events with my parents, who were both active volunteers and supporters of the gallery. My mom served on the board for a number of years, took numerous art classes and my dad exhibited many of his sculptures and other forms of mixed media. Growing up, art was part of what our family prioritized along with education and supporting Gallery One was an integral part of that.
After attending college, living and working in CA and starting a family, I migrated back to the Ellensburg and was drawn back to the gallery. Now as an adult, I find the variety of events as a wonderful hub to gather with friends at, as well as a means to support the arts in our community. I am drawn to the variety of classes offered for youth, with my son participating in many art-after-school or summer sessions over the past decade. We now have had the added joy of being able to take some together as a family, even with Grandma! Professionally, as a Speech Language Pathologist working in brain injury rehabilitation, Gallery One has also provided a supportive environment for hosting art therapy groups and members have enjoyed working across multiple mediums. All the staff and resident artists have been amazing to work with. I am proud to serve as a board member and give back in any way I can to support Gallery One’s mission.
I came to Ellensburg as a college student and never left. I love my life here in Ellensburg, the weather (sunshine), the art, interesting people, great outdoors, proximity to Seattle and laid back lifestyle. I raised five happy kids who have all moved away, temporarily I hope; (no one can leave Ellensburg forever). I renovated a building in the historic downtown, run an art gallery and am the chair of the board of a community radio station (eburgradio.org).
I’ve been on the Gallery One Board of Trustees for a long time and have had the pleasure of watching it grow into an amazing community resource. Years ago our board president, Gary Severin, offered a lofty vision statement for Gallery One; “Gallery One will help Ellensburg become the ART center of the galaxy.” We’re still working on it!
After my husband Brian and I moved to the Upper Kittitas Valley in 1973, I served on the Head Start Advisory Board, the Cle Elum Roslyn School Board, and the Board of Health Advisory Council.
When I joined the Board of Gallery One in 1993, we were renting the top floor of our current building. I was lucky to be “on board” in 1998 when the Gallery bought the building and then soon after renovated the entire space for use as an art center. This was possible because of a hard-working board, an incredibly dedicated and capable staff, and a community willing to support and grow along with us.
It is particularly important to me that Gallery One is able to provide art opportunities that are accessible to all ages, backgrounds and abilities. For me, art education is the most important part of our mission. I have greatly enjoyed seeing my three grandchildren attend many of the art camps offered in the summer months.
I support the Gallery’s goal of keeping Fun in our Fund-raising and I love seeing our physical space as a place where locals and visitors can come together and enjoy art and community.
As such, it has been a privilege to participate in a community art gallery becoming a regional visual art center. I love watching, working with and learning from all the community members who have made this possible.
Rachel Hall Kirk
I moved to Ellensburg in 2014 when I was hired to teach drawing and foundations in the CWU Department of Art + Design. I love being around creative people, and being on the Gallery One board is a great opportunity for me to have my finger on the pulse of the thriving art scene in Ellensburg. My mixed-media drawings have been shown around the country, and on several occasions Gallery One has allowed to share my artwork at the local level. I appreciate everything that Gallery One does to promote the arts, and being on the board is my chance to give back to an organization that gives so much to our community.
After enjoying 31 years of teaching, I have limited my volunteerism to serving on the Board of Directors at Gallery One. It is made up of dynamic members, and we work well together. I serve on the membership committee and remember us setting a goal of 250 memberships years ago. Today we have over 500 members! There are many things I love about Gallery One. When I moved to Ellensburg in 1979, it provided a cultural anchor for me. I was able to meet interesting people and begin collecting art. I found a place to belong in a new community. Gallery One continues to expose me to new artists, fill my home with art and provide meaningful relationships with people of all ages. I love the opportunities for children and adults to explore art. Gallery One is a treasure.
My husband and I have had a cabin in the Teanaway for many years and Kittitas Valley has been a haven for us. When we decided that we wanted a slower pace of life, we divested ourselves of everything but a few pieces of furniture, kitchen essentials, our art and books. We traveled around the State looking for our new home – and work – and that search brought us to Ellensburg. What we have found since moving here is not a slower pace, but a better quality of life! One of the first community events we attended was an exhibition opening at Gallery One and we knew immediately that this was a place we would frequent and support.
I self-identify as a wordsmith but appreciate many different forms of art. My current obsession is building with clay. I love to garden and preserve my own produce, am an avid reader, and a closet fan of animated movies. Other favorite things include CWU theatre, college basketball, and my dogs.
An MFA at CWU brought my wife and me to Ellensburg in 2015. About a year after graduating in ’18, I began teaching K-12 Art for the Thorp School District.
Gallery One has been a consistent part of my life since 2015. I’ve viewed and entered exhibitions, sold items in the gift shop, brought my students for field trips, and taught classes at the gallery. Being a member of the board is an opportunity for me to give back to the organization and community that welcomed me so openly many years ago and has continually reached out to include me.