Navigation Menu+

About Us

About Us

MISSION:  To provide vision and leadership to support thriving and diverse arts in the Mid-Hudson Valley.

VALUES STATEMENT: We value the abundant presence of art in the Mid-Hudson Valley and its ability to uplift, empower and engage. We honor diversity and celebrate creativity. We are committed to playing a central role in supporting and promoting all of the arts in the communities we serve.

Arts Mid-Hudson, the preeminent nonprofit arts service organization serving Dutchess, Ulster, and Orange Counties invites you to join us! Arts Mid-Hudson’s initiatives engage and promote the arts across the Mid-Hudson region, benefiting our artists, arts organizations and communities.

Through advocacy, exhibitions, performances, folk arts programs, festivals, awards and more, we bring creative offerings to artists, educators, venues, students and those who enjoy the region’s vast bounty of arts, bridging cultures, inspiring creativity and transforming communities.

Arts Mid-Hudson administers New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) funding in Dutchess, Ulster and Orange Counties, with annual competitive grants awarded to artists, schools, community groups, and arts organizations. Funding also is available through Dutchess County Partners in the Arts, and Ulster County Cultural Services & Promotion Fund.

From regional to localized activities, our outreach and joint efforts support a wide range of initiatives, including the annual Dutchess and Ulster County Executives’ Arts Awards, plus Poughkeepsie’s monthly Queen City Arts Initiative, collaborations with businesses and organizations, and many other endeavors, fostering effective communications between artists and communities.

Arts Mid-Hudson leads grant preparation workshops and proposal consultation sessions. We also secure bulk media opportunities for arts organizations to reach targeted audiences, and support regional and local marketing initiatives related to the arts. Arts Mid-Hudson connects the community with artworks by regional artists through exhibitions and sales.


Photos by On Location Studios

LINDA MARSTON-REID. Executive Director

Why Arts Mid-Hudson?  

“The arts have been a shining beacon throughout my life with experiences of learning music, enjoying literature, and making art as a child, to my current work as an arts advocate, visual artist, and arts writer. I’ve seen the positive impact that all of the arts provide, whether you are experiencing or creating, and feel grateful every day that my daily work connects these together.”

With a life-long interest in the arts, Linda is a native Californian who has lived in a variety of West Coast locations. After relocating from Seattle to Orange, Virginia in 1997, she founded the Arts Center in Orange, a nonprofit community arts center that continues to successfully serve that region today. Beginning in 2002, Linda added a new focus to her work at the Rockefeller Foundation’s Bellagio Program, an international residency program located in Italy for artists, scholars and nonprofit leaders. Currently she serves as Executive Director of Arts Mid-Hudson in the Hudson Valley region of New York, charged with leading the work of creating community connections through the arts, expanding arts advocacy, grantmaking, technical assistance and workshops for artists and arts organizations. She holds a Master’s degree in Nonprofit Management from Milano School of International Affairs, Management, and Urban Policy, serves as a board member for Dutchess Tourism, Inc. and is a Pattern for Progress Fellow. To contact Linda, click here.


LISA FIORESE. Director, Administration

Why Arts Mid-Hudson?  

“I wasn’t exposed to a lot of art growing up. Working with Arts Mid-Hudson has kept me connected to all forms of art. And by working here I’ve learned why the arts are important for our communities and why it’s essential for a strong economy.”

Lisa Fiorese, joined Arts Mid-Hudson in 1992 as a part-time bookkeeper. Over the next few years she took on additional responsibilities, at first job sharing the Administrative Assistant position and eventually moving into the position full time. In 2000, Lisa stepped into the position of Manager of Development & Administration and in 2007 was promoted to Business Manager. Lisa’s current position includes bookkeeping, office administration, contract administration, memberships and event coordination: in mid-2014 her title was changed to Director, Administration. Lisa resides in Staatsburg with her husband of 24 years. She wishes she had more time to spend with her camera but it waits patiently for her to retire.  To contact Lisa, click here.



MELISSA DVOZENJA-THOMAS. Director, Development & Marketing

Why Arts Mid-Hudson?  

“I could not imagine a life without the arts because the arts have greatly influenced the person I am today. I am grateful to have an opportunity to work for an organization that not only understands that but lives by the energy the arts puts into the community/world. ”

Melissa Dvozenja-Thomas joined Arts Mid-Hudson in April 2015 and has been a part of the arts scene for the majority of her life. She holds a BA in Acting for Theatre, a BA in Music Performance, a Masters in Public Administration, and a Masters Certificate from the International Institute of Event Management. Melissa was a singer, dancer, actor, photographer for 10 years following undergrad as well as the Managing Director at Allenberry Resort Inn & Playhouse in Pennsylvania. There, she coordinated volunteer programs, auditions, events, social media, and theatre representation among many other responsibilities. Melissa serves as a board member for Theatre Untitled, and the Mid-Hudson Valley Chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals. She is also on the advisory board of The Dutchess Community College Academy of Music. In her free time, Melissa loves to cook, bake, travel and spend time with her family. To contact Melissa, click here.



LILIA PÉREZ. Grants & Programs Manager

Why Arts Mid-Hudson?  

“As a visual artist, I understand the need for creative people to connect, collaborate, and have access to resources. Arts Mid-Hudson provides opportunities and support to so many hardworking artists and arts organizations in our region. I feel honored to support that mission and support Hudson Valley artist’s work!”

Lilia Pérez joined Arts Mid-Hudson in May 2016. As Grants & Programs Manager, she facilitates a grant program that distributes arts funding from the New York State Council on the Arts’ Decentralization Grant Program, and Duchess and Ulster Counties. Additionally, Pérez manages the Arts Mid-Hudson Gallery and Community Gallery program which provides showing opportunities to artists in our region. She has provided guidance to hundreds of grant applicants, led workshops, and works to strengthen partnerships in our communities through the arts. She graduated from the State University of New York at New Paltz with a B.F.A. in Photography in 2015. Based in Kingston, NY, she continues her varying photographic work. To contact Lilia, click here.


ELINOR LEVY. Folk Arts Program Manager

Why Arts Mid-Hudson?  

“My family, going back several generations, have always been supporters of the arts. With that tradition and being a folklorist, working at Arts Mid-Hudson allows me to immerse myself in art and culture daily. And with each program I participate in, whether it is an exhibit in our gallery or a festival for the community, I gain a better understanding of the world I live in. ”

Elinor Levy, joined Arts-Mid Hudson in September 2016 as the Folk Arts Program manager. A native of Oakland, California, she has bounced around the country from California to Indiana, Georgia, Nevada, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and now New York. Previously, she worked in Las Vegas as the folklorist for Clark County Parks and Recreation and as executive director of the Northwest Jersey Folklife Project. Having spent the last decade as a folklorist consultant and an adjunct professor, she is excited to be doing public folklore again especially in the culturally rich Hudson Valley. She has a master’s degree in Anthropology from California State University, Sacramento and a doctorate in folklore from Indiana University, Bloomington. She is a folk artist in her own right as a third generation knitter on her mother’s side. In the past three years she has added spinning her own yarn to her skills and looks forward each year to helping a friend shear a small flock of Jacob sheep. To contact Elinor, click here.


SYLVIA DIAZ. Arts Education Coordinator


Why Arts Mid-Hudson?  

“Arts Mid-Hudson is motivated by a need to promote the arts, and to encourage communities to expand their idea of what an artist is and what they offer. Artists are necessary; they are a vital part of any community, any movement, any celebration. Everything you see around you was created, and/or influenced by an artist. Arts Mid-Hudson understands this and recognizes the need to advocate, mentor, and support artists, as well as educate communities by offering access to the varied talented artists in our region. They are committed to inspiring and educating our youth in addition to seasoned artists. They are passionate about providing a platform for exploration, exhibition, guidance, and collaboration. I am honored to be part of such a fabulous organization!”

Sylvia worked in the marketing, promotions and event planning field for over 15 years, with artists for over 10 years, and has been an educator for 22 years. From 2014 – 2018 she was the Development Director & Community Liaison for a nonprofit in Warwick, NY. Once Sylvia fulfilled her contract, she decided to switch her attention back to a field dear to her heart and always a part of her life – art.

Sylvia is an artist and the new curator for Gallery 40 in Poughkeepsie. In addition, she is also the director of the New Paltz Open Studio Tour (NPOST). In 2018 Sylvia expanded NPOST into two additional towns, included 5 galleries and was sponsored by SUNY New Paltz and local businesses. Sylvia opened an art school called HATCH, sat on the board of a local arts organization called The Arts Community, and organized art events. Last year she was the juror for Woodstock Arts Association Museum’s 100th year birthday celebration and it was a great honor.

In 2017 Sylvia and her child went to Amsterdam to immerse themselves in their art and culture. They walked everywhere, visited a variety of art museums, and drew and painted all day for almost two weeks, in March 2019 they went to Frankfurt, Prague and Vienna to do the same!

Most recently Sylvia took on the role of president of the Rosendale Chamber of Commerce, and Curator of the Rosendale Maker Faire.

She is excited to be the Arts Education Coordinator for Arts Mid-Hudson, an organization she has admired for a very long time. To contact Sylvia, click


BETSY CARROLL – Chairperson, Culinary Institute of America

Why Arts Mid-Hudson?  

“Arts Mid-Hudson helps me connect to a thriving arts community.  I am proud to serve on the board because AMH is also one of the most effective arts organizations I’ve known.”

Betsy Carroll is the Director of Institutional Research and Effectiveness at the Culinary Institute of America.  Her job includes survey research, data analysis, reporting, and strategic planning, skills that she was trained for during her graduate work at Binghmaton University’s School of Management. Before graduate school Betsy was an Arts Administrator for Feld Ballets NY, Limon Dance Company, and Brooklyn Academy of Music.  She looks forward to joining the Arts Mid Hudson board to reconnect with the arts community that she has been missing in recent years.  She attends as many performances and events as she can in NYC and the Hudson Valley, especially modern dance and theater. Betsy is an executive board member of the Dutchess County Interfaith Council, a board member of the Assessment Network of New York, and co-chair of her 2019 University of Rochester class reunion.


DAVID WHITE – Vice Chair, Global Blood Therapeutics  

David White

Why Arts Mid-Hudson?  

“I am involved with Arts Mid-Hudson because of the incredible work and support they give to all artists regardless of their media. Artists create and display their skill and talent – that gives all of us a view of their beauty and introspection.
I am thankful to be part of the process to expand their access to our communities to share their gifts.”

David White is a Harlem/Hudson Valley native who grew up in the hamlets of Pawling, Wingdale and Millbrook. David received a BA from Marist College, a Master’s in Public Health from New York Medical College, and a Doctorate in Public Health minus the Dissertation from New York Medical College. He is a recent retiree from a Pharma/biotech company where he worked as a program manager.

David is married to his best friend Kathy and they enjoy spending with their children, the arts and traveling. He looks forward to helping promote our beautiful area through the eyes of our talented valley artists and supporters.




ROGER D’AQUINO – Treasurer, Certified Quickbooks Advisor

Why Arts Mid-Hudson?  

“The arts have played an important role in my life and I’m grateful for the opportunity to give back in any way possible.”

Roger D’Aquino has been managing his own accounting & bookkeeping firm, D’Aquino Enterprises, for the past 12 years, including serving as Financial Director for The Hudson River Sloop Clearwater for ten years. Prior employment includes serving as controller for two of the largest engineering firms in the Hudson Valley. Besides the corporate and non-profit work his background also includes teaching instrumental music in the public schools for nine years. Board experience includes serving on the boards of County Players (Treasurer for ten years), Wappingers Falls Business & Professional Association, Cardinal Hayes Home for Children and three years on The Wappingers School board (Vice President one year). Other volunteer board experience includes being an advisor to the boards of Northern Dutchess Symphony Orchestra, Vassar Temple, and The Beacon Sloop Club. When not working he can be found in the pits of the Hudson Valley playing his sax, clarinet and flute or swinging with The Big Band Sound Orchestra.


MEGAN MCKANN – Corporate Secretary, Marshall & Sterling Insurance

Why Arts Mid-Hudson?  

“Arts Mid-Hudson has an incredible reach – supporting the arts in Dutchess, Ulster and Orange Counties. Connecting so many communities, they are the perfect organization to align with if you want to get involved and grow the arts in the Mid-Hudson Region.”

Megan McKann joined Marshall & Sterling Insurance in 2014, and assists with the communications needs for 23 offices across NY, CA, FL, MI, VA, and the U.S. Virgin Islands of St. Thomas and St. Croix. Prior to working at Marshall & Sterling, Megan managed communications at United Way of the Dutchess-Orange Region, and continues to help as a grant-reviewer each year. An active volunteer with a variety of organizations, Megan received a 40 Under 40 award from the Dutchess County Chamber of Commerce in 2013 for her work as staff liaison for Young Leaders United, and Co-Chair of the Volunteerism committee for the Hudson Valley Young Professionals. She is also a proud graduate of Leadership Orange. Immersed in community theatre, choirs and community orchestras as a child, Megan understands the importance of supporting local artists and programs. She resides in Dutchess county with her husband and their growing collection of art toys and comic art.


SERENA MARRERO – Executive Committee Member at Large, Community Foundations of the Hudson Valley

Smiling image of SerenaWhy Arts Mid-Hudson?  

“Art shapes our world. It tells the stories of our cultures, brings joy, beauty and healing to our lives, and grows economies. I am honored to be involved with Arts Mid-Hudson to assure artists receive the support they need to benefit us all!.”

Serena Marrero’s inherent appreciation of art and culture led to a career as a development and fundraising professional when, as a college intern, she co-founded a local ‘materials for the arts’ organization. Serena has over 25 years of experience working with national and community based cultural, human service and health institutions in the areas of fundraising, community relations, marketing and public relations, organizational and board development. She is a founding board member and past president of the Mid-Hudson Valley Association of Fundraising Professionals and was a member of Arts Mid Hudson’s NYSCA Decentralization and Ulster County Cultural Services and Promotion Fund Grant Proposal Review Teams for several years. She holds an AA degree in Graphic Design and Advertising Technology and a Bachelor of Science degree in Organizational Development from SUNY New Paltz.


JOHN NELSON –  Executive Committee Member at Large, Nuvance Health

Why Arts Mid-Hudson?  

“The arts have played an important role in my life and I’m grateful for the opportunity to give back in any way possible.”

John Nelson is Assistant Vice President of Community, Government and Public Relations for Nuvance Health in New York. Previously he worked as the Local Editor at the Poughkeepsie Journal, where he established strong community connections. He holds an MFA in Theater, Ohio University and a BFA Theater/English from the University of Nebraska at Kearney.


CHRIS CANTELE –  Hudson Valley Credit Union

Why Arts Mid-Hudson?  

“I believe the arts play an integral role in every prospering community.  The work Arts Mid-Hudson does through their programs, grants and funding, community engagement, and arts consulting have allowed the art communities in Dutchess, Ulster, and Orange counties to thrive.  We all get to enjoy that!”

Chris Cantele joined HVFCU Financial Services in 2006. He has over 20 years industry experience, assisting members with their financial service needs, such as Portfolio Review, Retirement Planning, Estate Planning, Asset and Income Protection and Wealth Accumulation. Throughout his career, Chris has been dedicated to taking a consultative approach in helping people define and work towards their financial goals. Chris leads a team of experienced Financial Consultants and LPL Registered Sales Associates who focus on the total member relationship, offering unbiased advice and guidance through important and complex financial decisions. Chris has been a resident of Dutchess County for most of his life, where he currently resides with his wife and two children.


SYDNEY CASH – Artist/Sculptor

Sydney CashWhy Arts Mid-Hudson?  

“Arts Mid-Hudson is the primary organization providing broad-based support for artists in the Hudson Valley. I’ve been able to teach workshops at AM-H about Archiving for Older Artists and Understanding Your Personal Process. As an elder artist and a brand-new board member, I’m looking forward to being part of the team that creates AM-H’s long-term vision.”

Sydney Cash is an artist/sculptor. He has worked with glass, metal, paper and light. Much of his work has involved patterns and/or portraiture. He has had over fifty one-person shows. He has taught at Pratt Institute, The New Jersey City University and The Brooklyn Museum Art School. He has received fellowships from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, the New York Foundation for the Arts and The National Endowment for the Arts. His work is in many public collections including MoMA, The Detroit Institute of Arts, Le Muse Des Arts Decoratifs in Paris, The Corning Glass Museum and the Samuel Dorsky Museum.


ROBERT P. LANGDON – Emerge Gallery

Robert P. Langdon is the proprietor and curator at Emerge Gallery & Art Space in Saugerties, NY. Emerge Gallery is a welcoming environment that exhibits the best emerging artists from the Hudson Valley, NY Metropolitan region and beyond. Robert includes work of various mediums and styles in each show and strives to provide a pleasing and inviting journey for the viewer. Visit the Emerge Gallery website at

Prior to opening Emerge Gallery, Robert was Director at Gallery U in Red Bank and Westfield, NJ, where he played an instrumental role in furthering the art scene in both communities. Robert’s strength lies in community building and supporting and promoting emerging artists.

Robert has worn various hats over the years including Director of Sales and Marketing at a nonprofit children’s picture book publisher in San Francisco, where he began working one-on-one with fine artists; still-life photographer in Manhattan where he photographed still life for Macy’s and A&S catalogs among others; and teacher in suburban New Jersey. Robert was born and raised in New Jersey, lived in San Francisco for 13 years, and now resides in the beautiful Hudson Valley where he finds inspiration almost daily.

Robert graduated from the Germain School of Photography and holds a BA from Montclair State University. He has been writing poetry and the occasional short fiction since the late 1980s. His collection, “The Candied Road Ahead: Poems & Stories” is available through in print and Kindle formats.


URIEL PINELO –  Brown Rudnick, LLP

Uriel PineloWhy Arts Mid-Hudson?  

Art is a powerful and a unifying medium that enriches our lives – I am honored and grateful for the opportunity to help support and grow local arts in our communities with Arts Mid-Hudson.

Uriel Pinelo is a financial restructuring attorney with Brown Rudnick, LLP, who represents equity sponsors, trade vendors, and official and ad hoc committees of creditors and equity interest holders in Chapter 11 cases. Prior to private practice, Uriel clerked for the Hon. Cecelia G. Morris, Chief Judge for the Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York. Uriel’s prior employment experience includes managing a community-based residential program while with Anderson Center for Autism. A native of Oaxaca, Mexico, Uriel resides in Dutchess County and enjoys the many outdoor escapes that the region has to offer.


SHAWN STRONG – Phanatiks Entertainment LLC  

Shawn Strong

Why Arts Mid-Hudson?  

” As a creative, I wanted to help more towards the lack of diversity in our creative communities. In the past, we’ve gotten graffiti from lack of grants, block parties from the lack of our venues, guerrilla filming from the lack of permits. As an Arts Mid-Hudson member, I’m allowed to be a part of these cultural changes and others. The Hudson Valley is a palette of colors with every streak illuminating, even when scribbled outside the lines.”

Shawn Strong is the sole proprietor for Phanatiks Entertainment LLC, a small independent, creative digital media and video production company based in Newburgh, NY. Combining his talent for and connections from the worlds of art, music and digital film, in 2015, Shawn developed Phan Media, a creative arts web program that showcases Indie artists and venues throughout the Hudson Valley producing music videos, commercials, short and narrative-based digital films, video editing services, and digital photography with a mission to provide high quality work at reasonable rates for our creative community and working clientele. Shawn lives in Newburgh with his wife and two children.





Queen City weekends – in Poughkeepsie – every third weekend.

The latest events scheduled across a number of arts and cultural organizations in Poughkeepsie.


ArtWalk Kingston – in Kingston – September 23-24, 2017


See the latest around the region on the webpage:


Artrider – Hudson Valley Arts Festival at Rhinebeck

Advisory Board

Sadhna Bhargava, Frank Castella, Jr., David Cavallaro, Kelly Ellenwood, Maria Elena Ferrer-Harrington , (Grace) Angela Henry, Eugenia Jones, Ev Mann, Tim McQueen, Wilfredo Morel, Sara Pasti, Ruth E. Spencer, William ‘Gully’ Stanford, Ray Watkins, David Wise


Zoe Wennerholm (2017 Intern)

Zoe Wennerholm is completing the fall semester of her junior year at Vassar College, where she is studying Chinese and Urban Studies. Zoe comes to the Hudson Valley via her hometown of Boston, Massachusetts. Her love of visual arts goes back to her childhood and she has taken numerous classes covering a variety of media. Zoe is involved in student theater at Vassar, where she designs set, properties, and lighting for a number of different productions.



Mackenzie Cole (2017 Grants/Admin Intern)
Mackenzie Cole is finishing her final semester at Vassar College, where she is studying Drama and Women’s Studies. Mackenzie has come to the Hudson Valley region from her hometown of Wichita, Kansas. Mackenzie primarily works in theatre as a company manager, stage manager, and production manager, and she comes to Arts Mid-Hudson after previously working at non-profit theatre companies such as Music Theatre Wichita, Adirondack Theatre Festival, and New York City Center. After graduation, Mackenzie intends to pursue a masters degree in Arts Administration.




Kurt Suffern (2017 Arts Admin Intern)Kurt Suffern is currently enrolled at SUNY Purchase where he is completing his final semester.  He will be graduating with a degree in Arts Management and a minor in History. Having grown up in the Hudson Valley Kurt still lives in Orange County.  Kurt’s passion for the Arts started nearly 10 years ago when he first picked up guitar.  He has performed in several venues throughout the Lower East Side of Manhattan, which has furthered his passion in Arts.  Professionally he has been working in the customer service industry for roughly 10 years.


human wigs for sale tend to look more natural but are rather heavy.