Santa Fe International Folk Art Market

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Staff Biographies

Shawn McQueen-Ruggeiro, Executive Director

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With over 20 years of fundraising and communications experience in the nonprofit arena, Shawn most recently spent eight years with Project Concern International (PCI), a leading health and development organization based in San Diego. There, she led the charge in a rebranding effort, a 50th anniversary celebration, the launch of an initiative called Women Empowered, a savings-based empowerment program designed to help the most vulnerable women in the our world, and was the producer of two award-winning films for PCI. Shawn was inspired at PCI being involved with the likes of Hernando deSoto (Peruvian economist), Kenneth Kaunda (first democratically elected president of Zambia), Wahu Kaara (Kenyan activist), Bonnie Raitt (musician and activist), Oliver Mtukudzi (Zimbabwean musician), Mohammed Yunus (Bangladeshi banker, economist and Nobel Peace Prize recipient), and William Kamkwamba (Malawi author of The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind).

Ruggeiro’s fundraising background in California included work on a $21 million capital campaign for the Ocean Institute at Corona del Mar, work with former television and movie star Hugh O’Brian at the Hugh O’Brian Youth Foundation, and fundraising for a vulnerable population in East Los Angeles at the White Memorial Medical Center. Shawn also served as public information officer, shelter manager and field representative for the American Red Cross in South Central Los Angeles.

A California native, Shawn was born and raised in Santa Barbara. She is an alumna of UCSB, where she earned a bachelor of arts in history with a Latin American emphasis and a certificate in Global Peace and Security, and she also holds a certificate in fundraising from UCLA. Shawn is an American Field Scholar as well as a Rotary Exchange Student alumna. She has been known to empty her suitcases to make room for folk art and other treasures found during her travels. Shawn believes her position here will allow her a unique opportunity to be of service to her two passions: art and developing cultures.

Judith Espinar, Creative Director

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Judith Espinar has been instrumental in creating the Market and has provided leadership since 2004.  She has a BA in Clothing and Textiles and in Art History, as well as two years of graduate work in Philosophy of Design.  Judith served in the Peace Corps in Peru.  She was previously the fashion director of Gimbels East NYC, Fashion Director of Menswear for all Gimbels stores, Director of Fashion Information for Butterick Fashion, Editor-in-Chief of Vogue Patterns International, Director of Evan Picone Design Studio, and VIP Design Director of Murjani International.  Judith formerly served on the board of Aid to Artisans, was Project Advisor-Ceramics for USAID sponsored research on “Marketing Viability of Hungarian Craft Industries,” and one of three Project Directors for the first two years of UNESCO-sponsored “Lead-Free Low Fire Pottery Project” in Mexico.  Judith was previously the owner of The Clay Angel in Santa Fe, supporting her life-long interest and study of the world traditional ceramics.

Staci Golar, Market Coordinator

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Staci Golar joined the International Folk Art Market team in 2012, bringing a wide array of nonprofit arts experience – everything from communications and marketing to event management – with her. She holds a bachelor’s degree in art, with a minor in sociology/anthropology, from Eastern Oregon University and a master’s degree in arts administration from the University of Oregon.

Golar has previously worked for SWAIA – Santa Fe Indian Market, the Institute of American Indian Arts and as a freelance consultant and writer. She has served as a public art program and grant panelist, and has helped organize numerous community arts events as a volunteer. A lifelong advocate of the arts, and an artist herself, Golar believes in the transformative power of art and in those who create it.

Rich Moore, Director of FinanceRich-Moore-web-version

Rich Moore joined us at the climax before the Market in June of 2011. With an extensive background in the corporate realm, he has served in multiple capacities as CFO, Vice President of Operations and Finance, and President of Steelcase, Inc. dealerships and affiliates since the mid-1980′s. Most recently, his focus has been with the non-profit sector as Director of Finance for Ghost Ranch (Conference and Education Center) in Abiquiu. He has also volunteered at the Small Business Development Center at SFCC (conducting quarterly workshops in Budgets and Forecasting), and is currently President of the board of directors for Vista Grande Public Library. His educational background includes an MBA (emphasis in Finance) from Queens University at Charlotte, NC; an MA in Theology from Loyola University at Chicago, IL with an emphasis in Ethics; and a BA in Business Administration and English from Valdosta State University, GA. Rich has been a resident of New Mexico since 2008 and currently resides in Lamy, New Mexico.

Laura T. Sullivan, Development Directorimage

Laura Sullivan has been involved in the field of arts administration, museum education, and cultural resource development for the past 20 years.  Ms. Sullivan holds a M.A. in Arts Education and served as Director of Education at the Museum of International Folk Art.  Other professional positions included Director of the Museum on Wheels, an educational outreach program of the Monterey Peninsula Museum of Art; Executive Director of the Doña Ana Arts Council in Las Cruces, New Mexico; and Development Consultant for the New Mexico State University Foundation.  She has extensive experience in grant proposal writing, event management, fund raising, and project administration. She has lived and taught in Switzerland and has traveled extensively in West Africa, Mexico, northern India, Indonesia and Europe. She is passionate about promoting greater understanding and finding support for the preservation and continuation of traditional arts and cultures.

Heather Tanner, Associate Director of Developmentimage

Heather Tanner joined SFIFAM in December of 2010.  Prior to working with the Market, she worked as a Development Assistant and Resident Assistant at Youth Shelters, a non-profit serving homeless youth in Northern New Mexico.  She graduated from the University of Washington with a bachelor’s degree in Art and the Global Community, an interdisciplinary degree focusing on the intersection between art and social change.  Her studies culminated in an internship with a non-profit in rural Ghana where she was able to support and learn about innovative and sustainable models for community health programs.

Ernesto Torres, Director, Artist Relationsimage

Ernesto Torres, a native of Santa Fe, has extensive experience in arts administration. After receiving his BA in Liberal Arts from St. John’s College, he studied theology and Italian in Rome, Italy. Ernesto has served as chairman of the advisory board for the City of Santa Fe Arts Commission and was a co-founder of New Mexico CultureNet, a non-profit, online information gateway for arts and culture. He has also been a program coordinator for New Mexico’s statewide Art in Public Places Program, which funds the placement of public art and creates dialogue between communities and artists, and the Culturally Diverse Arts Program and Rural Arts Economic Development Initiative.

Sachiko Umi, Market Office Administratorimage

Sachiko Umi joined the Folk Art Market in 2008 as Market Office Administrator, which combines office support with oversight of receiving artists’ goods to the Market. Involved in most all aspects of the Market, Sachiko provides support to Market staff, Board members, and volunteers as well.

She has earned her BFA degree from the University of New Mexico and has been Director of Special Projects and Graphic Design at New Mexico Junior College, as well as a graphic designer at the Hobbs Daily News-Sun. Most of her administrative experience comes from the Education sector where she has been Registrar at Santa Fe Preparatory School, and Administrative Assistant to the Dean of Administration at Santa Fe Community College.

Kelly Waller, Director, Enterprise and Marketingimage

Kelly Waller was recruited to the Market in February 2006 as Market Coordinator and arrived in the thick of preparations for the Market’s third year.  It seemed the perfect fit given her talents and interests.  She has a BA in Art History from Emory University in Atlanta, Georgia with a double concentration in Cultural Anthropology and Studio Arts.  She has spent the majority of her professional life working in myriad facets of the visual arts -from preparing canvases as an artist’s studio assistant to creating a permanent textile archive at a non-profit arts organization to producing the Folk Art Market event each year.

Kelly was fortunate enough to have lived overseas starting at the early age of 6 when her family moved to France. The move inspired in her the desire to experience other cultures firsthand and has long since been coupled with a good dose of wanderlust! In 1995, while living in England, she worked for the DeMarco Arts Foundation in Edinburgh, Scotland, during the Fringe Festival.  It was an experience that solidified her interest in both the cultural exchange possible through the arts, as well her belief that powerful opportunities are born when people of different cultural origins work and share together face to face.

The Santa Fe International Folk Art Market, a non-profit organization, produces the largest international folk art market in the world, and our success led to Santa Fe’s designation as a UNESCO City of Folk Art.