Board of Directos About Us

Mimi Knittle

President

Mimi KnittleMimi Knittle joined the MAA Board in 2016 and is a creative design professional with degrees from Bennington College and Rhode Island School of Design. A practicing graphic designer for more than twenty-five years, Mimi began her career in Boston as a book and cover designer in publishing where her work received numerous awards and was published in several national magazines. She currently works as a freelance designer in Marblehead. Mimi recently returned to her first love of fine arts and has begun painting in her home studio. Mimi has extensive experience with non-profit organizations, where she has lead successful fundraising events as well as designed and produced marketing, promotion and outreach materials. She has been a Marblehead resident and member of the Corinthian Yacht Club for over twenty years and enjoys sailing the beautiful waters of New England and the Caribbean.

Michele Martin

Vice President

Michele Martin has been a Board member at the MAA since 2012. She serves on the Art Committee and is spearheading the IT Committee. Michele is an Artist member working in the alternative photography realm of Van Dyke, Cyanotype and mixed media. She has exhibited in the North Shore, Boston and Provincetown areas and enjoys volunteering and submitting works for non-profit auctions – most notably Bikes Not Bombs, Lifebridge and the MSPCA.

Kathy Hempel

Treasurer

Kathy Hempel, TreasurerKathy joined the board in August 2017. She started her career working as a CPA for a large firm in Boston, but more recently has served in senior financial roles within both large and small organizations. She is currently a CFO Consultant with RBF, a CPA firm in Woburn, and her client base includes start-ups in the life sciences industry as well as non-profit organizations. Kathy has been a Marblehead resident for over 25 years and an active volunteer for political candidates for the past several years. Kathy recently served as Treasurer for the Marblehead Festival of Arts and is looking forward to bringing that experience to MAA. Kathy enjoyed taking art lessons as a child and she would like to get back into making art after the demands of career and family have subsided.

Deborah Martin Kao

Secretary

Deborah Martin Kao is an art historian and curator.  During her decades-long career at the Harvard Art Museums, she was the curator of photographs, head of the division of modern and contemporary art, chief curator and interim co-director. She organized scores of exhibitions and public programs and published award-wining books and articles on topics ranging from daguerreotypes to conceptual photography. She led the talented curatorial team that conceived and implemented the critically acclaimed inaugural installation and innovative academic and public program precis for the new Harvard Art Museums, which re-opened in 2014 following a major renovation and expansion of the building designed by the Pritzker-Prize winning architect Renzo Piano.  Debi grew up in Marblehead in a family of artists and craftspeople just a few blocks from the MAA.  The MAA’s example of the importance of artists to the vitality of a community greatly contributed to the eventual trajectory of her life’s work.  Having recently returned to Marblehead, Debi looks forward to getting to know the current membership and working to support the MAA mission as a new board member.

Bruce Greenwald

House Committee, Chair

Bruce GreenwaldBruce Greenwald is an architect, preservationist, and sculptor. With over 30 years of experience, he is currently principal of D. Bruce Greenwald, Architects in Marblehead, MA. His architectural designs include housing, historic preservation, commercial, broadcasting and theatre projects. As a sculptor, he has created works in wood, brass, bronze, silver and stone. He designed and installed the “Sun Circle,” an astronomical stone sculpture, at Beach Bluff Park on the Marblehead/Swampscott border, and he serves the park as a board member of the Clifton Improvement Assoc. He has been a creative consultant for area theaters since 2003 and has been a set designer with the Mugford Street Players and the Salem Theatre Company. His community work has included 10 years on the Old and Historic Marblehead Districts Commission, and he has received various awards, including the Frank Regan Community Service Award from the Marblehead Chamber of Commerce. Bruce joined the MAA Board in 2015 and is the Chairman of the House Committee.

Missy Fisher

Artist Member and Past President

Melissa FisherMissy Fisher has been on the MAA board since 2009, Treasurer and member of Executive Leadership Team since 2012. She is an investment professional and has worked as a financial services executive for several Fortune 500 companies. She comes from a long line of family artists and currently designs and constructs jewelry using mixed media.

Claudia Kaufman

Artist Member and Past President, MAA Art Committee, Chair

Claudia KaufmanClaudia Kaufman has been a Board Director of the MAA and Chair of the MAA Art Committee since 2007, and has also served as Co- President since 2016 and Second Vice President since 2013. After a career as a Healthcare Information Systems marketing executive, Kaufman now sits on the board of several other non-profit community and human services organizations. A contemporary realist painter, Kaufman is a member of the Copley Society of Art, North Shore, Rockport and Marblehead Arts Associations and has been a frequent exhibitor and award winner in greater Boston area exhibits.

Emily Cantor

Associate Member and Past President

Emily Cantor has worked extensively for the past 20 years within the medical device industry biotech, brand marketing and television and film as a Project Manager, Meetings and Events Manager, HR Operations, Production Manager and C-level Executive Assistant.  Emily is an avid photographer with a passion for travel.  Born and raised in Swampscott, Emily is excited to be back on the MAA Board (former Board President).

Jim Murphy

Artist Member

Jim joined the MAA Board in 2021. His diverse professional background includes clinical and administrative roles in outpatient and community based mental health centers, was a regional director for a national assisted living company, and directing two regional chambers of commerce. An active and engaged volunteer, Jim has been a member of the Marblehead Chamber of Commerce, the Massachusetts Assisted Living Federation and the John Bertram House Boards of Directors. His interest in photography, which began during his undergraduate years, has become more of a focus over the past five years. He has exhibited at the Marblehead Festival of Arts, the MAA, and the Gallery at Lynn Arts. He holds a BA in economics from Salem State University and a Master’s in Human Service from Boston University. In addition to photography, his interests include social media, golf, and baking.

Larry Dunn

Artist Member

Larry DunnLarry is a self-taught photographer whose passion for the art started over 50 years ago. Larry’s work has won many awards at international, national and local exhibits. He has had his photographs published internationally and has been exhibited both in the United States and Internationally. Having joined the Board in 2019, Larry is an active member of the MAA, he exhibits frequently and serves on the Art Committee. He is also active with the Swampscott Arts Association, the Greater Lynn Photographic Association, the Photographic Society of America, the New England Camera Club Conference and the Marblehead Festival of Arts. Recently retired, Larry has a degree in Chemistry from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute and spent 30+ years in retail sales. Owning his own business for a decade, he also managed and was a buyer in the Outdoor and Ski Industries. He and his wife love to travel, cycle, kayak, ski, snow shoe and spend time with their grandchildren.

Kristen Uekermann

Associate Member and Past Secretary

Kristen UekermannKristen Uekermann joined the Board in 2015 and serves on the event planning committee. She works as a director in a basic science research department at Harvard University and is active in politics and community service. While her own artistic skill is limited to stick figures and doodles, Kristen is nonetheless a supporter and fan of both visual and performance art. She holds a B.A. in English from the University of Oklahoma and a Master’s degree in Management from Harvard University Extension School.