Board of Directors
Loretta Peterman, MBA
Loretta has served as the President of Arts Rolla since 2006 and has worked to increase the visibility of the organization in the region. She has focused on marketing the organization through the media and website and building relationships.. In addition to her work on the Arts Rolla board of directors, Loretta also serves on the Patient Family Advisory Council for Phelps Health. She has served as the President of the Greater Ozarks International Trade Association, on the advisory board of the Missouri District Export Council and the Missouri Association of Manufacturers. Loretta also has served on the Board of Directors for the Missouri Association of Art Agencies,
Jerry Cohen, Ph.D
Jerry is a professor of German and Russian at the Missouri
University of Science & Technology. His extensive work on
word origins includes many terms with at least some connection
to the arts (e,g, “jazz”), and he has lately been sharing the results
of his research with a broad audience via the Internet. He continues
to play a leadership role for the literary programs offered by Arts
Rolla, and as our Vice President he helps foster a productive relationship
between Arts Rolla and the university.
Briana Calkins is a Missouri native that moved to Rolla in 2005 to earn a Bachelor of Science degree in psychology at Missouri S&T. Briana later competed a Master's degree in Forensic Psychology at Argosy University and held various positions in the social services field until she found her true calling in 2014 working as an Employee Owner at Phelps County Bank. She currently serves on the Compliance and Risk Management team at PCB. Her husband is a lifelong Rolla resident and they both enjoy volunteering with Ozark Actors Theatre. In Briana's spare time she enjoys working on a variety of craft and hobbies including crochet, drawing, reading, cooking, canning, beekeeping, hiking, volunteering in the community, and traveling.
Mark Long was born and raised in Rolla, Mo and attended Rolla High School. Mark completed his bachelor’s degree in Business Administration at Drury College in Springfield, Mo. in 1987. He worked out of the area for 10 years with LabCorp in sales and management. Mark then moved back to Rolla in 1997 and worked for Phelps Health for 10 years in Marketing and Public Relations. In 2007 he left Phelps Health to do some medical sales work and also worked for Dr. James Bass in his medical office. In February of 2013, Mark had the opportunity to begin work at The Community Partnership in Rolla, MO, as the Development Director. This community has meant a lot to Mark and he enjoys the outdoors and the great scenery. He has always appreciated art and music and looks forward to working with the Arts Rolla Board.
Donna Clark planned a career in some kind of Art. Inspired by her elementary school Art teacher, she majored in it in high school—logging 12 semesters in the classes that were offered. For one shining day, she thought that she was headed for a degree at the prestigious School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
But things took a different turn that day in 1970. It’s a good story—now, even if it wasn’t then. Today, Clark has 50+ years in as a Medical Laboratory Technician.
During those years, Clark pursued a variety of side options that included an eight year stint as a radio personality and five years as a newspaper reporter. She came close to earning a Bachelor’s degree in Media Communications and finally (at the age of 61) attained a B.A. in Interdisciplinary Studies from Governors State University, University Park, Illinois.
Now “mostly” retired, Clark has found time to devote to her lifelong love of Art, primarily as a Photographer. She facilitates classes in “Art as a Spiritual Tool” at Crossroads church in Rolla and provides art/craft activities for the patrons of the Rolla Mission on a weekly basis. She is a member of Arts Rolla and Ozark Shutter Junkies.
Clark lives in Rolla—close to two of her three children—with two dogs and a reformed barn cat.
Carol Bennett is a retired kindergarten teacher and has lived in Rolla for many years. Carol is a long-time member and supporter of Arts Rolla and is active in many organizations in the region.
Carol is often found volunteering with various groups and is an active ambassador for Arts Rolla. Recently Carol put together a calendar featuring the work of regional artists, which was very popular. For many years she has served as co-chair for our opening receptions. She is very active member of our children’s programs.
Dr. Robert Cesario
Originally from Kenosha, Wisconsin, Dr. Robert Cesario came to Missouri S&T from Bucknell University where he served as Visiting Director of Bands. Previous to Bucknell he was Visiting Director of Bands at Texas Lutheran University following his service as Director of Bands at both Rice University and Huntsville Independent School District. He held the position of Coordinator of Music for the Tulsa Public Schools from 1990 to 1998 where he managed Oklahoma's largest public school music program.
With more than 20 years of college teaching experience and ten years of public school education and administration, his roles have been diverse and demonstrate a variety of talents. He has conducted college and high school wood ensembles, concert bands, jazz ensembles and marching bands, and taught courses such as conducting, wind literature, music education, theory, history, and applied woodwinds. Dr. Cesarion is also an accomplished soloist and performer on clarinet and saxophone in concert, jazz, and commercial venues across the United States, Europe, Mexico, Canada, and the Caribbean.
Recent professional service includes TMEA District XXIII College Chair, Vice President of the WAC Mountain West Conference Band Director's Association, Secretary of the World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles, and he has played an active role in the commissioning of works by several composers. He was inducted into Beta Chapter of Phi Beta Mu, the International Bandmasters Fraternity in 1988.
Brenda Linkeman has a Bachelor’s Degree in Fine Arts, with a concentration in
graphics, and a Master’s Degree in Social Work, both from the University of
Texas in Arlington. Professionally, Brenda has worked with children for over
thirty-five years. As a teenager she had summer jobs in art galleries in the
Washington DC area. While completing her art degree, Brenda worked in the
university photo lab, the art history slide library, in the UTA Art Gallery, as well
as having worked as a commercial artist and business form designer in Grand
Prairie, Texas. She began teaching art in Grand Prairie at the Golden Palette Art
Studio, and continued teaching art, primarily to children, at her Rolla art studio,
“Expressions!”. She has competed in numerous art shows, winning a variety of
awards through the years. Her collection of original bird paintings have been on
exhibit twice at the ”Audubon Center at Riverlands” in West Alton, Missouri.
Brenda has served as secretary of the Canyon County Respite Committee, the
Rolla Kennel Club, the Rolla Volkssport club, the Rolla Public Library board, and,
also as treasurer of the UTA Student Art Association, Vice Chair of the UTA Art
History Club, appointed member to the UTA Liberal Arts Constituency Council,
Vice Chair of the Tarrant County Crime Victim’s Coalition, and Chair of the
Phelps County Health Department Ethics Committee. While serving on the Rolla
Library Board, she was the project design coordinator for the library pocket
Brenda began writing poetry as a sophomore in high school while living in
Virginia. She self-published a book, “Pasque Flowers Along the Ipswich Trail,”
and recently had three poems published in the Gasconades Review. Her current
artistic focus is on writing, and creating collages. She is a strong supporter of
the arts, and looks forward to serving on the Arts Rolla Board.
Georgia "Lynn" Slawson, CRAADC, CGDC, CCJP
Georgia “Lynn” Slawson was born in and is a life-long resident of Rolla, living here with her husband, Larry, and their pets; she has one adult son. She graduated from Rolla High School, received her Bachelor’s degree in Psychology through Columbia College in 1989, and graduated with a Master’s degree in Guidance & Counseling through Missouri State University in 1993. Lynn has held Missouri state certifications as an alcohol/drug, criminal justice, and gambling addictions counselor since 2005. Lynn retired in 2013 after a career of 34 years working for the State of Missouri. After retirement, she began working at Horses Healing Hearts, as a certified co-therapist/equine specialist. This combined her love of horses with her desire to help people.
Lynn has always had an interest in learning about new languages, cultures, and the arts. Lynn is very active in the Rolla community and spends much of her time doing photography, painting, writing, and clogging. She is currently a Board Member of Arts Rolla; co-administrator of the Ozarks Shutter Junkies photography group and Facebook page; coordinator for the Local Color artists’ group; and a member of Ozark Spirit Cloggers, performing at numerous venues including the Missouri State Fair. In addition, as a self-taught artist and photographer, Lynn has shown her work in various public exhibitions. She has received several Honorable Mentions for her art work and photography, as well receiving the Fran Chastain Memorial People’s Choice Award in 2018 and again in 2023 for her photography during the annual Ozarks Shutter Junkies Photography Exhibit.
As a published writer, in 2016 Lynn had a short story, “Through His Eyes”, published in the Missouri Writer’s Ink anthology, “Paws, Claws & Hooves: Footprints on Our Lives”. Her photograph, also titled “Through His Eyes”, was the illustration for the story. She served two years (2016/2017) as president of Missouri Writer’s Ink. Also in 2018/2019, Lynn served as president of Missouri Author’s Circle (MAC). During that time, she had two short stories and photos published in an anthology through Missouri Author’s Circle, “Yarns From Ozark Story-tellers”. She was also the historian/photographer for Missouri Author’s Circle (MAC).”
Cynthia Hobart has a long history with Arts Rolla and has served on the board of directors several times in the past. Cynthia actively participated in the leadership and coordination of bringing Chautauqua opportunities to the Rolla region which provided the region with a chance to learn more about notable people in American history.
For more than 20 years, Cynthia volunteered in the Rolla Public Schools several days a week. Since retiring from teaching First Grade and helping her husband to home-school their son, Robert, she has invested her time and talent in the arts.
In addition to serving on the board of directors for Arts Rolla, Cynthia volunteers at Leach Theatre and with the Ozark Actors Theatre.
Cynthia has created visual art for many years working in watercolor, pastel, and block-print. For the last 25 years she has focused on creating original stained class pieces which are often entered in Arts Rolla exhibits.
Her artwork is a part of several private collections.
For many years she has also been an active member of The Presbyterian Church in Rolla. She has served as an Elder and Deacon, and for more than 20 years has created bulletin board designs appropriate for the various church seasons.
Cynthia continues to look for ways to bring additional learning opportunities to our community through her collaboration with other organizations, volunteerism and passion for the arts.
Lenore Marken has always loved reading books for the places they can take you, the information they share; and the personal transformation that can happen just from reading a book. Ms. Marken also loves to write and started writing poetry and short stories as a young adult. After graduating college, she started her career working for different agencies in the field of environmental planning. During her tenure as an environmental biologist, she wrote numerous technical reports for proposed land use projects that were reviewed by clients, permitting agencies and the public.
After ending her career in environmental planning, Ms. Marken felt the creative tug and began writing more poetry and short stories. This led her to join a local writing group. As a member, she shared her writing for critiques, gained new insights and helped to edit other members work. In 2018 Ms. Marken compiled, co-edited and co-published a book with other members of the local writing group.
Ms. Marken continues to read and write, and while she enjoys reading and writing fiction, most of her bookshelves are filled with non-fiction.
Originally from St. Louis, Missouri artist Mary Oliver-Hall now works from her home studio in Rolla.
Mary had formal artistic education from Meramec Community College in St. Louis, Missouri, the Columbus College of Art and Design in Columbus, Ohio, and the Cultural Arts Center in Columbus. While in Columbus she was the artistic talent behind her business, Gallery Prints Limited, and had showings and exhibits at a variety of venues including the state fair, the Columbus Zoo, and in the Short North artists’ district in Columbus. Mary has two pieces in the permanent collection at the Vern Riffe Center for Government and the Arts in Columbus, Ohio. One of her pieces, “Giant Panda”, was presented to the visiting governor of Hubei Province, China as a gift from Jack Hanna and the Columbus Zoo.
Since the early 1990s Mary has lived in the Rolla area. She has done freelance artwork and graphic design. Mary has also done fine art portraits, illustrations, sculpture, and wildlife art for individuals, private collections, and shows. Her wildlife art has been presented in fundraisers for the Turkey Federation and the local Audubon Society.
A true multi-media artist, Mary creates in any medium that inspires her; from paper, canvas, and mural works, to dimensional art and sculpture, to ancient Missouri sandstone.
Her works have been featured in local shows at The Blue Heron, the Rolla Fine Arts Museum, at The Center with Arts Rolla, and at the Oliver-Hall Studio & Gallery in St. James.
In the St. Louis area Mary has shown at Sheila's Fine Art Gallery in Kirkwood, Missouri Peddlers - On the Landing, and Friends of the Carousel - Carousel Museum, Faust Park.
Mary is a member of the Local Color Art Club and has been a contributing artist with Arts Rolla.
Reba Fryer - Administrative Assistant
Reba Fryer joined Arts Rolla in December 2005 and serves as the organization's Administrative Assistant. Reba has worked for and has been involved with not-for-profit organizations for more than 23 years and brings a vast amount of expertise to Arts Rolla.
Prior to working for Arts Rolla, she was the Office Manager for the American Red Cross Phelps-Pulaski Chapter for over 5 years. During this period Hurricane Katrina hit the Gulf Coast and her role expanded to include setting up and running a shelter for displaced hurricane Katrina families
She has been a member of the Phelps County Genealogical Society since 1992 and has served on their board in a number of offices since 1994. She is currently recording Secretary and the past Treasure, for the organization.
Reba was a 4-H Leader and active council member for the Phelps County 4-H group for over 10 years.
She is involved in the Rolla Coachlite Lanes Youth bowling league where she holds the office of Secretary/Treasurer she returned to this volunteer position after several years. of being just a youth bowler parent with the league. In addition to these activities, Reba currently serves as her daughter's Girl Scout leader and is an active participant in county wide Girl Scout events.
Arts Rolla continues to grow as a result of her expertise and enthusiasm.