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The Fine Arts Center Partners was established in 2012 for the purpose of promoting, encouraging, recognizing, and sponsoring the Fine Arts Center of the Greenville County Public Schools. The mission of the Partners is support the FAC in meeting the needs of the students relative to four main areas:

  • Relationships - with the community that the school serves
  • Partnerships - that offer students the opportunity to participate in and give back to community arts organizations
  • Sponsorships - to cover above and beyond experiences such as master classes, field trips, and entry fees to regional and national competitions
  • Scholarships - to assist students who want to pursue study in the arts over the summer or in college

News

The Executive Committee members are as follows:

Katy Bergman Cassell
Katy Bergman Cassell earned an MFA from Kent State University and a BFA from the Cleveland Institute of Art. She worked as an archaeological illustrator in India and as a museum educator at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Cloisters, in New York.  She taught metals, enameling, and drawing at colleges in Ohio until moving to Greenville, SC to teach at the Fine Arts Center. 

She was awarded a National Artists Teachers Fellowship to travel to England in 2015. She teaches workshops nationally, has been a South Carolina State Parks Artist-in-Residence, and was on the board of the Center for Enamel Art in Oakland, CA.   

She exhibits her work extensively. Recent exhibitions include the Blaze International Enameling Exhibition in Taipei, Taiwan. She has had eight solo exhibitions, the most recently at the Mesa Contemporary Arts Museum in Mesa, AZ in 2017 and Riverworks Gallery in Greenville, SC in 2018.  Her artwork has been selected to promote the Society of North American Goldsmith’s Exhibition in Motion, and the Richmond Art Center’s Place as Landscape exhibition, and other publications include The Art of Enameling, 500 Enameled Objects, Metalsmith magazine, Cleveland Scene, At Home in the Upstate, and The Greenville News.  

Stephanie Knobel 
Stephanie Knobel has been involved with the Fine Arts Center for over 5 years.  Both of her children participated in the ARMES program and her daughter, Anna Knobel, is currently a Junior in the Theater program.  Stephanie is the Executive Director of the YMCA Judson Community Center.  She serves on several local nonprofit boards and is active in community initiatives that support youth services. She is very excited and honored to be part of the newly formed Fine Arts Center Partners Board.

Anita Pacylowski-Justo
Anita Pacylowski is a native of Columbia, MD. She started ballet at the Columbia Conservatory Ballet in Columbia, Maryland and the Reston Conservatory Ballet with founder Julia Cziller. She continued her training at The Washington School of Ballet in Washington D.C. under the artistic direction of Mary Day and associate director Patricia Berrend. Her senior year in High School, she received the Princess Grace Award in Dance, National YoungArts Level 1 winner, and received the Presidential Scholar in the Arts in Dance award at White House. She also was a finalist at the New York International Ballet Competition, and semi-finalist at the Prix de Lausanne competition in Lausanne, Switzerland. She’s been nominated for the coveted Benois de la Danse Award, “the Oscars” of the Ballet world.

She joined The Washington Ballet as a professional dancer and ascended to a Principal dancer for five years under Ballet Master’s Kevin McKenzie, Simon Dow, Janek Schergen and Rex Bickmore. While there, she performed in St. Petersburg and Moscow, Russia, Thailand, Singapore, France, England and Spain. Highlights include performing the Grand Pas de Deux from The Nutcracker at the Kennedy Center for President Clinton and the First Lady, and performing at the White House Holiday Tea Party.

She came to Carolina Ballet Theatre in Greenville, SC to join her husband as artistic leadership of Carolina Ballet Theatre. In 2004, she became director of the School of Carolina Ballet Theatre after founder Barbara Selvy retired. She continued to dance with the founding members of the company and join them both nationally and internationally on tour. She retired as principal dancer of CBT in 2011, after nearly ten years with the company.

As co-artistic director of DanceArts Greenville for 17 years, her goal is to provide high-level training in a family friendly environment. She continues to guest teach in ballet and contemporary, and choreograph new works at dance schools across the Northeast and Southeast, and to discuss dance education with many of the top directors and teachers in the world. She is the lead teacher for DAG’s presence at Stone Academy’s Encore program for the 2nd year.  This program brings the art of dance to students in their school.

In 2017, she joined as an Associate Director of the Charlotte Ballet Academy. The Charlotte Ballet is where Anita met her husband and danced for 7 years.vShe shares her time directing as well as teaching, coaching and developing curriculum.

As a Presidential Scholar in Arts alumni, Anita served on the Presidential Scholar Alumni Association’s steering committee to build a network and platform for PSA dance alumnus.

Megan Riegel
Megan Riegel is the President and CEO of the Peace Center in Greenville, SC, a role she has held since 1997. Under Riegel’s leadership, the not-for-profit performing arts organization has become the cultural hub of Upstate South Carolina, with an estimated economic impact of $42 million annually. The Peace Center presents first-run Broadway tours, along with world-class classical music concerts, dance companies, popular musicians, comedians, and speakers. Additionally, the Peace Center hosts an extensive Community Impact program.

Riegel joined the Peace Center in 1994 as Director of Development and within six months assumed the role of General Manager, holding both positions until her promotion to President and CEO in 1997. The Peace Center, located on a six-acre site along the Reedy River in the heart of downtown Greenville, features the 2,100 seat Peace Concert Hall, 400 seat Gunter Theatre, 1,200 capacity outdoor TD Stage, Genevieve’s lounge, and a variety of event and meeting spaces located in the historic Huguenot Mill. The campus also includes the Wyche Pavilion, Roe Coach Factory, Markley Building, and Gullick Building, which offer prime retail and programming spaces to support the Peace Center’s operations.

In 2009, Riegel spearheaded a $23 million capital campaign to renovate and expand significant parts of the Peace Center’s campus, the first major update since the organization opened in 1990. The project doubled the size of the Peace Concert Hall lobby, added a patron lounge, a public plaza, and an outdoor stage. The project also included renovation of the Huguenot Mill to include additional administrative offices, as well as education and event spaces.

During Riegel’s 26-year tenure, the Peace Center’s operations have grown from a $4 million annual operation to one just under $27 million. More than 360,000 patrons attend 700 events annually at the Peace Center, and the organization’s community-centric gifts of roughly $3 million each year, support free programs and partnerships, outreach in local schools, opportunities for emerging artists, and services for Greenville-based arts partners. Riegel has brought to Greenville the biggest blockbusters Broadway has to offer, creating a season ticket subscriber base nearing 9,000. More than 4,000 donor households contribute to the Peace Center’s mission each year.

In 2013, Riegel became the proud recipient of the Order of the Palmetto, the highest honor to be bestowed upon civilians by the State of South Carolina.

Lindsay Smith (Partner - Womble, Bond, Dickinson Law Firm)

Thomas Strange
Tom Strange has an extensive background in materials science, and is the author of fifty-three patents and numerous papers over the last three decades, covering all aspects of capacitor development. He was a member of a small team of entrepreneurs who developed and produced the pioneering flat medical grade electrolytic capacitor that made thoracic implantable cardioverter defibrillators possible. Strange has presented numerous lecture/concerts on early piano development in the US and around the world, and is a builder and restorer of early keyboard instruments. He now serves as the Executive Director of the Sigal Music Museum in Greenville.

Steve Watson
Steve Watson graduated from Newberry College with a BA in 1974 and The University of Miami (Coral Gables) with a MM in 1977. 

Steve has performed all over the world.  He was a member of The University of Miami Concert Jazz Band that toured Switzerland, Cyprus, Syria, Jordan, Egypt, and Tunisia. From 1978 through1984 Steve was a member of The Bruce Hornsby Band.  After moving to Los Angeles, he became a studio guitarist for television, movies and records.  His credits include Hill Street Blues, Magnum PI, The A-Team, Hunter, Hardcastle and McCormick, Riptide, Murder She Wrote, LA Law, Big Business, Simon and Simon, Quantum Leap, The Young Riders, Sonny Spoon, The Greatest American Hero, Young Guns, Trains, Planes and Autos, Sixteen Candles, Rhinestone, Dragnet, Dr. Detroit, River Rats, Into the Night and The Dolly Parton variety television show.  He has also recorded commercials for Coors, Budweiser, 7-11, Acura, Honda and Toyota.  Steve was an adjunct professor at The University of Southern California from 1981-1990 and lecturer at The University of Miami from 1977-1978.

Steve has been the Director of Jazz Studies at The Fine Arts Center since 1990.

Austin White (Co-Founder, GSI Studios; Bass Player and FAC Alumnus)

Steve Hairston
Steve Hairston currently serves as the Assistant Director of Employer Engagement at Furman University. Prior to arriving at Furman, Steve worked at Public Education Partners as their Policy and Advocacy Director. He has spent most of his 20-year career in higher education or affiliated with education in some fashion and has worked at a number of the nation’s most prestigious private and public higher education institutions. Steve holds a Master of Business Administration from Clemson University and a Bachelor of Arts degree from Hope College. He and his wife, Christen, raise their three children in downtown Greenville and, in his spare time, he loves honing his culinary skills, playing basketball, listening to vintage soul and hip-hop, and spending time with extended family and friends.
 

Qena Jennings 
Qena is an educator of over 25 years and a mom of three.  Her background includes serving as a classroom teacher, reading specialist and instructional coach.  Currently, Qena is a Program Director for Public Education Partners (PEP) where she leads strategic initiatives that elevate teachers and engage the local community in support of public education. 

Brock Koonce 
(Marketing Coordinator at THS Constructors, Inc.; FAC Alumnus)

Sidney Locke 
Sidney Locke is the Vice President, Human Resources and Communication for Sage Automotive Interiors (Sage).  Sage is the largest global manufacturer of automotive interior surface materials with operations in North America, South America, Europe, Africa, and Asia.  Sidney travels the globe and is based at Sage’s headquarters facility on the CUICAR campus in Greenville, South Carolina.

Sidney Locke joined Milliken & Company after his graduation from Georgia Tech in September 1998.  He began his career as a Production Manager where he managed the efficiency and output of a department manufacturing textile products for the automotive and apparel industries.  

After several years in manufacturing, Sidney joined Milliken & Company’s Research Division to serve as a liaison between the Manufacturing, Business and Research Divisions.  In this role, Sidney contributed to the development of several technologically advanced products in the carpet, napery and consumer markets, resulting in multiple issued patents.  Specifically, Sidney helped develop and patent the YES Essentials® family of performance automotive interior.  Sidney then led the Six Sigma effort as a Black Belt to scale up the newly patented technologies in the company’s manufacturing facilities.  

In 2009, Sidney joined with a number of colleagues in a management buyout of the Automotive operations of Milliken & Company to create Sage Automotive Interiors.  He took on responsibility for managing Sage’s business with a major Asian OEM.  In addition, Sidney had responsibility for Sage’s Brand Management, Innovation Process and Strategy Process.   In his current role, he has responsibility for Sage’s Global Human Resources and Communication where he is working to standardize and globalize Sage’s support and development of its nearly 4000 employees.   

Sidney received his Bachelors of Chemical Engineering from Georgia Institute of Technology in 1998, and a Masters of Business Administration from Wake Forest University in 2005.


William H. Pelham, AIA
William Pelham is the president and founder of Pelham Architects, LLC (1983) and a Managing Partner of RPM Partnership, LLC (1999). He currently serves on the Christ Church Episcopal School Board, the Camperdown Academy School Board, the Fine Arts Center Partners, the Jean T. & Heyward G. Pelham Foundation, and the Poinsett Club Foundation (vice president). He previously served on other boards including: the Peace Center board (vice chair), the Clemson University Foundation, the Clemson Architectural Foundation (president), the Clemson University Foundation, the Poinsett Club (president), BankGreenville, now HomeTrust Bank (board chair), the Warehouse Theatre (president), the Carolina Music Museum (now the Sigal Music Museum) and the Greenville Museum Association.  He co-founded the Fine Arts Center’s Art of Architecture program with Dr. Roy Fluhrer.

Joe Rhodes (Educator; retired law enforcement officer; FAC Parent of a Chamber Strings Musician)

Mike Sablone 
Mike Sablone is the Producing Artistic Director of the Warehouse Theatre in Greenville, South Carolina, a job he started in 2017. The Warehouse is Greenville's premier professional regional theatre, where community engagement and education complement thought-provoking theatre experiences. Before joining The Warehouse he was a dramaturg for Center Theatre Group (Mark Taper Forum, Ahmanson Theatre, and Kirk Douglas Theatre) in Los Angeles. While there he was the dramaturg for Alex Timbers and Michael Friedman’s BLOODY BLOODY ANDREW JACKSON and saw the musical through its development including productions at the Kirk Douglas Theatre and Public Theater to its run on Broadway at the Jacobs Theater. Other notable theatre world premieres include David Henry Hwang’s Pulitzer Prize finalist YELLOW FACE (Mark Taper Forum); Matt Sax and Eric Rosen’s hip-hop musical VENICE (Kansas City Rep, Kirk Douglas Theatre), which Time Magazine called “The year’s [2010] best musical”; Culture Clash’s PALESTINE, NEW MEXICO (Mark Taper Forum); John Belluso’s HENRY FLAMETHROWA (Trinity Rep); and Paul Grellong’s RADIO FREE EMERSON (Gamm). He has developed work at CTG, Portland Center Stage, South Coast Repertory, Trinity Rep, and the Denver Theatre Center. He spent five years as Director of Development for John Krasinski’s production company Sunday Night, serving as the Executive Producer of Krasinski’s THE HOLLARS and Co-Producer of the Gus Van Sant film PROMISED LAND.

Bill Sauerbrey (parent)

Catherine Smith
A Spartanburg, South Carolina native and two time Clemson Graduate, Catherine spent over seven years in New Orleans, Louisiana working with Waggonner & Ball Architects. There her work experience was focused on educational, commercial and institutional projects, several of which won American Institute of Architects’ awards. Post – Katrina, she managed a three year long design/build repair and alteration project on the 1880s era National Historic Monument US Custom House. In October of 2009, Catherine returned home to be closer to family and to open her own residential architectural practice.

Today, Catherine is practicing her craft locally in Greenville as the firm of Catherine Smith Architect, LLC which has also been recognized with AIA awards. The firm focuses on creating residential architecture specific to the individual client with a style that can be described as crafted, simple, and honest. Perhaps the work CSA is most proud of lately is with Allen Temple Community Economic Development Corporation which provides Energy Star homes for low-income families. Follow this link for a story that the Greenville County School District recently did about this work.

Catherine, the Architecture Department Chair, recently completed a term on the Greenville City Planning Commission, is currently pursuing a Doctorate of Education in Professional Leadership, serves on the Metropolitan Arts Council Board, and is living with The Izzy (not quite the best dog, yet).

John Warner
John Warner is former VP Finance and Administration at the SC Governor’s School for the Arts and Humanities (SCGSAH), and co-Founder and former President of Selective Micro Technologies, LLC.  John is currently Director of the Ray and Joan Kroc Community Center in Greenville, SC.  John also remains active in several civic and economic development organizations.

John was at SCGSAH for nearly nine years.  Along with President Bruce Halverson, he revived the school’s finances, implemented significant improvements in the administrative functions of the school and managed several construction projects.

Prior to joining SCGSAH, John was co-founder and CEO of Selective Micro Technologies, LLC.  Founded in late 1999, Selective Micro Technologies developed, a patented system that generates Ultra-Pure Chlorine Dioxide on demand at the point of use.  Chlorine dioxide (ClO2) has been recognized as a superior biocide that is highly effective against bacteria, viruses, molds, fungi and spores.   John is co-inventor of the patented generation system.

Prior to founding Selective Micro, John held several senior executive and general management positions with large industrial companies.  He was Chief Operating Officer at World Minerals, Inc., a mining and minerals firm.  Before joining World Minerals, John was Vice President and General Manager for Grace Packaging (a division of W. R. Grace & Co), in both Europe, based in Lausanne, Switzerland, and Asia Pacific, based in Hong Kong.  John held several senior management positions in Grace Packaging’s US organization, including Chief Financial Officer.

John is a former US Air Force pilot and was an Assistant Professor of Mathematics at the US Air Force Academy.  He is now retired from the Air Force Reserve.  He has also served in many civic and cultural organizations, including the Board of Greenville Symphony Association (President 1991-1992),  the Board of SC Launch (four years as Chairman), the Board of The Children’s Museum of the Upstate and the Boards of the Greenville Tech Foundation and Carolina Music Museum (now the Sigal Music Museum).

John is a graduate of the United States Air Force Academy and holds graduate degrees from North Carolina State University (Applied Mathematics) and Clemson University (Business).