Board of Directors
Betsy Braley, President, is a Manager for the Bank of Greene County. Betsy is a graduate of Chatham High School, holds an Associate of Science, General Banking, from American Institute of Banking and an Associate of Arts from the Fashion Institute of Technology. She has been an active volunteer and Board member of numerous community nonprofits, and is currently also a Fair Director of the Columbia County Agricultural Society. Betsy is a life-long resident of Columbia County.
Karen J. Martin, Vice President, recently transitioned to Columbia County from Long Island after retiring from a large pharmaceutical company after 20 years as a Senior Business Development Manager. She and her husband Elliot bought a farm in Valatie were they grow much of their own food. Karen received an art scholarship and holds a BFA degree from Long Island University and started her professional life in advertising. She is the proud mother of 2 daughters and is passionate about art, photography, gardening and farm to table cooking.
Rachel Fainter, Treasurer, is the Collections Manager for The School | Jack Shainman Gallery in Kinderhook, NY. She obtained a masters in painting from the Savannah College of Art and Design, then moved to New York City to pursue her career in the visual arts and arts administration in non-profit museums and alternative spaces, as well as contemporary commercial galleries.
Dominique DeVito, Secretary, grew up on a farm in Chester Springs, Pennsylvania. She went to Mount Holyoke College, and landed in New York City, where she had a career in magazine and book publishing. She was an editor at the American Kennel Club Gazette magazine. Dominique launched a freelance career when her twin sons were young, and she has written numerous books on everything from dogs to decorating to cooking, including The World Atlas of Dog Breeds. Since purchasing the house and land that are now the Hudson-Chatham Winery in early 2006, she has learned more than she ever thought she would about agriculture, wine making, marketing, retail sales, and owning a small business. She is a huge fan of the riches Columbia County and the area have to offer in everything from local food awareness to cultural institutions to natural beauty, and serves on the Board of the Columbia County Chamber of Commerce.
Nicole Furnée, Board Member, is the visionary behind the Art School of Columbia County. Nicole was raised in the Netherlands and has lived and been active in Columbia County for nearly two decades. A nurse by training, Nicole’s lifetime dream was to own and operate a bookstore – a dream she continues as co-owner of the Chatham Bookstore in Chatham, NY. Nicole is the mother and step-mother of four grown children, and Oma to three grandchildren. Nicole resides with her husband, Thomas, in Ghent, NY.
Thomas Chulak, President Emeritus, is a retired Unitarian Universalist Minister who, in addition to parish ministry, spent much of his ministerial life leading, organizing, coaching and contributing to congregational and denominational growth and development on local, regional and national levels. Tom is the co-owner of the Chatham Bookstore and former president of the Chatham Area Business Alliance, father and step-father of four grown children and grandfather of three (which includes a set of twins). Thomas is a “gentleman” farmer who has a passion for traveling the world. Tom resides with his wife, Nicole, in Ghent, NY.
Serena Kovalosky, a sculptor who has lived and worked in both Montreal and upstate NY, specializes in projects that incorporate art, culture and tourism. As a cultural project organizer, Kovalosky was the co-founder and former executive director of the Open Studios of Washington County (NY) juried biennial. She curated and produced a national art exhibition at the Slate Valley Museum in Granville, NY and developed an art/travel edition of ACS Magazine featuring artists of the Yukon, including First Nations peoples. Kovalosky is currently producing a docu-reality film series on artists in North America. She lives in Cambridge NY. More information is on her website.
Barbara Masterson has painted her entire life. She holds a a BA in Art Education and MA from SUNY New Paltz. She taught extensively in the mid-Hudson region. Her art portraying migrant workers who work in Hudson Valley farms has been exhibited widely, including at the Samuel Dorsky Museum (SUNY New Paltz) and a solo show at the Woodstock Artists’ Association and Museum (NY). She continues to both paint and serve as an advocate for the diverse community of migrant workers who live in the Hudson Valley.
Andrew Pellettieri, is a working artist who lives in Columbia County with his wife, the artist Fern T. Apfel. Andrew graduated from the High School of Music and Art in NYC, received a degree in Art from the State University College at Plattsburgh, and studied at the Art Students League of New York (NYC) with Robert Beverly Hale, Joseph Hirsch and Vaclav Vytiacil. He received a Certificate of Completion in Painting from the Art Students League. He served on the Art Students League Board of Control and was a Trustee of the American Fine Art Society. He has also served on the Ichabod Crane School Board (Kinderhook NY), and was a Trustee of the Kinderhook Memorial Library.
Richard Trachtman, Ph.D. LCSW, is a psychotherapist working in private practice in Manhattan and Columbia County. In addition to private practice he spent much of his professional life working in not-for-profit agencies, as a clinician, supervisor and administrator. He was also a board member of A Better World Fund, a small charitable organization. Richard has been sketching, painting and photographing for much of his life. Over the years he took classes at the Brooklyn Museum, Cooper Union and with Betsy Jacarusso, Maj Kalfus and others. Along the way he taught himself pastel and oil pastel painting. Most recently he has taken several classes at the Art School of Columbia County. His work has appeared in various shows in Columbia and Greene Counties.
Help make art happen in our community – serve on ASCC’s Board or Advisory Council:
We seek motived, service-oriented individuals who would like to ensure art is part of our community. Serving as an ASCC Board member is a great way to be connected to a dynamic group of volunteers whose governance of ASCC ensures our organization serves the needs of our community. Serving on ASCC’s Board is an excellent opportunity to enhance your community connections in the arts, build the public service portion of your resume, and give back to our community. ASCC’s Board meets 6 times a year and Board service includes some additional committee meetings and fundraising. Serving on ASCC’s Advisory Council entails volunteering to provide a specialized service: community networking, legal advice, strategy development, or other service. Service on the Advisory Council is developed to suit the schedule of the individual.
For information about serving on either ASCC’s Board or Advisory Council, please .