The CCA Team
Columbia Center for the Arts consists of many individuals working to increase access to the arts and provide unique educational opportunities. Members of the staff, Board of Directors, and outstanding CCA volunteers play a key role in helping CCA thrive.
Leith has always been passionate about the arts. Prior to becoming the ED of CCA Leith was the Director of Arts in Education of the Gorge, and served on CCA’s Education and Theater committees, and the Oregon Cultural Trust Committee for Hood River County. She also had a wedding planning business for over 15 years. Before moving to The Gorge, Leith held event manager positions at One Reel, an arts production company in Seattle and the Environmental Protection Agency in Washington DC. She studied art in Europe and received an BA in art history from Vassar College. She is driven by community building and creative collaborations. Her creative outlets are stage acting and writing. Her advice for staying healthy: laugh…often and regularly.
Rachael is a practicing artist who heralds from Northeast Ohio. Before becoming CCA`s Gallery Manager, Rachael received her BFA from Kent State University in 2010 and MFA at Southern Illinois University at Carbondale in 2014 with a focus in glass. She has received scholarships to Pilchuck School of Glass as well as Pittsburg Glass Center. Rachael has also taught workshops at various schools around the U.S.
Post MFA she worked as an artist assistant, was manager at the Mark Payton Glass Center in Louisville Kentucky, and worked as Gallery Assistant and Gaffer at Nichols Art Glass in The Dalles.
All of her experience as an artist, educator, instructor, and manager have led her to her current position at CCA. Being relatively new to the Gorge, she is thrilled to be able to spend her free time enjoying all of the beauty and outdoor activities the area has to offer as well as drawing inspiration from it for her craft. Rachael strongly believes in living in the present moment and trying to make light of life. One of her favorite quotes to live by is “ Man suffers only because he/she takes seriously what the Gods made for fun”-Alan Watts
Mattea joined the CCA team in February of 2021 and looks forward to being more immersed in the art community of the Gorge. She has lived in the Columbia Gorge her whole life and loves and appreciates the beauty of her hometown! Growing up she always knew she wanted to be an artist and be in a creative environment. She is so grateful to have had the opportunity to work alongside some amazing local artists who have become some of her most valued mentors. She enjoys working in a creative atmosphere and collaborating with creative people. Amidst the pandemic she received her Associates of Arts with a focus in Studio Arts & Illustration from Central Oregon Community College in Bend, OR. She aspires to share her love for art with the community and spreading kindness and love to those around her.
Hannalies joined CCA in March of 2021. Working behind the scenes in a number of small to medium enterprises over the years, she has served and supported organizations to effectively manage, organize and optimize their results. A master of the client journey, organizational systems and processes, Hannalies brings together diverse information in projects into a format that is easy to understand and cohesive to automation and scalability. When she’s not at CCA, Hannalies works with clients as an RTT hypnotherapist and coach. She has lived in the Gorge for 11 years and was raised in a musical household with a love of theater, live music, and the classics. She is an avid gardener, baker, knitter, and amateur herbalist.
Tim Ortlieb joined the CCA team in January of 2020. He assists the CCA team with video filming and production services for special projects including interviews, workshops, and livestream performances. Tim’s passion is with the local music community and he aspires to find ways to weave the local music community and CCA closer together.
Board of Directors -2021
Judie Hanel, Board Chair
Anna Cavalieri, Co-Chair
Ashley Huckaby May, Secretary
Tim Mayer, Treasurer
Abigail Merickel, Artist, printmaking, arts educator at Arts in Education of the Gorge and Columbia Gorge Community College
Anna Barker,Cathedral Ridge exhibit space liaison, Past CCA Board Member
Amirra Malak, Artist
Dena Gadomski, Current CCA Board Member
Marketing & Communications Committee
Anna C. Cavaleri
Anna C. Cavalari
Fundraising & Development Committee