ReCreative Staff

JENNA BOITANO
Executive Director & CO-FOUNDER

Jenna has over 15 years of experience in the non-profit sector. She has been part of organizations working on a variety of issues from adult literacy to youth in the juvenile justice system. She most recently worked as the Executive Director of Crayons2Calculators in Durham, NC. While in Durham, she served on the board of The Scrap Exchange and fell in love with creative reuse.

When she’s not exploring Seattle with her two small children, Jenna is actively involved in the Seattle community, and currently serves as the President Elect of the Junior League of Seattle.  She received her Juris Doctorate from Santa Clara University Law School and is a member of the California Bar.  Jenna also holds a BA from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor in History. 

Darrah Parker
Program Manager (on maternity leave until early 2018)

Darrah was born into an artistic family. She has fond memories of watching her grandfather make found-object sculptures out of treasures he found at the dump. Her mother taught her to draw before she could write. As a young girl, she took an interest in theatre and went on to receive a BFA in Acting from the University of Florida and a Masters degree in Theatre Education from Emerson College. She has been a teaching artist at Seattle Children's Theatre and Youth Theatre Northwest, a museum interpreter at Pacific Science Center, and was an education program manager at Experience Music Project, where she oversaw classes, camps, and workshops. Most recently, Darrah has been a professional photographer, specializing in documentary style family and newborn photography.

Few things bring Darrah more joy than fostering creativity in the next generation. She gets to witness that daily as her young daughter explores, creates, and delights in the world around her. She has been bringing her daughter to Seattle ReCreative since it opened and loves supporting an organization that is not only environmentally conscious and encouraging of creativity and innovation, but also a place that brings people of all ages together for a positive purpose.

EMILY ELLINGSWORTH
OPERATIONS & MATERIALS MANAGER / retail assistant

Midwest born and raised by a creative reuser, Emily Ellingsworth earned her BA in Fine Arts at Flagler College with minors in Creative Writing and Stained Glass. She received her MFA in Non-Figurative Painting and Drawing from Academy of Art University where she made huge found object mixed-media abstractions and studied fashion illustration, for a non-classical drawing approach.

Emily has built curriculum and taught many forms of art over the years, stressing the importance of environmental awareness/responsibility and community engagement, while encouraging using materials and tools in unconventional ways to make colorful, original works of art.

Transplanted in Seattle from Richmond, Virginia, a year ago, she has hit the ground running, teaching art, facilitating community outreach, and stepping in as the first Operations/Materials Manager at Seattle ReCreative. She also teaches camps and classes as well as keeping up the social media at Thrive Art School

Check out her artist website www.emilyellingsworth.com and her online store www.twirlyskirts.net

Kathryn Stewart
Programs & Events Coordinator

Katie Stewart has enjoyed working with children since she was in high school, babysitting and nannying her way through Smith College and beyond. Originally from the East Coast, she worked as a Teaching Assistant and Lead Counselor for Glen Urquhart School's GAIN @ GUS-- a program that hosts intelligent, motivated kids from the poorer areas of Boston-- where she taught art and theatre classes as well as assisting in the classroom. Here in Seattle, she has taught theatre classes for Youth Theatre Northwest and Stone Soup Theatre. 

MARVA HOLMES
OUTREACH COORDINATOR / lead teacher / RETAIL SPECIALIST

After 15 years teaching preschool and prekindergarten students Marva decided it was time to shake things up. She started back to school almost 30 years after graduating with her BA in Children's Theater from Central Washington University. Before she was a classroom teacher, Marva worked as an administrator and arts specialist  at Seattle Children's Theater, Studio East, and many other locations in the Seattle area.  In her spare time you can see Marva participating in art parades. Marva has been in 2 Fremont Solstice Parades, 4 Burien Arts-a-glow , and 2 Buskers in the 'Burg . This summer Marva will be participating in West Seattle's first Mermaid parade and in her third Solstice parade. She was Seattle ReCreative's first intern before joining the staff.

MARiA LeFrance
Operations Assistant/ RETAIL SPECIALIST
 

Maria is a Seattle native with a love of jewelry and dance. Both loves have lead her to
pursue degrees in Dance and Anthropology from the University of Washington and
graduate work at the University of Hawaii. She has performed both Bellydance and
Persian dance in the Seattle area as well as studying Balinese Dance and Hula while
living in Hawaii.
In the last few years she has shifted her focus from dance to jewelry. Copper, Sterling,
leather and semi-precious stones are cut, hammered, folded and woven to create jewelry
meant to inspire and empower the wearer to live boldly. She also teaches jewelry class in
the Seattle area. You can find her jewelry for sale at www.lunabulan.etsy.com while
class information can be found via Facebook at LunaBulan Jewelry.

Jona Shoe
lead teacher / Retail assistant

Jona is a freelance illustrator and designer who grew up frequenting her local creative reuse shop in Ann Arbor, Michigan, and still loves any excuse to create and get messy! Jona worked for over 3 years as an arts educator at the Chicago Children's Museum, then provided counseling and art therapy in community mental health agencies for 3 years. She earned her B.F.A. in Film, Photography and Visual Art from Ithaca College and her M.A. in Counseling and Art Therapy from Adler University. Check out her work at jonashoe.com!

 

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Mike BErry
Lead Teacher / RETAIL Assistant

Originally from the Pacific Northwest, Mike recently returned from Albany, New York, where he taught for 10 years at the Free School (an urban alternative school). There, Mike found that origami is a wonderful catalyst to work in other subjects besides art. He has used origami to help teach math, science, cultural/social studies and other subjects. When not working with children at Seattle ReCreative, Mike loves to focus his energy on weight training and exercise, teaching and practicing martial arts (holding a black sash in Jeet Kun Do), teaching origami, and folding paper as his form of art expression.

Jonath OcHS
RETAIL SPECIALIST

Jonath grew up admiring portraiture and as a young kid really wanted a dynamic black and white portrait of himself with intense Rembrandt lighting. In high school he took fate into his own hands and started taking self portraits. He later went on to earn a BFA at the University of New Mexico where he further developed his skills as a creative self portrait artist. He continues to this day taking self portraits— toying with the idea of gender expression through make-up, wigs, and fashion. His inspirations include Cindy Sherman, Ryan Burke, Annie Leibovitz, Richard Avedon, and Egon Schiele. He also plays violin, piano, and ukelele; makes jewelry; is a graphic designer; and has experience in early childhood education. He’s very much a Jonath-of-all-trades. 

Amanda Drewniak
RETAIL SPECIALIST

Amanda Drewniak is a multi-media artist, filmmaker,producer, and artistic curator currently living in Seattle, Wa. She is heavily involved with the Seattle Film Community; creating content and the founder the Non-Profit Ardor Creative Media, curating screenings, pitch fests, and producing local productions. She also paints, crochets,  and works in digital art and photography. Her latest public installments are the Octopus Banners along Highway 99 (Aurora Avenue) in Shoreline, Wa. To learn more about her go to www.amandadrewniak.com

 

Erica CaLHOON
Teaching assistant

Erica grew up in Olympia, surrounded by inspiring artists and mountains. After a program in Environmental Studies at McGill University, she returned to the Northwest. Here, she has mostly worked in education, including teaching positions with the Mercer Slough Environmental Education Center and Pacific Marine Research. Working at ReCreative allows Erica to spread environmental awareness while stretching her creative side. Outside of work, she can be found biking, drawing, hiking and making papercut art. 

 

Ardis Burr
Teaching assistant

Ardis taught herself to sew at the tender age of eight. She’s not one to follow directions too closely, so her family kept the peace by surrendering the 1960s Bernina and looked the other way.

She studied weaving and indigo dying at Macalester College, and during a year abroad in Sendai, Japan at the Akiu Craft Park. In 2015, she began Up & Undies, a handcraft business that turns fun tee shirts into awesome underwear for grown ups. She hopes to teach you how to make your own undies and upcycled fashions at Seattle ReCreative someday.

Sunny Sundays you can often find Ardis and her undies, handknit dog sweaters, and latest projects at a pop-up in Bergen Square, Ballard. Stop by and say hello for a special Seattle ReCreative discount!

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Nora Rodriguez
Teaching assistant

Nora started as a volunteer working on service learning, and when she finished we instantly hired her as a teaching assistant because we didnt want her to go!

Bio coming soon!

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Jeanette Miller
Teaching Assistant

Most can find Jeanette using fibers and string for knitting, crochet, cross stitch or encaustic work. These are self driven work, commissioned works, and some self designed. Jeanette especially loves to design cross stitch patterns. She loves dabbling in other art mediums, but those remain her constant interests. 

 

 

 

Jeanette most recently worked outside the home as a parent educator and children’s teacher in the Parent/Child Center at Seattle Central College. P/CC children’s teachers facilitate process oriented art and emergent curriculum with ages 12 months to 3 years. Jeanette had also worked in preschool and K-8 educational settings supporting art exploration and skill acquisition in different mediums for students in Seattle Public Schools. 

Jeanette has worked with people of all ages, has a BA in developmental psychology and an MA in Student Development Administration.