Katie Patterson Larson, president/founder
Katie was born in Spokane to a family that collectors tools and things to make or fix everything and anything. Art and reuse have always been a natural part of her life. She studied art and psychology at Concordia College/Moorhead and received an MA is Counseling and Art Therapy from Marylhurst University. After working as a child and family counselor in Portland she returned to her hometown in 2009 and saw the need for a creative reuse center is the Spokane community. Katie lives with her husband and 3 creative kids that provide constant inspiration for the countless ways you can create art with TP rolls and goggly eyes.
Amy Mickelson, vice president
Amy Mickelson, is a jewelry designer who works with colorful glass beads, gemstones and powder coated metal. She enjoys sharing her creativity by teaching upcycled jewelry making workshops with Art Salvage. After many years in the world of engineering, energy and environmental conservation, Amy left the left-brain world to launch her own jewelry design business, and work in the sales and marketing departments at Rings and Things, a Spokane based supplier of jewelry making components. She has served on boards of various visual arts groups in Spokane including Inland Crafts, the Spokane Jewelers Guild and Art on the Prairie. A native of upstate New York, Amy has been a resident in the South Perry neighborhood of Spokane for over 25 years. Amy brings her skills as a detailed planner, community networker and long range thinker to Art Salvage.
Ashlee Brewington, Treasurer
Ashlee grew up in Central Washington but moved to Spokane almost 10 years ago to pursue a masters degree from Gonzaga. She is currently the Accounting and Payroll analyst for NAC Architecture, where she can use her degrees in accounting but still work with artistic and creative people. While she doesn’t come from a family of creatives, she’s been crafting for long as she can remember. She loves paper crafting and sewing most of all, and some of her favorite projects include those she can get her kids in on. Most recently, those projects look similar to vision boards, junk journals, and patchwork pillow cases. She is teaching her children that almost everything can be repurposed or reused, and some of the best art projects can come from items someone else tossed out or found at the back of their closet. She is excited to help promote reuse within the community.
Mary Gayle Johnson, Secretary
Johnson, a nearly lifelong resident of Spokane and an avid supporter of the arts and art makers, is grateful for the opportunity to be among like minded, dedicated people. Her vocation is as an adult educator, talent development partner in corporate America, currently with more than 2,000 employees of Banner Bank. Johnson is a compulsive sorter, a skill she is happy to employ as a volunteer for Art Salvage. As a Board member, she is happy to offer big picture perspective by asking pertinent questions to help guide and support the mission of Art Salvage.
Megan first came to Spokane as a student at Gonzaga, where she met her husband. She studied abroad in Florence, Italy and took art classes in college though her degree is in biology. After graduation, she and her husband settled down in Spokane , a charming and inspiring place to live and work. As an artist and teacher, Megan has taught classes at the Corbin Art Center, the New Moon Gallery and Auntie's Bookstore. She was super excited to learn about Art Salvage when Katie first started the organization. A place to buy art supplies and all sorts of weird oddments to make fun things? "I want that!" Megan is a proud supporter of the Art Salvage mission of creative reuse and of the Spokane creative community.
A writer/designer and marketing communications professional, Robin has been passionate about combining words and images since her first gig as a newspaper editor back in junior high. After years in corporate communications, 14 as a magazine editor and art director, Robin now works as a freelance graphic designer and copywriter, choosing both clients and community projects — like Art Salvage —that focus on bringing more beauty, pleasure and sustainability to our world. Her penchant for creative reuse is hard-wired, having watched her mother turn old clothes into cozy quilts, while her pack-rat daddy would draw from his ever-growing collection of random, well-organized junque to build whatever was needed. Following in their footsteps, Robin loves to collect interesting materials and items with no apparent purpose and give them new life. After 22 years on Spokane’s South Hill, she and her husband moved to the country — where she recently combined an old wooden pallet, animal bones, bird houses and car parts she found on their property into outdoor wall art.
Julie Gautier-Downes received a BA in Studio Art from the University of California, Santa Cruz in 2011 and a MFA in Photography from the Rhode Island School of Design in 2014. In her studio practice, Gautier-Downes uses found and discarded objects to explore the emotional resonance of abandoned or destroyed domestic spaces. In photographs and installations, she leads viewers on a journey through abandoned or distressed homes, creating both the visual and emotional experiences of the places she explores. Gautier-Downes has taught and guest lectured at a number of prestigious institutions, including Eastern Washington University, Gonzaga University, Rhode Island School of Design, and Washington State University. In 2017, she was an Artist in Residence at the Vermont Studio Center and AIR Studio Paducah. In 2018, Gautier-Downes was an Artist in Resident at Laboratory in Spokane, Washington. She has worked in marketing, development, and volunteer services at several nonprofits including Habitat for Humanity and Community Frameworks. Julie Gautier-Downes is currently the Executive Director of the Richmond Art Collective. She is excited to bring her passion for sourcing and utilizing repurposed materials in her studio practice as well as her professional experience with nonprofits to help Art Salvage reach the next level.
Kryston is the Executive Director at Laboratory Art and Residency here in Spokane. She has been involved in many different areas of the art world, from art advocacy to college residency programs and art marketing. She is focused on promoting artists within local communities.
Lindsey Paxton is a Spokane native who was introduced to the unofficial creative reuse movement when making things from her mom’s scrap fabrics and yarns. Lindsey was introduced to the official creative reuse movement when she was an Americorps volunteer in the California bay area and discovered the East Bay Depot for creative reuse in Oakland, CA. Lindsey has a bachelor’s degree in social work and global studies from Pacific Lutheran University and a law degree from Gonzaga University School of Law. Lindsey is an attorney for the Law Office of Lindsey A. Paxton in Spokane. Lindsey enjoys knitting, quilting, controversial cross-stitching, traveling, gardening and hiking with her dogs.
Art Salvage Advisors
Blair Williams considers herself lucky beyond belief, to work in the arts in her hometown of Coeur d’Alene, Idaho.
In 1998 Blair discovered the world and profession of arts administration, through her position as a board member with The Performing Arts Alliance in Coeur d’Alene. This led Blair to leave the state, in order to gain a degree in arts administration.
Upon her decision, she promised herself that she would always return to her beloved Coeur d’Alene, to find employment in the arts, and to work to strengthen the arts in her home state. Now Blair owns and operates The Art Spirit Gallery on the main street of Sherman Avenue, in downtown CDA – making her the luckiest woman ever.
Blair grew up in Hayden Lake, Idaho, among the mountains, woods and lake of the Idaho Panhandle. She then headed to the bay area of California where she earned her degree in arts administration from Golden Gate University – while working for the California Confederation of the Arts.
For over three decades Blair has worked and volunteered with a broad array of nonprofit arts organizations. She later returned to school to gain a degree in Public Relations and Communication, and later operated her own public relations firm for close to 10 years.
Since returning to Coeur d’Alene in 2011, Blair has been active in community development organizations such as Leadership Coeur d’Alene, The CDA School District, Coeur d’Alene Vision 2030, The CDA Arts & Cultural Alliance, The CDA Education Partnership, The CDA Downtown Association, Sorensen Magnet School for the Arts & Humanities, North Idaho College, University of Idaho, The Arts Ed Co-Lab, and the Human Rights Education Institute.
Every day Blair puts her key in the door of The Art Spirit Gallery, and with a huge smile says to herself “I get to be here today – working in the arts – in the city and state that I love.”