Activating Heritage 2023 – March 6



Claire Fassnacht is the Development Manager at Intuit: The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art, where she has worked for five years. Her responsibilities range from capital campaign fundraiser to Young Professionals Board liaison to fundraising events to grants.  She is also the founder and director of Chicago Balinese Gamelan and a board member, musician and dancer with Friends of the Gamelan, both nonprofits that perform Indonesian music and dance across Chicago. She earned her master’s degree in arts administration from Boston University and completed a one-year fellowship in Indonesia sponsored by its Ministry of Culture. Claire’s greatest passion is introducing audiences to two niche treasures of the world—outsider art and gamelan.

Ellen Placey Wadey is the Program Director for Chicago Artistic Vitality and Collections at the Gaylord & Dorothy Donnelley Foundation. Before joining the Foundation in 2013, she was an independent fundraising coach, serving many arts organizations including the Chicago Cultural Alliance and Ragdale Foundation. She was executive director of the Guild Complex – a literary arts organization – for seven years and in that time built the Guild’s impressive artistic accomplishments on a firm foundation of organizational development. Before that, Ellen was the director of marketing and development for the Marwen Foundation. She has reviewed arts proposals on behalf of Prince Charitable Trust and served as a jurist or panelist for the likes of the Illinois Arts Council and the Third Coast Festival New Audio Competition. An accomplished writer, Ellen has two advanced degrees in fiction writing, is the recipient of the Scott Turow Fiction Prize, and has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize.

Eva Silverman Eva Silverman currently serves as Project Director of Art Design Chicago, a collaborative initiative of the Terra Foundation for American Art aimed at highlighting Chicago’s rich visual art and design histories and creative communities. Prior to joining the Terra Foundation, Ms. Silverman was the Associate Director of Arts Alliance Illinois, where she was responsible for fundraising, programming, and stakeholder engagement. Previously, Ms. Silverman was the Director of Arts & Community Engagement for the Chicago Office of Tourism and Culture (COTC) and Director of Collaborative Programs for the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs, where she was a staff member for 18 years.

Teresa Davis is a Program Director for the Illinois Arts Council Agency where she has worked for 6 years. She began working in the Grants Office and then moved over to the Program Office. Teresa is responsible for Arts Service Organizations, Community Arts Access, Individual Artist Support, Local Arts Agencies, and Media Arts. She also serves as the Agency’s ADA 504/Access Coordinator. She enjoys helping Illinois artists and arts organizations and often holds grant writing sessions. She has a background in performing arts to include music and dance and enjoys volunteering in her community.

Moderator: Randy Adamsick – Chicago Cultural Alliance Board of Directors