Mark Fraire | Director, Dane Arts
Mark Fraire has worked as an arts administrator for over 20 years and has been involved in supporting theater arts on every level from producer to writer to actor to comic to playwright to manager to director. He was the Grants and Fund Development Director for the Madison Metropolitan School District and helped raise in 2013-14, over $2 million in funds. Fraire spent 17 years as the state’s Grants Officer for the Wisconsin Arts Board.
Prior to that position, Fraire created the Community Education Department for the Milwaukee Repertory Theater where he was awarded the President’s Coming Up Taller Award for creating TEENworks, an innovative youth and community theater arts training program. Fraire has an MBA in Corporate Finance from the University of Wisconsin- Madison.
Meghan Blake-Horst | Street Vending Coordinator, City of Madison & Founder, Absolutely Art
Meghan Blake-Horst is a native Madisonian raised in the Madison arts scene with a BS degree in Kinesiology from UW–Eau Claire. For ten years Meghan owned Absolutely Art, a community-based art gallery, and has been involved in organizing throughout her life.
Meghan has been a juror and/or judge for Art Fair On the Square, Art Fair Off the Square, Watertown Art Fair, Overture Center’s gallery exhibits, the UW Art Business Competition, DABL Night Market and curated the work of over 200 artists at Absolutely Art. For four years Meghan was on the grant review team for the visual arts for Dane Arts. Through Absolutely Art Meghan curated exhibits at many local businesses including the Monona Public Library. She has also been on the operations team for American Craft Week and since 2015 has been on the organization team for Dane Arts Buy Local (DABL).
She is currently the Street Vending Coordinator for the City of Madison where she oversees Art & Craft vending, Food Cart vending, Sidewalk Cafes, Game Day vending, Southeast Campus vending, and Late Night vending. She also staffs the Vending Oversight Committee, sits on the City’s Street Use Staff Commission and most recently was part of the Operations Team and assisted in installing the Bucky on Parade project.
Taeli Turner | Cultural Affairs Specialist, Dane Arts
Taeli Turner is the Cultural Affairs Specialist for Dane County Cultural Affairs – Dane Arts. In 2013, she received a BA in Art and General Business from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. In 2017, she received a graduate certificate in the Executive Program in Arts & Culture Strategy, which was offered through National Arts Strategies and the University of Pennsylvania. Previously, she served three terms as a Dane Arts grant reviewer. She has juried artwork for the annual Dane Arts calendar and poster, for the EUARCA+ 2017 Kassel, Germany visiting artist, and for DABL 2017. Taeli is currently serving on the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art jury panel for Art Fair on the Square 2018. She is also on the steering committee for the 3rd Annual Westfest in Elver Park, and is working towards her PCM certification in Digital Marketing offered through the American Marketing Association.
Brent Gerlach | BG Creative
Community engagements where people create together have taught Brent that Art is at the core of human relationships & progress. Whether creating cost effective business solutions for artists to grow professionally, producing novel pop-up markets like DABL, or designing conceptual installations for sold out music festivals: Art is at the HeART of it All ~
Sarah Akawa | Queer Pressure
Sarah is an events organizer, advocate, and artist. A co-founder of Queer Pressure, she focuses on community engagement and promoting underrepresented artists (visual, music, and performance). Sarah has been involved in events production and nightlife for over ten years and works as a consultant and graphic designer for various entities in Madison. Currently, she is continuing to curate art exhibits focusing on queer identities and queer people of color’s experiences, and exploring performance and video art. Always collaborating and hoping to engage people in making Madison a great place to live, she encourages people to find their community and do something for it.
Anna Strand | Cultural Affairs Intern
Anna Strand is a Cultural Affairs Intern and Dane Arts and an MBA candidate in the Bolz Center for Arts Administration in the Wisconsin School of Business. Anna has worked as a consultant for major national organizations, been part of a large development team for a statewide organization in Wisconsin, and served as development director for a Madison-based nonprofit. She is active in the community and currently serves as a docent and Director-at-Large on the Volunteers Board at the Madison Museum of Contemporary Art. She is a lifelong lover of art and studied Art History and Political Science at Indiana University-Bloomington. Anna is excited to work with Dane Arts to empower artists and arts organizations across Dane County.