ACW Leaders

Barbara Rogers Bridges – Director

Barbara is the Founder and Director of the non-profit Art To Change The World
Art to Change the World (ACW) is a non-profit, diverse coalition of artists, educators, scientists, topic experts, and other change makers who join forces in service of positive social change. We employ the arts, education, audience engagement, and organizational partnerships to invoke positive discussion, reflection, and action.

Barbara has been an artist and a teacher/college professor for over 40 years. Her social practice sculptures have been exhibited in Maine, Miami, the Virgin Islands, Maryland, Chicago, Mexico, Spain, Canada, and throughout Minnesota. Bridges taught K-12 art in Minnesota, Maine, and the Virgin Islands. She was voted Art Teacher of the Year twice in Minnesota.

She is a sculptor on a mission to demonstrate how art can serve as a catalyst for social change and is committed to creating, and empowering others to create, high quality art objects which honor their powerful message.

Barbara has partnered with various Minnesota institutions such as the Minneapolis school district, the Minnesota Online High School, Perpich Center, the Walker Art Center, the Mpls. Institute of Art, the Weisman Museum, and the Minnesota Museum of Art.

Barbara has served as a professor for twenty years at the university of Minnesota and Bemidji State University and has contributed in a variety of ways. She was the architect of the unique DLiTE (Distributed Learning in Teacher Education)  – a hybrid online K-8 teacher licensure partnership program and the FasTrack secondary initiative designed for previously degreed candidates who wish to teach high school. The combined programs serve 250 teacher licensure students per semester, average age 35, working, and place bound with children.
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Chair of ACW Board

Board Member, Chair  -Joan Vaughn is a writer, visionary, and entrepreneur.

She has extensive experience in business development:
* In 1999, Joan created Communities of Care, a home care nursing agency, which she still owns and operates.  (https://communitiesofcaremn.com
*She coaches other entrepreneurs in the EOS/Traction business method in her business consulting company, How to Train Your Visionary. (https://howtotrainyourvisionary.com)
*Joan is also a co-owner of 5 Sisters Organics, a farm in Northern Minnesota that has belonged to her family for over 100 years.  (yes, there are really that many sisters.

She has participated on many non-profit boards including Entrepreneur’s Organization, Oak Hill Montessori, and is a founding member of Professional Home Care Coalition. Previous careers include teaching English and 10 years in a medical device company, Guidant.


Secretary of ACW Board
Board Member, Intern /Secretary  Grace Bianchi is a senior at Roseville Area High School. Currently she is working on her senior service project focused on double standards and girl bashing. Through her video, she is hoping to make some changes in the school culture by raising awareness. Grace is an active member of AWE inc. changemaker course/group, and has been a member since 2015.  Her responsibilities for AWE include, co-facilitating International Day of the Girl 2017, leading empowerment exercises, and facilitating small group discussions. She is excited about supporting other girls in their empowerment, self-discovery, and leadership. Grace is a student at MacPhail Center for Music. She has played the violin for 15 years and received several music awards. She is active in the community outreach programs and was selected to perform with Black Violin 2017, a sold out show, at the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts. She mentors younger musicians in both high school and the Suzuki program. She draws on her own experiences to encourage young girls in their own musicianship and self –discovery.


ACW Event Chair

Craig Harris  Craig Harris is Artistic Director of Interference Arts and is a composer, performer and writer. Harris creates multimedia stage works and interactive sculptural environments. He has collaborated with dance theater companies Ballet of the Dolls, Zorongo Flamenco, Off-Leash Area and Katha Dance Theatre, and served as Music Director on many theater projects.

Harris received a 2016 Right Here Showcase Commission, and has received support from McKnight Foundation, American Composers Forum, Hanson Institute for American Music, and Rimon: the MN Jewish Arts Council.

As Executive Director of Ballet of the Dolls and the Ritz Theater Foundation, he led the initiative to renovate the Ritz Theater in Northeast Minneapolis. He was Managing and Interim Director at the Playwrights’ Center, President of the International Computer Music Association, and Executive Director of the International Society for the Arts, Sciences and Technology. Harris received a Ph.D. in Composition at Eastman School of Music


ACW Public Relations Chair  

Layl McDill has decades of experience with organizing  public relations for several arts organizations in the Twin Cities.
Her unique polymer art form has grown into a national market.

“Remember that feeling when you went to a museum and saw all the mysterious old tools from ancient worlds laid out in row after row? Or maybe you got a peek inside some broken electronic and saw all those circuits. Then there are all the times when something mysterious about nature is explained and still you just can’t hardly believe it. The word that comes closest to describing that fantastic feeling that drives you to pursue more knowledge and fills you with joy is “wonder.”

I use wonderment as a mechanism to show the things we live with everyday in a new perspective, like the green hills you drive by everyday or the laundry hanging on the line. When you are surrounded by my polymer clay sculptures it is as if you are seeing the world through a patterned lens where the mundane is much more precious and mysterious.


ACW Non-Profit Chair

Elissa Raffa has a B.S. in Secondary Science Education and an M.F.A. in Creative and Professional Writing, both from the University of Minnesota, and an M.Ed. in Educational Leadership from Bemidji State University.  She is licensed in Minnesota as a district superintendent and as a teacher of high school physics, chemistry and earth/space science. She has also been active in arts education and has published a novel and several short stories, essays and performance pieces.  A founding director and current executive director of Minnesota Online High School (MNOHS), Ms. Raffa served for three years on the Minnesota Online Learning Advisory Council and has been active state-wide in preparing pre-service and in-service teachers for the rigors of online education.  Before starting MNOHS in 2005, she worked as a teacher and program developer for seven years with the Mindquest Learning Network in Bloomington and for twelve years at Loring Nicollet Alternative School in Minneapolis.  She lives part of each year in Greece where she has served as a consulting expert in faculty development, technology integration, and science education for the American Community Schools of Athens, the American College of Greece, and most recently the European Commission’s Horizon 2020 Science with and for Society funding program.


ACW VIP Event Chairs

 

Board Member, Chair  -Joan Vaughn is a writer, visionary, and entrepreneur.

She has extensive experience in business development:
* In 1999, Joan created Communities of Care, a home care nursing agency, which she still owns and operates.  (https://communitiesofcaremn.com
*She coaches other entrepreneurs in the EOS/Traction business method in her business consulting company, How to Train Your Visionary. (https://howtotrainyourvisionary.com)
*Joan is also a co-owner of 5 Sisters Organics, a farm in Northern Minnesota that has belonged to her family for over 100 years.  (yes, there are really that many sisters.

She has participated on many non-profit boards including Entrepreneur’s Organization, Oak Hill Montessori, and is a founding member of Professional Home Care Coalition. Previous careers include teaching English and 10 years in a medical device company, Guidant.


ACW  Event Design Chair

 Barry Scanlan works out of his studio in Minneapolis, Minnesota. He is first-generation Irish; his father’s parents lived in or around County Sligo before immigrating to Scotland then to America in 1920. Raised in Pittsburgh, Scanlan’s background is blue-collar; his father was a steel-worker as was his grandfather. He knows what it is like to sit in a bar surrounded by men who just left the mill, each drinking beers and shots of cheap whiskey.A Vietnam-era Marine Corps veteran, upon leaving the service he lived very close to the bone, with little money, drinking and using drugs, and making at-risk decisions, until he attended college with the GI Bill. Scanlan still makes at-risk decisions, just not as many.

Scanlan has a wide variety of experiences. He has worked in boatyards, built grottos and fences out of fieldstone, and circumvented Rapa Nui (Easter Island) on horseback while partaking in healing ceremonies to save the Earth. He taught in the elementary classroom for a couple decades, which is the hardest work he ever did. He most recently worked as a trauma response coordinator for Anoka-Hennepin Schools. He is a member of Veterans For Peace and has participated in El Salvador’s elections as an impartial observer.  Each of these experiences have shaped his artistic eye and motivation.


ACW Donor Management Chair
Danielle Ricci is an educator, choreographer, director, and dancer. She received her BFA in Dance Performance from University of California, Irvine in 2006 under direction of Donald McKayle. In 2014 she graduated with an MA in Arts and Cultural Management from St. Mary’s University of Minnesota. She currently an ‘MFA in Choreography’ candidate at Jacksonville University (2018). She has studied at The Ailey School in New York City as part of their Certificate in Dance Program. Danielle has danced professionally in California, Texas, and Minnesota and has also performed on stage with members of Joffrey Ballet, American Ballet Theatre, James Sewell Ballet, and Minnesota Dance Theatre. Danielle is the Founding Artistic Director of Borealis Dance– a professional modern dance company based in Minneapolis. Her choreography has been recognized as “Best of the Festival” at the Frontera Fringe Festival in Austin, TX in 2010.


 Jill Waterhouse Writer/Editor/Event Schedule Coordinator is a founding member of Art to Change the World, a new non-profit started by her former protégée, Barbara Bridges. Waterhouse has been a practicing artist for over 35 years and a mentor and Critical Response facilitator for over 20 years. She is also a performance artist, community activist, curator and published author. Her art work is primarily sculpture, installations and performance/social practice art. She has exhibited extensively in museums, galleries, and alternative spaces throughout the United States, including the Walker Arts Center and Minneapolis Institute of Art (Mia), and internationally in China and Mexico. Her art work and writing will be featured in an upcoming TPT production (TBD). And, her work as a Critical Response facilitator and writer will be featured in the new book on Critical Response by Liz Lerman and John Borstel, to be published soon.

Waterhouse has been heavily involved in a number of large community art projects and public performances. She has been a long time member, mentor and former director of WARM (Women’s Art Resources of MN) and a long time member and chapter president/co-president of WCA MN (Women’s Caucus for Art MN). She has also been involved with the Art Car and Art Shanty Projects for years and is a member of “What We Need is Here,” an environmental arts group at The Phipps in Hudson, Wisconsin. She has received grants and awards from the Metropolitan Regional Arts Council, and the Minneapolis Arts Commission. McKnight/Annenberg/Horncrest Foundations.   Artist  Minneapolis, Minnesota


ACW Education Committee Chair

Barbara is the Founder and Director of the non-profit Art To Change The World
Art to Change the World (ACW) is a multidisciplinary, cross-generational coalition of 40 social practice artists, educators, scientists, authentic/expert voices and other change makers who meet at the intersection of art and natural and social science. We aspire to investigate what divides us and discover strategies that might unite us, encouraging the marginalized, disenfranchised, under-served, and the established elite to join forces to DO Something about societal challenges.

Barbara has been an artist and a teacher/college professor for over 40 years. Her social practice sculptures have been exhibited in Maine, Miami, the Virgin Islands, Maryland, Chicago, Mexico, Spain, Canada, and throughout Minnesota. Bridges taught K-12 art in Minnesota, Maine, and the Virgin Islands. She was voted Art Teacher of the Year twice in Minnesota.

She is a sculptor on a mission to demonstrate how art can serve as a catalyst for social change and is committed to creating, and empowering others to create, high quality art objects which honor their powerful message.

Barbara has partnered with various Minnesota institutions such as the Minneapolis school district, the Minnesota Online High School, Perpich Center, the Walker Art Center, the Mpls. Institute of Art, the Weisman Museum, and the Minnesota Museum of Art.

Barbara has served as a professor for twenty years at the university of Minnesota and Bemidji State University and has contributed in a variety of ways. She was the architect of the unique DLiTE (Distributed Learning in Teacher Education)  – a hybrid online K-8 teacher licensure partnership program and the FasTrack secondary initiative designed for previously degreed candidates who wish to teach high school. The combined programs serve 250 teacher licensure students per semester, average age 35, working, and place bound with children.