The Portage and District Art Centre now has a new executive director. Margaret Bernhardt-Lowdon's taking on the role, and board member Doug Halmarson's pleased with her abilities.
"The biggest thing right off the bat was we are looking for a manager -- someone who can pull together all the facets of the Arts Centre and make them work," he explains. "The other big thing about Margaret was the calming influence she had just sitting in the chair at the end of the table. It was exciting to see that."
Bernhardt-Lowdon notes she's excited about the job and feels she has the skill-sets required to move the Centre forward. She adds her experience includes charity work in the early 90's, filling every role from coordinator to manager, and as executive director for the Lung Association. She's also done a lot of volunteering in Portage.
She explains the element that caught her attention for the PDAC was its field of work in relation to her experience in watching her son become an established artist with a gallery. Bernhardt-Lowdon says she saw how hard it is for artists to become established and wanted to do what she could to help. She notes came into the arts late in life due to her children, and any kind of art's now her passion. She says her style of leadership includes being hands-on at times, and other times letting people do their work and helping them do an even better job.
Bernhardt-Lowdon says she plans to start things off by getting out and around and see what people think of the Centre.