Current ACAC Commission


Chair: Andrew Salinas

Andrew brings to ACAC a background in public humanities and nonprofit management and has worked on public history projects for the Library of Congress, Smithsonian Institution, and Tennessee Valley Authority. Andrew has an MA in Folklore and Literature from Ohio State University. He moved to Athens to pursue an MBA in 2014 after working at the Amistad Research Center, a hybrid archive/library/museum in New Orleans documenting the ethnic American experience. He works in the Terry College of Business at UGA and is on the board of the Athens Latino Center. Andrew and his cats like to collect vernacular art from the Deep South, and he enjoys trail running and working with his hands.

[photo courtesy Matt Hardy Photography]

Vice Chair: Holly J. Alderman

Holly has been active in arts programs throughout her lifetime. She served on the Athens Public Art Task Force in 2010 to design the public art policy. She also helped develop an inventory of local public art.

Treasurer: Darcie St Onge

Darcie St. Onge is a former public school educator and the current Financial Manager at CLOTH & KIND, a nationally recognized residential and commercial interior design studio based in Athens, GA and Ann Arbor, MI. As a mother of three and a native Athenian, Darcie loves sharing the Athens experiences she remembers as a child with her own children, along with exploring new opportunities currently available. Darcie is excited to be part of a team that showcases local artists and works to creates spaces that encourage questions, imagination and communication amongst all members of the Athens community.

Secretary (Vacant)


Beatrice Brown

Beatrice Brown is a consultant with a background in science and social justice. As a biochemist and medical researcher in the field of cancer diagnostics, Beatrice traveled nationally and internationally teaching state-of-the art diagnostic, and biotechnology practices. She is a certified facilitator with the National Coalition Building Institute of Washington, DC. Beatrice is an affiliate at the Intercultural Communication Institute in Portland, Oregon. Her expertise includes facilitation, mediation, interactive learning, training games and simulations, and controversial issues process. Beatrice holds a BFA in fashion and design, a BS in Biochemistry and a Ph.D in Immunology, Cell Pathology and DNA repair. As a consultant, she has helped hundreds of organizations, teams and individuals be more productive, creative and inclusive.

Melisa Cahnmann-Taylor

Cahnmann-Taylor is an award winning professor of TESOL and World Language Education in the Department of Language and Literacy Education. She has published and co-authored two books in education. Her numerous poems, essays, and articles about language learning have appeared in the Georgia Review, American Poetry Review, Women’s Quarterly Review, Cream City Review, Barrow Street, Puerto Del Sol, Mom Egg, Anthropology and Humanism, Language Arts, TESOL Journal, and many other literary and scholarly homes. She publishes Misha’s Poetry Cast and runs an annual “Seat in the Shade” poetry series in Athens, Georgia. She aims to raise two Spanish-English bilingual-bicultural children and to enhance Americans’ access to world languages, creative literacies, and multicultural humilities.

Linda Ford

Linda is a graduate of the University of Georgia. She was elected an Athens-Clark County Commissioner in 1999 and was Mayor Pro-tem in 2001. She has served on various boards, including the Classic Center Cultural Foundation, the Citizens SPLOST advisory committee, Habitat for Humanity Women’s Build, the Georgia Federation of Women’s Club, and the Classic Center Authority. She co-chaired the “We Let the Dawgs Out” public art project, which continues to bring Athens artists and businesses together to benefit non-profit organizations. Linda currently is a business analyst and trainer for PCC Technology Group, a software development company.

Deborah Gonzalez

Deborah Gonzalez, Esq. is a former Georgia state representative (HD117), attorney, and arts advocate. She has spent many years promoting and protecting the work of artists and art collectors, museums and community arts organizations. Understanding that there is a need for artists to understand how to monetize their work, and for the public at large to appreciate the work by sustaining artists by purchasing their work, Deborah collaborated with Art is King in Atlanta to create a 6 month program called “The League of Art Entrepreneurs.” Deborah looks forward to working with the ACAC to help its achieve its mission of providing resources and opportunities for artists to beautify our beloved county.


Helen Kuykendall

Helen relocated to Athens in 2009 from Denver, Colorado after working for over 20 years as a landscape architect specializing in park planning for the National Park Service and the City of Denver Parks and Recreation. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin (BS) and the University of Colorado (MLA), she has gradually over the years shifted focus from science and environmental planning towards garden history, yoga, painting and photography. Art has always been a part of her life, collecting, making and appreciating. She strives to make art part of daily living.


Marc Beechuk, Advisor and former ACAC Chair
Didi Dunphy,  Leisure Services Liaison
Stephanie Raines, A-CC Leisure Services Liaison
Marilyn Wolf-Ragatz, Advisor and Founding ACAC Chair


Jan Bush, AAAC Liaison


Lizzie Z. Saltz, Public Art Coordinator

Zucker Saltz is delighted to be working on behalf of art in Athens as the staff person for the ACAC. She is best known as the founder of ATHICA, which she directed from 2001 through 2012, curating 25 exhibits and overseeing 45, working with 100’s of local and national artists, performers and young curators. She promoted thematic exhibits, such as Nurture about breastfeeding and parenting, Running on Empty about the fuel crisis, Upcycle and Third Act: Contemplating Aging, which attracted audiences numbering in the 800’s. She earned her B.A. from Barnard College of Columbia University, NY in 1984, where she had the opportunity to intern for numerous Manhattan-based arts organizations. In 1993 she completed her M.F.A. in Spatial Arts from San Jose State, CA. She exhibited her own sculpture and installation work nationally for over a decade, as well as interactive electronic projects created in collaboration with her spouse. After moving to Athens’ in 1998, she familiarized herself with the art scene by writing art reviews and features for Flagpole Magazine until 2000. She also published arts features and reviews of artists from across the US from 1998 to 2003 for the international magazine Art Papers. Prior to ATHICA, she was a freelance curator on Long Island, NY and later in Athens, curating exhibits such as 2000’s Rock Art: An Exhibit of Visual Art by Athens Musicians (2000) with Melissa Link, and Eclectic Electric: An Exhibit of Electronic and Digital Art (2001), both mounted at the Lyndon House Art Center. She designed the publicity and 24-page catalog for Dr. Chris Cuomo’s Climate Change: Conveying Realities project held at Bottleworks, which ran for over three months in 2013. In 2014 she initiated and coordinated Athens Celebrates Elephant Six, a series of exhibits held at Ciné, Indigo, Lyndon House Arts Center, ATHICA, the Georgia Museum of Art and Piedmont College. She has worked for numerous non-profit arts organizations from the San Francisco International Film Festival to ABANA, the Artists Blacksmith’s Association of North America, as well as environmental non-profits such as The Athens Lands Trust and the Sustainable Forestry Initiative. She is excited to learn more about the processes that make quality public art possible and be able to help enrich our artistic environs.