Our Executive Staff

Linda-Wise photo

Linda Wise, CEO

Linda is responsible for the development, oversight and coordination of the properties, affairs and finances of The Fine Arts Association. She holds an M.E. in Education Administration from Kent State University; and a B.M. in Music Education from Miami University. She served as a member of the Board of Education of Solon City Schools for 19 years, 5 as president, and was awarded an honorary lifetime membership to Ohio PTA. Linda taught music at Hawken Middle and Lower School for 6 years and then became Assistant Director of the Middle School in 2000. She is a 2009 graduate of Leadership Lake County and has served as President of the Willoughby Rotary. She is currently Secretary of the board of the Willoughby Western Lake County Chamber of Commerce.  Ms. Wise is also a member of Western Reserve Junior Service League and Painesville United Methodist Church.

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Jeannie Fleming-Gifford, Director of Education & Lead Director

Jeannie Fleming-Gifford holds a B.A. in music (French Horn) and a M.A. in child development from The University of Akron. Prior to joining the team at The Fine Arts Association, Fleming-Gifford was the Director of CHABAM (Children Have Active Bodies And Minds). This locally owned, start-up company's mission was to provide quality, developmentally appropriate arts education program for the youngest learners and their families. Fleming-Gifford was charged with developing an early childhood multi-arts curriculum, hiring and training a team of educators, and working with the owners on the creation of a unique, interactive environment for families.

Jeannie also brings the experiences of more traditional arts education roles, with both Center for Arts- Inspired Learning and The Columbus Symphony Orchestra (Columbus, OH). She served as Education Director with both of these non-profit organizations. In both of these capacities, Jeannie worked with professional artists and musicians, area educators and the community to build and implement quality arts education programs. Fleming-Gifford has been recognized as an emerging leader in the Cleveland area, having been selected and completed the Cleveland Bridge Builders Leadership Training Program and is a member of the 2016 Leadership Lake County class. Her personal passions include writing, running and yoga.

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Yvonne Delgado Thomas, Director of Development

Yvonne Delgado Thomas holds a M.S.E. in Education Administration from Youngstown State University, a B.S.E. in Education (English) from Kent State University, and active Superintendent, Principal (Elementary) and Teaching (grades 7-12) licensure. This is Yvonne’s second tour here at The Fine Arts Association (2012-14) recently returning to the organization (March 2017).  Between The Fine Arts Association tours, Yvonne was the Corporate and Foundation Relations Officer at Kent State University’s department of Institutional Advancement (4 years).  There she worked with faculty mainly from the College of Education and the College of the Arts along with other colleges and programs to develop mutually beneficial relationships between KSU and private foundations to secure private funds for the university.  Prior to that, Yvonne was a public school administrator for 14 years through Lake County Educational Service Center holding various roles including the Director of the Porter Center for Science and Mathematics. 

Yvonne is a dedicated educational professional.  She has strong connections with corporations, schools, non-profits, government, foundations, private funders and individuals throughout the geographical region.  She is excited to be back at The Fine Arts Association and looks forward to growing the financial base for operations and programming.  Raised in an artistic family, Yvonne appreciates and respects the benefits the arts can bring to people of all ages.  She is proud to have two sons in the  military– the oldest in the Navy and the youngest in the Army.  Her personal hobbies include making maple syrup and candies, rain barrel painting, barn quilt painting, acrylic painting, reading and gardening.  She also volunteers with the Department on Aging through the Meals on Wheels program.

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David Malinowski
Roger and Anne Clapp Chair of Performing Arts

David began his relationship with The Fine Arts Association in 1983 as a violin student of Dr. Carol Linsenmeier. His interest and fondness of theatre began and developed while a member of the Youth Orchestra between 1990-92. In December of ’93, he appeared in his first production, Babes in Toyland. David continued his theatrical and musical training at FAA until he graduated from Notre Dame Cathedral Latin School in 1998.

A professional actor and director, David earned his BA in Theatre with Minors in English and Philosophy at Ashland University. He has been acting for twenty years and been teaching for seven. David’s previous directing credits at FAA include Willy Wonka, Doctor Dolittle, Alice in Wonderland, and The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe. He has directed at other area theatres including Almost, Maine, God of Carnage and The Maltese Bodkin (Chagrin Valley Little Theatre), Of Mice and Men (Geauga Lyric Theatre Guild), An Evening of David Ives and #MyLife (co-directed with Sandy Kosovich Peck at South High School).

David runs the Theatre program at Notre Dame Elementary as well as The Breckenridge Village Players. He is also a Baritone with the North Coast Men’s Chorus. Some of David’s favorite acting credits include The Sound of Music (Captain Von Trapp), The Life and Adventures of Nicholas Nickleby (Wackford Squeers/Mulberry Hawk), Doubt: A Parable (Father Flynn), Frost/Nixon (David Frost) at Rabbit Run Theatre, Cats (Munkustrap) at GLTG and A Tuna Christmas (11 roles) at CVLT. David has directed, stage-managed and performed at many local theatres including, FAA, CVLT, GLTG, The Beck Centre for the Arts, the Jewish Community Center, and the Cleveland Play House.

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Wanda Wareham, Director of Communications and Marketing

Wanda joined The Fine Arts Association as Director of Communications and Marketing in 2001. She is responsible for the development and coordination of all marketing, publicity, public relations, media relations and advertising for the organization.

Before coming to Fine Arts Ms. Wareham held the position of Executive Director of the Willoughby Area Chamber of Commerce for twelve years. She holds a B.A. in Sociology and Psychology from Clarion University in PA and earned a certification in Organizational Management from the Institutes for Organization Management at the University of Notre Dame. She completed the Dale Carnegie Course and was awarded the Highest Award for Achievement by her peers.

Wanda currently serves on the editorial advisory committee of Cleveland Magazine's Lake County Community Leader. Formerly she served on the Steering Committee of Lake Kidz Biz  and several boards including Lake Communicators (holding the positions of President and Treasurer), the American Marketing Association (Cleveland Chapter)where she held the positions of Hospitality and Programming chairs, United Way of Lake County, Lake County Council on Aging and Chamber of Commerce Executives of Ohio.

In her spare time Wanda enjoys reading, needlework, attending arts events and most importantly spending time with family and friends.

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Suzanne Benet, Manager of Finance

Suzanne is responsible for the oversight and coordination of all financial matters at The Fine Arts Association.

Suzanne is a Certified Public Accountant in the State of Ohio. She earned her B.A. in Prelaw and Accounting from Cleveland State University. Suzanne has had a unique and diverse career of thirty years plus in both the private and public sectors. She was the controller for Recovery Resources, Total Recovery Group, Equity Consultants, City of Cleveland and Moreland Management Company. She is thrilled to be working for an organization that fosters creativity and self expression and enriches the community through the arts.

Suzanne's hobbies include ballet and ballroom dance. She is also an avid Cleveland sports fan.

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Support Staff


Judy Nagel, Adminstrative Coordinator

Judy joined The Fine Arts Association staff in 2007.  She works directly with the CEO, Director of Finance, Board of Directors and Development Department. Among her various responsibilities she also coordinates the rental of the facility.

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Ann Hedger, Programming Coordinator

Ann has been involved with The Fine Arts Association's theatre productions since 1982. She joined the office staff full time in 1994 and currently is the Programming Coordinator working with both the Theatre and Education Departments and handling the Fine Arts IT system. In addition, Ann has performed, directed and stage managed over 80 productions at the Fine Arts and other area theatres over the past 25 years. Ann created the FAA Annual One Act Festival and has been involved as an actor or director since its inception in 1997. She has directed productions at many area theatres and favorite directing projects include To Gillian on Her 37th Birthday at the River Street Playhouse, Frost/Nixon, Educating Rita, Broadway Bound, Brighton Beach Memoirs and Sleuth at Rabbit Run Theatre and You Can't Take it With You and Barefoot in the Park at Geauga Lyric Theater Guild.

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Sandi Fink, Education Assistant

Sandi is the mother of five children who have all been involved in FAA classes for more than 17 years. A former preschool teacher, she homeschooled all of her children through 8th grade. She is a jack-of-all-trades who has experience in many areas including the arts and education and enjoys working with both children and adults. She joined the FAA support staff as Education Assistant and Dance Recital Coordinator in 2011 after years of volunteering and enjoys the variety of responsibilities that she experiences daily at Fine Arts. In her "free time", she enjoys theatre - behind the scenes assisting with set painting and props as well as being a member of the audience; teaching first grade PSR and other activities at St. Francis of Assisi Parish; volunteering; baking and cooking; calligraphy; knitting; ballroom dancing with husband David; zentangle; reading and much more!

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