Faculty Bios

Please check back regularly for updates and information about the 2019 Tennessee Arts Academy.


Lauralee Chambers

Visual Art –Elementary/Lower Middle

Core Class Description 

Lauralee Chambers is currently completing her twenty-fifth year as a kindergarten through fifth grade art educator in the Mt. Pleasant School District in Westchester, New York. Chambers believes that children are born to create, express, and find both comfort and challenge in the arts. Her goal is to ensure that children know there are many different ways to be an artist and that the world needs their creative thinking. She has a passion for collecting ideas everywhere and putting things together in unique ways—in her own art making as well as with her students. Chambers has been instrumental in integrating the arts across curriculum and developing unique programs such as Avenues to Artists, Artists to Authors, Discovery Days, Summer Voyage, and Unified Arts. In 2011, she was the recipient of the Artsonia Leadership Award.






Josh Chenard

Theatre - Upper Middle/Secondary

Core Class Description • Interlude Description

Josh Chenard is a director and educator who hails from Portland, Maine. His directing credits include the Virginia premiere of Lord of the Flies for Henley Street Theatre, the Chicago premiere of Peter Pan: The Boy Who Hates Mothers at the Athenaeum Theatre, and Eugene O'Neill’s tragic Desire Under the Elms at the Firehouse Theatre. A certified teacher of the Michael Chekhov Technique and an associate teacher of Fitzmaurice Voicework, Chenard has led classes and workshops all over the country including at Berea College, Dean College, Indiana University South Bend, the Kennedy Center American College Theatre Festival, the Southeastern Theatre Conference, and the University of Southern Maine. He is a proud member of the Stage Director and Choreographer’s Society and a member of the Lincoln Center Directors Lab, where he led an experimental staging of the Costa Rican folk tale “La Segua.”




Bethany Corey-Ekin

Theatre/Arts Integration – Elementary/Lower Middle

Core Class Description • Interlude Description

Bethany Corey-Ekin has worked nationally and internationally as an actress, director, educator, and teaching artist. She primarily identifies as a teaching artist, placing equal value on both her educational and artistic work, with her practice firmly rooted in theory and scholarship. Corey-Ekin works as a specialist for the Creative Learning Initiative in the Austin Independent School District, serves as a part-time assistant professor of theatre at Southwestern University, and is the Director of Pollyanna Theatre Company’s early childhood program Play and Play. Much of her educational work focuses on the use of arts-based instruction in early childhood and elementary classrooms and includes doing curriculum development, in-class residencies, and teacher training for a wide variety of organizations. She received her master of fine arts degree from the University of Texas at Austin, where the majority of her research involved the use of drama and theatre for children younger than six.




Dru Davison

Arts Leadership and Administration

Core Class Description

Dru Davison is an arts administrator for Shelby County Schools in Memphis and has recently served as project chair for the Tennessee State Board of Education’s revised fine arts standards. Additionally, Davison has served as a consultant for the U.S. Department of Education Reform Support Network and for the Insight Education Group. He has been a contractor with the Tennessee Department of Education and is past chair of the NAfME Council of Music Program Leaders during which he oversaw the revisions of Opportunity-to-Learn Standards for music instruction. In addition to his time working in kindergarten through twelfth grade public education, he has served as an adjunct jazz instructor at Arkansas State University, was a teaching fellow in music education at the University of North Texas, has served on the Bill and Melinda Gates College Readiness Advisory Council, and is a national fellow alum for the Hope Street Group.




Anthony DeQuattro

Music – Upper Middle/Secondary

Core Class Description • Interlude Description

Anthony DeQuattro is currently principal percussionist with the Greater Bridgeport Symphony and is an instructor at Quinnipiac University, Southern Connecticut State University, and the University of Bridgeport. He has traveled to and studied in Bali, Ghana, Puerto Rico, and Taiwan and has studied with performers from Brazil, Cuba, and South India. In addition to music, he has studied folkloric dance from England, Ghana, and Latin America. In 2007, DeQuattro was named Connecticut’s outstanding secondary school music educator. In 2009, he was selected as the chairman of the music department at the Regional Center for the Arts. Since his appointment, the music department has grown from serving eighteen music majors to serving eighty music majors. He is a contributing author to Cengage Publication’s Listening to Music.




Sarah Fairfield

Music – Elementary/Lower Middle

Core Class Description • Interlude Description

Sarah Fairfield teaches elementary general music in the Iowa City Community School District, where she also serves as a curriculum coordinator and an instructional design strategist for the district. In these roles, she coaches new educators and provides curricular support for the general music department. While pursuing her education degree, she maintained an active performing career, singing in the University of Iowa Opera Theater, Kantorei, and the Iowa City Chamber Singers. She now sings with the Vocal Artists of Iowa. Fairfield attended Orff certification courses at St. Thomas in St. Paul, Minnesota; the San Francisco Orff School; and the Orff Institute in Salzburg. She is an active member of the American Orff-Schulwerk Association, serving as its national conference chair in 2018 and as a past member on the board of trustees.




Zachary Fine

Theatre - Upper Middle/Secondary

Core Class Description • Interlude Description


Zachary Fine is an actor, writer, director, and teacher. His Broadway credits include China Doll with Al Pacino, and his Off-Broadway credits include work with the Acting Company, the Mint Theater, Pearl, Red Bull, Fiasco, Theatre for a New Audience, and New York Classical Theatre. He directed the Spanish language premiere of El Bien Del Pais (Our Country’s Goodat Teatro Helenico in Mexico City and Tony nominee Bryce Pinkham’s Between the Moon and Me at Birdland in New York CityOther directorial assignments include productions at the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival, Key West Theater, and Thin Air Shakespeare Festival. He was commissioned by Playmakers Rep to write Bewilderness for presentation at the Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival. He apprenticed with Christopher Bayes and trained at Ecole du Phillipe Gaulier, the Circus Center in San Francisco, and Spymonkey with Aitor Basauri. He has degrees from the University of Tennessee and Oberlin College. Additionally, Fine teaches clown and games at New York University and regularly holds workshops around the world.



Brent Gault

Music – Elementary/Lower Middle

Core Class Description • Interlude Description


Brent Gault is professor of music education at the Indiana University Jacobs School of Music. He specializes in elementary general music education, early childhood music education, and Kodály-inspired pedagogy. He also has training in both the Orff and Dalcroze approaches to music education. During his career, Gault has served as a presenter and guest lecturer for colleges and music education organizations in the United States, Brazil, Canada, China, Greece, Ireland, Poland, and Scotland. He is the co-editor with Carlos Abril of Teaching General Music and the author of Listen Up! Fostering Musicianship Through Active Listening. In addition to his duties with the music education department at the university, Gault serves as the program director for the Indiana University Children’s Choir, where he conducts the Allegro Choir. He is also a past president of the Organization of American Kodály Educators.




Tamara Goldbogen

Theatre/Arts Integration–Elementary/Lower Middle

Core Class Description • Interlude Description

Tamara Goldbogen is the Beverley Taylor Sorenson Endowed Chair for Arts Learning and the director of the award-winning Arts Learning Collaborative at Weber State University in Ogden, Utah. She oversees a statewide arts integration program and teaches in the College of Arts and Humanities, the College of Education, and the honors program at the university. Goldbogen’s interdisciplinary research and teaching focus on the transformative possibility of the arts in education. She regularly presents workshops at national and international conferences for arts, education, and research. She has also published many articles about her work. As part of the ASSITEJ World Congress and Performing Arts Festival, she presented at the International Theatre for Young Audiences Research Network in Australia, Poland, South Africa, and Sweden. In 2017, she received the Distinguished Fellows Outstanding Presentation Award from the International Society for Exploring Teaching and Learning. 




Nichole Hahn

Visual Art –Elementary/Lower Middle

Core Class Description 

Nichole Hahn has been a visual arts teacher for seventeen years and is known to her online friends as Nic Hahn. She has taught students of all ages—from preschoolers to adult learners. Hahn received a degree from the University of Wisconsin-Stout and then continued her education at the University of St. Mary’s in Minnesota. She has been a part of the Art of Education team, working as an online instructor as well as filming and sharing presentations on their website. She has been a member of the National Art Education Association since she was a university student and was recently was honored with the Minnesota Art Educator of the Year 2018 Award. Hahn has a blog called MiniMatisse.blogspot.com, which has connected her with educators from around the world. Using social media sites such as Twitter and Instagram, she has celebrated and shared her classroom happenings as well as her own creative endeavors.




Harry Hearne

Visual Art –Upper Middle/Secondary

Core Class Description 

Harry Hearne has been a full time potter since 1990 and currently works out of his own Turning Point Clay Studio. A fifth generation Floridian, he received a master’s degree in social work before accepting a potter internship in Murfreesboro, Tennessee. Hearne taught for five years at the Tennessee Governor’s School for the Arts and has conducted workshops at various colleges and universities, as well as the John C. Campbell Folk School and Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts. He also teaches Raku kiln building workshops and has built Raku kilns for various schools and organizations. Hearne’s work focuses primarily on Raku firing techniques using classical forms and multiple glaze layers and incorporating stained glass. He is a member of the Southern Highland Craft Guild and shows his work regionally and nationally. Harry is also a member of the Brasstown Morris Dancers, in Brasstown, North Carolina.




Julie Hearne

Visual Art –Upper Middle/Secondary

Core Class Description 

West Virginia native Julie Hearne started her clay career as a studio assistant for workshops in throwing, Raku firing, and Raku kiln building at Arrowmont School of Arts and Crafts and the John C. Campbell Folk School. She joined the Turning Point Clay Studio full time in 2008. With a background in systems management, she uses her skills to manage the behind-the-scenes operation of the pottery business, manage websites, host an Airbnb guest suite, and raise chickens. She feels fortunate to live in a community where food is a craft and table fellowship a norm. Hearne’s clay work focuses on garden sculptures and image transfer techniques. She enjoys remodeling houses and teaches weekly throwing classes in her studio. She is also a member of the Brasstown Morris Dancers, in Brasstown, North Carolina.




Timothy J. Holtan

Music – Upper Middle/Secondary

Core Class Description • Interlude Description

Colonel Timothy J. Holtan retired in 2017 as the senior military musician in the Department of Defense. Col. Holtan’s final command was as the 10th Leader and Commander of The United States Army Band “Pershing’s Own.” He holds the distinction of being the only officer to command all three of the Army’s premier bands, which include the U.S. Army Field Band and the U.S. Military Academy Band at West Point. Holtan has presented concerts and clinics in all fifty states, Canada, Japan, the U.S. Virgin Islands and across Europe. Holtan’s ensembles have been seen on many nationally televised broadcasts and diverse stages such as the Kennedy Center, Lincoln Center, DAR Constitution Hall, Mormon Tabernacle, Myerson Symphony Center, and Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, as well as for the 2017 Presidential Inaugural Concert at the Lincoln Memorial. Holtan also led the West Point Band in the Emmy-nominated “Marina at West Point” public television production that has reached more than 180 million viewers. 




Chauntee’ Schuler Irving

Theatre – Upper Middle/Secondary

Core Class Description • Interlude Description


Chauntee’ Schuler Irving is a professional actor and educator. Her many Broadway, professional theatre, and television production credits include The Lion KingThe ProducersApplauseSmokey Joes’ CaféCrumbs from the Table of JoyAs the World Turns, and numerous national commercials. Irving has trained and worked with the Actors’ Studio Drama School, the Barrow Group Theater Company, Alvin Ailey, and the Virginia Governor’s School for the Performing Arts. She has been appointed as a Jack Kent Cooke Scholar and Welsh Scholar. She was nominated for a Barrymore Award for Best Actress in her role as Deena Jones in Dreamgirls. Irving has taught theatre workshops and partnered with Camp Broadway, On and Off Broadway, the Salvation Army, the African Children’s Choir, the Christian Youth Theater, as well as many schools, performing arts centers, and organizations around the United States. Most recently, she taught acting and audition technique at Virginia Commonwealth University. Irving is a proud member of the American Federation of Television and Radio Artists and Screen Actors Guild as well as the Actor’s Equity Union.



David S. Leong

Arts Leadership and Administration

Core Class Description 

David Leong’s academic and professional career spans more than three decades in higher education and professional theatre. In 1996, he became the chair and producer of the theatre department at Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU). Leong used his expertise in the integrated arts to co-create the VCU School of Medicine Empathy Project, which now houses the nationally recognized Center for Standardized Patient Training Program and the VCU School of Business Creative Communication Center. More recently, he has used his theatre skills to teach conflict resolution to inmates as part of the program Rehabilitation through the Arts. His textbook Real-Life Public Speaking: Great Presentations as Theatre, is used by college students throughout the country. In the professional arena, Leong has coached movement or choreographed the fights for twenty-one Broadway and West End plays and musicals. 





Alan C. McClung

Music – Upper Middle/Secondary

Core Class Description • Interlude Description

In 2017, Alan McClung moved to the rank of associate professor emeritus at the University of North Texas. While teaching there, he conducted the Concert Choir, supervised student teachers, and taught graduate and undergraduate courses in secondary choral music education and undergraduate courses in choral conducting. In addition to six European concert tours, his choirs have performed numerous invited concerts for state and regional music conferences. He has conducted state and regional honor choirs and has served as guest conductor for the award winning Landesjungenchor from Koblenz, Germany. In addition to publications in a variety of professional journals, he is the author of Movable Tonic: A Sequenced Sight-Singing Method, a GIA publication. He currently serves as owner and managing editor of Cambiata Press, a small publishing company committed to quality music for the changing voice.




Robert B. Morrison

Arts Leadership and Administration

Core Class Description 

Robert Morrison is founder and CEO of Quadrant Research, the nation’s leading arts education research organization. During his career, he has created a deep body of research and policy work and is recognized as a pioneer in statewide arts education status and condition research. He served as the managing partner for the groundbreaking New Jersey Arts Education Census Project, completing the first statewide census for arts education in every school building. This work has been hailed as a model for statewide arts education research and has impacted many other states. Morrison’s advocacy work has earned him an EMMY, a Peabody Award, the New Jersey Governor’s Award for Arts Education, and an honorary doctorate degree from the State University of New York, Potsdam in 2002. He was also honored with the Motherland Award—the highest honor from the American Red Cross—for developing the nationwide public service campaign that aired in support of the organization following the attacks of September 11, 2001, in New York City.




Lynnette Young Overby

Theatre/Arts Integration–Elementary/Lower Middle

Core Class Description • Interlude Description

Lynnette Young Overby is an author, editor, and professor of theatre and dance at the University of Delaware. Her first classroom position was teaching dance and physical education in the Washington, DC, public schools. Her research interests are in the areas of mental imagery, arts education, and interdisciplinary learning. In 2018, she served as artistic director of an arts-based research project that culminated in the production of Women of Consequence: Ambitious, Ancillary and Anonymous. Overby is a Kennedy Center Teaching Artist and has provided professional development in arts integration for hundreds of teachers. She served as one of ten dance educators who developed the National Coalition for Core Arts Standards. With co-authors, Beth Post and Diane Newman, Overby published the book, Interdisciplinary Learning through Dance: 101 Moventures. In 2018, the National Dance Education Organization awarded Overby with its Lifetime Achievement Award.




David Row

Music – Elementary/Lower Middle

Core Class Description • Interlude Description

A Nebraska native and Midwesterner at heart, David Row now lives and teaches in the Cherokee County School District outside of Atlanta, Georgia. He holds a master’s degree in music education, has completed three levels and a master course in Orff Schulwerk training, and has extensive experience with critical thinking in the arts. Row loves teaching music to children. But when he’s not teaching, he likes to connect and learn with other music educators around the country. He’s an active clinician and has presented workshops at local, district, and state conventions across the country. On his blog, MakeMomentsMatter.org, he shares ideas about classroom content, management, lesson plans, and critical thinking. His newest adventures can be viewed by looking in Spotify or Apple Podcasts for Make Moments Matter: A Music Education Podcast!





Mackie V. Spradley

Arts Leadership and Administration

Core Class Description

Mackie Spradley is the president-elect of the National Association for Music Education, one of the largest arts education organizations in the world. She is currently an adjunct professor of education in the College of Education at the University of North Texas, where she teaches graduate-level courses in teacher education and administration. She is also the curriculum program coordinator for the academic curriculum standards and student support division at the Texas Education Agency. Spradley’s teaching experience includes more than twenty-five years as a classroom teacher. She is a published author with primary research interests in critical discourse analysis, educator preparation, and culturally responsive teaching. Her work focuses on issues related to equity in education and improving teacher effectiveness.





Cliff Tierney

Trio Track – Visual Art Sessions

Core Class Description

Cliff Tierney is associate professor of art at Lipscomb University in Nashville, Tennessee, where he has taught for eighteen years. Before teaching full time, he was an illustrator and designer at The Tennessean newspaper in Nashville and The Florida Times-Union newspaper in Jacksonville. He has taught for Lipscomb’s LIFE Program at the Riverbend Maximum Security Facility and the Tennessee Prison for Women, where he was the art director for their annual literary journal Chiaroscuro. Tierney has co-led travel classes to the Big Bend National Park and the Olympic Peninsula in Washington state, in addition to leading art experiences in France and Italy. He is a member of the College Art Association, Southeastern Art Conference, and FATE (Foundations in Art: Theory and Education). His work has been shown both regionally and nationally in commercial and university galleries.





Kelsey Viola Wiskirchen

Visual Art – Upper Middle/Secondary

Core Class Description 

Kelsey Viola Wiskirchen is a full-time studio artist and educator living in St. Louis, Missouri. She received degrees with a concentration in fibers from Truman State University and from Arizona State University. She has taught textiles at every age level from children to university and adult continuing education, with a heavy emphasis in community programs. Wiskirchen currently operates Viola Textile Studio, a textile education center that provides community education in textiles and offers professional development workshops for art educators in the St. Louis region. She spent two years in Tennessee as an Artist-in-Residence at the Appalachian Center for Craft. Continuing to learn and to teach others has become central to her life as an artist, and these experiences continually crossover into her studio practice.