Our Staff and Board Members2018-03-16T13:08:12+00:00


Kelly Hart, Executive Director

Kelly Hart, Executive Director

In September of 2008, Kelly Hart relocated from Idaho to Bellingham to become the Executive Director for Allied Arts of Whatcom County. She brings over 20 years of experience working in for-profit and non-profit arts organizations. Her wealth of knowledge and abilities are related to the incorporation of the arts into cultural tourism and in community development through programs such as promotion of the public arts. Kelly has served as a member at large for the Idaho Commission on the Arts, Bellingham Tourism Commission and Washington State Arts Alliance.
Email Kelly

Photo by Thor Ofteness

Judy Taylor, Bookkeeper

Judy Taylor, Bookkeeper

We have lost count of how many years Judy has been involved with bookkeeping for the organization. She has been a vital component in the coordination of our Holiday Festival of the Arts and Chalk Art Fest.
Email Judy

 Katy Tolles, Artist Services Coordinator


Katy started out as a volunteer and was hired on when we realized what a great asset she was to the organization. She oversees the programs that promote retail art sales such as our rotating gallery exhibits and the booth coordination for our two festivals.
Email Katy


Board Members

Jen Castaldo, President

Jen has always loved art her entire life, and because she isn’t a very good artist, she wants give all the support she can to those that are!

After moving to Bellingham in 2006, Jen wanted to get more involved in the community and started volunteering for several nonprofit organizations. After learning more about nonprofits and how they impact, as well as shape the community, she wanted to have a bigger role in that process.

What she absolutely loves about the Bellingham community is how well the nonprofit organizations work together to form a stronger community. Jen wants to connect organizations to increase resource awareness so they can do what they love.

 Vice President


Alexandra Wiley, Treasurer

Alexandra’s core belief is that everyone deserves beauty, everyone can be creative.

She has a long history of volunteering in the Bellingham Arts scene, beginning at the turn of the century joining the Bellingham Arts Commission as a mayoral appointee serving through 2016. She served the board of the Whatcom Museum Society for 2 ½ terms during which the Lightcatcher Building developed from dream to reality. Simultaneously she served on the Whatcom Community Foundation Investment and Finance Committee and delved into the management of nonprofit funds. Later, she served as Treasurer for Kulshan Community Land Trust, and is a former board member of the Downtown Bellingham Partnership.
She joins the board to advance the efforts of AAWC for everyone in the community.

Sheri Clark, Secretary

Dragon Wood Design – Designer. Sheri Clark has been a successful artisan at various craft shows for many years. Her background in Chainmaille comes from several private sources learned many years ago. She enjoys working with all types of metal using various techniques and mediums. She is one of the founding members and a past officer of the board of Directors at the Bellingham Metal Arts Guild. This lady has an unlimited amount of patience.

Courtney Rambo

Courtney joined the Board via the Whatcom Community Foundation’s Board Match Program. She came to Bellingham for her undergrad at Western Washington University and has stayed since to complete her MBA and launch Intellitonic, a Bellingham-based digital marketing agency dedicated to nonprofits and small-to-medium sized business. She plans to use her marketing skills to help Allied Arts increase their online presence via blog posts, the Google Ad Grants for AdWords program, and other digital channels.

Jena Curry

Jena moved to Bellingham in 1985, and shortly after began working for Bellingham National Bank.  She continued in the banking industry for another 30 years and became involved with her community by serving on such non-profit board of directors including President of the Skagit Women’s Alliance and Network. She currently serves as the Treasurer for the Downtown Bellingham Partnership and is a member of the historical preservation committee.  Jena became interested in the arts and historic buildings downtown Bellingham when she started working for Daylight Properties. Jena loves having such a diverse group of local artists who are readily available near Downtown Bellingham.  

Rachel Simpson

Rachel has always been a part of art, ever since she was a child. The community of Bellingham, the outdoors, travel, diversity, and her family are a big part of her life and inspiration. Rachel has a plethora of experience in many forms of fine arts; from art history, drawing, painting, sculpture, ceramics, screen-printing, photography, upcycling/recycling/reduce/reuse art, dyes, fibers/fabrics, textiles, sewing, costumes, masks, art installation, collaboration, and mixed-media. In 2007, she enrolled at Whatcom Community College, then went onto the Woodring College of Education for Fine Arts in Education K-12 at Western Washington University. In the fall of 2013, she was given the opportunity to be a fine arts student teacher in England at an international school called Box Hill. There, she was able to meet and work with a fine group of teachers, staff, and wonderful students from all over the globe. Rachel graduated from WWU in December of 2013 with a certification in arts education. Since then, she has continued her love of the arts and education in many ways: art exhibits throughout Washington state, volunteering & teaching at Allied Arts of Whatcom County, volunteer tutoring at Explorations Academy, substitute teaching for the Bellingham School District, teaching art workshops throughout Whatcom county, teaching Community Ed Art at Whatcom Community College, and teaching kids art classes for BAAY EduArts Enrichment.

Colleen Harper

Colleen graduated from Western Washington University and has worked with the creative community in Bellingham and Ferndale ever since; making many valuable connections in the communities that we serve along the way. She is a local small business owner and has a history working in event management and organization. Colleen believes that art is a tool for community development and a way to help connect individuals.