Art Connection in the Capital Region (ACCR) is a nonprofit that expands access to original visual art and provides opportunities for artists to have their work placed permanently in collections within nonprofit organizations throughout Washington, DC and Baltimore. ACCR’s robust exhibition program includes in-person and virtual exhibitions where participating nonprofits select artwork that speaks to their mission and vision to exhibit permanently in their public areas.
ESTABLISHED IN 2004
ACCR’s artwork exhibition and donation program enriches lives by contributing to the creation of nurturing and inspiring spaces. From the individual receiving services at a partnering nonprofit, to the staff and volunteers who ensure their wellbeing, ACCR is able to proliferate creativity and a sense of beauty one artwork at a time by connecting artists and their art to nonprofits within our community.
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ACCR is modeled after the success of the former Art Connection, an organization founded in Boston in 1995 by the late Fay Chandler, an artist who had been working there since the early 1970s.
Like many of her artist contemporaries, Fay amassed a growing inventory of artwork and became convinced that donating artwork to public, charitable, and educational groups in the community that lacked funds to purchase art would be the best course.
The Art Connection connected artists and collectors to nonprofit agencies and facilitated the donation of thousands of works of art during its existence. In addition, it encouraged the development of similar art donation and placement programs throughout the country through its expansion efforts, before its closing in 2020.
To date, ACCR has partnered with over one hundred community service organizations throughout the District of Columbia, Maryland, and Northern Virginia in the delivery of its mission, and made thousands of pieces of art available for placement. Through our efforts, we have inspired dialogue, creativity, healing, and learning by introducing artwork into nonprofit community environments. We have witnessed firsthand the transformative effects that artwork has on the lives of residents, clients, and staff, and are very proud of the individuals and communities we have empowered through our programming.
JULIE ANN CAVNOR, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR
has served as the Executive Director of the Art Connection in the Capital Region (ACCR) since her appointment in 2010. Before joining ACCR, she served for seven years as the Executive Director of Maryland Art Place (MAP)—a respected center for contemporary art in Baltimore City, established in 1981 to provide exhibition and educational opportunities to artists, curators, and arts writers at all stages of their careers. Prior, she served as the Assistant Director of MAP for five years.
Throughout her career, Julie has worked in various capacities in museums, alternative art spaces and commercial galleries throughout the country, and possesses extensive programmatic, curatorial, and arts management experience. She holds a Masters degree in Arts Administration and Public History from The American University, Washington, DC.
DANIEL P. KELLIHER, BOARD PRESIDENT is the managing member of Kelliher & Salzer, LLC, a law firm with offices in Severna Park, Maryland and New Orleans, Louisiana which focuses on commercial real estate transactions. Dan has been on the board of ACCR since 2004. In addition to being on the ACCR board, Daniel also serves on the board of Community Homes Housing, Inc., a non-profit in Columbia, Maryland which owns affordable housing sites in Columbia and on the Marketing Committee of the Community Foundation of Howard County. Dan lives in Severna Park, MD with his wife, Tree, and their four children, JoJo, Karry, CJ and Abby and two dogs.
“It has been an honor to meet artists throughout the Baltimore/Washington area and to have the opportunity to enjoy their amazing work. I am excited that ACCR continues to increase the audience for this work by partnering with other arts organizations on exhibitions and by having the works permanently placed in non-profit locations which have typically been devoid of original artwork. Art is an essential element of a successful community and ACCR through its connections with artists, collectors, arts organizations, and non-profits is making original art a bigger part of the lives of more people in the communities which ACCR serves.”
ASHBY D. ANDERSON, VICE PRESIDENT has actively collected art for over thirty years, acquiring his first painting—a portrait by Connecticut artist William Sherman Potts—at the age of ten. Influenced by his seafaring hometown of Noank, Connecticut, and his family’s long connection to the ocean, Ashby began collecting Connecticut marine paintings and developed a broad knowledge of New England’s renowned artist colonies of the late-19th and early-20th centuries. His personal collection includes paintings by Reynolds Beal, Charles Harold Davis, Carl Lawless, Lars Thorsen, and George Albert Thompson.
Ashby has worked for several New England institutions, including the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, the Mystic Seaport Museum, the Florence Griswold Museum, and the auction house Skinner, Inc. Ashby holds a M.A.L.S. from Dartmouth College and a BA from St. Lawrence University.
SUSAN KIM, SECRETARY is a cause-driven freelance journalist who writes and edits stories on social justice, disaster recovery, diversity and inclusion for the World Council of Churches, Mennonite Disaster Service, and The Business Monthly newspaper. She believes every person deserves to experience—and be transformed by—original art. Art is not just for display in the living rooms of the rich, or for exhibition in galleries for the privileged.
"Art is for everyone—for every human being who is striving to live with dignity and courage in our world."
"What I love about ACCR is that it understands the magic and power of art. I’ve seen white bare walls transformed into incredible murals for all to see and brighten up a day. I’ve seen non-profit recipients’ joyful reactions after new art is distributed and hung on the walls and I’ve seen the satisfaction on the faces of the artists, knowing that their art is impacting people’s lives. Every time I go to an ACCR art placement, I am in amazement at both the creation of the artwork itself, but also what it can do when it is exposed in the right place."
MATTHEW SONNE, TREASURER is Vice President in Jones Lang LaSalle’s Corporate Accounts team for the Mid-Atlantic region. Matt currently acts as the account manager and lead transaction manager for the Lockheed Martin Account in representing their real estate requirements throughout the world. He is responsible for managing and overseeing the operations of the account team, client communications, and execution and negotiation of transactions. Prior to joining Jones Lang LaSalle, Matt was a project manager and environmental scientist at Dames & Moore Group. Matt executed and managed environmental due diligence projects, compliance audits, and remediation projects for real estate developers, lending institutions, and corporate clients.
BEI MA is the Founder and CEO of The Pinea Group, LLC, a global consulting firm for biotech, biopharma, digital health, medtech, and other healthcare organizations to deliver patient-centric innovative solutions in the U.S. and international markets. Previously, Bei served as the vice president of global healthcare business development at the British Standards Institution Group and international business development at the U.S. Pharmacopeia Convention.
A scientist by training, Bei has always been an artist at heart. Largely self-taught, she is a firm believer that everyone deserves LOVE, JOY, and PEACE. She feels that art can achieve this goal and connect everyone in a meaningful way. She uses photography, painting, and digital art to express the beauty in human life and nature. Bei has served on the board of the Rockville Economic Development Inc. and the VisArts Center since 2020. Both organizations are non-profits, located in Rockville, Maryland.
JACQUELINE "Jackie" JONES is Dean of the School of Global Journalism & Communication at Morgan State University.
A veteran newswoman, Jones has worked in a variety of capacities in newsrooms around the country, including: The (Baltimore) Evening Sun, Detroit Free Press, New York Newsday, The Philadelphia Daily News, The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel and The Washington Post. While at New York Newsday, she was a member of the newsroom team that won a Pulitzer Prize in 1992 for Spot News Coverage. Jackie has served on the Board of Directors of the National Association of Black Journalists (NABJ) and represented the NABJ on the Accrediting Council on Education in Journalism and Mass Communication for more than 25 years.
An avid art collector, Jackie brings her passion for art and social justice to the Board, contributing to ACCR’s efforts to make artwork accessible and a means for enrichment in communities throughout Baltimore and Washington, DC.
“ACCR offers the opportunity for me to expand my knowledge-base and satisfy my avocation as a collector, while also supporting the work of nonprofit organizations. It’s a win all the way around.”
CINDY RIVARDE, FOUNDING MEMBER
is an artist who has exhibited across the country and has had several one-person shows. She attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she received a B.A. in art and dramatic art in 1988 and received the Paul and Elizabeth Green Award for women in theater. She also received her M.F.A. in painting from Towson University in 2004. In her early career, she was a scenic artist at Hartford Stage, PlayMakers Theatre, Long Wharf Theater, and Baltimore Center Stage. Cindy is also a commercial real estate attorney and an economic development professional who builds communities with a strong talent for placemaking and engagement. She has overseen numerous cultural programming for cities including public art programs, cultural grants programs, presentation of musical series, film location services, as well as operation of cultural assets.
"I feel my paintings have a positive impact on the clients and staff of the non-profits that select them. Several of my large tree paintings have been installed at homeless shelters, where I hope they give a sense of rootedness and peace." Cindy Rivarde