THE MACK BOARD:
• Bob Berry – Chairman
• Roberta McKee – Vice Chairman
• Gail Gore – Treasurer
• Mitch Mitchell
• Brenda Lang
• Carol Grady
• Herman Keith Jr.
• Sondra Gividen
• Marina Skea
• Tom Poland
• Jai Jones
• Roman Stone
• Patti McAbee, Emeritus
SPOTLIGHT ON THE BOARD
• Bob Berry was born in Wildwood, NJ. He is married to Diane Berry. Bob retired after 35 years with the United Parcel Service. He started as a part-time employee loading trucks and retired as the Corporate Labor Health Care Manager responsible for the design development, implementation and negotiation of all union health care contracts for approximately 300,000 employees. His past professional affiliations include National Business Group on Health, Cigna Board of Directors, Cigna Client Advisory Group, Aetna Client Advisory Group, President – Pennsylvania Business Health Care Coalition, Trustee Teamster Local 107 and 804. Bob enjoys fishing, boating among other hobbies. He is looking forward to serving on the board of the MACK .
• Gail Gore has lived in Savannah Lakes Village with her husband, Brian, for eight years. She returned to her native state of South Carolina after living in Michigan where she worked as a realtor. Gail dabbled in pottery making as a teenager using an old kick wheel. Her mother would laugh when Gail left a note saying, ‘I’ve gone to pot.’ In 1977, she bought her first potter wheel and found time to take night courses at Grosse Point South High School. In the year 2000, when the Gores moved to SLV, only a few miles from her hometown of Greenwood, Gail purchased a kiln and better wheel and became a serious potter. Working from her basement studio, she uses six different colors of stoneware clay, 27 glazes, and loves to experiment with blending and overlapping colors. ‘My mother and I agreed that my business should be called ‘Gone to Pot,’ says Gail. Her greatest honor came when her church, – McCormick United Methodist – asked Gail to make the Paten and Chalice that is used for Holy Communion.
• Roberta McKee was born in Fort Campbell, Kentucky, and raised in Greenville, SC. She is the daughter of John H and Mary Clinkscales Harris. She attended grammar schools in Greenville, SC and graduated High School from Hillcrest High School in Simpsonville, SC. She earned her B.S. in Psychology with honors from the University of Maryland. She earned her Master of Science in Geriatric Counseling with honors from Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio. She is retired from the United States Air Force where she was in the medical field and the entertainment corps. She was a disability counselor for Sinclair Community College and a mental health counselor for Goodwill Industries in Dayton, Ohio. Due to health reasons, she retired in October 1995 and started a career in volunteerism. Roberta is a member of the MACK Artisans Guild and the Abbeville/McCormick Habitat for Humanitites Board of Directors and the Mighty Arts Players in Savannah Lakes Village. She is married to James C. McKee. They have 4 daughters and two grandchildren. Jim and Roberta relocated to Savannah Lakes Village on May 7, 2004. Roberta became a member of the MACK Board of Directors in 2007.
• John “Mitch” Mitchell was born in Elkhart, Indiana. He attended Purdue University where he met and married Sue, his wife. The Mitchell’s moved to Dayton, Ohio where they raised their three children. Mitch worked for several companies in the computer field before starting his own company. That company specialized in interactive voice response systems with schools being their primary client. Mitch’s flying hobby turned into a part time job as a charter pilot captain. He logged over 4000 hours in the air. Music has
always been a part of his life. He played cornet/trumpet in high school and was a member of a dance band. In college, he started singing and was a member of a quartet. A few years ago this quartet had the honor of singing on stage with the Kingston Trio. The Mitchell’s moved to McCormick in 2000. Mitch has been active in Lions, Community Chorus, church, Habitat, AFS (student exchange program), and he is happy to help promote the arts through the MACK.
• Brenda Lang is originally from Baltimore Maryland. Brenda worked for Verizon as a specialist in system testing and design in accounts payable. Brenda always loved her vacations to SC and knew she would someday retire there. She moved to Savannah Lakes Village in 2003.
Brenda became interested in making jewelry about 13 years ago after recreating a bracelet for a friend for a fraction of the price charged at a department store. She is self-taught from Internet articles, lots of books and magazines and has taken classes in Charleston and Anderson SC “I love making one-of-a-kind jewelry out of wire, precious metal clay and dichroic glass. I have designed my signature piece called the Twisted & Squeeze bracelet that has no clasp for ease of taking on and off the wrist. My main focus is designing something that no one else has ever seen” states Brenda. She has a room of her own where she creates all of her designs with various machines, tools, equipment and supplies.
• Herman A. Keith Jr., is a Painter and Muralist from Anderson, South Carolina. Mr. Keith received a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree from Howard University in Washington D.C. While attending college, Mr. Keith enlisted into the United States Air Force Reserves where he served for eight years. In 1995, Mr. Keith began working as a graphic artist for the consulting firm of Booz-Allen & Hamilton in Mclean, Virginia. During his contract, he produced classified artwork for various government agencies such as the Department of Defense, National Reconnaissance Office, and the National Security Agency.
In 1998 Mr. Keith received his M.A.T. Art Education from Lander University in Greenwood S.C. His teaching career began in the Charlotte-Mecklenburg School District. After two years of teaching art Mr. Keith started, owned, and operated Brushworx Painting Company. Brushworx specialized in commercial and residential painting contracts. Over the next twelve years of Brushworx’s operations, he continued his career as an art instructor in Calhoun County S.C., Prince George County MD., and Hillsborough County FL. His desire to fuse art and life lead to the formation of a company for which he named; HAKeith Brushworx. The mission of Brushworx is to “unite art with the community through the creative process,” and to also, “create art that transforms public spaces and individual lives.”
• Carol Grady
After retiring from a career as a registered nurse in 2000, Carol Grady decided it was time to find and develop a new passion. Ms. Grady strives to present her surroundings as flowing, not static. This view is what sets her apart from other photographers. Her logo “AsEyeSeeit2Day” conveys the mindset that drives her pursuit of excellence in photography.
Landscapes, florals, still life, portraiture and wedding photography are all a part of her skill set.
Ms. Grady has been awarded several honors over the years and is especially proud of her very first competition and win at the Red Rooster in McCormick, SC. “Old Time Religion Leads to a New Life” never fails to stop people in their tracks as they take a second and third look at the composition. Her works have been on display at the Augusta Airport, Augusta, Georgia; state fairs; the Georgia Library and at the McCormick Arts Council at the Keturah (MACK). She has placed twice to be displayed during the Augusta Photo Festival.
Her most recent accomplishment has been to take part in a community service project involving a downtown Augusta, Georgia church. Ms. Grady, along with several other photographers, spent the day documenting the beauty and history of the church. Her work and the work of others will be proudly displayed at the Lucy Laney Museum later in 2016.
• Marina Skea was elected to the Board of Directors in October 2015. She has a M.S. and C.A.S. in Educational Administration from Hofstra University, Hempstead, NY and a B.S. in Art Education from St. John’s University, Jamaica, NY. Marina’s career began in marketing and design and culminated in finance and education. Prior to serving as a district administrator in the public school system on Long Island, N.Y she taught art history and advertising design. She also served as the senior administrator for the New American Schools Development Corporation national design team at Metropolitan College of New York in New York City. Now an educational consultant and grant writer Marina works with underperforming schools across the country to improve standardized test scores by providing strategic planning, curriculum development and teacher training.
Marina has served on the Board of Directors of New York Outdoors Women, Inc., the Board of Directors of Literacy Volunteers of America and the Advisory Board of the Lower Adirondack Regional Arts Council. In addition to serving on the MACK Board of Directors, Marina is currently serving on the Board of Directors for the historic Wiawaka Center for Women in Lake George, NY. She also serves as historian for the Wings Falls Quilt Guild in Glens Falls, NY. She is an award winning educator, baker and textile artist.
Marina and her husband Russell enjoy participating in a multitude of year-round outdoor sporting activities in the Adirondack Mountains of New York and Lake Thurman in South Carolina.
• Tom Poland, A Southern Writer
Tom grew up in Lincoln County, Georgia, where four wonderful English teachers gave him a love for language that led to a career as a writer. People first came to know Tom’s work in South Carolina Wildlife magazine where he met his friend and co-author, photographer, Robert Clark. Since then, they’ve collaborated on five books and many magazine features. Tom’s written over 1,000 columns and features and seven traditionally published books.
Among Tom’s books are Classic Carolina Road Trips From Columbia, Georgialina, A Southland As We Knew It, and his and Robert’s two volumes of Reflections of South Carolina.
Swamp Gravy, Georgia’s Official Folk Life Drama, staged his play, Solid Ground. His coloring book for third graders, South Carolina From A to Z, came out in the fall of 2015.
Tom earned a BA in Journalism and a Masters in Media at the University of Georgia. He lives in Columbia where he writes about Georgialina—his name for eastern Georgia and South Carolina.
Jai Jones, Entertainment Committee
Jai Jones, a McCormick native also joins the MACK Board to take lead of our Entertainment Committee. Jai relocated to Atlanta, GA and has been in the entertainment business for over twenty five years. She is the lead singer of The Flavor Band (www.flavormusic.com) and several other professional bands, performing for more than twenty years. Jai “Lady J” Jones offers her solo performance “Lady J” shows for events, anniversaries, celebrations, Gospel productions. Jai has professional experience as a performer / singer, casting director, booking agent, coordinator, promotions, radio personality, entrepreneur, actress, model, and more. She thoroughly enjoys helping our youth the best way possible in being a positive role model, with all of the skills she has and has obtained from all of her experience in the Entertainment Industry her entire life. Tapping into all areas of the Entertainment Industry, “Lady J” & her company “Jai Anita Casting & Film Productions, Inc.”, as well as additional programs developing through the MACK, she will be a great additional to our community’s cultural center. For Future Bookings and/or to Contact “Lady J” directly, please call: (323) 639-0853 or via email at: email@example.com.