Off to New Adventures!

13 Jun · Adrienne Clow · 11 Comments

Our Fearless Leader, Kate Fisher, is Retiring September 2017!

Eastern Shore Art Center Staff

Executive Director, Kate Fisher, has been with our Art Center for seven years, and it is with a heavy heart that we have to announce she will be retiring from her position on September 30th.


Our Board President, Gaye Lindsey, remembers Kate’s devotion to the Art Center fondly, “I have come to discover how much the Association owes to her dedication, tireless effort, and unselfish commitment to live up to its mission to connect people of all ages and abilities with the arts. During the recession of 2008 – 2009, there were lean years when the very existence of the Association was in doubt. Kate was forced to make difficult decisions, but she guided the organization through the crisis and brought it back on a solid financial footing, all while expanding its impact on the community.”


Being the Director of a nonprofit organization is not a small feat or a glamorous position by any means. Most visitors do not realize this, but ESAC is a giant facility with five galleries, four studios, and recurring events throughout the year, staffed by only 4 part time employees. Kate can be found anywhere throughout the building: in the gift shop unpacking new merchandise, in her office writing a grant for the Art Center’s Outreach programs, or even in the kitchen loading up the dishwasher.


Gaye praises Kate’s commitment, “She is always there, weekdays, weekends, evenings. She hasn’t had a vacation in the entire time she has been Director. Board chairpersons have threatened to lock her out of the building, but she just keeps on coming back. Sometimes I worry that the building will fall apart as soon as she retires.”

The board, staff, teachers, volunteers, artists, members, and supporters are greatly appreciative of the time Kate has been with ESAC and look forward to the future she has created for everyone here.


Now, Kate, take some time off! You deserve it!!

Have any fond memories or fun stories with Kate? We would love to hear about them in the comments below!


  • Pam Aloisa, Professor of Art, Director, Permanent Professors Art Gallery, US Air Force Academy, CO says:

    When I entered the Center for the first time a few years ago, I was immediately impressed and knew it was a professional venue that I wanted for my art. I met Kate then and was doubly impressed, joined the gallery, and walked away with confidence that this was a wise decision for me. In my 35 years as an artist and educator, I’ve seen hundreds of art centers and galleries and I know that Kate has done a phenomenal job as a cultural leader there. Her legacy is inspirational and influential to keep ESAC moving forward!

  • Helen Trammell says:

    Dear Kate, I’m writing with one eye covered while holding a magnifying glass but THANKing you is so important!! Bob & I relocated to Fairhope in 8/2008-You welcomed us graciously encouraging Bob to ‘stop in & play the piano anytime!’ That one gesture meant the world to us for Bob had forgotten how to play after 14 chemos for brain cancer. He played daily at home, relearning his favorite songs. The invitation to play for a First Friday brought him ears-of Joy. ESAC became his family-your encouraging words a salve. What a grand gathering of artistic, compassionate people! The 9/2/16 ‘Life Is Abstract’ retrospective of Bob’s art prior to my move North remains a highlighted moment of my memory in Alabama. God speed, God bless you!

  • Sue beard says:

    Kate – You have left an indelible imprint. Good job, well done. Sue

  • Patty Willcutt says:

    The art center is a well oil machine because of Kate. She always showed concern for members. She often asked me how i was doing because of my health problems. Have a wonderful retirement and don’t forget to invite me to the party! 🙂

  • When I began to exhibit my photographs at the Easter Shore Art Center, I was unsure how well they would be received as I had never shared my photographs with anyone except family and friends. Kate welcomed me into the art community and provided the support and encouragement I needed. It wasn’t long before I became an Artist Member and began to participate in the Art and About program. I admit it took me a little while to get used to Kate’s direct-to-the-point personality, but as I watched her deal with all the details associated with overseeing the ESAC, I began to admire her dedication and enthusiasm. Kate helped give me the confidence to exhibit my work (I’ve had several of my own shows, and I am working on a photography book) and I am very grateful. Kate, good luck in all of your future endeavors and keep grasping life by the horns.

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