Cumming Arts Center/SAA 2024 Board of Directors Nominees


President:                           Alison Sims                       

Vice-President:                  Ellen Lewis         

Treasurer:                           Charlotte Gardner          

Secretary:                           Kathy Gamble


Alison Sims was born in Kent, England. At an early age, the family immigrated to Vancouver, BC. Both parents were artistic, studying architecture, drawing, painting and sewing, which was a great influence. She studied fine art in college, and later worked in the field of pulp and paper, concentrating on customer service. This brought her to Atlanta in 2000 where she met her husband and in 2016 moved to Cumming. Now, in retirement, she can dedicate her time to fine arts again. She purchased her first digital camera in 2007 and her greatest joy is primarily shooting landscape, wildlife, nature and anything old and rusty. In the last few years she picked up a  paint brush, concentrating on oil on canvas, some watercolor, gouache and felting. She is naturally inquisitive and loves to learn new techniques and meet fellow artists. Since finding the Cuming Arts Center, she is excited to be a member of its growing arts community and hopes to see member artists at its many upcoming events, especially the Christmas Festival at Lanier Tech in November which includes so many talented artisans from the area.


Ellen Lewis,  an Atlanta artist, has been honing her creative skills as a fine artist since her first paid art job in 1986 as a calligrapher. She graduated from the School of Visual Arts in 1992 with a BFA in 3D Design and Illustration (w/a minor in Graphic Design). The desire to make ideas come to life is the basis of her thought process. Her 3D work has been viewed in package design, 1996 Olympic events, movies, television, high-end holiday decor, Broadway, residential construction and more. Some of Lewis’ noted interactive Fine Art 3D work has been on display on MTV, The New York Art Directors Club, and The Whitney Museum of American Art in NYC. Ellen’s evolution from 3D to 2D allowed her to incorporate her production talent and skill to create images in a 3D fashion on a 2D surface. As her mother was losing her battle to cancer in 2005, Lewis was inspired to create two-dimensionally. Thankfully, her mother saw her work before she passed. From then on, 2D has been her focus. “I visualize in raw, vibrant color. Color is my driving force. Color can instigate just about every emotion”.


Charlotte Gardner has had a drawing pencil in hand since early childhood. She has taken many art classes and workshops with Gregory Johnson, Lala Streett, Rick Rennick, Bonnie Flood, Ann Templeton from New Mexico, Kathy Wert, Bill Davidson and Connie Shriver. Charlotte paints in oil, pastel, and watercolor. She and husband, Jerry, retired in 1995 and moved to Lake Lanier. Here she found a home with the Sawnee Association of the Arts, now known as the Cumming Arts Center. She has devoted many hours to the organization. Charlotte is a bookkeeper by trade. She and her husband owned and operated Frontier Contracting for forty-four years and she was the financial part of the organization. She is a past President of the Hudgens Art Center and has also been treasurer of most organizations that she joined. Art is her passion and pastime.


Kathy Gamble and her husband George moved to Cumming from New Hampshire in 1990. Kathy’s passion has been raising and boarding Arabian horses. Both she and George traveled extensively, and both became interested in photography. Kathy’s interests expanded to various art mediums, and she began painting in 2008. She uses many of her travel photos as the basis of her paintings. She continues taking classes and workshops to further her art and enjoys learning more about oil and acrylic painting. She has been an active member of the Cumming Arts Center/Sawnee Association of the Arts having held several board positions. She is committed to promoting the arts of all types through the Cumming Arts Center.