The Staff

General contact questions? Call 541-754-1551 or Email The Arts Center

Cynthia Spencer-Hadlock

Executive Director

Cynthia became a member and volunteer of The Arts Center soon after moving here in the 1980s. After 20+ years sharing her work through galleries and art fairs, she became Director of Corvallis Fall Festival and then ED of The Arts Center in 2014.

As a professional artist, Cynthia understands the challenges of leading a creative life and running a business.

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Barb Malloy


Barb, an economics graduate from UCSD, moved to Benton County in 1995 in time to see the 75-year flood. She loves the rivers and trails. We appreciate the experience she brings from her time as Benton Community Foundation’s Operations Manager.

She appreciates this creative and generous community, enjoys volunteering, sings in a choir, loves nature hikes, and paddles rivers and lakes.

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Claire Elam

Artist Accelerator Program Director

Claire joined The Arts Center in 2017 as the Artist Accelerator director supporting professional development and community for artists through career-building workshops and meetups. Claire comes to The Arts Center with a diverse background in non-profits, startup sustainability, and a BFA from Bennington College in Painting & Ceramics.

She also enjoys backpacking and learning about behavioral sociology. Claire thinks that the view from Chip Ross Park is pretty great.

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Ellen Fuller

Business Manager

In 2015, Ellen brought more than three decades of government, government contracting, non-profit and small business owner experience to a Business Manager position at The Arts Center. She attended Oregon State University and graduated from Linn-Benton Community College with a Certificate in Supervisory Management. She has volunteered at the state and local level for over 40 years with various Boards of Directors, the 4-H Program and Boy Scouts.

She enjoys photography, cooking, reading, and spending time with her family. Her favorite places in Corvallis are the plant nurseries.

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image of person with short brown hair, glasses wearing read shirt

Carl Conner

Arts Learning Coordinator

Carl Conner (they/them/theirs) is incredibly excited to be part of the team as the Arts Learning Program Coordinator.

They are excited to combine their love for the arts with their passion for community & youth engagement. They moved to Corvallis in 2016 from southern Oregon to pursue an education at OSU and graduated in 2020 with an Honors degree in Psychology.

Carl enjoys yoga, drawing, painting, cooking, baking, tabletop role playing games, and spending time with their sweet dog, Almond.

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Dawn Figueroa

ArtShop Manager

Dawn worked with several university museum collections over the past 15 years. Prior to that she managed bead shops.  

The Corvallis community has been a great source of inspiration to Dawn’s work as an illustrator. She is a member of Voices Art Cooperative, enjoys hiking on Bald Hill, and sitting at the family table making art with her artistic family.

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Jen Bouton

Community Engagement Coordinator

Jen returned to The Arts Center in 2017  as the Community Engagement Coordinator. She is a seasoned volunteer in the community has continues to improve each volunteer’s experience. Jen has a B.S. in Human Development & Social Policy from Northwestern University.

Jen has lived all over the world, has milked cows, sold fancy Oregon wine, and written biographies of stuffed animals. Jen thinks Willamette Park has the best recreational opportunities for dogs and humans in town.

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Vanessa Smith


Vanessa has a strong background in fine arts and graphic design and is a true asset to the organization.

She enjoys spending time with her partner and their dog Oblio, as well as learning to play the violin.

Vanessa has been involved in the progression of art throughout the surrounding communities.

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black and white image of young woman, Curator Jennie Castle

Jennie Castle

Curator, Public Programs Manager

Jennie joined us as our new Curator in 2022. She came from Lower Columbia College’s Rose Center for the Arts. She discovered her passion for artistic collaboration while earning her MFA in photography from the Massachusetts College of Art and Design – her love for curating was born!

When she’s not in the gallery, you can find Jennie running on the local trails and tracks, or working on her latest photo projects.