Staff Directory



Title: Curator
First Name: Jessica
Last Name: Phinney
Phone: 315-686-4123
Bio: Jessica M. Phinney was born and raised in Clayton, NY. She earned her BA in anthropology from St. John Fisher College, Rochester, NY in 2006. During her time at SJFC she interned at the George Eastman House, International Museum of Photography and Film. Her focus was on the Eastman Legacy Collection, cataloguing photographs from Eastman’s famous 1927 African safari. The animals from this safari became the foundation of the African Hall at the American Museum of Natural History, New York City. For her work on this project and other academic accomplishments, including archaeological field schools, Jessica was awarded the 2006 Departmental Award for Excellence. Following her graduation summa cum laude, Jessica began her graduate work, also in anthropology, at the University at Albany, SUNY, where she earned her MA in 2009. Her particular area of research was colonialism-- specifically 17th Century European “contact-period” interactions with indigenous populations up the Hudson River. She wrote her thesis on the relations between the Jesuit priests of New France (Canada) and the indigenous Huron populations. During her time in the Hudson Valley, Jessica also served as Executive Director of the Ulster County Historical Society, Stone Ridge (2008-2009).

Ms. Phinney moved back to Clayton in 2010 to accept a position at the Antique Boat Museum where she served as Curator of Exhibitions and General Collections until late 2012. Jessica was appointed Executive Director of the Jefferson County Historical Society, Watertown, NY, where she served from July, 2013 to June of 2015, when she joined the TI Arts Center staff.
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Title: Events Coordinator
First Name: Joy
Last Name: Rhinebeck
Phone: 315-686-4123 ext.200
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Title: Executive Director
First Name: Leslie
Last Name: Rowland
Phone: 315.686.4123 x 201
Bio: Leslie joined the Arts Center as interim executive director in June 2013, and became executive director in January 2014. Previously she was the principal of LWRPR LLC, an independent consulting firm advising clients on marketing communications and event planning in central New York. Prior to founding LWRPR in 1999, she was district director for U.S. Congressman Sherwood Boehlert, and also spent a decade in the airline industry as a public relations manager for regional and international airlines, and later as a lobbyist for the Air Transport Association, the Washington D.C.-based national trade association of the major U.S. airlines. She also spent several years in the advertising business as an account executive and new business development manager. Leslie has spent most of her summers in the 1000 Islands and moved to the River year-round in 2012.
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Title: Education & Membership Coordinator
First Name: Marcia
Last Name: Rogers
Phone: 315-686-4123 ext. 203
Bio: Marcia was born and raised in Clayton, NY – and after 20 years in the Buffalo area working in sales & marketing for a mid-sized book publisher, she has returned to live and work in her hometown. She loves being a part of the Arts Center staff and bringing quality arts instruction to the 1000 Islands region.
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Title: Staff Potter
First Name: Serena
Last Name: Buchanan
Phone: 315-686-4123x 205
Bio: Serena Buchanan is the staff potter at the Arts Center and an accomplished artist and potter. She was born in Pisa, Italy and is a self-proclaimed DIY’er, teaching herself acrylic painting, ceramics, and jewelry making. She has exhibited her work throughout upstate New York, including the Arts Center.
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