OPA board & staff
Stefanie Nagorka, MFA, became Board President in January 2022
after previously serving as OPA Development Co-Chair. She is a
sculptor, educator, potter, counselor and teacher. Stefanie brings
her experience of serving on other boards, her passion for supporting artists and leveling the social playing field to this role.
Aubrey Sloan, artist and new momma. In my clay practice, my business Vibrant Pottery, I created functional, handcarved, cone 6 pieces. I also work in collaboration with my partner Joe Robinson, and create large handcarved, thrown, and wood-fired pieces. I live at East Creek Art, and help plan and run firings and programming. I value the clay community in Oregon, and have a strong desire to help create more opportunities for artists to create and be successful making artwork. I have been an OPA member since 2017, and serving on the board as Vice president since 2019. I look forward to many years of service, visioning, and growing our clay community through volunteering with the OPA.
The Oregon Potters Association is "our" association as potters of Oregon. I'm passionate about my clay practice and clay's ability to organize diverse individuals. Joining the OPA was really a no brainer for me, it's a wonderful organization that has created a framework that allows Potters to organize with each other.
Professionally, I work in the talent acquisition sector. This line of work has shown me the power of a network and how critical the relationships we build and maintain can be. I thrive in ambiguous results oriented environments with the goal of delivering value to all stakeholders involved. This mentality and framework paired with my passion and interest for clay provided me with the tools and motivation to join the OPA and take on additional responsibility.
Wheel Thrown and altered functional ceramic wares is what I love to make. I'm captivated by the magic and alchemy that atmospheric kilns bring to the ceramics process. Check out my Instagram page - @suayceramics
I'm a compulsive creator, collector and curator. Solving problems is my passion. I love the community of clay and the people who like to get their hands dirty. My goal, when working with clay, is to create something that speaks of the past, and at the same time reinterprets traditional forms.
I have been an artist my entire life and ceramics has been the focus of that expression for the last ten years. I am also a professional with 25 years of manager experience, project manager and process improvement work. I absolutely love people and I believe laughter is a great way to ground yourself.
I always enjoy working on a team within the community and have been on a few boards over the years. It provides me with a strong sense of community and Allows me to volunteer in ways that play to my strengths.
I am excited to join the board of OPA as co-chair of Clay and Education. I hope to use my experience teaching ceramics and hosting workshops to expand the Clay and Education offerings. In my pottery, I wish to draw inspiration from these traditional Japanese forms and execute it with my personal interpretation. My pottery is a continuing exploration of my Japanese-American heritage.
John Hasegawa is a native of Seattle, Washington. John is the head of the Ceramics department at Mt. Hood Community College, teaching beginning and advanced Ceramics. He received a BA with a double major in Philosophy and Mathematics from the University of Puget Sound and a second BA in Art. He also earned a Master of Fine Arts degree in Ceramics from the University of Oregon. John has taught both introductory and advanced level ceramics at Emporia State University in Kansas, Worcester Craft Center in Massachusetts, Armory Art Center in Florida, University of Oregon, and University of Massachusetts - Dartmouth. He recently moved back to Oregon from Paducah Kentucky, where he taught Ceramics, 3-D design, and Digital Photo classes at Paducah School of Art in Paducah. His work has been exhibited nationally and he has won numerous awards for his ceramics.
Growing up during the Cultural Revolution in China, art was unknown to me until I was influenced by an art collector to calligraphy, ink paintings and ceramics in late eighties. This informal education motivated me to obtain a BFA in Ceramics from the University of Manitoba, Manitoba Canada and an MFA in Craft from Kent State University, Ohio. Besides making art and part time teaching, I also served as an exhibition board member for Yeiser Art Center, a board member for Paducah Art Alliance and a community and public program coordinator for West Kentucky Community & Technical College. My ceramics works are mostly porcelain ware with a focus on beauty beneath the surface. I hope my education and experience will qualify me to work with this active group to serve the community at large.
As a high school art educator and fellow OPA member, I want to support student learning in the ceramic arts by providing access and opportunity outside the PDX area. I support OPA not only as a ceramic artist but as an educator. OPA allows educators opportunities to connect students to artists and fellow clay lovers. I have been teaching for eight years and currently am The Art Department within the Amity school district. I teach 7th and 9th-12th Grade Visual Arts & Ceramics. I have served as an Art Conspiracy West Valley Board Member for two years and Amity Education Foundation member for two years. I am constantly looking for opportunities in building relationships with fellow art/ceramic educators in my county. I will be sharing the Clay in Education Director role with two other people, in this role I hope to expand and welcome the OPA into schools and rural communities outside of the Portland area. My ceramic work, either wheel thrown or handbuilt, combines the rural mountainous landscapes of the Pacific Northwest with the iconic silhouettes of the douglas fir.
Joe Robinson is co-owner of East Creek Art and Linfield University Art faculty in Ceramics. Joe fell in love with clay at 13 and works primarily in wheel thrown, wood fired pottery. After obtaining an art and business BA degrees from then-Linfield College, Joe spent 8 years in the corporate world focusing in digital marketing. He left business to pursue an MFA from Oregon College of Art and Craft and Pacific Northwest College of Art in 2019, and was in the the last class conferred a degree from OCAC.
I have made crafts since before my teenage years alternately exploring textiles, metals and clay. As I matured the idea of community became very important to me and so I have pursued working with others to build community around arts experiences. Retiring in 2015 gave me time to commit to taking on a bigger role in OPA and I revel in the Membership Outreach position, getting to know folks and instigating ideas and activities that strengthen our community of clay artists. My hope is to help each member feel connected to the group and feel empowered to pursue their clay & community ideas.
I have been on the OPA Board and the Ceramic Showcase Steering Committee off and on for many years, and have held positions including OPA President, Newsletter Editor, Empty Bowls Chair, Showcase Publicity Chair. I am hoping to bring my past experience and history of OPA to the Board as we move forward into a very exciting future.
I have been a full time potter for 30 years. Over the years I have experimented with many clay techniques: for a time making humorous sculptures of animals; then using low-temperature clays to make plates featuring humorous cartoons; then becoming involved with high temperature wood fired ceramics. I now make functional pottery, both thrown and handbuilt, fired in a gas kiln. I love clay.
Roberta Lampert has worked with clay for more than 45 years. She was a founding member of OPA, helped organized the first Ceramic Showcase, and returned to the OPA board in 2020. As a board member at large, Roberta focuses on t
asks where her abilities find their highest use—graphic needs, special program planning, monthly website feature, and semi-annual newsletter. Roberta lives and works outside of Portland, where her studio focus is mainly functional ceramics, both handbuilt and thrown. She fires a soda/salt and an electric kiln in her studio, and participates in wood firings in various kilns in the area.