Emory Alumni Creative Celebrates
By Michelle Valigursky
Creativity takes shape in many ways, and the Emory Alumni Creative affinity group was established to bring together alumni and their various forms of artistic expression. More importantly, the group will provide these creative individuals with invaluable networking opportunities, business resources, and educational enrichment, and will provide a platform to give back to students, the university, and each other.
“On June 20, the Emory Alumni Creative affinity group will formally launch with a Summer Solstice Party at Kai Lin Art Westside in Atlanta,” says Carolyn Bregman 82L, director of alumni career services and the group’s staff advisor. “Our steering committee of alumni has designed a launch event with live music by Emory award-winning alumnus Will Scruggs 02B. This will be a fabulous place for creative individuals to exchange ideas and make connections while enjoying the ‘Inhabited’ show at the gallery.”
Steering committee leader and Kai Lin Art owner Yu-Kai Lin 01C will host the first event at his gallery in Atlanta. “Creativity exists in all of us, and some of us are more aware of our hidden potential. The Emory Alumni Creative will give us insight into creativity programming at Emory and share how we all can be interconnected through creative expression.”
With authors, playwrights, artists, filmmakers, and other creative professionals, the steering committee consists of representatives David Darracott 73C—novelist and business communicator in Atlanta; Rachel Goldstein 01Ox 03C—art photographer and college photography teacher in North Carolina; Lynn Garson 81L—memoirist and attorney with McKenna, Long & Aldridge in Atlanta; Hank Kimmel 99L—playwright, founder, and CEO of Working Playwrights Studio, and legal mediator in Atlanta; Yu-Kai Lin 01C—classical musician, piano instructor, and owner of Kai Lin Art in Atlanta; Shannan Palma 12PhD—motivational speaker, writer, and program coordinator for the Center for Women at Emory; Elizabeth Stanton 99C—photojournalist, documentary filmmaker, and founder of the Through Her Eyes project in Chicago; R. Candy Tate 87C—art historian and assistant director of Emory College Center for Creativity & Arts.
The group’s mission seeks to include a wide variety of creative alumni. “Emory Alumni Creative is an affinity group for the creative community. We are committed to supporting alumni in all creative disciplines, broadly defined: writers, painters, musicians, poets, actors, dancers, theater artists, craftspeople, multi-media artists, gallery owners, critics, chefs, and other creators in the arts. Our support includes providing multiple forums on social media to post events and images, exchanging ideas to build community, presenting meaningful events locally to promote a wide range of disciplines, and giving back to Emory and to its students and other constituents involved in creative endeavors.”
Steering committee member Shannan Palma 12PhD sees the group as a viable way for creative individuals to connect within the Emory alumni community. “The connections we make with other alums can lead to inspiration or mentoring, or they may even point the way towards new avenues of promotion and distribution,” Palma says.
Lin recommends that creative alumni join the group. “We’ve established a presence on Facebook, and we’re just now beginning to grow the group. The process is simple,” he says. “Subscribe to let us know who and where you are, then join the Emory Alumni Creative Facebook Group.”
He adds, “With the high level of creativity expected at the Emory Alumni Creative events, the possibilities are limitless.”