April 18, 2019


The AATA National Office team works year-round to ensure a positive membership experience in all areas of the Association. Our small team is growing – and we want to share our updates with you!  We recently renovated our office and were so pleased to welcome members and friends of art therapy for our Open House on April 12th  while the Board of Directors was in town.


Meet our Newest Staff Member


We are excited to welcome Anita Douglas to our team as Senior Manager, Membership.  She brings more than 12 years of experience in the association space with expertise in membership development, member engagement, marketing, database management, retention, and recruitment.  Most recently, Anita worked for Sterling Consulting, where she worked closely with a variety of senior staff and board members to develop and implement strategies to achieve each association’s unique objectives.  Anita previously held positions with the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology and the National Association of Mortgage Brokers.  She has a passion for helping others and volunteers at homeless shelters in her spare time.  Always having been inspired by her mother who is a therapist, Anita was drawn to the AATA’s mission to advance art therapy.


Taking on New Roles


Kat Michel has transitioned from Manager of Membership to Manager, Member Engagement & Programming. She is responsible for developing programs and resources for AATA members that focus on professional development, such as continuing education offerings, webinars, and the online career center. Additionally, she oversees online member engagement and experience through the MyAATA community. Art therapy is a cause near and dear to her heart, and in 2015 she graduated with her Master’s degree in Art Therapy from The George Washington University.



Clara Keane has transitioned from her position of Coordinator of Communications and Policy to Manager, Advocacy & Public Affairs.  She supports our chapter state legislative and regulatory efforts and acts as liaison between the AATA and our partners in the wider mental health and arts communities. Clara also manages our weekly e-briefing Art Therapy Today.  Constantly inspired by the work of AATA members, she loves highlighting their stories to advance public recognition of art therapists.



Get to Know Our Whole Team


Cynthia Woodruff, Executive Director, brought 20 years of experience in the corporate world to the Association.  In 2007, she made a values-driven move into the nonprofit arena, where she held leadership positions in Rebuilding Together, Inc. and SOS Children’s Villages-USA. Cynthia is an active member of the Association Leadership community and has earned Certified Association Executive (CAE) status through the American Society of Association Executives. On a personal note, Cynthia’s family has personally benefited from art therapy, which adds to her passion for AATA’s mission to expand access to art therapy. A single mom, she lives in Northern Virginia with her son and “six-is-enough” rescued four-legged family members.


Christina Easterly, Coordinator, Events & Operations. She is responsible for the daily operations of the national office and provides key support for major program areas including the Annual Conference and education. Often the first line of contact for customer service inquiries, Christina additionally provides support to the Board of Directors and works closely with several committees.  Christina has her MA in Art History from Hunter College, City University of New York.


Barbara Florence, Director, Events & Education has more than 30 years of experience in nonprofit and association management in the areas of corporate business development, membership, marketing, human resources, professional and career development, training, and conference and meeting planning. She is responsible for the Annual Conference, education, and professional development disciplines for the Association. She previously worked for Gifts In Kind International and the United Way of America. This year Barbara is celebrating 10 years with the AATA and says, “The time has flown by!”


Eugenia Bravo, Special Projects Intern, supports state advocacy work as well as conference and membership operations. Eugenia recently submitted her culminating paper for her Master’s in Art Therapy from The George Washington University (GWU).  Her paper shared a case study from a grief and loss group for immigrant adolescents.  Learn more about Eugenia in her Featured Member article.



Bani Malhotra, Special Projects Intern, works on projects related to online community engagement and research. Bani is a graduate of Art Therapy from The George Washington University (GWU) practicing in Philadelphia and holds an MA in Psychology from India. Bani has worked with diverse clients and is an advocate for diversity and accessibility within the field. Learn more about Bani in her Featured Member article.



Kimberly Nguyen, Special Projects Intern, is supporting the AATA’s year-long 50th Anniversary campaign. Kim recently submitted her final project for her dual degree program in Art Therapy and Clinical Counseling from Emporia State University. Read more about Kim in her Featured Member article..



The work of the national staff is amplified by the help of dedicated volunteers, consultants, and vendors who help us deliver on our mission every day. A special “thank you” goes out to the AATA Board of Directors, Committees, Working Groups, and chapter leaders. We could not do it without you.


Highlights from Our Open House


The AATA Board meeting weekend had a great kickoff with the Open House at the AATA National Office. Thank you to everyone who came out to celebrate with us!

Guests draw on the dry-erase Welcome Wall and enjoy good food and company at the National Office.