2018-2019 Inspiration Grant Committee Bios
Lisbeth (Beth) Lurey, Chair of the Committee, Art Historian
Education: BFA Drake University, Des Moines, Iowa, Graduate Studies: UMKC in Art History
Employment History: Art Museum Curatorial and Administration
1978 -2016, Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
I have held many positions within the Nelson over the years. I have left and returned on more than one occasion. Highlights include Head of the Docent Program, in the early years, winding up the last 9 years as acting curator of the Print Department. I have also put in time at the Des Moines Art Center before moving to Kansas City, and a part-time filling in as Registrar at the Kemper, UMKC Gallery for several years, on several occasions. There were projects with Mid-America Arts Alliance to name only a few.
Art Consultant: 1999- current, Stowers Institute for Medical Research, Curator of the Collection
In addition, I have been responsible for Faultless Starch-Bon Ami’s Collection and BMA’s collection as well. There were years at the Morgan Gallery, under Myra Morgan, years with Mark Twain Banks, both here and in St. Louis.
Board Experience: 2016- current, ArtsKC Regional Arts Council. I have served several years on the Board at City In Motion. I have done committee work previously with the Metropolitan Arts Council, Truman Medical Center, Kindness is Contagious and the PTA, among others.
Walter Coppage is an award winning actor who has appeared at Steppenwolf Theatre Company, The Studio Theatre in Washington, DC, KC Repertory Theatre, St. Louis Black Repertory Theatre, Coterie Theatre, Unicorn Theatre, KC Actors Theatre, Spinning Tree Theatre and Heart of America Shakespeare Festival. Recent roles include: Gabriel in Fences, MLK in The Mountaintop; Dr. Copeland in The Heart Is A Lonely Hunter; the Stage Manager in Our Town; Bob Cratchit, Jacob Marley and Mr. Fezziwig in A Christmas Carol; Rev. Peters in The Curious Incident Of The Dog In The Nighttime; Rat in Welcome To Fear City; Polonius in Hamlet; Emperor Joseph II in Amadeus.
Directing credits include: Spinning Tree Theatre’s Black Pearl Sings; KC Actors Theatre’s The Island; Coterie Theatre’s Hana’s Suitcase, a co-production with Tradewind Arts, UMKC Theatre, and the Mid-West Holocaust Center. Feature film credits include: All Creatures Here Below, Goodland, The Profit, Jayhawkers, Destination: Planet Negro, In The Wake Of Ire, The Only Good Indian, Suspension, State Of The Union, If Night Comes. His TV credits include: Detroiters (Comedy Central), Chicago Med (NBC), Gone In The Night (CBS), The Only Witness (Lifetime), All Roads Lead Home (Showtime), A Deadly Vision (ABC), Truman (HBO). He is a founding member of KC Actors Theatre, the Unicorn Theatre’s Actor Ambassador for the National New Play Network and an advisory board member for the KC Film Fest.
Tom Corbin’s introduction and subsequent career in sculpture has been based more on serendipity than calculation. Born in Dayton, Ohio in 1954, Tom’s early fascination in art was inspired by his mother, an art teacher by trade. Tom’s original career pursuit was in Business as an advertising executive. Tom’s first brush with the third dimension came in a chance meeting with a bronze sculptor in 1982. Classes with this sculptor led to a deepened interest in bronze casting and thoughts of a career in art. In 1986, Tom left the secure confines of his advertising agency job for the unpredictability of life as a full time sculptor.
Tom landed his first major public commission in 1988. Additional commissions followed, along with the financial freedom for Tom to develop his own “speculative” sculpture. During this period, Tom was also experimenting with furniture design, an area that would soon play a major role in the growth of his studio operation.
Today, Tom’s work appears in 22 showrooms and galleries internationally. Individual collectors include Mr. and Mrs. Tom Hanks, Sofia Vergara, Nicole Kidman, Danielle Steel and the late Frank Sinatra. Public installation sites include the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art, the United Nations, The Kauffman Foundation, the Firefighter’s Memorial, the Children’s Fountain, University of Oregon and Florida State University. In addition to important public and private collections, his work has found its way onto the sets of some major motion pictures, among them True Lies, A Perfect Murder, It’s Complicated and Transformers.
Dr. Derald Davis is the Assistant Superintendent of Innovation and Special Projects for Kansas City Public Schools. He has over 22 years’ experience as a principal, district leader, and educational consultant. He is the recipient of the Turnaround Leader Award from Kansas City Public Schools, the Outstanding Educator Service Award from Phi Delta Kappa Sorority, the Joseph B. Whitehead Educator of Distinction Award from the Coca Cola Scholars Foundation, and the Ida B. Wells Risk Taker Award from the National Alliance of Black School Educators.
Mary Lockton, Community Advocate
Mary Lockton believes it is important to support our Kansas City community. After graduating from Kansas State University and working at Shook, Hardy and Bacon law firm as a medical research analyst, she became an active community volunteer. Since 1979, she has been a member of the Jr. League, chaired numerous committees and served on the Board. She was on the start-up committee of the Holiday mart and chairman of the second one. Now in its 32nd year, it has raised millions of dollars for the KC community. Training in fund development and event planning led to helping develop and chair other large fundraisers for nonprofit organizations in Kansas City. Seeing a need for a science museum in Kansas City and for the restoration of Union Station, she worked for more than 10 years to raise awareness, work on the bi-state campaign, raise funds through events and chair the Grand Opening of a renovated Union Station and the new Science City in 1999. In 2014 she co-chaired a gala celebration of the 100th Anniversary of Union Station. She is involved with Cristo Rey High School (a school for below poverty level students) as a board member, a dancer for Dancing with the Stars fundraiser, on the Development committee and the President’s Advisory Council. Other community boards have been Children International, Children’s TLC and the Ronald McDonald House. She is a member of the KC FBI Citizens Academy, a participant of the Nelson Adkins Advocates, and a master gardener. Other arts related support is as a member of the Nelson Adkins fellows, the Kemper museum, Powell Gardens, Naples Botanical Gardens, and Kauffman Performing Arts Center. She loves to dance and is passionate about Ballroom Dancing. Other interests include golf, hiking, fitness, travel and time at a second home in Naples, Florida. She is married to Michael Murphy, an artist and musician and has two grown children and five grandchildren.
Desmond Poirier is a Kansas City native. A musician, artist, and teacher, he has also lived in Rhode Island and California. Desmond has worked as a graphic designer, an illustrator, a production technician in the print industry, a landscape designer, and an art educator. A lifelong musician, he also plays lead guitar in the local rock band Red Kate. Red Kate tours often in cities such as Minneapolis, Tulsa, Fayetteville, Des Moines, and St. Joseph. Desmond received a BFA in graphic design from the Rhode Island School of Design in 1999; and a Master’s degree in Landscape Architecture from Kansas State University in 2008. For the last 10 years, Desmond has taught drawing continuing education courses for the Kansas City Art Institute. Specializing in figure drawing and portraiture, his artistic work focuses on draftsmanship and understanding of the human anatomy. Desmond currently lives in Kansas City with his wife and year old daughter.
Kristin Raven, Content Author, Waddell & Reed
Kristin is honored to serve on this year’s Inspiration Grants committee. She has been involved with ArtsKC since 2006 through participation in Art@Work events, and lucky to serve on a variety of ArtsKC grant panels and committees since 2015. She serves on the boards of KC Young Audiences and KC Women’s Chorus, where she also sings. Kristin holds a BFA in Design/Illustration. Over the years, she has played clarinet and keyboard in school and pit bands, performed in plays and musicals, recorded Celtic music, completed hundreds of pet portraits, designed greeting cards, sung in regional choruses, majored in English for a minute, and danced ballet and jazz just for fun. She believes in the power of lifelong arts education and integration to develop communities of problem-solvers, joy-seekers and restless creators. Arts will always be worth our support.
Rob Robinson, Commerce Bank, Assistant Vice President & Senior Business Analyst
Current Board Member for the following organizations: Lenexa Arts Council, Owen / Cox Dance Group, Goodwill of Kansas City, and Rediscover. Rob is a graduate of Michigan State Univ.