The ABC staff’s experience traverses the spectrum of fields in the arts, humanities, and sciences.
Kat Bloomfield, MS
Kat (they/she) is a nonprofit executive and fundraising professional who has inspired over $22 million in charitable giving over 11 years. As an avid STEAM advocate, they feel a strong connection to the principles of social entrepreneurship, particularly centered around arts-integrated racial and economic justice.
Kat was first in their family to attend college, start a business, and get a Master’s Degree. In February 2021, at 31, they were honored by the New York City Council and the Chair of the Arts and Culture Committee for community service and a lifetime of philanthropy as part of Black History Month celebrations.
In 2014, Kat founded Arts Business Collaborative, a technical assistance and research nonprofit committed to improving the quality of life of people of color through the arts and STEM. Under their leadership, the organization’s budget grew from $30,000 in 2018 to over $10 million in 2020, providing technical assistance and fiscal sponsorship through the lenses of racial equity and data-informed research for nearly 1,000 BIPOC- and Latinx-led community-based nonprofits, individual artists, and creative economy small businesses.
Kat serves on the Queens Community Board 2 as Treasurer and part of the Arts & Culture and Budget Committees. They also serve as President of the board of The Effing Foundation for Sex-Positivity and are a co-founder of BLX Alternative, an organization committed to reducing and eliminating the shame and stigma associated with alternative relationships for economically and racially marginalized communities.
They are a graduate of Wellesley College with a dual Bachelors in Media Arts and Sciences and Printmaking and earned a Masters in Nonprofit Management with a concentration in Online Community Organizing at Northeastern University. In their limited spare time, they like to play resource management video games, make art on their mini etching press, play with their cat Noodle, and grow vegetables to share with the community in their backyard garden.
Josh (He/him/his) has been working in the non-profit sector in different capacities for the past 15 years. This includes as a board member for different non-profits and currently as a CFO for a NYS charter school. Josh holds a strong belief that non-profits provide the greatest diversity to the business world as well as the most interesting projects. As such, his life mission is to help non-profit entrepreneurs reach success by sharing his years of HR, finance, and start-up knowledge in the non-profit world as a mentor and coach to small business entrepreneurs.
Krista (she/her/hers) is able to take action on her passions by engaging entrepreneurs and artists through her work as the Director of GAP Programs here at Arts Business Collaborative (ABC). Krista has previously worked in fund development, economic development and education + policy over the last ten years with a strong emphasis to create opportunity- whether that be through policy advocacy or through funding-- for black and brown communities. She has a strong desire to remove societal divides, while working to dismantle systems that create disparities, so that all persons have real equitable opportunity. Through her commitment to create a more inclusive universe, Krista also serves as the Inspired Director and Founder of Detroit Parent Collective; a social-impact small business that was carefully designed to bridge families/ communities across Metro Detroit.
Myxolydia Tyler, MFA
Myxolydia (she/her/hers) is an actor and artist educator who is passionate about arts entrepreneurship. Her innovative curriculum development skills lead to her full-time work as a Lead Teaching Artist and Program development manager for Lincoln Center Education’s MentorLinc program where she designed the “Think Like An Art-trepreneur” curriculum. Her superpower is building a strong community for a sustainable creative career. Her work as an actor has taken her to Off Broadway stages such as Manhattan Theatre Workshop, Signature Theatre and PS122. Regionally she’s worked at The Everyman Theatre, Baltimore Center Stage, McCarter Theatre, The Guthrie Theatre, and Hartford Stage. Television: NBC Season 21 Law and Order, Season 3 of New Amsterdam and Manifest ; Season 6 Homeland Showtime, and Season 3 of I am Homicide Discovery ID. As an arts educator she has taught at NYU Tisch, Dartmouth College,Pomona University, Harlem School of the Arts, The Conservatory for the Dramatic Arts of Film and Television, and The Acting Studio. She is a Hermitage Artists and Michael Bradford Fellow. In 2020 she wrote and toured her first commissioned production of Freebird: The Early Life of Sarah Vaughan for NJPAC Education Assemblies Program. Myxolydia holds a BA in biology from The University of Virginia and an MFA in Acting from Brown University.
Erika Pettersen, MA
Erika (she/her/hers) comes to her role as a researcher scientist at ABC after a decade in nonprofit administration. Her broad spectrum of experiences in the field includes extensive resource and capacity building for Black-led, community-rooted arts organizations in Brooklyn, NY, such as the Youth Design Center and Haiti Cultural Exchange. She also brings a wide-ranging educational background to her work, including multidisciplinary graduate studies centering on the politics of identity, representation, and belonging in Oaxaca, Mexico. Erika’s professional and academic experiences inform her commitment to supporting the power of the arts as an agent of transformational narrative change and collective healing for BIPOC communities. At ABC, Erika has spearheaded the organization’s new Racial Equity in Arts Funding Research Track, beginning with an exploratory study on the challenges and successes of Community-Centric Fundraising (CCF) in the arts and culture sector.
Erika holds a Master of Arts in Latin American Studies from Tulane University and a Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy from Amherst College. She has also completed a certificate program in Arts & Culture Strategy from the University of Pennsylvania and post-baccalaureate coursework in Studio Art and Art History at Brooklyn College.
Dianne Walsh, MS
Dianne (she/her/hers) previously lived in Edinburgh, Scotland, where she graduated from the University of Edinburgh with an undergraduate degree in Social Anthropology and an MS in History of Art. Her academic studies involved conducting ethnographic research in Hong Kong and critical analysis of embodiment within dance-theater performance. She also worked with various dance/arts organizations across Edinburgh and in home-based direct service to convert theory and holistic thinking into practical and sustainable support. She believes in the arts and cultural practices as an active means of interrogation and assertion – and is committed to continuing this work to center the artistic lives, histories and survival of historically disenfranchised and marginalized communities.
Carolyn (she/her/hers) has been involved in non-profit organizations in the tri-state area for over 15 years. Most notably as the president and one of the founders of Operation Toy Train. OTT has collected over 300,000 toys for the USMC Toys for Tots Foundation since its inception in 2009, helping to provide holiday presents for children of struggling families in northern New Jersey and Orange County New York. She is thrilled to apply her experience volunteering, as well as many years of administrative experience, to benefit under-represented communities in the arts and sciences.
Music and the arts have always been at the core of who she is. Carolyn was a performer with the New York Renaissance Festival for several years, and enjoys singing and performing in her spare time. She believes music can be therapy for anyone willing to listen.
Danie (she/her/hers) is a graduate of SUNY Oneonta with a BA in Studio Art and is a Certified Reiki Practitioner. With a deep connection to plant medicine and alternative healing modalities, Danie has combined her personal passions in the holistic industry into her work ethic and strategies in Human Resources. It is Danie’s passion to create safe and healing work environments by adhering to and staying up-to-date with all State and Federal labor laws while simultaneously integrating that into the culture of the company and developing strategies to build up and not tear down.
As a POC and entrepreneur, Danie strongly believes in the vision and mission of the Arts Business Collaborative. Danie has embraced her creative abilities and channels that into her apothecary, where you’ll find her working on witchy tinctures, exotic healing kombuchas, or setting intentions under the next full moon. Danie is a firm believer in self-care/love by way of introspection and strongly believes in work-life balance. As a result, in her spare time, Danie works very hard to assist others in their healing journeys while simultaneously working on her own. Danie has learned that the best way to build herself up is to believe in the inherent potential of others and she demonstrates this in her personal and professional life.
Inspired by the resilience of nature, Krys (They/Them) works to cultivate strength through support. They are honored to engage in meaningful work that uplifts communities and amplifies joy. Rooted in advocacy for change, they have contributed to organizations such as MH First, which decriminalizes emotional and psychological crises and decreases the stigma around mental health, substance use, and domestic violence while also addressing their root causes: white supremacy, capitalism, and colonialism. A lover of humanity, Krys has collaborated with The Creation District: an incubator and a safe haven for creation, discovery, activism, and dream-making. They are an urban landscape photographer who is determined to shine a spotlight on the hidden spiritual depth of overlooked places. They are a maker of protective amulets, a humble traveler, and a collector of experiences. A life-long apprentice determined to learn from their surroundings.
Lydia Blankenship, MS
Lydia (she/her/hers) is a multicultural, world traveling artist (singer and painter) and scientist, passionate about holistic health in her community, and bringing about social change.
She is a proud graduate of Berea College, the first coeducational and racially integrated college in the South. After graduating with a Bachelor's degree in Exercise Science, she went on to earn her Master's degree in Exercise Physiology from Western Kentucky University. In higher education Lydia has worked in student affairs, administration, event coordination, and strategic planning. She has also worked as a fitness trainer and coach.
Lydia is dedicated to the promotion and education of the full spectrum of individual health: mind, body, and spirit, believing that each should be recognized and cared for. She is a passionate advocate for the wellness of young people, especially those in displaced and overlooked communities.