NCECA has highly qualified candidates for several distinct positions on its Board of Directors. Voting this year will occur for one opening for Director at Large and one for Student Director at Large to be determined through a membership ballot concluding in March in 2020. The candidates elected for these positions will begin their service immediately following the closing ceremonies of the 2020 conference in Richmond, Virginia. Check out information about the candidates and their candidate videos below!

Three-year term beginning on the final day of the 2020 conference and running through closing ceremonies of the 2023 conference. This position is non-renewable.

Serves on and /or chairs committees or task forces as determined by the President; guides and/or supports the work of the conference during conference and year-round (specific projects to be determined in cooperation with the President).


Must be at least 21 years of age, a member of NCECA, and be able to travel to and participate in all scheduled board meetings and conferences throughout the term of service. (NCECA’s policy is to limit reimbursement for travel to within the US via coach airfare or equivalent.)

Specific Duties 

  • Serves as representatives of the membership at large and advocates for the Council. 
  • Supports and/or initiates special projects subject to the talents of the individual with Board approval.
  • Reviews and encourages conference program proposals.
  • Responsible for input on and implementation of NCECA’s annual efforts and Conference through at least one of the following roles:
    Coordination of Clay Conversations programming, International residencies, Emerging Artists programs, Gallery Expo, and/or other special projects as assigned. 
  • Provides information for NCECA publications and communications as needed.
  • Travels in order to participate in semi-annual board meetings and the annual conference is an expectation of this role. (NCECA supports basic domestic travel expenses associated with these meetings.)
  • Assists with solicitation of financial support for the organization and make an annual financial gift to support its work and mission.

Desired Qualifications

  • Passion for the field of ceramics and NCECA.
  • Past participation in some aspect of NCECA programming.
  • Builds upon and analyzes creative ideas for NCECA programming.
  • Understands budgetary requirements of ongoing programs and initiatives.
  • Manages and think critically about programming priorities.
  • Makes personal contribution necessary to direct a non-profit organization.

Simon Levin has been working in clay since 1990, when an elective ceramics course in college lead to an M.A. and an M.F.A from the University of Iowa. He is a full time studio potter working exclusively with wood firing. His work is exhibited and published internationally. Simon is a writer for many ceramic journals, though he dislikes writing about himself in the third person. In 2013 he was a Senior Fulbright Scholar researching local materials. Simon has built wood fired kilns for both US colleges and universities as well as schools in Taiwan and China. Between 2004 and 2019 his apprenticeship program has trained and influenced 21 potters. A resident of Wisconsin for 18 years, Simon has recently moved to Pawnee Illinois where he is currently re-establishing his pottery.

C.A. “Cat” Traen is a teaching artist working in clay since 2002, leading to a BA and MEd from University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Motivated by enriching others through community building and collaboration, Cat has mentored thousands of students and teachers to equip and ignite the next generation in clay. 

Since relocating to Memphis in 2017, Cat serves as faculty in the ceramics department at University of Memphis and is finding her way as an educational consultant for Laguna Clay Company and regional school districts with a mission to support start-up clay programs at underserved public schools. 

Internationally active since 2015, Cat teaches workshops, exhibits, and is collected in the US, Europe, and Asia. Beyond her work as an emerging international artist, Cat is developing a study abroad program for the University of Memphis with a focus on economic development opportunity for traditional craftspeople in depressed areas in India and the Mid Southern US. 

A proud member of National K12 Ceramics Exhibition Foundation, Cat has presented at NCECA multiple times and seeks to widen the scope of opportunity for all as a representative of the clay community at large.