Local artist and community leader Suny Monk has been elected to the Sweet Briar College Board of Directors.
Monk, of Amherst, is recently retired from Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, an international artist community next door to the College. As VCCA’s executive director since 1997, she has had a long association with Sweet Briar, personally and professionally.
The College shares a special relationship with the arts center, offering students the opportunity to interact with and learn from the artists in residence there. Monk’s husband, Joe, is a retired professor of studio art at Sweet Briar. As an active member of the community, she has collaborated with faculty and staff over the years on endeavors such as Amherst ArtMeters, a public art project.
“While no one would wish for such a circumstance, the threat of the loss of Sweet Briar spurred the entire community to re-imagine the rich and varied collaborations that are possible between the College and its neighbors,” Monk says. “I am honored to be invited to share my experiences as a citizen and board member to consider how those opportunities might become realities.”
Monk continues to serve as a board member of VCCA Abroad, focusing especially on VCCA’s satellite program in Auvillar, France. Prior to moving to Amherst, she was head of school at Aylett Country Day School in Millers Tavern, Va., from 1982 to 1997. She is trained as a ceramist and for the past 20 years has produced one-of-a-kind wearable art.
Monk has served as a consultant or panelist for the University of Virginia’s College at Wise, Randolph College, the Virginia Commission for the Arts, the Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation and the Appomattox Regional Governor’s School for the Arts and Technology. Most recently, she served on the selection committee for the Virginia Governor’s Awards for the Arts. She was named Woman of the Year in the Arts by the YWCA of Central Virginia Academy of Women. She has served as a board member of the Academy Center of the Arts, the Alliance of Artists Communities and Lynchburg Fine Arts Center.
Currently, she serves on the board of Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, is immediate past chair of the board of directors of New Vistas School, and president of Second Stage | Amherst, an emerging local nonprofit seeking to establish a cultural and community center for Amherst County. She is an advisory board member of Endstation Theatre Company and a partner at Oxide Pottery, a fine craft gallery in Lynchburg, Va.
Monk earned a bachelor’s degree from Marietta College and a master’s from Ohio University.