Abbi Peters Resigns as Executive Director at Elk County Council on the Arts

Elk County Council on the Arts (ECCOTA) announces that Abbi Peters has resigned from her position as executive director with her last day scheduled for April 29.

Peters moved to Ridgway in the spring of 2007 and sat on the ECCOTA Board of Directors for one year before being hired as executive director in May 2008.

Peters reflected on her time with the organization, saying, “The past eight years have been an amazing opportunity for my professional growth.  I have been so fortunate to work with a talented array of artists, dedicated staff, passionate board members and volunteers, caring members and business owners, and partners from Erie to Harrisburg.  I have been accepted in an arts and culture community that spans the state and for that I am eternally grateful.”

Peters is leaving ECCOTA to join the PA Wilds Center (a regional non-profit) as the program director.

In her role as program director, Peters will oversee the Wilds Cooperative of Pennsylvania (formerly the PA Wilds Artisan Trail), the non-profit’s main business development program, which aims to grow and cluster the kinds of unique businesses central to place-based tourism development like that being done in the PA Wilds.

ECCOTA intends to simplify its overall management structure. There will be no replacement for Peters’ position as the executive director. An Education and Grants Director will be hired to manage the Arts in Education, Pennsylvania Partners in the Arts and local re-granting programs.  ECCOTA is currently interviewing to fill this position.

The Elk County Council on the Arts is a 501(c) non-profit organization founded in 1984 as a center for the development of all the arts in Elk County.

ECCOTA provides a variety of opportunities to participate in the arts for the area’s residents. A wide selection of art classes and workshops for adults and children are offered.

Additionally ECCOTA brings a selection of cultural programming to the area including: an annual children’s theater workshop; and programs by nationally and internationally renowned performers. ECCOTA also maintains a sales gallery featuring art work by more than 40 local and regional artists.

Since 2007 ECCOTA has administered over $325,000 in re-granted funds to over 100 projects and programs across 9 counties as a Pennsylvania Partner in the Arts (PPA).

The PPA is a decentralized granting program that is a partnership between local organizations and the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts (PCA). Now operating in all 67 counties in Pennsylvania, PPA re-grants funds to support a wide variety of local and community arts activities.

In 2015 ECCOTA became in Arts in Education (AIE) partner to administer PCA allocated AIE residencies in Cameron, Elk, Forest, McKean and Potter counties.

The AIE program places approved teaching artists in classrooms for 20-day residencies to provide a learning experience for the students and broaden the classroom teacher’s ability to teach their curriculum.

Since 2007 ECCOTA has worked with the PA Wilds Artisan Development Work Group to develop and promote the Pennsylvania Wilds Artisan Trail (pawildsartisans.com).

This DCED-sanctioned trail, spans 12.5 counties and is working to develop directed tourism to promote exposure for artisans in the PA Wilds region.

Since March 2014 ECCOTA has served as the administrative support for the Pennsylvania Wilds Artisan Trail, running communications, member billing and customer support for over 80 artisans and 50 trail sites (and growing).

Applicants interested in learning more about the open position can visit eccota.com/team.

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