It is with mixed feelings that we must say farewell to our Communications & Development Manager Rachelle Toarmino. While we’re sad to see her leave, our team is so proud to congratulate her as she embarks on her journey to the University of Massachusetts Amherst as an MFA candidate and teaching associate in poetry in the fall.

Rachelle joined ASI in May 2019 as our first Communications & Development Manager. She was brought on to develop and craft ASI’s public voice through the communication of its services and programs for the field, in addition to ASI’s rebrand planning.

Rachelle’s contributions to ASI have been countless and invaluable. She was instrumental in strategizing ASI’s visual rebrand as we head into our 10 Year Anniversary (2021) and how that will play a role in ASI’s impact to the field in the future.

She laid the groundwork for ASI’s communications for artists and organizations including weekly e-newsletters, social media presence, and media and community relations. Assistance to the field also included the presentation of the first, Creative Professionals Exchange (CPX) in 2019. Especially during the COVID-19 crisis Rachelle spear-headed creative communication tools including #WeAreWNYArts campaign, ongoing weekly #ShowUsYourArt WNY artist features, and weekly Coffee Chats to assist arts administrators. Her commitment and dedication have helped to transform the careers of artists and sustainability of WNY arts organizations.

On behalf of ASI, we would like to wish Rachelle the best of success in all of her future endeavors and at UMass!