We are sisters who grew up in the 1970s in an artistic family and have worked together all our lives on creative endeavors. Maureen followed a path into business, technology and arts education, and Shannon found a career in nonprofit managment and creative writing. After thirty years of jobs and marriages and children--and motivated by the conviction that the world needs artists now more than ever--we moved to St. Paul de Vence, a medieval village on the cote d'Azur, to pursue our shared passion for bringing the arts and culture to a wider audience.
As a writer invited by the Republic to live in France and work in the arts, Shannon is the team's cultural liaison to artists, government entities and cultural organizations. Maureen's superpowers in project management, arts administration and problem solving make her the strategic brains of the operation.
We live and work in a 19th century stone row house at the top of the village, surrounded by public art, tile roofs and the songs of swallows. We love what we do--it's easy to be happy in this place!--and are eager to help you or your organization realize your creative potential.
Shannon is a writer, manuscript consultant and community organizer with a background in nonprofit executive management.
She has taught creative writing at universities in the U.S. and Europe, including in the MFA program at Bennington College. Her writing has been recognized with the Drue Heinz Literature Prize, the O. Henry Prize, two Pushcart Prizes, a fellowship from the US National Endowment for the Arts, and the "skills and talents" permanent resident status from the Republic of France. Books, stories and essays edited by Shannon have won the Iowa Short Fiction Prize and the Mary McCarthy Prize in Fiction, and have been accepted for publication by dozens of fine literary magazines.
She has served on the boards of directors of many nonprofit groups and has directed five social justice organizations, including a health education project for homeless women, a fundraising consulting firm, a private philanthropy, and an independent publisher of literature by women. She is the founder and director of La Maison Baldwin, a cultural organization that employs the arts to celebrate the life of the writer James Baldwin in St. Paul de Vence.
Maureen is an arts and business consultant. With a background in creativity, technology and education, she helps individuals, organizations and businesses plan and implement their visions.
She was a Worldwide Program Manager at Microsoft in Redmond, Washington, where she led a global program that reached 2 million K-12 teachers per year. She was the Director of State Partnerships for The Partnership for 21st Century Skills, a US education advocacy organization, where she helped state departments of education build and implement their educational reform plans. Maureen also directed the Art Institute and curated art shows at the Arizona Sonora Desert Museum.
Maureen started her career as an art teacher in southern Arizona and since that time has taught more than 5,000 adults and a thousand young people. She holds Master's degree in business and a Bachelor's in Art & Design, and has run several businesses and non-profit organizations. These days, she is focusing her career on bringing joy, beauty and pleasure to the world.