Speakers & Presenters

Anna Maria Horner

Anna Maria Horner grew up in a house full of her dad’s paintings and with a closet full of her mom’s handi-work. Beds were warmed by the hand-loomed wool blankets sent by her grandmother from Greece. The busy bodies of her and her siblings were warmed by the beautiful hand-knits of their grandmother in Indiana. As a kid in the 70’s, she passed up store-bought Barbie dresses and instead created them from her mother’s fabric scraps.

Dr. Carolyn L. Mazloomi

Dr. Carolyn Mazloomi is a historian, curator, author, lecturer, artist, mentor, founder, and facilitator — and has left her mark on many lives. Trained as an aerospace engineer, Carolyn Mazloomi turned her sights and tireless efforts in the 1980s to bring the many unrecognized contributions of African-American quilt artists to the attention of the American people as well as the international art communities.

Dindga McCannon

I have always been a fiber artist, but have also been a writer/illustrator, painter, wearable art maker, costume designer, muralist, printmaker, and a mother. My work is the fusion of traditional needlework (skills given to me by my mother and grandmother), with the fine arts: drawing, painting, printing, and printmaking, along with a lot of mixed media. I tend to work in series; one of my ongoing series is the celebration of women’s lives, portraits and “herstories.”

Julie Silber

Julie Silber is one of the world’s most respected quilt experts. She has been selling antique quilts to museums, businesses, and individuals since 1968. Julie was the curator of the world renowned Esprit Quilt Collection in San Francisco and is the co-author of the critically acclaimed books, Hearts and Hands and Amish: The Art of the Quilt. She has curated two of the most respected quilt exhibitions of modern times — those at The Oakland Museum and the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.

Janneken Smucker

Janneken Smucker, Professor of History at West Chester University, specializes in digital and public history and material culture. She also serves as the digital editor of the Oral History Review. In the classroom, she integrates technology and the humanities, working with students to create digital projects, including the award-winning Goin’ North: Stories from the First Great Migration to Philadelphia and Philadelphia Immigration.


Josh Dunn

Josh Dunn is the International Sales Manager for Moda Fabrics and Supplies and the son of Moda founder and president (and Quilt Alliance Vice President), Mark Dunn. Josh earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the University of Southern California and shares his father passion for documenting the art and history of each and every quilt.

Emily Bode

Emily Adams Bode launched her eponymous brand in July of 2016 and became the first female menswear designer to show at New York Fashion Week. The collection is now shown twice a year at Paris Fashion Week Men’s with runway shows in June and January. Bode manufactures over half of the collection in New York, with 40% of the annual product sold made from antique textiles. Emily and the brand is committed to further advancing consumers’ knowledge of the history of material culture and the preservation of craft.

John M. Walsh III

John M. Walsh III (Jack) began collecting art quilts in 1992. His first goal was to document the range of works in this new fine art medium. Many artists receive little more than minimum wage for their creations. Jack began supporting the artists with commissions. He promotes appreciation of the artists with exhibits in museums throughout the US and with lectures and articles in magazines, books and other publications such as the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. On four occasions Jack was included in Art and Antiques Magazine’s annual listing of “100 Top Collectors.’ Jack’s life’s work has been making water safe to use. He has done pioneering work in seawater desalination, pollution control and UV water purification, and managed the water chemistry of a nuclear power plant.


Merikay Waldvogel

Merikay Waldvogel is an internationally known quilt historian author, and lecturer. She is widely considered an expert on mid-20th century quilts. Her expertise and tireless research into quilting and the quilters who made them led to her induction into the Quilters Hall of Fame in 2009.


Gwen Westerman

A poet and fiber artist, Gwen Westerman lives in southern Minnesota, as did her Dakota ancestors. Her roots are deep in the landscape of the tallgrass prairie, and reveal themselves in her art and writing through the languages and traditions of her family. She is an enrolled member of the Sisseton Wahpeton Oyate, and Professor in English and Humanities at Minnesota State University, Mankato. Her quilts have won awards at the juried shows of the Northern Plains Indian Art Market, the Heard Museum Guild Indian Art Fair & Market, and the Eiteljorg, and have been exhibited in Minneapolis, Sioux Falls, Anchorage, Houston, Tulsa, Fargo, and Lincoln.  She is the author Follow the Blackbirds, a poetry collection in Dakota and English, and co-author of Mni Sota Makoce: Land of the Dakota, a history of Dakota land tenure in Minnesota.


Mel Beach

Mel Beach is a San Jose, CA based quilt artist, teacher and lecturer, who breaks away from tradition by adding her own modern, beautifully textured and colorful twists. She loves stretching her creativity through her completion of 90+ quilt challenges at the local and international level. Her quilt designs draw upon her inquisitive nature of asking “What If?” and “Why Not?”, working in a series, comedy improv studies along with her love of nature, photography and sketching.

Her award-winning quilts have been juried into national quilt shows and traveling exhibits, and published in books and magazines.


Ricky Tims

Ricky Tims has successfully blended two diverse passions into one very unique and interesting career. His skills as a pianist, composer and producer have been evident by the thousands who have heard his music. His success as a quilter is equally significant.

He is known in the international world of quilting as a best-selling author, enthusiastic and encouraging teacher, an award-winning quilter, fabric designer, and a talented and spellbinding speaker. His innovative and entertaining presentations, feature live music and humor combined with scholarly insights and wisdom. His quilts have been displayed worldwide and are highly regarded as excellent examples of contemporary quilts with traditional appeal.