Who We Are


Founder & Executive Director

Lisa Degliantoni, is a visionary who has been at the forefront of the Evanston arts scene for several years. She is a gallery owner and champion for artists, recognized by local leadership as the go-to person for all things arts related in town. Before securing Evanston Made' 501(c)3 status, she coordinated arts initiatives through the moniker of Evanston Made for five years with popular events like studio tours, Maker's Markets and the Evanston Made Group Show. Evanston Made has since added to these offerings and now host year round programming such as First Saturdays, professional development workshops, storefront activations, community art projects, member mixers and more.



Liz is currently launching Artisan & Sage Marketing, acting as a consultant to small businesses and the creative community in Evanston. Her focus is project management and marketing strategies, content creation and event planning.

As a Regional Marketing Director and Field VP, she has worked with retailers to develop corporate sales, marketing and customer service strategies, merchandising and event plans and education programs to maximize the talent and potential of account teams. “Life is about connections. My strengths lie in bringing creative thinking, conceptualizations and a collaborative spirit to my work. Her passion is creating functional ceramics with a touch of nature, painting and  spending time supporting Evanston art and artists.


Denise W. Barreto

Board President

Denise is not an artist, per se.

Yet she's been art adjacent her entire life and is excited to lend her talents to advance art in her adopted hometown of Evanston.

An entrepreneur, author and TEDx speaker,  Denise W. Barreto is a prominent 21st Century voice on leadership and storytelling. Whether she’s executing in her role as a business strategist and managing partner of Relationships Matter Now, LLC or behind the camera in her latest roles of executive producer and co-founder of Serqet Productions and Media, LLC, Denise is always challenging the status quo and building new, more inclusive narratives and environments across government, nonprofit, corporate and Hollywood multimedia entities.

Denise and her small firm are leading a new conversation about equity, inclusion and diversity in philanthropic, corporate and government entities across the United States, challenging and reshaping narratives and social norms.

Personal leadership is just as vital as organizational leadership to Denise. Before it was cool for young women of color to run for political office (2009), she was twice elected to the Board of Trustees for the Village of Lake in the Hills, IL.  Since 2014, Denise has served  on the Illinois Business Enterprise Program Council, a state commission that helps to implement, monitor, and enforce the goals of the Business Enterprise for Minorities, Females and Persons with Disabilities Act appointed by former Illinois Governor Pat Quinn. She serves on the Parks and Recreation Board for the City of Evanston and as an advisory board member of the 101 Best and Brightest Places to Work - Chicago Chapter.

Denise has recalibrated all aspects of her life in the last 48 months and has chronicled this journey in “healing tattoos” across her body. This newly minted outdoors gal enjoys trekking through local, state and national parks whenever ever she can or spending time laughing, enjoying meals and traveling with her progeny - visual artist and fashion school student Emma and Evan, her high school aged musician and digital artist.

Denise's first production as a television executive producer , Fly Brother with Ernest White II is currently running on PBS affiliates across the United States.


Mat Rappaport

Board Member

Mat Rappaport is a Chicago based artist, curator, and educator known for works that utilize mobile video, performance, and photography to explore habitation, mass-tourism, perception, and power as related to built environments. Recent projects include the range series of performances employing commercial trucks, augmented with external cameras that capture video from the surrounding environment, and screens onto which video is projected as the truck navigates the city. Sitting in the passenger seat of the truck, the artist “remixes” the environment in real-time, performing a moving intervention into architectural space. range continues Mat Rappaport’s effort to shape the experience of urban environments through media-based interventions. In 2018, Rappaport developed the Range Mobile Lab, a platform for practice-based research based on a 1995 GMC delivery truck. The Range Mobile Lab serves to extend the range performances, architectural collaborations, and direct community engagement.

Rappaport’s work has been exhibited in the United States and internationally in museums, galleries, film festivals, and public spaces. Recent projects have been featured during EXPO Chicago, the Chicago Architecture Biennial in 2019 and 2017, Anniversary of the Jewish Ghetto in Venice, Italy, and 2018 Ann Arbor Film Festival and performances with the Range Mobile Lab at the Museum of Contemporary Art in Chicago and the Block Museum at Northwestern University.

Rappaport is an Associate Professor in Cinema and Television Arts at Columbia College in Chicago.

Evan Finamore

Board Member

Evan is committed to serving the greater good.

For over 20 years, as a consummate community volunteer and leader, she has dedicated much of her time and energy to building bridges to bolster the success of agencies devoted to human services, the arts, education, and community engagement in Evanston.

She has served on the boards of a variety of community organizations including Foundation 65, the philanthropic foundation dedicated to providing arts and literacy enrichment to Evanston's primary public schools and Young Evanston Artists, a thirty year old community arts festival featuring the artwork of students from all schools in Evanston, preschool to high school, public and private.

She currently works as Outreach and Development Manager for Illinois Partners for Human Service, a nonprofit dedicated to advocacy on behalf of the sector and a coalition of over 800 human service providers across the state of Illinois. Prior professional pursuits include exhibit development, strategic planning and museum evaluation.

Evan holds a Bachelor of Arts in Art History from the University of Pennsylvania and has completed certification coursework in Arts Management.

Cortney Lederer

Board Member

Cortney Lederer is an arts consultant, project manager and educator with seventeen years of experience managing an array of artistic programming for organizations and businesses. From 2011–14 she served as the Director of Exhibitions and Residencies at the Chicago Artists Coalition (CAC), where she designed and managed its two residency programs: BOLT Residency and HATCH Projects. While at CAC, Cortney curated and managed special projects for businesses such as tech incubator 1871, Patron Tequila, TOMS Shoes, Groupon and Taste of Chicago (DCASE). She curated and produced hundreds of solo and group exhibitions during her tenure at CAC. As a result of her efforts, her programs were cited as producing some of the most promising emerging practitioners in Chicago in the Chicago Tribune (2011) and voted “Best opportunity for emerging artists” by New City’s Best of Chicago (2013).

As of June 2014, Cortney launched CNL Projects (CNL), which provides project-based consulting to organizations with a specialization in curating, project management, program design and development. CNL has worked with notable organizations such as 3Arts, Chicago Artists Coalition, DePaul Art Museum, EXPO Chicago, Fashion Outlets of Chicago, LinkedIn, Wilson Sporting Goods, PurePoint Financial, Hyatt Hotels Corporate Office Chicago and EQ Office/Willis Tower. She also provides professional development workshops and individual consultation to artists. Most recently, CNL launched the initiative PROMPT, an artist dinner series intended to create space to build community, share stories, resources and skills amongst creatives. Cortney is faculty in the Arts Administration and Policy department at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago

Cortney received her BA in Sociology from George Washington University (1999), a BFA from the University of Victoria (2002), and a dual Masters degree in Modern Art History, Theory and Criticism and Arts Administration and Policy from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago (2009). Currently, she serves on the board of Every House Has a Door, the Education Advisory Committee for the Chicago Artists Coalition, and the Lakeview Public Art Committee.

Anne Laverick

Board Member

Anne is a Manager in the Corporate Finance and Planning Team at Rotary International, and oversees accounting and reporting for operations, investments, salaries and benefits, and supporting the International Assembly and Convention. Anne has thirty years’ career experience working for both large and small for profit companies responsible for financial reporting, including corporate consolidations and SEC reporting.


EM Board Focus areas: TREASURER

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