Carol Sauvion is the creator of the Peabody Award winning PBS series Craft in America. Now in its fifteenth year, the documentary series celebrates American craft and the artists who bring it to life. She is also the Executive Director of the Craft in America non-profit organization which has the mission is to promote and advance original handcrafted work through educational programs in all media. Craft is Sauvion’s lifelong passion. For over 40 years she has been the director of Freehand, her Los Angeles gallery specializing in functional craft. Prior to opening Freehand, Sauvion was a professional potter for ten years.
Sauvion has her degree in Art History from Manhattanville College in Purchase, New York. She has served on the boards of the Craft Emergency Relief Fund and the American Craft Council.
Patricia Bischetti has produced the Craft in America series since its beginning in 2007. She has produced documentaries for PBS, American Masters, American Experience, Netflix, Prime Video, Discovery, National Geographic, TBS, TNT, TCM, CNN, Lifetime, Starz, and Showtime. Her work includes the Emmy Award-winning Mel Brooks Make a Noise, Oscar nominated Last Days in Vietnam featured at the Sundance Film Festival, Peabody Award-winning Black Sky: The Race for Space, Take Every Wave featured at Sundance, Code Black winner of the LA Film Festival, and PBS primetime series Tavis Smiley Reports. As Executive Producer at Big Buddha Baba Productions, Bischetti also produced interactive media and experience design projects for Walt Disney Imagineering.
Craft in America Center Director & Curator
Emily Zaiden is Director and lead curator of the Craft in America Center, where she has curated over sixty exhibitions for the Center and partner venues since 2010. In addition to overseeing public and educational programming, she publishes catalogues and writes for journals including Archives of American Art Journal, American Tapestry Alliance, and Metalsmith. She has served as juror and lectured widely. Zaiden has an M.A. from the Winterthur Program in American Material Culture and a B.A. in American Studies from University of California Berkeley. She was a Research Associate to the Decorative Arts department at LACMA and research editor for Architectural Digest prior to joining the organization.
Denise Kang has worked on every aspect of the Craft in America project since she joined the organization in 2006. Kang works on pre-production shoot planning, assists the crew and director at all on-location shoots, and is involved in post production including archival research, archival licensing, image retouching, on-screen text, and digital deliverables. In addition, Kang also works on in-house graphic design and branding, manages website content and social media. Kang also produces the filming of the Craft in America Center talks as well as the digital-only content. Kang graduated from the University of Southern California with a BFA in ceramics, printmaking, and graphic design, and continues to make pottery today.
Emilia Shaffer-Del Valle
Associate Producer & Curatorial Assistant
Emilia Shaffer-Del Valle has worked as production coordinator for Craft in America since 2019, and began her role as curatorial assistant at the Craft in America Center in 2021. She has also independently curated exhibitions, organized educational programs, and published writing, always approaching the arts as a critical tool for education and change. Shaffer-Del Valle graduated from Columbia University with a B.A. in English and Art History.
Michelle Starks has worked as the Production Controller for Craft in America since 2019. Having studied Art, Design and Architecture, she graduated from California State University, Northridge with a B.A. in Art and also holds a Certificate in Set Design. Having worked with Designers and an Art handling service throughout the years, she is passionate about all forms of creativity and persists in her oil painting and restoring antiques and furniture.
Terry de Castro
Terry de Castro became involved with Craft in America in 2011 while working at Freehand Gallery, a retail store specializing in fine American craft. In 2012, she started curating a series of concerts at the Craft in America Center, which has hosted more than 40 concerts. A musician herself, she performed in and co-coordinated Craft in America’s 10th anniversary music festival at Olvera Street in Downtown LA in 2018. She took over the role of Communications in 2019.
Craft in America Center Manager
Joan Mace has worked as the Craft in America Center Manager since 2021. She is an arts educator with 13 years of experience in museum programming, 7 years of college teaching experience in art history, and over 4 years of arts management experience at the college and museum level. Mace graduated from California State University, Long Beach with a B.A. in Art History and a M.A. in Art History and Museum and Curatorial Studies.
Alejandro Nam joined Craft in America in 2019. He has been involved in the Arts, Crafts and Design industry for over 20 years across the globe and has also instructed Product and Furniture Design at his alma mater, University of Technology Sydney, prior to moving to Los Angeles in 2016. He manages the Craft in America website along with providing IT and technical support for the organization.