The following people were recently hired or promoted in Northwest Arkansas. To add an employee to an upcoming list of new hires and promotions, email us at [email protected]. Announcements should be limited to a few paragraphs and be accompanied by a photograph.
Joanna Bell, City of Fayetteville
Joanna Bell has been hired to fill a new arts and culture director position at the City of Fayetteville. Bell was most recently the director of marketing and communications at TheatreSquared.
In the new position, Bell will lead planning efforts for the city’s first Arts and Culture Plan that will guide the implementation of projects and programming in an effort to build the capacity of arts and culture organizations in Fayetteville.
Before working at TheatreSquared, Bell served as director of programs for the American Theatre Wing, a New York City-based organization that founded the Tony Awards. In that role, she oversaw programs ranging from grants, awards, professional development initiatives, Emmy-nominated media productions and national partnerships.
The new position is housed within the city’s Parks, Natural Resource and Cultural Affairs Department. Bell begins her new role July 25.
Amanda Cheatham, Washington Regional
Amanda Cheatham, APRN, recently joined the Washington Regional Hospitalists group, where she evaluates and treats hospitalized patients.
Cheatham earned a Doctor of Nursing Practice and a Master of Science in Nursing from the University of South Alabama and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Arkansas Fort Smith.
Cheatham has more than 15 years’ experience in health care and most recently worked as a critical care advanced practice provider.
Kaitlyn Fondano, Specialized Real Estate Group
Kaitlyn Fondano was recently promoted from development and construction manager to director of development for Specialized Real Estate Group, after working with the company since 2019.
In her new role, Fondano is responsible for feasibility, design, entitlements, (zoning, etc.), financing, and construction of all of SREG’s development projects. Fondano will also manage the building and completion of South Yard, a new three-phased residential and commercial development in Fayetteville.
Prior to Specialized, Fondano worked at Desert Viking Development in Phoenix, Arizona, a firm recognized for their investment in historic properties, adaptive reuse projects and ground-up commercial and residential developments.
Jeffrey Mann, Walton Arts Center
Jeffrey Mann was recently hired to fill a new chief operating officer position at Walton Arts Center.
Mann will directly oversee all facility operations, marketing and public relations of both the arts center’s venue in Fayetteville and the Walmart AMP in Rogers. He will also guide the center’s programming and education initiatives.
Most recently, Mann was vice president of Nashville-based Outback Presents, an independent promoter of live events. He also spent five years with Live Nation as a general manager of Xfinity Center and Orpheum Theater in Boston. Before that Mann was chief operating officer of the International Association of Venue Managers, a global trade association for venue professionals.
Kyndal Murach, Washington Regional
Kyndal Murach, APRN, recently joined the Washington Regional Brain and Spine Surgery Clinic, part of the Washington Regional J.B. Hunt Transport Services Neuroscience Institute, where she provides care for patients in the clinic and hospital setting.
Murach earned a Doctor of Nursing Practice and a Master of Science in Nursing from the University of South Alabama and a Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Kentucky.
Murach has more than three years’ experience as an acute care nurse practitioner and served five years as a registered nurse. She is a member of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners.
Curt Owens, Walton Arts Center
Curt Owens was recently hired as director of programming at the Walton Arts Center. He replaces Jennifer Ross, who was recently promoted.
A native of Pine Bluff, Owens joins the Walton Arts Center after 11 years at NETworks Presentations, a touring production company for the Broadway theater community.
Owens has worked on more than 40 productions including War Horse, Phantom of the Opera and Les Miserables. Before joining NETworks, Owens worked in both the producing and presenting divisions of Broadway Across America.
Jennifer Ross, Walton Arts Center
Jennifer Ross was recently promoted from director of programming to vice president of programming for the Walton Arts Center, after working with the nonprofit since 2002.
During her tenure, Ross has been director of artist and client experience as well as director of production and oversaw not only the artist contracting process but also the full production crew, client and promoter rentals.
Most recently, Ross was director of programming. In her new role, Ross will be responsible for booking all of the programming at Walton Arts Center.
Trish Watkins, World Trade Center Arkansas
Trish Watkins, the longtime director of grants and finances at the World Trade Center Arkansas, has been promoted to the center’s chief of staff. Since joining WTC Arkansas in 2016, Watkins has also overseen human resources and the center’s participation in the State Trade Expansion Program Grant.
Watkins has nearly 40 years of experience working for the U of A. She has worked in the U of A Division of Agriculture Research and Extension, the Arkansas Small Business and Technology Development Center and the University Development office.
She currently serves as chair of the U of A Staff Senate, a role which she has previously held for three years. Watkins was also the Division of Agriculture Employee of the Year in 2012 and U of A Employee of the Year in 2009.
The above announcements are for individuals who were recently hired or promoted in Northwest Arkansas. To add an employee to an upcoming list, email us at [email protected]. Announcements should be limited to a few paragraphs and be accompanied by a photograph.