The Artist-Blacksmith's Association of North America (ABANA)
Business - ABANA Board
Year behind each directors name is the year their current term ends
ABANA Board Elections
Each year 5 board members are elected for a 3 year term.
To run for election, one is required to be an ABANA member in good standing and provide the following:
• A nominating petition signed by at least 10 ABANA members,
All candidates who meet this deadline will be listed on the official ballot form.
All candidates statements will be published on this web site as they are available.
2017 ELECTION TIMETABLE
Jun 1, 2017 Candidate Statements and Ballots Published in Vol 45 No 3 Summer 2017 Anvil's Ring
2017 Candidate Statements
Thomas J. Owens - Ripon, CA
I joined the California Blacksmith Association (CBA) in 2009 after becoming fascinated with the skills and art of blacksmithing. I started buying and making tools immediately. In 2011, I became the Treasurer of the CBA and hold that position today. I joined ABANA in 2014 and helped with the 2016 Salt Lake City Conference. In fact, I did most of the work in creating the Program that many of you kept as a memento of the event.
Mark Kochan - Placerville, CA
My education in the metal arts started over fifty years ago. My brother and I cut my sister's car in half with a cutting torch. It was less than successful, but a great beginning! I have been cutting, welding, casting and sculpting metal on and off for most of my professional life. My blacksmithing apprenticeship began after I retired. I volunteered at a Historic State Park about ten years ago. After a few years I became the lead smith and later a California Blacksmith Association Level III Instructor. I have been an ABANA member for about ten years. At one time I was a guest editor on Anvils Ring (vol 37, #4. p. 38), contributing several articles about blacksmith shops from California to Pennsylvania. I have met and exchanged ideas about this craft with many of the members of this great organization. I have held the position of Chairman of Education for the California Blacksmith Association for the past two years and I have been been on the CBA Board of Directors for the past four years. Sharing all I have learned about event planning, organization, education and cutting torches with the ABANA organization seems like the logical next step. I welcome your support.
Jerry Veneziano- Mineral, VA
I've been blacksmithing pretty much my entire adult life. I was one of the founding board members of the Central Virginia Blacksmith Guild, and have served in several roles for CVBG, including 2 terms as President. I started a blacksmithing program at a school in coastal Virginia, and recently helped found a blacksmithing and metalsmithing school in Richmond, VA. Finally, I'm helping bring an amazing ABANA Conference to Richmond, VA in 2018.
As a member of the ABANA board, my focus would be on serving the needs of the average member, and constantly being an advocate for them. I would promote increasing and improving open communication between the board and the membership, constantly looking for new and different avenues to make this happen. I would look for ways to increase collaboration and cooperation with the Affiliates, while never forgetting and respecting their independent, sovereign status. I would work to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of board operations, to serve the needs of the membership better. Finally, there are many constituencies where the blacksmithing renaissance hasn't yet taken root. I would work to help ABANA reach these communities.
Eddie Rainey- Milner, GA
This is my third year serving on the ABANA board, one year as Secretary and 2 years as President. I have been involved in a lot of challenging decisions and have been surrounded with a great team of dedicated board members who have equally met the challenge. I was able to meet a lot of the membership last year at Salt lake City and several major affiliate conferences that have expressed appreciation and support for what we have accomplished. My experience in blacksmithing and serving on the board has provided me with the confidence to continue to serve and fulfill my goals to make sure ABANA remains the premier blacksmith organization in the world.
Leigh Morrell- Colrain, MA
I have been forging iron professionally for 47 years joining New England Blacksmiths at it's second meet in 1979. I joined ABANA in 1981 and have been a continuous member. I have demonstrated at many venues as well as ABANA 1986 and 2000, taught smithing and welding skills, not only at other events, but also through classes in our shop since 1998 and have counted 6-7 former employees that now have their own shops. The skills I bring to ABANA - director in many venues; town government, church fellowship, and am currently a director and treasurer of New England Blacksmiths.
Bruce Jarrell- Serverna Park, MD
I ask for your vote to re-elect me to the ABANA Board for a second term. It has been my pleasure to serve a first term and be part of a group of people dedicated to continuing the educational mission of ABANA. I have been honored to play roles on the Board that have furthered the image of blacksmiths and enhanced our mission. My main role has been to serve on the publications committee to work with the editors of our two magazines to maintain high quality publications. I have also been pleased to be part of a successful conference in Utah which I believe touched many young lives and hopefully planted a seed for future interest in our art. I have additionally served on the education committee, where we have awarded a number of grants for educational projects and seen the ABANA Foundation funds double in size. There will be many opportunities to use those funds wisely in support of those who need it, and I hope to help guide that. In summary, I am very committed to serving another term on the board and furthering our cause.
Linda Tanner- Amelia, VA
I would like to be considered and would be honored to have your vote in this 2018 ABANA Election.
Carson Sams- Partlow, VA
As a third generation farrier, the forge and the anvil are a way
of life in my family. Hard work, courtesy, and respect - these
are the values taught to me by my father. These values have
served me well and made me the blacksmith and bladesmith I am
today. I demonstrate and teach at various shows and festivals
including the Virginia Renaissance Faire, Virginia State Fair
(site of the 2018 ABANA conference), and numerous other venues.
I enjoy entertaining and educating the public, doing what I call
Check back to view additional Candidates statements as they are submitted - Deadline to submit is 15 May 2017