The Bascom Staff

Teresa Osborn, Executive Director


Teresa Osborn joined the Bascom in 2016 as Executive Director with over 25 years’ experience in the nonprofit sector.  While she began her career in sales and marketing, in 1990 she made a career change into the nonprofit sector when she became the first executive director of the National Osteoporosis Foundation, Georgia Chapter. She led that organization through a successful transition to a Regional Office of the national organization and was with them for ten years. 

For the next eight years, she had a consulting business which focused on board development, strategic planning and change management. In 2008 she became the Executive Director of the Jacqueline Casey Hudgens Center for the Arts and led that organization through a successful turnaround. She was there until she joined The Bascom in October 2015.  
She was on the board of Georgia Arts Network Board and ArtWorks Gwinnett and was active in the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce, CEO Roundtable, Georgia Museum, Galleries Association and HRMA.  She was a graduate of Arts Leaders of Metro Atlanta, Leadership Gwinnett and CEO Peerspectives. She received both the Outstanding Arts Professional and the Vision Award from ArtWorks Gwinnett, and the Pinnacle Award from the Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce.  

Raised in Atlanta, she attended University of Georgia, where she received a Bachelor of Arts in English/Political Science. She completed PhD coursework at Vanderbilt in Political Science. She and her husband Jim love living in Highlands and are visited frequently by their adult children who live in Atlanta. 

Contact Teresa at 828.787.2895 or

Tracy Gihl, Chief Financial Officer

Tracy joined The Bascom as CFO in September 2014. Tracy comes to the Bascom with over 25 years of experience in Finance. A certified public accountant, Tracy joined The Bascom from Angel Medical Center where she served in the roles of Controller and CFO. Tracy is responsible for all of the Accounting and Finance functions of The Bascom. 

Tracy began her career as an auditor with KPMG in Atlanta, GA. There she worked with clients from diverse industries, but mainly concentrated in Real Estate, Insurance, Healthcare and other non-profits. After working in Atlanta for many years, the opportunity to return to her mountain hometown presented itself and, as the saying goes, “the rest is history”. 

Tracy is a graduate of the University of Georgia where she earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Accounting. She is active in her church and also serves as the Treasurer there. 

In her free time, Tracy enjoys spending time with her husband and daughter enjoying the beautiful mountains of Northeast Georgia and Western North Carolina. 

Contact Tracy at 828.787.2885 or

Billy Love,  Director of Education and Outreach

Billy love is an Education and Non-Profit professional with 20 years of experience working in the arts, education, and sales and marketing.  Always avoiding idle hands, Billy is constantly exploring new forms of creative expression and innovation.  A self-proclaimed "maker of things," Billy's creative interests reach far and wide.  As a professional muralist, he has completed over 30 murals, both individually and collaboratively, including work on the "Milltown Murals" project in Lakeland, GA. The "Milltown Murals" project has been recognized as a historic landmark by the State of Georgia.

Billy is an art educator who has instructed figure drawing and art education courses at Western Carolina University.  He has instructed at the high school level, and has conducted several youth and adult art workshops in Western NC. Billy also has experience with the theater arts, including scenic design, set and prop construction, and scenic painting.  Currently, he is exploring work in digital photography. Billy received his Bachelors in Studio Art from Furman University in Greenville, SC, and his Masters in Art Education from Western Carolina University. 


Originally from Columbia, SC, Billy spent many summers in the mountains of North Georgia and Western North Carolina with his family, and is happy to have permanently relocated to the cool beauty of the southern Appalachian mountains.

Contact Billy at 828.787.2881 or

Frank Vickery, Director of Ceramics

Frank Vickery has been working in clay for 20 years with multiple years devoted to instruction in clay arts. His personal art works are concentrated in wheel throwing but Frank also has extensive experience in hand building and creating and embellishing clay forms. Frank has a Bachelors in Art Education and Bachelors in Fine Art from Winthrop University and a Masters of Fine Art from Western Carolina University.

Contact Frank at 828.787.2892 or

Julia McRae, Community Engagement Manager 

Julia McRae is originally from Aberdeen, North Carolina and has been in the Franklin area for a little over a year. She became the Community Engagement Manager at The Bascom in July 2017.

Prior to her employment with The Bascom, Julia was a volunteer grant writer for ReDefiners World Languages, a nonprofit organization that offers foreign language education to elementary aged students in Tampa, Florida; a customer support representative for Drake Software; and an occasional free lance writer.


Julia has a Bachelor of Arts in Writing from Catawba College where she graduated Magna Cum Laude. She also is an active professional poet and vocalist who has had the opportunity to teach on those subjects and perform in venues ranging from college campuses to Disney World. 

Contact Julia at 828-787-2864 or

Maurice Laderoot, IT and Facilities Manager

Maurice has been a contractor, a custom wood-worker, and a property manager in Highlands for 35 years. He enjoys camping and fishing with his three sons and spending time with his family. He has developed a passion for keeping the climate right at The Bascom, and also all of the IT up and running. He attended Rabun Gap Nacoochee School and lives in Scaly Mountain. 

Contact Maurice at 828.787.2884 or

Katherine Ford, Director of Community Engagement

Born in Lafayette, LA and raised in rural southern Santa Fe County, NM, Kat Ford comes to The Bascom with over 17 years of professional retail experience.  Graduating with a degree in Clothing, Textile, and Fashion Merchandising from New Mexico State University, Kat spent the next ten years working in luxury retail in both Las Vegas, NV and Los Angeles, CA.  Her experience includes retail management, sales, buying, visual merchandising, clienteling, special events, social media marketing, and work in editorial and advertising photo-shoots.

As an artist and writer, Kat strives to share her narrative that we all have a purpose and should dare to make our dreams come true.  She accomplishes this through her novels, line of children’s and coloring books, folk art, and collaborative work in costume and set design.  Acquiring a patent in 2015 for a device stimulating child development, Kat places a great deal of importance on using art in building cognitive function.

At The Bascom, Kat is happy to have found a place where she can join her skills, experience, and interests to inspire and encourage both the arts and artists.  After all, it is through the power of imagination that we find our hidden strengths and the power to create a better tomorrow.  We should all dare to dream.

Contact Kat at 828.787.2865 or

Zachary Rogers, Exhibitions Manager

Born and raised in Laurinburg, NC, Zachary is an artist with a knack for creative problem solving. After earning his Bachelors of Fine Arts in Metal Design from East Carolina University in 2013, he stuck around Greenville, NC for a couple of years working in a few of the art galleries and as a studio tech at Pitt Community College.

Zachary moved to the North Carolina mountains to attend Western Carolina University and received his Masters of Fine Arts in Sculpture from Western Carolina University in 2018. Zachary has instructed art history lecture classes, 3D design studios, and Sculpture courses. While in graduate school he began to incorporate his interest in archeology and museum studies in his sculptures and wrote his thesis on shifting museum dynamics and their relationship with the viewer.

Since starting at The Bascom as the Exhibition Manager in May 2018, Zachary is able to continue utilizing his skills to create on both sides of the gallery wall and remain engaged in the artistic community.

Contact Zach at (828) 787 - 2878 or at

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323 Franklin Road
Highlands, NC 28741
© 2017  The Bascom • A Center for the Visual Arts • Highlands, NC