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FACULTY

FACULTY BIOGRAPHIES

FACULTY CHAIRS

Susan Katz – Chair of Mass Communication. Chair of Digital Marketing and Communication Studies. Susan Katz is an award-winning writer/producer/director/creative lead with over 25 years experience serving Fortune 500 corporations, marketing and advertising agencies and political campaigns with concept development through completion services in digital and traditional media—web, film, video, radio and print. In addition to working in the digital media, television, radio, newspaper and magazine industries, she served as a member of the faculty at the Women’s Campaign School at Yale University for 15 years. She founded Katzing Creative Ways, a full-service media production company in 1985. Katz holds a B.A. with Honors in Television/Radio from Brooklyn College; a Certificate in Filmmaking from New York University; and an M.S. with Distinction in eMedia/New Media from Quinnipiac University. She served on the International Television Assoc. Board of Governors and the Connecticut Assoc. of Production Professionals Executive Council. She is listed in Marquis’ Who’s Who of American Women, Who’s Who in Entertainment and other biographical publications. Industry awards include: American Assoc. Political Consultants Pollie Awards, Campaigns & Elections magazine Reed Awards, Telly Awards, New York Festivals, Worldfest Charleston Film Festival, Assoc. of Visual Communicators Cindy Awards, International Television Assoc. Connecticut Vision Awards. A native of Brooklyn, NY, Katz is an avid walker, dancer, and devout servant to two Maine Coon cats.

Chelsea Kostek – Chelsea Kostek is the Chair of Industrial Design at Paier College’s SASD in Bridgeport. She has a Master’s in Industrial Design from Rhode Island School of Design and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Virginia Commonwealth University. She has many years of professional experience designing and developing a variety of products for companies such as Griffin Technology, HP, Brookstone, and Lovesac Furniture. She has also worked in the field of Fashion Design and was previously the chair of Fashion Merchandising at The University of Bridgeport. She is an active member of IDSA.

Marsha Matto – Chair of Interior Design at Paier College’s Shintaro Akatsu School of Design (SASD) in Bridgeport. Marsha earned her B.S. in Interior Design from Mount Ida College and has over 20 years of detailed experience as a high end residential and commercial interior designer. She was founder of her first interior design firm, Savoir Faire Interiors in Westport CT, from 1997-2007. In 2007 she became founder of Point Of View Interiors, an exclusive residential and commercial interior design firm, which she currently owns and operates. Marsha’s work takes her through-out Fairfield County, Manhattan, the Hamptons and Miami Beach. Her design and construction expertise has earned several of her homes in Fairfield County the very prestigious HOBI Award (Home Building Industry Award). She is also an active member of ASID. See her work in detail on her website, Marsha had been teaching at the University of Bridgeport for the past 8 years, and has lectured for SASD in China at Ludong University for two summers. 

Gary Munch, M.S. – Chair of Graphic Design in Paier College’s Shintaro Akatsu School of Design (SASD). Gary earned his M.S. Art Education from the University of Bridgeport, 1986 and his B.F.A. from the University of Oregon, 1979. He has designed typefaces for Linotype (Ergo, Really) and was part of Microsoft’s ClearType project of system fonts (Candara) which all included Greek, Latin, and Cyrillic. He has a long-standing interest in non-Latin scripts and has designed award-winning typefaces in Cyrillic and Greek. Most recently his work has extended to Cherokee and Arabic. From 2001 to 2008 he was on the board of the TDC Type Directors Club (New York), and served as president and chairman, and chaired the TDC 2 2002 type design competition and the TDC50 typography competition in 2004. In 2010, he was a juror in the TDC 2 2010 type design competition. He speaks occasionally at the annual TypeCon, sponsored by SoTA.

Salvatore Privitera – Sal is the Chair of the Photography Department at Paier College, as well as a professor since 2018. Sal is the former Director of Career Services and Enrichment. He completed his MFA at Maryland Institute College of Art and his undergraduate studies at Paier College [of Art]. His interests and expertise lie in multiple areas of the arts consisting of (but not limited to) photography, video, 3D animation, and art history. Along with being an educator, he has continued to work as a professional photographer since 2012 and exhibit his personal artwork.

Vladimir Shpitalnik – Chair of Illustration. Vlad is an illustrator, set and costume designer, and painter whose work has been showcased across the United States, Europe, and in Asia. He has illustrated children’s books for Random House/Knopf, Cambridge University Press, and Soundprints. His children’s book illustrations recently toured 13 Japanese museums. His Off-Broadway theatrical credits include set designs for American Place Theatre and SoHo Rep. Regional dance and theater credits include set and/or costume designs for the Joffrey Ballet, Eugene O’Neill Theatre Center, Stage One Theatre, New Harmony Theatre, Seacoast Rep, and Yale Cabaret. International credits include the Moscow Art Theatre Studio, Kazan Theater for Youth, Yermolova Theater, Gorky Cinema Studio. A founding member of Alliance TCC, a theater construction consultancy, Shpitalnik has collaborated on the development of numerous art and performance venues, including the Oakdale Theatre, Meadows Music Theater, and Madison Art Cinemas in Connecticut, and SubCulture and Hex & Company in New York City. He serves as art director for educational games at Mindtrust. Shpitalnik’s gallery exhibitions include Lincoln Center Library for the Performing Arts (NY), Greene Gallery (CT), Paul Mellon Center for the Arts (CT), and the Society of Illustrators Gallery. Shpitalnik is a member of United Scenic Artists and the Society of Illustrators, Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, and the Connecticut Watercolor Society. He holds MFA degrees from the Yale School of Drama and the Moscow Art Theatre School. Shpitalnik is a recipient of the National Endowment for the Arts/Theatre Communications Group’s Designer Fellowship and a Three x Three International Illustration Award.

Dr. Yanmin Yu, Ph.D – Chair of Global Media and Communication Studies. Dr. Yu obtained her Ph.D. from S.I. Newhouse School of Public Communications at Syracuse University. Currently she is a professor of Mass Communication and Chair of the Graduate Program in Global Media and Communication Studies at Paier College. Dr. Yu teaches mass communication courses including Media Law, International Journalism, Communication Theory, Political Communication and Public Diplomacy, Intercultural Communication, Senior Seminar in Mass Communication, and Advertising and PR Campaign among others. A three-time recipient of Fulbright Scholarship, Dr. Yu conducted research in Egypt, Israel, Australia, and Senegal. She has authored a number of journal articles, book chapters, and books. Her research interests include media and society, media and foreign policy, media and international relations, and intercultural communication.

Robert E. Zappalorti – Director of the Division of Fine Arts/ Illustration/Foundation. Professor of Fine Arts. Diploma, Paier School of Art; B.F.A., Albertus Magnus College; painter, author; exhibitor: New Haven Paint and Clay Club, Trinity College, Gallery-on-the-Green, Osage Gallery, Gallery 86, and Douglas Gallery; recipient, Benedictine First Prize. Represented by Cavalier Galleries, Greenwich CT, NYC, Nantucket MA. Member: Collegiate Press Editorial Advisory Board. (1971) 

Chelsea Kostek

Chair of Industrial Design

Marsha Matto

Chair of Interior Design

Gary Munch

Chair of Graphic Design

Sal Privitera

Chair of Photography

Vlad Shpitalnik

Chair of Illustration

Dr. Yanmin Yu

Chair of Global Media & Communication Studies

Robert Zappalorti

Chair of Fine Art

Susan Katz

Chair of Mass Communication & Digital Marketing and Communication Studies

Chair of Marketing

Chair of Marketing

Chair of Web & Mobile Application Design

Chair of Web & Mobile Application Design

FACULTY MEMBERS

Jeffrey Bishop – Lecturer in Graphic Design. M.A., Liberal Arts, Wesleyan University, CT. B.A., Photography and Painting, Charter Oak State College, CT. Certified in Computer Information Science, Internet Website Developing, Electronic Publishing. Freelance Web Designer; Computer Instructor, Gibbs College, Teaching Assistant, ACES. (2012)

Todd Conant – Originally from the Pocono Mountains in PA, Todd began making scaled models of famous buildings and bridges as early as middle school. Going on to enroll in architecture and engineering classes in high school, and then again at the University of Hartford, his path became clear. Todd received his B.S. and MArch degrees from the University of Hartford and was later received recognition from the school’s CETAVIEW newsletter as “A Model Alum”. From the beginning of Todd’s professional career, he continued his passion for model making for the architect Tai Soo Kim and his work began to be displayed publicly and even in a museum internationally. With architectural contributions to schools and library buildings in his portfolio, and a Master of Architecture degree in hand, Todd eventually shifted his focus to the New Haven based firm Svigals + Partners where he worked on a variety of building typologies. Today Todd works on a host of large-scale projects from early design, through design development and documentation, all the way through construction. Todd’s most recent projects include clients such as Yale University, Southern Connecticut State University, University of New Haven, Cornell Scott-Hill Health, Yale New Haven Hospital, and a few high-rise residential complexes spread across Connecticut. In addition to Todd’s love for design also comes his love for teaching. Todd serves as dedicated adjunct professor at Paier College teaching industry standard applied technology courses such as Revit, AutoCAD, and a physical model building studio. Todd custom tailors his approach to teaching based on individual student needs realizing students may take a different path in course skill building and concepts comprehension. Todd developed an appreciation for an adaptable approach to teaching from a life of overcoming the challenges of dyslexia symptoms himself. He credits his childhood teacher’s patience for understanding his struggles and helping him reverse a learning disability into a path towards a prosperous future.

Glen Curtis – Born in Denver, CO Glen grew up in CT and then moved to FL where he became a police officer. He is certified in crime scene investigation and received a technical education in photography. He met his wife in FL, left the police department and moved back to CT where they opened a studio specializing in weddings and portraits. 47 years later, that studio still exists! He has received many awards, has had exhibits in various galleries and venues including the Lyman Allen Museum in New London, as well as having a presence is many private collections. He has previously served as the President of the Connecticut Professional Photographers Association, Councillor to the Professional Photographers of America’s Board of Directors and he has received the National Service Award and The Lifetime Achievement Award from the CPPA. He began his time with Paier in 2000 and very much enjoys teaching Paier Students who appreciate the comprehensive courses that the College provides.

John F. Falato – John received his B.F.A. from the University of Hartford in 1968. Prior to that he earned a diploma from Paier in 1963. He has been affiliated with the Harmon Meek Gallery since 1991, the Fishbach Gallery in NYC from 2005-2011 and the Grand Central Art Galleries from 1983-1990. His works have been featured in the Arkansas Art Center in Little Rock, AK, the Louisiana Art & Science Museum in Baton Rouge, LA, the Orlando Art Museum in Florida and the Loos Art Gallery Collection in Naples, the United States Golf Association Museum in New Jersey, Yale University’s Portrait of William Beinecke, and the Collection of Jackye & Curtis Finch, Jr. John was published in the November 2008 edition of American Artist, “Back To Basics,” p. 29, as well as in “Art From The Parks”, Rachel Rubin Wolf, North Light Books, 2000, and “Face to Face” at the Arkansas Art Center. His teaching career began in 1968 at Silvermine College of Art until 1970 and continued at Greens Farms Academy from 1970-82. In 1985, John joined the Paier College [of Art] faculty and has been with Paier since! His works are also featured in many private collections and he won the 2011 Summer Residency, Acadia Foundation Founded By Richard Estes

Terence Falk– Has maintained an extremely active role in both the fine art and commercial photography worlds for over thirty-five years. Along with shooting for annual reports and editorial clients, he is regarded as one of the finest exhibition black and white printers. His clientele has included Richard Avedon, Bruce Davidson, Philippe Halsman, Horst, Mary Ellen Mark, Duane Michals, Eva Rubinstein, and Rodney Smith. Terence has exhibited widely in New England and New York. Group shows include “Metal Transfigured: The 2009 Art and Design Faculty Exhibition” at The Fashion Institute of Technology in NYC, The 2003 Biennial Exhibition of the Portland Museum of Art in Portland, Maine, The Aldrich Museum of Contemporary Art in Ridgefield, CT (1996) and The Fitchburg Museum of Art in MA (1996), where he was selected as one of three photographers among the twenty­ five artists in New England for their annual “New England/New Talent” exhibition. Solo exhibitions include, “Borrowed Light: The Photographs of Terence Falk,” in 2004 at The Center for Maine Contemporary Art in Rockport, Maine, and “Photographs by Terence Falk: A Thirty-Five Year Retrospective”, at The Keyes Gallery in Stony Creek, CT. In 1986, Falk was awarded an Artist Residency Fellowship at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts in Sweet Briar, VA and in 1996 he received The Weir Farm Visiting Artist Fellowship in Wilton, CT. He has taught classes at the Creative Arts Workshops, New Haven, CT, The University of Bridgeport, The International Center of Photography, NYC, The Maine Media Workshops, Rockport, ME and The Fashion Institute of Technology, NYC. Presently, Terence is on the faculty of Paier College, Hamden, CT.

Kahn Gasimov – Khanlar Gasimov was born in Azerbaijan. He received an M.A. in sculpture from the University of Fine Arts in Baku, Azerbaijan. He also received his B.F.A. in sculpture from Azimzade College of Fine Arts. The majority of his works are held by collectors in New York, Toronto, London, Tel Aviv, Moscow, Baku, Geneva, and Antwerp. His selected commissions and exhibitions include a 2014 residency in Yucatan Mexico, “En Plain Air” at Gallery Stux in 2013, the Curator’s choice a the 2013 Vienna Art Show,  “Under Influence” in 2012 at the Phillips Auction House in London as well as the “Bodhi” sculpture in London at Gallery Gazelli that same year, the 2011 Venice Biennale 54th International Art Exhibition, “Baku Unlimited” at Voltahalle in Basel, Switzerland , 2008 Rockefeller Park Cleveland where he completed a sculpture project commission for permanent installation in Azerbaijan National Park, 1997-1999 Madame Tussauds Wax Museum- London UK , completed a number of life-size figures for museum exhibition in London, New York, Los Angeles and Las Vegas, and the 1996 Summer Olympic Games in Atlanta when he participated in the commissioning of life-size Olympic athlete sculptures for exhibition. Commissioned to create the portraits of Bostonian writers Nathaniel Hawthorne, Louisa May Alcott and Henry David Thoreau. He conducted solo shows in Toronto throughout the early 1990s and international shows in Azerbaijan and Russia in the late 1980s.

Richard Hoyer – Lecturer in Photography. M.A., Photography, Fairfield University; B.A., Science/Music, Southern CT State University; Graduate Studies, Photography, Columbia University, NY.; Internet Engineering and Design, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, MA. Photography instructor: Manchester Community College, Worcester Art Museum. Awards: Artwell Gallery, Nicholas & Johnson Silver Gavel Award; Wood Memorial, Silver Anniversary Biennial National Group Show, Simonds Photography Award. Extensive solo and group exhibitions. Publication: Photography for United Way Publication. Member: American Society of Media Photographers; Society for Photographic Education; Editorial Photographers; College Art Association; International Center for Photography. (2005)

Leeah Joo – Leeah received her BFA in Painting and BA in Art History from Indiana University, Bloomington and MFA in Painting from Yale School of Art. A recipient of Pollock-Krasner, George Sugarman, Puffin Foundation grants, and a two-time CT Artist Fellow, she has exhibited widely in U.S. and South Korea including at the Frye Art Museum, Wyoming Art Museum and Seoul Art Center. She’s been teaching for over 25 years and previously taught at Kansas City Art Institute, Maryland Institute College of Art and Fairfield University.

Sawson Khouldi – Sawsan is an Interior Designer with five years of experience in Connecticut, New York, and California. After receiving a Bachelor of Arts in Architecture in Syria, Sawsan earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in Interior Design from the University of Bridgeport. She also holds a Master’s degree in Business Management from the University of Bridgeport where she has been teaching computer design programs for six years. Sawsan incorporates the Human Design concept in her work, striving to provide clients with sensory-driven, client-centric design solutions. Sawsan has recently earned the WELL Accredited Professional (WELL AP) credential through the International WELL Building Institute (IWBI), placing her among a group of leading professionals who are dedicated to supporting human health and well-being in the built environment. Sawsan is wife and mother of two beautiful children who always remind her of the purpose of what she is doing and inspire her to become the person she wants to be. On her free time, Sawsan enjoys staying with her family and taking care of their needs. She loves traveling and she has been to several countries throughout Europe including Spain where she had the opportunity to visit the most amazing architectural buildings in the world.

Whitney Prentice – Lecturer in Fine Arts. M.F.A., cum laude, Painting, New York Academy, Graduate School of Figurative Art. Professional Certificate, Painting, Lyme Academy College of Fine Art, Old Lyme, CT, Diploma Candidate, Illustration, Paier College of Art, Hamden , CT, 1990-1994. Recipient of the Jay Verbutis Memorial Award for Excellence in Art. Instructor: Paier College of Art, Silvermine Arts Center, New Canaan, CT; Guilford Art Center, Guilford, CT; Lecturer in Art History, Gateway Community College, New Haven, CT; Painter. Exhibited: Dahesh Museum, New York, NY; New Britain Museum of American Art; Spectrum Gallery, Centerbrook, CT; Slater Museum, Norwich, CT; Lyme Art Association, Old Lyme, CT; Hudson Valley Art Assoc. 88th Annual Juried Exhibition, Muriel Alvord Memorial Award; City Wide Open Studios, New Haven, CT; New Haven Paint and Clay Club; New Haven Brush and Palette Club; Mystic Art Association, Mystic, CT; Essex Art Association, Essex, CT; Paier College of Art, New York Academy of Art, Lyme Academy College of Art. Published in American Artist Magazine and IDW Library of American Comics, Rip Kirby, The First Modern Detective, Volume 7. Recently won The Muriel Alvord Memorial award for his painting in The Hudson Valley Art Association’s 88th annual Juried Exhibition which runs from 5/21/21 to 7/22/21 at The Lyme Art Association in Old Lyme, CT.

Rima Rahal – Rima Rahal is an illustrator and visual arts educator, based in western Connecticut. Having been exhibited both domestically and internationally, her work always has an emphasis on watercolor and ink, featuring curvilinear lines, delicate detailing and layered gradients. She earned a dual Bachelors of Fine Arts from Lesley College of Art & Design in illustration and graphic design,then a Masters of Visual Arts Education from Lesley University, both located in Boston. She then worked abroad for 5 years at 2 international English based private schools, working in both Beijing and Istanbul. Returning to the states, she earned a Masters of Fine Arts in illustration from Western Connecticut State University. She now has been teaching art full time for 7 years, continues to freelance when opportunities arise and adjunct at Paier College.

Christopher Town – Lecturer in General Education. Ph.D., Pharmacology, University of Florida, College of Medicine, Gainesville, FL. B.A., Biology, Cum Laude, Montclair State University, Upper Montclair, NJ. Independent Consultant in Drug Metabolism and Pharmacokinetics. Worked for Vertex Pharmaceuticals Inc., MA., Associate Director. Bayer Pharmaceuticals, CT., Principal Research Scientist; Hoffman-LaRoche, Inc., NJ., Associate Research Investigator, Senior Scientist. Numerous Presentations and Papers. Member: International Society for the Study of Xenobiotics. (2012)

Jeffery Bishop

FACULTY MEMBER

Glenn Curtis

FACULTY MEMBER

John Falato

FACULTY MEMBER

Terence Falk

FACULTY MEMBER

Paul Hoyer

FACULTY MEMBER

Whitney Prentice

FACULTY MEMBER

Linda Scinto

FACULTY MEMBER

Christopher Town

FACULTY MEMBER

COLLEGE STAFF & ADMINISTRATION

Dr. Summer Cerruto Amorosino – Provost, B.A. in Political Science; B.A. in Urban & Community Studies, University of Connecticut (2008). M.B.A. Corporate Innovation, Post University (2010). Ed.D. Doctor of Education, Northeastern University (2017).

Joseph M. Bierbaum – President, B.S. in Management (2007); M.S. in Marketing Analytics (2009), Bentley University.

Christopher DiStiso– Dean of Art and Academics, M.B.A. New York Institute of Technology (2009). B.A. in Communication, Central Connecticut State University (2000).

Pedro Rodriguez – Director of Student Affairs

Conor Geary – Chief of Staff, Office of the President

Jeff Rife – IT Administrator

Ted Roback – Director of Facilities

Teresa DiLorenzo – Human Resources Manager

Kathryn Calkins – Bursar

Damary Rodriguez – Senior Admissions Representative

Victoria Grab – Admissions Representative, SEVIS PDSO

Khanlar Gasimov – Gallery Director, The Schelfhaudt Art Gallery (See Faculty Listing)

John DeRose – Director of Financial Aid. A.S., South Central Community College; B.S., University of New Haven. (1987)

Shontisha Kinchen-Askew – Assistant Director of Financial Aid

Katrina Zannini – Financial Aid Officer

Elizabeth Llera – Admissions Coordinator & Administrative Assistant

Wendell Jones – Model Coordinator

Lynn Pascale – Associate in Science, Middlesex Community College. Admissions Secretary. Stone Business School. (1993)

Beth R.  Harris – Librarian. AA, Middlesex Community (1998) Technical College; B.A., Wesleyan University; MLS, Southern Connecticut State University. (2001)

EMERITI

Kenneth S. Davies – Dean Emeritus of Illustration. B.F.A., Yale University; D.F.A. (Honorary), New England Law. (1954)

Lorraine L. Davis – Professor Emerita of Interior Design. B.F.A., Syracuse University. (1954)

Leonard Everett Fisher – Academic Dean Emeritus. B.F.A., M.F.A., Yale University. (1966)

Howard G. Munce – Professor Emeritus of Illustration. Diploma, Pratt Institute. (1977)

IN MEMORIAM

Jack O’Hara – Professor Emeritus of Graphic Design. B.F.A., Massachusetts College of Art, Tufts University Ed. M., New York University; Teachers College, Columbia University. Advisor for the yearbook. Paintings in regional and national exhibitions. (1992)

Edward T. Paier – (1918–2010), CEO of the Board of Directors. B.F.A., Yale University. Founder, Paier College of Art; taught art and photography in public and private schools, vocational training courses in the U.S. Army; portrait painter: commissions include Hunter Holmes McGuire, Seth G. Haley, Surgeon General Kirk, Senator Abraham Ribicoff, and many others. (1946)

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We’re an institution preparing students for professional careers in art and marketing, Paier College is committed to a program of learning and services that provides intensive practice in art skills and other areas of study leading to diploma and certificate awards.