Emma McHold Burke started working with the Portland Art Gallery just as COVID was causing small businesses like the gallery to “shift direction.”
She had recently graduated from the Tyler School of Art and Architecture in Pennsylvania after gaining an education in painting and art history and had planned her next life steps around the Philadelphia community in which Tyler is located.
With the uncertainty of the pandemic looming, McHold Burke reluctantly gave up her post-college apartment and moved to her family home in Maine. Wanting to maintain her connection to the art world, McHold Burke reached out to the Portland Art Gallery. When she learned that the gallery, as a non-essential business, had been instructed to close its doors to the public, she volunteered to work behind the scenes.
Her work ethic and enthusiasm were immediately evident. She was soon offered a paid position, and her willingness to work through strange and challenging times eventually earned her the position of gallery manager.
Learn about the power of creativity, and the importance of resilience, in McHold Burke’s conversation with Lisa Belisle in Radio Maine Episode 27. Listen at https://www.portlandartgallery.com/podcast.