Join us in welcoming two new staff members to Vesterheim Folk Art School! Jane Addams comes on board as the Onsite Program Coordinator, and Erin Ryan is the new Folk Art Education Administrative Assistant. They join Andrew Ellingsen who continues to support the department as the Online Program Coordinator. This team brings a wealth of experience and enthusiasm to Vesterheim, and we’re excited for you to meet them!

Learn more about them in their introductions below.

Jane Addams
I am a first-generation Norwegian-American with a passion for folk art and traditions. I have taught knitting classes online for both Vesterheim and other organizations and am excited to continue my journey in preserving these crafts for future generations. Originally from Illinois, I have lived in Texas, Oregon, and Norway and am now here in Decorah. I was very involved in the Nordic community as a volunteer and organizer in my most recent home of Portland, Oregon, and now I look forward to finding volunteer opportunities here in Decorah. I collect bunader and folk costumes, colorize antique photographs, and love to cross country ski.

Erin Ryan
I am so very excited to have joined the already amazing Vesterheim Folk Art team as the Administrative Assistant. I’ve been coming to Vesterheim since I was a child with my grandma on weekend trips (she’s VERY excited about my new job). I love all kinds of art – folk art especially – and make art in my own time (when there’s some of that!) I live about 15 minutes north of Decorah and milk goats and keep bees with my husband Mike. In fact, you may have seen us with our goats at the annual Norwegian Christmas celebration here at Vesterheim! I also run a small vintage clothing shop out of The Getup in downtown Decorah. The Ryan house is always bustling with our three children – Josie (off at college), Jude, and Marley; three dogs; and three cats.