Theresa Timmons | Westwind School for the Performing Arts | Executive Director
Day at Work…I start my mornings with devotion and coffee. Then, I’m off to greet our creatives (students) with a smile. Meetings and reports take up much of my afternoon, but I always dedicate the last hour of the school day to circle through classes, making touch points with teachers and students.
Beginning Interests…I founded Westwind School for the Performing Arts because I am a product of the arts. Being the granddaughter of Terry Timmons, an accomplished blues singer, as well as a niece of a professional modern dancer and daughter of a violinist – I know firsthand how the influence and exposure changed my life. Through the Timmons Arts Foundation classes and productions – I witnessed the improvement in student literacy, critical thinking skills and ability to create a sense of community. I was inspired to create a setting that provided more of an impact. The opportunity presented itself to be the change in Central Arkansas’ educational landscape that I wanted to see regarding the arts community, and I leaped at the chance!
Career Evolution…I was born and raised an entrepreneur. But the STEAM career officially began for me when I started my nonprofit organization the Timmons Arts Foundation. We offered numerous summer camps, workshops and partnerships with afterschool programs, providing arts education to young children in Central Arkansas. While we hosted events within the fashion and arts community annually, it wasn’t until right before the pandemic that we made the decision to turn what we had provided students over the last decade into an actual school: Westwind School for Performing Arts.
LOVE the Work …One thing I absolutely love about my job is that it has yet to feel like one. Waking up and walking into those doors, reaffirms my purpose. My creatives (students) have the chance to be the innovators, educators and researchers who will change the world. But before they can dream those dreams, they need to know it’s possible to make them a reality. Their curiosity is what I love the most – when they learn something new or try something different.
Surprising but True…How fulfilling it can be! You must know that in the minds of our children, since they have never had a job, the concept can seem odd to picture. When our girls can see someone actually doing and having done the work, it inspires them that they too can achieve. The impact still blows my mind.
Advice…Trust that whatever your gifts may be, it will always make room for you. Never despise humble beginnings, within them lie your biggest blessings.
These wonder women are redefining what “full STEAM ahead” means in Arkansas. With exciting careers in science, technology, engineering, the arts and mathematics – each reflects WIT (Women in Tech) and true grit for making the most of every opportunity. Here’s to the powHER of knowledge.
Photography by Lori Sparkman Photography