Cindy Garner joined Portraits, Inc. as an associate in 2005 after she commissioned portraits of her own children by Sally Gates Elliott. Cindy grew up in Virginia with portraiture as a huge part of her life. Her mother was an artist and had several portrait artist friends that she worked with to secure commissions for clients in their hometown. Often times Cindy would come home from school to find an artist at work at the easel in the middle of her family’s living room. Experiencing portrait painting first-hand like this most likely influenced Cindy to pursue a college degree in fine arts. Her love of the arts continued throughout her career and eventually led her to join Portraits, Inc., following in the same footsteps as her mother with securing artists' commissions for fine portraiture.
In a slight deviation from her career in the arts, Cindy was appointed to the position of Executive Director in August 2018 for Clothes That Work. This small non-profit organization located in Dayton, Ohio, provides professional clothing and confidence-building image services for under-resourced job seekers. In this role, she is responsible for the planning, guidance, management, and overall operations of the organization. She leads a team of six employees and more than 60 volunteers in their efforts to serve local job seekers and the underemployed.
Cindy has more than 25 years of professional experience in the civic and nonprofit sector with an extensive background in resource development and nonprofit administration. Prior to joining the Clothes That Work team, she served in management roles at Muse Machine, The Arts Council of Fairfax County, and the Virginia General Assembly. Community service has been a cornerstone of her professional career, and she has served as a volunteer leader with Aullwood Audubon Center and Farm, The Garden Club of Dayton, K-12 Gallery for Young People, Carillon Historical Park, Junior League of Dayton, Wegerzyn Gardens MetroPark, and the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery.
A native Virginian, Cindy graduated from Virginia Commonwealth University and settled in the Dayton area in 1994. Cindy is an avid tennis player and gardener. She also is a Certified Volunteer Naturalist through the Ohio State Extension Office and enjoys the outdoors. She is the proud parent of two children, Graham and Lily, who are both actively enrolled at the University of Mississippi. Cindy lives in Oakwood with her husband of 25 years, Mark.