Board of Directors

Kurt Anderson



Kurt Anderson OPA joined the Board in 2010. Kurt paints in many genres — figurative, portrait, and landscape — but his reputation has primarily been associated with his floral paintings.  Since exhibiting in his first OPA National Show in 1999, Anderson has won multiple honors with OPA.  He has won honors with the Salon International, the ARC International Salon, and the Open Market National, in which he won Grand Prize.  He also won Grand Prize in International Artist magazine’s Floral Painting Challenge.

Anderson received his artistic education in the traditional atelier or studio system of training under Minneapolis artist Richard Lack.  This makes him part of a master-pupil lineage that can be traced back to 19th century masters such as Jacques Louis David.  Anderson received his BA in studio art from the University of Arizona, where he also studied marketing and received a master’s degree (MAcc) in accounting.

Anderson’s paintings are included in numerous major collections, including Iowa State University, where he was commissioned to paint a mural for the interior of the historic Parks Library.  His other commissions have ranged from painting book covers to portraits of corporate presidents.  Over 20 articles about Anderson’s painting have appeared in leading art magazines.  He has been featured in seven books and is author of Realistic Oil Painting Techniques (North Light Books).

John Michael Carter



John Michael Carter OPAM attended the American Academy of Art in Chicago and received a B.F.A. from the Art Center College of Design. John Michael has taught at Scottdale Artist School and Dallas Artist League and the Arts Club of Cincinnati. He is the winner of first place and the Artist's Choice Award at the 2002 Amerian Society of Portrait Artists’ International Portrait competition, 2003 Artist's Magazine Award at the OPA National Competition, 2007 Best of Show at the IHA Exhibition, as well as many others. Mr. Carter’s portraits include governors, senators and university presidents as well as corporate and civic leaders. His paintings hang in the collections of Phillips Petroleum Corporation, J.B.Speed Art Museum, the McDonalds Museum, the Patton Museum, the State Capitol Museum, the governor’s mansion, Frankfort, KY and in many other corporate collections. He currently serves as Co-chair of OPA’s Fundraising Committee

Suzie Baker





Suzie Baker OPA joined the board of Oil Painters of America in 2013. She holds a degree in Advertising and Fine Arts from Louisiana Tech University and worked as an Art Director in ad agencies before trading in her Pantone swatches for a pallet and brushes. She has been profiled in Plein Air Magazine and named "Three to Watch" by both Southwest Art and Fine Art Connoisseur. She regularly exhibits in prestigious national shows and plein air invitationals earning her an alphabet soup of signature memberships; OPA, AIS, LPAPA, AWA... you get the idea. In addition to being a still life and portrait artist, Suzie has been painting en plein air since she was a teenager. Her humorous and informative teaching makes her a sought instructor for workshops nationally and in her home state of Texas.

Stuart Fullerton


Stuart Fullerton grew up in north central Wisconsin and studied ancient Greek and Latin at Harvard College. After a year studying archeology in Greece and Turkey, he returned to Harvard for law school.

Today Stuart works and paints in Chicago. He is a long-time member of the Palette and Chisel Club and of the Plein Air Painters of Chicago.

Stuart has participated in juried shows such as the Oil Painters of America National Exhibition, Salon International, the American Impressionist Society National Show, the OPA Eastern Regional Exhibition, and the Bosque Art Classic. He has been invited to take part in the Door County Plein Air Festival, the Carmel Plein Air Festival, and others.

Susan Abma



Susan Abma has been a full-time artist since the end of 1999, painting commissioned portraits for art galleries, corporations, government officials and local celebrities. Abma studied under master Chinese artist Xin Yu Zheng and has enjoyed workshops by talented artists such as Doug Swinton, Bev Tosh, and William Rodgers, among others.  Receiving her inspiration from the outdoors, Susan spends her summers painting en plein air in Newfoundland. Her winter studio near her home in Alberta, overlooks pastures and grain fields - a great place for contemplation.

Susan founded and publishes Canadian Brushstroke Magazine, an online magazine geared towards Canadian artists. Through it, she is able to interview amazing artists from all over Canada. Currently Susan, along with two other artists, is working to on a project honoring fallen Canadian soldiers from the Afghanistan war that will be featured in a national exhibition during the latter part of 2012.  Presenting solo exhibitions as well as jurying among others in group, Susan is a member of OPA, as well as the International Guild of Realism, the Portrait Society of Canada and the Alberta Oil Painters. Her work has been featured in magazines, newspapers, television and radio, and her articles have been published in numerous newsletters and magazines.

James W. Bruce, Jr.



James W. Bruce, Jr. OPA is a Signature member of the Oil Painters of America and one of OPA’s newest board members.  Jim lives and works in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.  Although the pursuit of a business career kept Jim from a full measure of devotion to painting, the love of art has been where his heart has been.  The real love for art began when Jim was fifteen, when he took a summer workshop from noted Oklahoma artist, the late Richard V. Goetz.  Becoming a lifelong friend and mentor, Goetz instilled in Jim a love for still life painting and color.  Since then, Bruce has won a number of awards including one he is most proud of being a recipient of a Governor’s Arts Award presented by Oklahoma Governor Brad Henry in 2006.  In addition, he has been selected to exhibit in several of OPA’s national and regional competitions.

He has studied with a number of nationally recognized artists including Scott Christensen, Kevin Macpherson, David Leffel, Sherrie McGraw, John Budicin, George Strickland, and the late Henry Hensche.  In his business life, Bruce is Chairman and CEO of American Bank Systems, Inc., a bank service company located in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma.  In addition to serving on the board, Jim serves as Co-chair of OPA’s Fundraising Committee.

Bill Chambers OPA



William T. Chambers OPAM is a nationally recognized portrait painter, a graduate of the American Academy of Art in Chicago, and holds a BA from Northeastern Illinois University.  His portfolio of portraits includes those of numerous public figures, including former Illinois Governor Jim Edgar and Secretary of Defense Melvin Laird. He is has also won the prestigious Grand Prize Award in the International Portrait Competition of the Portrait Society of America.  Bill has served as a Board Member-Director since February 2002, and served as Vice-President from 2004-2006 and President from 2006-2008. He also served as Chair of the Jurying Selection Committee from 2004-2006.  From 2006-2008, Bill served as the Chair of the Signature Advisory Committee and Co-chaired the Program Committee in 2011.

Konrad Hack



Konrad Hack OPA received his B.F.A. from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago/University of Chicago and his Masters from Governors State University.  He is a founding member of the Midwest Air Force Artists Program.  His paintings are on display in the permanent collections of NASA, the Pentagon, 9th Infantry Division Museum-Fort Lewis, WA, and numerous other locations as well as in private collections and corporate headquarters.  Since 1989, he has taught college level drawing, painting, photography, art history, humanities, and film history.  He was first appointed to the Board in June 2001, served as Director until 2011 and currently serves as OPA’s Scholarship Chairman as well as Secretary.

Jane Hunt



Jane Hunt OPA, following her move to the US as a teenager, Jane Hunt received her B.F.A. in illustration from the Cleveland Institute of Art. After working as an illustrator for several years, Hunt eventually returned to her true love: landscape oil painting. A sought after instructor, she was a faculty member of the Plein Air Convention as well as a demonstrator and speaker at the Oil Painters of America National Exhibition. Hunt recently won 1st place at Door County Plein Air and the Director's Choice Award at the Laguna Plein Air Invitational. Her paintings have been exhibited in numerous museums and are represented by notable galleries in the US as well as her native England. Now based in Colorado, Hunt frequently paints plein air, and continues to be awed by the beauty surrounding her.

Jane Hunt



Bill Suys OPA is an OPA Signature Member who joined the Board in 2017. Recent years have been a period of accelerated growth for Suys, whose work was chosen to hang in 7 OPA National Exhibitions since 2010 and who, in 2013, won Best In Show at the Salon International. In addition to numerous group and one-man gallery shows, event invitations, cherished awards earned, juried show acceptances - and some wonderful editorial profiles - Suys's devotion to his craft, his participation in plein air invitationals, judging, and increasingly teaching, have helped him grow not just in reputation but as a soulful painter who believes in lifelong learning, 'no excuses', and the power of observation.

Bill is best known for his sensitive depictions of "People & Other Animals" and is represented by 7 galleries in the US.

Suys holds degrees in Art and Business, and though he did graduate work in Finance and admits to wearing wingtips in a corporate setting for a number of years, Bill has been a full-time fine artist for long enough to not own a well-fitting suit and to consider the space behind his easel to be his office.

Zhiwei Tu OPAM



Zhiwei Tu OPAM has been a member of OPA since 1993 and joined the Board of Directors in 2000.  He is highly regarded by his peers and is recognized internationally for his figurative paintings.  Born in China, Tu graduated from the Guangzhou Institute of Fine Arts, renown for producing many of the best artists in the world. While there, Tu was able to achieve major recognition for his work and went on to become a professor of fine arts.  In 1987, Tu came to the United States to enter Drake University in Des Moines, Iowa, to further his education and career.  Since then he has won some of this country’s most coveted awards including OPA’s American National Award of Excellence in 1998.  Tu has served as Chair of the Jury Selection Committee from 2002-2004 and as OPA President from 2004-2006.  He currently is Co-Chair of the Master Signature Advisory Committee.

Ken Cadwallader





Ken Cadwallader was born and raised in Michigan, Cadwallader received a bachelor’s degree in fine art at Kendall College of Art and Design, an exclusive private college in Grand Rapids, Michigan. While in attendance at Kendall, he was also invited to study at the Royal College of Arts in London. After graduating from college with honors, Cadwallader moved to Chicago where he attended the Palette and Chisel Academy in order to further his understanding of impressionism. Shortly after arrival, Cadwallader was discovered by a respectable Chicago Gallery and so began his professional career. His work has been seen in magazines such as Southwest Art, American Artist, The Artist’s Magazine and Wildlife Art. Cadwallader has participated in many prestigious shows such as the Arts for the Parks, Oil Painters of America, and Portrait Society of America, receiving awards in all. In addition Cadwallader is an active member of the local and national art community. He is a member of Grand Valley Artists in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Signature member of Oil Painters of America and the American Impressionist Society. Cadwallader is also a past president of OPA (2014-2016) and current director of international development.