Staff for 2020 Carpe Diem Arts Summer Camps

busy grahamBusy Graham (Founder/Director, Carpe Diem Arts) began her career in the arts first as a teacher of music and dance in Vermont, North Carolina and overseas, next as founder/director of Five Corners Music, an international artist management and booking agency, and then in the non-profit arts arena.  While serving as the executive director of the Institute of Musical Traditions (1992-1995), Busy founded Class Acts Arts, an arts outreach organization which currently works with over 100 artists, bringing more than 2,200 programs each year to 300,000+ children and youth, seniors, and special needs populations throughout Maryland, D.C. and Northern Virginia. During her 10 years as founder/director of Class Acts Arts, she launched numerous initiatives including Project Youth ArtReach (serving youth in detention and correctional settings), Carpe Diem Choral Arts Residency Project (a cross-cultural, multi-generational workshop and performance-based program), Jump Start with the Arts (outreach to pre-school age children and teachers), and several public performance series. Busy also co-founded the international arts management agency, Class Acts on Tour.  She served for years as a founding board member of Lumina Studio Theatre, and on the board of the African Immigrant and Refugee Foundation (AIRF).  As the founding director of Carpe Diem Arts, she continues to facilitate workshops, community dances, and song gatherings, along with visual, literary and performing arts retreats and residencies on Maryland’s Eastern Shore and in the D.C. area.  Awards include the Montgomery County Community Award for Excellence in the Arts and Humanities and a Certificate of Honor from the Smithsonian Discovery Theater for a “Legacy of 20 Years of Excellence in Service to the Arts and Education of Young People.”  In 2013 Busy received the County Executive’s “Lifetime Impact” Award c/o the Arts and Humanities Council of Montgomery County. In 2017, she received the prestigious Sue Hess Award as “Arts Advocate of the Year” at Maryland Arts Day in Annapolis c/o Maryland Citizens for the Arts.

2020 Staff & Teaching Artists TBD


2019 Camp Staff

A31C59F9-B366-48C5-AFE9-54158DFAED84Maggie Averill is a Carpe Diem Arts counselor.  She is passionate about the arts, and is a visual artist specializing in watercolor painting and mixed media collage.  She is a certified lifeguard and has previously worked as a swim instructor. Having graduated from the Sligo Creek Elementary School french immersion program she is a fluent french speaker, and is currently working on building her German language skills.  She previously attended Elon university, studying creative writing. In the future she hopes to continue working in the arts and further explore her interest in environmental science, finding artistic and creative ways to make a positive environmental change.

reina coulibalyReina Coulibaly is currently an undergrad at Princeton University studying Computer Science. After graduating from Wheaton High School, she spent a gap year in China’s Yunnan Province studying Mandarin, volunteering with China’s Operation Smile branch, and backpacking. Reina has been involved with Carpe Diem for almost 10 years! Starting as a camper in some of Carpe Diem’s first summer camps, Reina went on to become a counselor at the French Immersion camps, a lifeguard for camps on the Eastern Shore, and also worked as an arts instructor with Carpe Diem’s Youth ArtBeat program at the ACE (African Arts, Culture & Education) Academy after-school program. This will be Reina’s first year as co-director of the Carpe Diem Arts sleep-away camps on the Shore–which she is looking forward to!



Mary Amato with guitar MARY AMATO: Songwriting workshops (August 4-9, 2019) — is an award-winning children’s and Young Adult book author, poet, playwright, musician, songwriter and ukulele advocate! Her books have been translated into foreign languages, optioned for television, produced onstage, and have won the children’s choice awards in Ohio, Minnesota, Utah, and Arizona. She teaches popular workshops on writing and the creative process around the country — and is widely acclaimed as a teacher of the ukulele and songwriting, working closely with Carpe Diem Arts and “Ukes on the Move.”  Her latest series of books are about Lucy McGee. Learn more about Mary, her award-winning books, workshops and residency offerings at  She teaches workshops locally and nationally. In her songwriting workshops, campers will learn the basics of songwriting from brainstorming to rough draft to revision. Using a collaborative approach, they will learn strategies and tips and explore elements such as repetition, surprise, rhythm, prosody, metaphor, voice, imagery, and structure.

ahhhhRAINA GREIFER: Theater workshops (August 4-9 and August 11-17) — Raina Greifer is an undergraduate at Bath Spa University in the UK, studying Drama and Philosophy.  She is interested in all things art-related, specializing in poetry, playwriting, and live performance.  She is a co-founder of the DC area theatre company Purple Crayon Productions and Dog Eat Dog Theatre, a student company based in Bath.  She joined Carpe Diem Arts as in administrative intern in June 2019.  Working with the mission to open up accessibility in the arts and provide more opportunities for emerging artists, Raina hopes to build up and expand her own art collective, Sleepwalkers Art Collective.  In the past, she has worked with Lumina Studio Theatre as an assistant director and ensemble member, and with ArtStream as a costume designer.

peggy walker photoMARGARET (Peggy) WALKER: Visual Arts workshops (August 11-17) — Margaret Walker is a clinical associate professor of art education and arts integration, as well as a practicing artist. She holds a BS in Art studio/Art education, an MS in Deaf Education, and an EdD in Art and Art Education. Margaret coordinates and advises the MEd programs in Art Education and in Arts Integration, and teaches undergraduate and graduate courses in both areas. While living in New York City for 15 years, Margaret taught art at a PreK-12 school for the Deaf, and at a community art school. She also worked as a museum educator, and regularly exhibited her art, before moving to the DC area in 2007. Most recently, her work has been exhibited in Baltimore, NYC, VA and Washington, DC. Margaret’s studio practice is deeply based in the art process, allowing the medium to direct the concept and final outcome. Trained as an oil painter, her recent work explores the familial connection to traditional hand work and materials, reinterpreted in a contemporary art context. She is also interested in artmaking as a collaborative act, and has been involved with large collaborative pieces focused on artmaking as activism. In addition to her teaching and studio work, Margaret recently co-wrote a book for Teachers College Press titled Community-based Art Education Across the Lifespan: Finding common ground, due to be published in July 2019. The book is geared toward teachers and artists interested in Community Based Art Education.