Printing tool Download PDF

Work experience

Apr 1992Present


Ann Bacon Studios

Art Studio producing paintings, drawings, prints and graphic design.

See the collection at:

Artist's Statement:

Why do I take a blank piece of paper and patiently move a pencil across it until an image emerges? Where does that image come from? Imagination. The word “image” is inside the word “imagination.” Sometimes I have to close my eyes in order to get the image to come up front, right behind my eyelids so I can see it. Other times, I have to stare at a spot on the paper where I want the image to appear. After a while, my imagination will pull the image out and it will slowly emerge onto the paper like a photo appearing from a chemical bath. Those are the times when I feel the magic of the creative process.

How do I choose the images I create? They must convey a story. Most of the time, my work contains at least one person. Sometimes, though, I like to use trees as my storytellers.

I like to draw with pencils. I like the permanence of lead. I like the way I can lay the tip sideways and at different angles against the paper to create certain effects. I like watercolor. I like the way it soaks into the paper and moves this way or that. I like the surprise. I like oil pastels. I like smushing them around. I like the screaming colors.

I produce my art entirely freehand. People often ask me if I “work from photos.” Sometimes I use a photo as a source of inspiration, but all of my work is from life and some of it is totally from my imagination. No, I don’t use photos with a projector to trace an image. The idea of that goes against my desire to work freely.

Art is the ultimate expression of freedom. That’s why artists are always the first ones to be imprisoned during times of revolution. I feel strongly about the role of artists in any society. They must be protected. Supported. Art is about survival. Art is the opposite of war. Art is constructive. War is destructive. Without art, there is no chance for innovation, invention, community progress nor economic development.

Jan 2006Present


Skywave Writers

Ms. Franks directed a creative writing and storytelling workshop, “Skywave Writers”, from 2006-2010 in Hudson, Ohio. The workshop drew an average of six participants per weekly session. The local news magazine, The Hudson Monthly, published a four-page article about the success of the group in 2006.

In 2006, she created a work of total originality, “Porch Stories™”. Participants pay to tour 3-4 grand old porches, where an actor tells an engaging story about an inspiring person or interesting event from the town’s history. The idea for Porch Stories came to Ms. Franks from years of ruminating on the fact that no one sits on their front porch anymore visiting with their neighbors. People feel disconnected. Our fast-paced life styles have run over our need to have a sense of community. Sharing our stories revitalizes our roots and allows us to hear our common voice. During these stressful times, it has become more important than ever to think of ways to connect with our neighbors and strengthen our communities. Porch Stories can do that.

This event not only brings a steady stream of visitors to town, but also serves as a fundraiser for the local community theater. 

In 2009, she added a Ghost Story Tour to events that Skywave Writers produce. The tour was successful and received many good reports. Several tour-goers noted that this was the best ghost tour they'd ever been on - it actually had real stories attached with every stop. 

Aug 1993Feb 1997

Group Administrator

Group Administrator for team of three investment bankers and six analysts. Duties involved arranging client meetings, organizing and implementing group’s participation in annual investment conferences in New York and San Francisco, coordinating IPO roadshows, organizing group’s travel schedule, etc.

Aug 1986Apr 1990


The Nanny Network


Creator and Owner of employment agency that matched nannies with families 

The network consisted of over 200 nannies available for employment. On-going training was provided, by on-site visits and monthly seminars at the agency. 

The Nanny Network quickly established a reputation for excellence. Ms. Franks was interviewed on the KRON morning news show in San Francisco as a successful entrepreneur and childcare consultant.

Jun 1981Aug 1986

Portfolio Assistant

Crocker Bank

CROCKER BANK, San Francisco, Investment Advisory Group

Secretary to a group of six investment advisors, then promoted to Portfolio Assistant, duties involved maintaining client commercial account balances, reconciling portfolio trades, analyzing portfolio timing.


Aug 1969Jun 1971

California College of the Arts


Non-Profit Board Executive
Ms. Franks served as President of Actors' Summit, a professional theater, for two years.   Vice President of The Hudson Woman's Club, Trustee of The Hudson Heritage Association, Trustee of The Hudson Community Foundation, Chair of the Rotary Club of Hudson Annual Auction for four years, and Chair of the Hudson Cable TV Advisory Committee.        
High level of creativity - reputation as an IDEA PERSON -  often asked to contribute ideas for various community projects, such as fund-raisers, festivals, education & recreation centers
  Known as an excellent writer. Intuitive talent for for articulating project visions, company goals and objectives. Reputation for writing a compelling story. Bulletproof on details.

Art = Survival

Samples of my work

Original Idea

Why is art important for economic growth?

Any nation's economy is based on the health of their business and commerce. In order to remain competitive, businesses go to great lengths to hire and retain what they refer to as "talent" or "the best and the brightest". How does such a competitive edge arise in an individual? Is innovative thinking something that can be taught?

Contrary to popular belief, inspiration does not come as a thunderbolt upon unsuspecting souls. No, inspiration, innovation and invention have to be cultivated. Art, in its many forms, provides such fertile ground.

Forward-thinking and shrewd executives know this. Successful companies reside where there is a rich art and culture scene in order to provide an environment where their employees can be stimulated, enriched and refreshed.

What people say about my work

  • Frank Dunlevy, Vice Chairmain, Cowen and Company, LLC: March 14, 2013 I am pleased to give my stongest recommendation for Kathie Franks. Kathie was my Assistant,strong right Arm and basically COO of my 5 Teams of bankers at Montgomery Securities in the late 90's. She works well with the newest Associate and handeled the many CEO's and CFO's who were the Clients effortlessly. She was able to understand the overall "Big Picture" and mission, while also being Bullet Proof in execution of the smallest detail. Kathie is the role model for every Assistant that I have ever had in my 42 years of Investment Banking ,and she is head and shoulders above all the others. Truly an 11 on a scale of 10. please feel free to contact me @ 415 646 7475 to discuss her performance and capabilities.

  • Kathleen Franks, better known to us as Red, was an absolute delight to work with on community affairs while she was a resident here in Hudson Ohio.

    Her cheerful optimism and very exceptional writing skills meant that she was sought after by virtually all of the cultural and philanthropic groups in town.

    During my tenures with Hudson Rotary, Hudson Community Foundation and  Actors' Summit Theater, Kathie led the way in volunteerism and creative ideas for fundraising.  She also became our 'expert' in grant applications.

    Then, over a two year period Red and I worked hard to create a plan for a North East Ohio Community Center.  She was an inspiration for many in this movement with her vision and enthusiasm.

    I wish we had her back here now!


    Dennis W. Rich, Retired Executive, Goodyear Tire and Rubber

    March 14, 2013

  • Don Polyak, March 14, 2013

    Principal at The Impact Group and Owner, The Impact Group:

    Kathy is fantastic to work with. I appreciate her attention to detail and additional ideas she brings to a project. I would recommend her writing skills. She does a great job in putting together projects that require input from multiple team members.

  • “Kathie is a passionate supporter of the arts and philanthropy in general in our community. She is very energetic and is a can do person. She is an asset to whatever organization she participates with.” June 24, 2009

    Jim Hackney, President, Hudson Community Foundationworked with Kathleen at Actors' Summit Theater

  • “Kathy did a wonderful job managing the Rotary Annual Auction. Despite a down economy she managed to exceed the funds raised last year. She is personable, detailed oriented and perseverant.” June 23, 2009

    Bill Wooldredge, chief financial officer, King's Medical Companywas with another company when working with Kathleen at Rotary Club of Hudson

  • "stunning originality" - Mike Moran, Ohio State Representative - regarding "Porch Stories", 2007


I believe that self-education can be more useful than the training received from an institution.

My self-education began in early childhood when I developed a love of reading. Throughout my career, this early passion has been my springboard for learning everything that was needed in order to perform above expectation. Also, being an artist, I have developed exceptional abilities to observe my surroundings and absorb the knowledge that lies therein. 

My earliest business education began during my high school years when I worked in my father's real estate office. He taught me the basic principles. My father was also a Dale Carnegie instructor. I accompanied him to most every meeting and soon was participating on a regular basis. I completed the course several times over!

My first "real" job was with a small giftware manufacturer. The owner taught me everything about running a small company - front door to back door. She was an excellent teacher - very thorough and very picky - which was all to my benefit.

My next job took me into the world of investment advisory. I was lucky to be in a group of professional investment advisors who were happy to teach me everything about the business.  My main boss literally had the stock market in his blood. His grandfather was the "Jones" of the Dow Jones duo. Mr. Jones shared not only his extensive knowledge of the markets, but also the sound fundamentals of investing. We had a couple of young MBAs in our group. They were both studying for their CFA. I voraciously read their textbooks, absorbing all the more on financial analysis. I was indeed lucky to work with people who shared their knowledge so generously!

My foray into investment banking took me to the other side of the markets where companies are born. It was fascinating to learn how a business grows and reaches the point of going public. Working with the bankers, researchers and traders rounded out not only my knowledge of the inner machinations of the markets, but also sharpened up my people skills and eliminated any timidity that was left in my personality!

Self-education is something I will never stop doing. I believe that experience is the best teacher. However, if I had had the opportunity to complete my college education, I would have, but in lieu of that, I am proud of the education that I have gained otherwise.

Interesting Quote

"So much of wartime is talking about evil and who we hate. The arts can so much more easily show us what we believe in. Theater specifically shows us the roots and threads that tie people together far more than the differences that tear us apart."

Ed Stern, Producing Artistic Director

"Playhouse in the Park", Cincinnati

My Nonprofit Board Accomplishments

Actors' Summit  is a professional theater in N.E. Ohio providing great entertainment for the past ten years.

As President, I made several improvements to the board:

  1. strengthened infrastructure by forming essential committees, such as, governance, finance, marketing, operations, fund-raising
  2. updated the by-laws which had not been reviewed since the inception of the theater
  3. arranged for a much-needed audit 
  4. came up with ideas for fund-raising such as, "For Your Love", a successful Valentine gala, replete with a fashion show of period costumes
  5. handled a crisis concerning the lease by meeting with the board bimonthly, formed an ad-hoc committee as a liaison in the interests of the community, hired an image consulting firm, etc.
  6. improved public image and awareness
  7. formed a corporate sponsorship program which included a unique idea to connect this program to our local food bank, i.e., building a support system and public goodwill for art, business & charity
  8. arranged for a "mini-bailout" via a board solicitation letter - a critical component of our survival strategy - Actors' Summit is the only theater left in Summit County - the others have had to close
  9. collaborated with the artistic directors to create a summer theater festival - a "mini-Stratford" of sorts which will boost the theater's income and reputation along with increasing tourism in our town
  10. Actors' Summit has been voted #1 theater in the Cleveland market by the Fox8 news poll for the past two years!

The Rotary Club of Hudson 

As Chair of the annual auction for the past four years, I initiated the following new methodologies:

  1. instituted a minimum bid and raise 
  2. upscaled event this year (2010) to black tie in a better location - increased profits from $25,000 to $50,000
  3. appointed auction officials
  4. appointed a jury to categorize donations according to actual value
  5. created a corp of volunteers with specific assignments
  6. set the checkout time to begin AFTER the bidding has closed and all items tallied
  7. initiated a post-auction meeting to go over what went wrong and what went right


Kathleen A. Franks spent her childhood in Hudson, Ohio, a small town near Cleveland. She moved to the West Coast in 1969 to begin her studies at The California College of the Arts in San Francisco.

Ms. Franks’ life story has taken many directions - from raising five children, which was by far her most challenging task, to working in finance as an executive secretary then as a portfolio assistant.  Later she created and operated an employment agency, The Nanny Network, which quickly established a reputation for excellence. She was interviewed on the KRON morning news show in San Francisco as a successful entrepreneur and childcare consultant. Along the way, Ms. Franks kept alive her love of all things having to do with the arts through her continual pursuit of painting, drawing and writing. Ms. Franks is the author of several short stories.

She returned to Hudson in 2005 and became involved in various community organizations. Ms. Franks served as President and Vice President of the Board for Actors’ Summit Theater, a board member of The Hudson Community Foundation, the Hudson Heritage Association and Chair of the advisory committee for Hudson Cable TV. She was a member of the Rotary Club of Hudson for five years and was awarded "Rotarian of the Year" in 2008. She served as Chair of the annual Rotary auction for four years and increased profits by 50%.

Ms. Franks lives in the San Francisco Bay Area and continues her involvement in community activities, storytelling, writing and art funding.

Survival = Art

What does a stage production, musical performance, great novel, or even a mere painting hanging on a wall, have do with the survival of a nation's economy?

What sparks innovative thinking?

How does inspiration happen?

What fuels the process of invention?

What drives your research and development team?

These questions have answers which you can find to your left, under the heading, "Why is art important for economic growth?"

What I am known for

"hits the ground running"

has "radar" for sensing immediate needs

"takes the lead"

Belief System


  1. listening as a way to evolve
  2. responsibility as a catalyst for progress
  3. discipline as a prelude to inspiration
  4. honesty as a problem solver
  5. collaboration as a path to the best possible solution


  • performing arts
  • music - outdoor venues - sitting on the lawn with wine and cheese
  • libraries
  • museums
  • science - brain research
  • reading - everything within reach
  • TED - the website - interesting lectures on latest innovations

Who I Am

  • GRANT WRITER: Non-profits, community and government  organizations
  • NONPROFIT CONSULTANT: Sharing my talents and skills to help you succeed
  • CREATIVE CONSULTANT: Articulator for your vision
  • EXECUTIVE ASSISTANT: Facilitator for your leadership
  • WRITER/STORYTELLER: Petite plays, screenplays, short stories, neighborhood histories
  • EVENT PRODUCER: Porch Stories, Ghost Story Tours
  • NON-PROFIT LEADERSHIP: Past president, vice-president, secretary, committee chairs
  • COMMUNITY LEADER: Community boards and city government committees
  • INNOVATOR: Known as an idea person
  • ARTIST: Highly creative - can see endless possibilities
  • FACILITATOR: Writing workshops

What I am looking for

Full-time Employment using any of my skills:

Grant Writing

Story Writing for Business and Community Projects

Nonprofit Consultant/Manager

Administrative/Office Manager

Freelance writing projects: commercial writing, short stories, essays, newsletters, blogging

Creative Consultant/Idea Person

Creative Writing Workshop Facilitator 



Propensity for blending divergent viewpoints into successful outcome; thoughtful leadership; attentive listener; cheerful disposition; intuitive talent for articulating project vision and forming focus into compelling story; bulletproof on details.


Writer, artist, storyteller, event planner, fundraiser, grant researcher, and project implementor. Technical competencies on MAC programs, social media and web research.


Business Administration  15 years

Nonprofit Development      6 years

Rotary Auction Chair          4 years

Fundraising                          4 years

Event Planner                      4 years

Startups                                 3 years

Story Tour Producer           3 years

Community Projects           3 years

Grant Writer                          2 years

Regional Development     2 years

Recent Accomplishments

Creative Consultant:

Bloomfield & Troy - 2013


Petite Plays - 2013


Screenplay - 2012

Grant Writing

The Hudson City Schools Foundation: $50,000 in Seed Money - 2011

The Regional Prosperity Initiative: $10,000 for Private/Public Collaboration Pilot Project - 2010

The Regional Prosperity Initiative: $400,000 for economic development, civic engagement project - 2011

Story Writing for Business and Community Projects:

The Fund for our Economic Future: Government Efficiency - 2011

The Fund for our Economic Future: Collaboration Prize entry - 2011

The Regional Prosperity Initiative: Americans in Government Innovation - 2010

A Regional Recreation Center: Goals and Objectives - 2010

Porch Stories: local history storytelling tour - 2006 - 2011

Ghost Stories: 2009 - 2011

The Hudson City Schools Foundation Start-up: Goals and Objectives - 2009

Freelance writing projects: commercial writing, short stories, essays, newsletters, blogging - “Social Ignorance” - - Edifying people on matters of social ignorance, erasing stereotypes, discovering our similarities, celebrating our differences, telling our stories, finding our common voice.