Pioneer Art Department Faculty

Michael Benedict joined the Pioneer Art Department faculty in 2002 as an instructor for Art & Design, Drawing-Painting & Printmaking, Ceramics and Advanced Portfolio. Mr. Benedict has taught in five districts through out both Michigan and California in subjects as diverse as A.P. European history, chemistry, biology, civics, humanities and visual art. He received his B.A. from the University of Michigan and his M.A. from Mills College in Oakland, California. When not teaching, Mr. Benedict spends his time painting & sculpting, driving his two daughters to soccer practice, gardening, traveling and, in his spare time, is training to become a philosopher-king.

Corrine Gignac joined the PHS Art Department faculty in 2004 as an instructor of Art& Design. Ms. Gignac received her B.A. from the University of Detroit-Mercy, her M.A. from the University of Michigan, and has studied at the Center for Creative Studies and the Arrowmount Academy. Ms. Gignac has exhibited her artwork in numerous shows across the State of Michigan, and continues exploring new ideas through her artwork.

 
Ron Lutz has been teaching art in the Ann Arbor Public Schools since the early1970s, and had been a part of the Pioneer staff since 1989. Mr. Lutz currently teaches photography and Art & Design, although sculpture remains his passion. Mr. Lutz received his B.A. from Eastern Michigan University, his M.A. from the University of Michigan, and has studied at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. He has also studied under some of the country's most influential artists including Gerome Kamrowsky, Richard Wilt and Susanne Stephenson. In addition to being a talented artist, Mr. Lutz is also an accomplished mechanic (we rely on Ron to fix anything and everything at Pioneer), and, when not teaching, can be found either working on or riding one of his many motorcycles throughout the greater Washtenaw County area.

 
 Debbie Thompson, the PHS Art Department Chairperson, is an award-winning ceramic and metal artist who has taught visual art in the Ann Arbor Public schools since 1972. Ms. Thompson received her B.F.A. from the University of Michigan, her M.A. from Eastern Michigan University, and has studied at the Art Institute of Chicago and the Massachusetts College of Art. In addition to her department chair duties, Ms. Thompson teaches both Jewelry & Design and Ceramics & Sculpture. Ms. Thompson is also an active, long-time member of the Ann Arbor Potter's Guild. When not teaching, Ms. Thompson can be found either working in her gardens, working with her horses, or working with clay in her home studio.

 

 Crystal Westfield joined the PHS Art Department faculty in 2000, and is the instructor for Art & Design and Graphic Design. She received her B.F.A. from Wichita State University, with a concentration in graphic design, and is currently working on her M.A. at Eastern Michigan University. When not teaching, Ms. Westfield can be found either at home with her adorable young daughter, on the basketball court as Pioneer's Head Women's varsity basketball coach, or outside helping to coach Pioneer's womens' track team.


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