Quilt Tulsa 2014 Judges

We are pleased to announce our NQA certified panel of judges:

Marilyn Hardy
Connie Silber
Serena Stiles Vrnak

Marilyn Hardy, NQA CJ
            Marilyn Hardy of Tyler, Texas was one of the founding members of the Quilters Guild of East Texas.  Through the years she has served her guild in many capacities, including president, quilt show chairman, judging coordinator, and newsletter editor.  For her service to the guild, she was honored with a lifetime membership.

            For Marilyn quilting is more than a hobby—it is a major focus and passion.  She loves making quilts and has won numerous ribbons in quilt shows. It was through her involvement as quilt show judging coordinator that Marilyn became interested in the process of judging quilt shows.  She began judging and went further to become a National Quilting Association Certified Judge in 2008.  She has also completed the requirements of Master Quilt Judge, and in 2012 was one of three NQA Certified Judges to judge their national show in Columbus, Ohio.  She currently serves as Education Chair on the board of the National Quilting Association.

          JUDGING PHILOSOPHY – As a quilt show judge, I recognize, reward, and encourage excellence in quilt design, workmanship, and creativity. My hope is that the comments I make as a judge will be insightful, helpful, and encouraging to the person who dedicated herself to starting and finishing a quilt.

Connie Silber, NQA CJ
           Long fascinated with color, Connie combines a strong sewing and needlework background with creativity unleashed during a three-year stint in the Costume Shop at Texas A&M University.  Whether a period collection, a theme or a mood, color always strengthens the chosen style. Her quilts have been shown, judged, and ribboned at local, regional and national shows.  A collaborative work with De Leclair of San Antonio, TX ribboned at the 2012 NQA Show in Columbus, OH, the Indiana Heritage Quilt Show in Bloomington, IN, as well as in San Antonio and Dallas and Bryan, TX.  Connie’s entry ‘Ombre Garden’ as been part of the Certified Judge’s Challenge ‘Color Journey’ exhibit that has traveled from June 2012 until February 2014. Her work has also been featured in “American Quilter” and “Needle Arts” magazines.

           Active as a quilt judge since the late 90’s, Connie became an NQA Certified Judge in 2008.  She works throughout Texas as well as Oklahoma and Louisiana, and in May 2014 will be one of the three Certified Judges for the 2014 NQA Show in Columbus, Ohio.  Connie also lectures and teaches.  While she teaches and lectures on a wide variety of topics, they all emphasize encouraging and educating quilt makers of all skill levels.

Serena Stiles Vrnak, NQA CJ, Master Quilt Judge
            Quilting is Serena’s passion and hobby.  She has sewn all her life, and studied Fashion Merchandising at Texas Christian University.  She became interested in quilting as a vehicle to memorialize her daughter’s apartment fabrics.  That quilting journey has provided her with many wonderful friends, the laughter they, and their positive encouragement with her quilt design pursuits.

            Serena decided to enter the judging world to promote and encourage this ever changing art form known as quilting.  She entered the National Quilting Association Certified Judging program and was ultimately certified in June of 2010.  Her Master Quilt Judge status was achieved through the NQA program.  Serena was also selected to be the 2013-2014 National Quilting Association Show Judging Coordinator.

            For Serena NQA Judging Certification meant she could bring to each show the full breadth of knowledge necessary for objectively critiquing a quilt.  It became the vehicle to understanding each and every process in order to give entrants an equal opportunity.  She believes that knowledge provides understanding, understanding promotes objectivity, and objectivity is fairness to all.

           Serena is an active member in many quilt related organizations (NQA, AQS, etc.) and her local guild (Quilters Guild of East Texas).  She has shown her quilts and won at various shows throughout the region (the Tyler Quilt Show, the Dallas Quilt Show, the Gun Barrel Quilt Show, the Ft. Worth Trinity Valley Quilt Show, and the Waco Quilt Show).   In 2011 Serena entered the National Quilting Association Quilt Show and won with both quilts.  She also enjoys designing her own quilts or simply adding an original border.

            Judging for Serena is a process she hopes will encourage, empower and enable all needle artists.  She views the critique sheet as a tool and opportunity to communicate with the entrant about their creative endeavor.  Serena firmly believes it is an honor to be allowed to critique the work of another.