Joni Ray is the Gallery Director at the Florence Thomas Art School in West Jefferson, NC.  She is an Ashe County native who has had a interest in painting since childhood. She completed the North Carolina School of the Arts Visual Arts Program, as well as a BA in Sustainable Development from Appalachian State, and has spent some valuable time at Penland School of Crafts. Since undergraduate she has been developing her focus on community and environmental art and enjoying the strong and supportive arts community in the High Country.