Our Staff

Debbie

Debbie Smith

Owner & President  |  Certified Picture Framer

Born in Bellefonte, PA, Debbie has been singing for audiences since age 2. With a lifelong love of music, she graduated Magna Cum Laude in Theater and Communications from Temple University. While in college, Debbie held the lead in many shows and was awarded the Charlotte Cushman Award for Excellence in Performance and the Statecrafters Award for performing. She also studied in London for a semester and sang with the Hammersmith Opera Company. Debbie sang in ‘dive bars’ in New York with sets of Jazz and Musical Theater while supporting herself working for Hicks and Greist Advertising.

In 1987, Debbie’s Dad, Sig, asked her to return to Harrisburg to help him find a permanent home for the Smith’s framing business. Debbie found an 1870s Victorian home in New Cumberland which Sig, Debbie, and Debbie’s mom, Polly, restored to better than its original glory. The business then became Smith Custom Framing and Victorian Galleries, serving customers in that location until Polly and Sig retired from the business in 1998 to travel and enjoy life. Soon after selling the building, however, Sig was diagnosed with terminal lung cancer. Debbie relocated The Smith Gallery & Fine Custom Framing to its present location and continues to serve customers with the highest quality and professionalism in the industry.

Debbie still loves to perform on stage—acting, singing, and dancing. Her favorite roles include Lucy in Jekyll and Hyde, and her tour de force role of Vivian Bearing in WIT! In both shows she dies on stage … maybe that is her barometer for favorites? Debbie performs the National Anthem for sporting events and graduations, is a troubadour for weddings, and gets to vote for the Oscars since she is a member of SAG/Aftra, the union that represents professional film and TV actors.

Debbie is happy to call Central PA her home. She lives in Camp Hill with her boyfriend, Rick Stevens, and two cats, Simon and Mikado. She is grateful every day for her friends, customers, and staff members who lift her and her business to new levels, and that her life is abundant, exciting, and fulfilling in so many ways. The legacy that her Mom and Dad began continues and grows.

Nancy

Nancy Riggs

Manager/Lead Framer

Nancy was born and raised in Arlington, VA. She rowed crew on the Potomac River for Yorktown High School and Potomac Boat Club. She also worked as a bicycle messenger in Washington D.C.

Nancy learned the art of sewing from her mother. Over the years she has made much of her own clothing as well as doing some high-end dress making for clients in Washington D.C. She studied commercial design at Northern Virginia Community College, then went into an apprenticeship program for carpentry where she worked for Case Design and Remodeling in Washington D.C.

Eventually, Nancy found her passion in picture framing. She worked for many years as a custom framer at the well-known Mickelson’s Gallery in Washington D.C.

Several years after moving to Pennsylvania, she found her way to The Smith Gallery & Fine Custom Framing. Her range of skills from carpentry to sewing to design combine perfectly in the realm of custom framing. She thrives on change and enjoys the challenge of learning and mastering anything new.

Mariah

Mariah Cook

Framer/Designer

Mariah began her life in Galion, Ohio before a cross-country move to Houston, Texas. In high school, she started working in artistic fields by becoming a face painter at the Kemah Boardwalk. When it came time for higher education, she decided to focus on art therapy at St. John’s University in New York City. While in college, she met her husband and together they settled in Central PA.

After becoming a resident of the Keystone State, Mariah was quickly promoted to the Framing Manager for the Camp Hill location of Michaels. She discovered a love for framing and enjoys every part of the process, from design and creation to getting to share the joy when the customer sees their precious artwork and memories beautifully preserved.

When not framing or taking care of her daughter, Mariah pursues her embroidery and painting. She was awarded First Prize in Watercolors by the Harrisburg Art Association during their Student Showcase in 2016.

Mallory

Mallory Shelley

Framer/Designer

Mallory was raised in Central PA, now residing in the Borough of Mechanicsburg. She is a local artist that has found her calling working at The Smith Gallery & Fine Custom Framing.

Mallory specializes in figurative drawing and acrylic painting, but always curious to learn new techniques and experiment with assorted mediums. She is mostly self taught, however, she studied at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, NY for a year. Observing the work of Salvador Dalí, Claes Oldenburg, and M.C. Escher are what inspire her think outside of the box.

Mallory volunteers at the Susquehanna Art Museum assisting with exhibition installation. Art world aside, Mallory has a dedicated family (partner and 2 children) and pug to love. She enjoys playing puzzle/board games, Onewheeling, researching Mid-Century Modern design, and spending time outdoors!

About Staff Polly

Polly Smith

Former Owner  |  Needlework Expert

Polly Smith (Debbie’s Mom) was born to dairy farmers in upstate New York. Early on, she demonstrated a great interest, love, and talent for music. She started playing piano at an early age under the loving teaching of her Aunt Mary. She was admitted into Ithaca College, where she received her undergraduate degree in Vocal Performance. Her love, however, was for the piano and for teaching. She completed her Master’s Degree in Music Education from Fredonia State Teachers College where she met the love of her life, Sig Smith (also co-founder of Smith’s Custom Framing, and Debbie’s dad). They were married in 1961 and had two children, Debbie and Todd.

Polly and Sig had a wonderful marriage for almost 40 years until Sig’s death in 1999. It left a hole in everyone’s lives—especially Polly’s—but she continued to share her teaching with many. Polly still continues to teach piano and voice at her private studio and feels she contributes to developing the love of music and enhances the lives of her students.

Polly lives in New Cumberland and can be heard playing beautiful piano music at Gallery openings and for customers who are lucky enough to be there when she plays. Many people have thought it was music from the Sonos system, but if they were to look in The Drake Gallery, Polly would be playing.

Luckily, Polly continues to lace needlework for customers and is always ready to lend a hand, share her talent, and beam her most contagious smile. She loves to help and is willing to do whatever it takes to continue to make the business successful.

Kristina

Kristina Machusick

Framer/Designer

Kristina is thrilled to have come full circle back to the craft of picture-framing by joining the Smith Gallery family! Kristina was born in Lancaster, PA into an art and music-loving family and currently lives in Camp Hill. She began her journey to becoming a professional musician in 2nd grade on the recorder, progressed to the flute in 5th grade, and by the time she was in high school her band director suggested that she go straight from 11th grade to college. At age sixteen, Kristina was accepted as a performance major at Lebanon Valley College. After struggling to conform to the requirements of a classical music education, as her true gift and passion is improvisation, Kristina left college and joined a rock band on lead vocals and of course the flute (Jethro Tull anyone?). Needing a “day job” to supplement band income, Kristina was hired as a picture framer, gaining valuable skills while working for beloved Harrisburg watercolor artist, Nick Ruggieri at his gallery in Strawberry Square, and later at Framers’ Workshop in Camp Hill where she delighted in assisting customers with creative framing design.

During the past 20+ years, Kristina raised a daughter and son, and embarked on a career in Instructional Design, designing, developing, and facilitating training and leadership and professional courses for companies such as Williams-Sonoma, AAA, and Rite Aid. Throughout, she has continued to play music, supporting local singer-songwriters in live concerts and in the recording studio. When she finds spare time, you will find Kristina in the woods (literally) hugging trees – she is also a certified Forest Therapy Guide, as well as an adventurous world traveler. But home is where her heart is, and she is just as happy puttering in the garden or cooking with her partner, Jason, sewing, working on upholstery projects, snuggling with her long-haired dachshund Rufus, and planning the next travel adventure with her family.

Christina

Christina Heintzelman

Ms. Terious for The Tenth Muse

Christina Heintzelman was born in Turkey and raised in Massachusetts and Virginia, coming to central Pennsylvania as a child and settling in Harrisburg twenty years ago. She is the former owner of Gallery Blu in Harrisburg, and was the winner of Simply The Best Gallery in 2009.  She was a co-founder of Third in The Burg and served as its president.

She has judged photographic exhibits for local camera clubs and was a juror for the Members’ Art Exhibit for Art Association of Harrisburg in 2016.

Christina, a two-time winner of the Pennsylvania News Media Association for writing about the local arts and entertainment scene, wrote the Arts and Entertainment section of Harrisburg Magazine for two years and assisted in the Magazine’s first and only “Simply the Art” contest in 2022.

She is now a freelance writer for The Burg and The Tenth Muse, aka “Ms Terious”, for The Smith Gallery & Fine Custom Framing.