Alison Vareika is a small business owner, arts advocate, community activist, preservationist, philanthropist, and choral singer.
A native of Ada, Oklahoma, of a Bostonian mother and Oklahoman father, Alison has lived in Newport for over 40 years. A graduate of the Master’s School in Dobbs Ferry, New York, she attended Franconia College in Franconia, New Hampshire to study music before taking a leave of absence to work as a crew member and Chef on the “Kittiwake,” a charter yacht based in Newport for the America’s Cup Races. Later returning to college, she graduated summa cum laude from the University of Rhode Island with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Political Science in 1983. She married Bill Vareika in 1985 and in 1987 they co-founded the William Vareika Fine Arts gallery, which specializes in the purchase and sale of American art of the eighteenth, nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. From the beginning, the Vareikas envisioned a dual mission for their gallery: to provide a public viewing space for important historic American art and to support charitable causes. Over the past thirty-five years, the Vareikas have raised and contributed funds to a long and varied list of local, regional, and national non-profit organizations. They have also served on dozens of non-profit and governmental boards, committees, and advisory councils. This tradition of using excellence in the arts to help support the vital public service of non-profit organizations has become a defining feature of their gallery.
Ms. Vareika is past Chairperson and currently a member of the Board of Directors of the Newport Performing Arts Center, which is restoring the historic 1867 Opera House in Washington Square in Newport for use by the community. She is a former Trustee of Berkshire Choral International; past Board member of Trinity Repertory Company in Providence; past Board member of the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts; past Board member and Board Chair of the Aquidneck Land Trust; former Trustee of Swinburne School, Newport; former Trustee of the Newport Art Museum, where she chaired the Museum Special Events Committee for ten years. She has sung with the South County Chamber Singers, Swanhurst Chorus, The Rhode Island Civic Chorale, and the Emmanuel Church choir. Ms. Vareika is currently singing in the Trinity Church choir in Newport and with Berkshire Choral International throughout the US and abroad.