dixie lee hedrinton miller bust shot sDixie Lee Hedrington
Executive Director

Dixie is the driving force behind the organization and one of the co-founders of the circle. As the Executive Director, Dixie stays busy with the daily operational thrusts of Friends & Stars, Inc. Dixie is originally from St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands and relocated to South Florida in 2009. She has volunteered at several organizations and taught art at local middle and high school after-school programs. As a professional artist, she paints daily and is on exhibit throughout Broward County, Florida. As a mother of a special needs son, she knows, from personal experience, how hard it is to get art instruction for special needs children, and even harder for adults. She, along with friends, formed the Circle of Friends & Stars, LLC and later knew they had to incorporate and move the organization in a new direction. Dixie has continued her training and in 2014 earned a Certificate in Nonprofit Management, is a Teaching Artist in Residence with the VSA-Florida, in 2016 became a Program Partner, awarded the 2016 African American Achievers Awards (Arts & Culture), Listed in Gold Coast Magazine Oct., 2015 Edition Who’s Who in Charities & the Arts.

,, 2014 2013 DUO Magazine Thrillanthropist of the Month; and won the 2017 Motivational Mover of the Year Award.">

julieta conde canal photoJulieta Conde Canal
Art Instructor

Julieta is a co-founder and creative genius behind many of the wonderful projects produced through Friends & Stars, Inc. She comes to the United States from Venezuela with a unique approach to art, passion to create, attention to detail and love for color, which she transmits to her paintings. She worked as a lawyer in her native country, founded dìFibrosis Quistica de Venezuelaî, the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation in Caracas, Venezuela, and was its first president. She also participated as a volunteer in many children’s foundations. Julieta has been a resident of Plantation, Florida for the past thirteen (13) years and is a member of Mujeres Latinas.

Julieta’s first museum exhibition was in 1995 with the Florida Museum of Hispanic and Latin American Art in Miami; in 1996 at the Art Expo in New York and other art galleries in Miami. Julieta began exhibiting for the Miami Police Department in 1987 for their First Annual Hispanic Heritage and remains as a contributor. She has exhibited for the City of Tamarac and continues to paint. Julieta has volunteered at the Miami Police Athletic League with the “P.A.L. Children of the City of Miami” and donates paintings to local foundations like “Madison’s Wish”,
which conducts research for spinal muscular atrophy. She has also volunteered with the “Sweet Melissa Foundation” which financially helps the families of children waiting for lung transplants in North Carolina. Please contact her via email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or find her on Facebook: Art-Lab Julieta

Laura Green
Grant Writer