Meet the Gifts of Thanx Team!

Robin Bernstein - Founder & President

Robin head shot.png

Photography first came calling to Robin after the loss of her dearest Friend . . . and what began as a resource for healing became a joyful passion for capturing Mother Nature’s beauty.  With a Masters in Human Development, twenty years experience as a Marriage and Family Therapist, former President of a non-profit institution and co-author of two books (Letters for Tomorrow and A Journal for Healing), Robin has witnessed time and again the restorative power of appreciation.

After realizing that the combination of gratitude’s force with Mother Nature’s heartening resilience was something that others would enjoy, Robin founded Gifts of Thanx . . . whose mission it is to inspire in others the timeless art of appreciation by offering thoughtful products for gift-giving (products that contain Robin's beautiful photography) as well as the tools with which to express thanx.

Robin has transitioned from her therapy practice to directing Gifts of Thanx.  With her camera always near, she resides with her family in Santa Monica.

Contact Robin at


Cynthia Swenka - Vice President, Web Designer & In-house Artist

With most of her employment history being in the banking industry, Cindy did not expect that one day she would be creating art!  This History Major (with a minor in Mathematics) has always been adept at utilizing her organizational skills for any project in which she was participating . . . however, she was not aware of her penchant for art until she began working with Robin!  Naturally shy, she cannot be found on social media nor via any personal blogs or websites, however you can get a sense of her by perusing this website and looking at her Gifts of Thanx creations . . . personal favorites being Quan Yin, Granite Rose and Voltaire Roses.

Contact Cindy at


Carrie Rosenquist - Social Media Manager & In-house Artist

A CalArts alumna with a degree in Film and Animation and founder of Violet Cottage, Carrie is a California native (currently living in North Carolina) who is a natural-born artist with a passion for painting, home decor and visual merchandising.  She gathers inspiration via her countless road trips and hundreds of Disneyland excursions (she is a super-fan of the House of Mouse!).  If you follow us on Facebook or Pinterest you will see Carrie’s delightful artwork, mainly in the form of carefully hand-crafted fonts!  Follow her adventures and view lots of art journaling on her blog where you will find oodles of sketches and watercolors - all imbued with the colorful, fun energy that is Carrie!


Support Staff

Dori Friedman

Dori brings her passion for technology to Gifts of Thanx and keeps Robin updated on the most current systems and applications.  Dori also works at a local middle school helping teachers integrate technology into their classrooms while also teaching the students everything from Photoshop to Robotics.  She has a knack for challenging her students and colleagues to think outside the box so they can be their most creative selves.

To replenish herself after an often six day work week, you can find Dori mountain biking (she also cycles to school and to her after school client consultations!), hiking on local trails, visiting family and friends . . . or figuring out how to use the latest cool gadget!

Gaye Lowenstein

Gaye comes to Gifts of Thanx with a love for expressing gratitude and appreciation.  She assists Robin with bookkeeping, research and community outreach.

Originally from New Jersey, Gaye loves living in Santa Monica and being a 'California Girl Transplant'.  She has a passion for cooking (and eating!), enjoys 20-minute workouts and walks to the beach as well as relaxing with family and friends.  Gaye's 15 year old Blue Point Lynx Siamese cat is the apple of her eye and keeps her purring along!

Kate Arnesen

As an art and design student at UCLA, Kate found her love of photography.  While attending Brooks Institute for Photography she began her professional career as an actress in film and television.  Comfortable and at ease with celebrities, she later went on to work on the other side of the camera for a public relations firm in Hollywood.  Her love of black and white photography evolved into a business doing portraiture and fine art prints (Kate Arnesen Photography).  Kate's easy way with people, her love of natural and uncomplicated methods of photography, her experience with composition and design made her a perfect choice for Gifts of Thanx.

Tracy Katzer

What would Robin’s office and art studio look like without Tracy . . . I don’t think we would want to know!  This Wildcat (for you UA fans out there) is the founder of Organized to a “T” where for the past 15 years she has been in the business of helping people organize their lives.  Tracy consistently keeps Robin’s business and personal matters in order so that Robin can concentrate on her photography and Gifts of Thanx product development.  When Tracy’s not assisting her clients, you will most likely find her supporting her favorite team at Chavez Ravine . . . she loves The Boys in Blue!