Karen Gahl-Mills was named Executive Director of Cuyahoga Arts & Culture in November, 2009. Under her leadership, the five-year old agency remains one of the nation's top five sources of local public funding for arts and culture. In total, CAC has granted over $80 million dollars to more than 180 local arts organizations throughout Cuyahoga County.
Ms. Gahl-Mills’ career began in Los Angeles where she worked as part of a team creating national and international advertising for many well-known global brands. Her work then led her to Chicago and back to her roots as a musician, first as a development officer for the celebrated Ravinia Festival, summer home to the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, and then as Managing Director of The Rhythm Cafe, an advertising music production company. Ms. Gahl-Mills went on to serve as executive director of the Westchester Philharmonic and then as President and Executive Director of the Syracuse Symphony Orchestra.
Ms. Gahl-Mills holds a Bachelor of Music degree from DePaul University and an MBA from the University of Chicago Booth School of Business.