A note from Melissa: Changes and New Blooms at EmcArts

Change is always in the air, it seems, and I’m especially thankful for the change toward blooming flowers now beginning in our NYC.  With change in mind, I wanted to update our ArtsFwd community on some of the recent personnel changes at EmcArts this year:

We are delighted that our long-time colleague, Karina Mangu-Ward and her wife are looking forward to the arrival of their baby this summer; With the expansion of her family, Karina accepted a position at a consulting firm which requires less travel. Many, many thanks and kudos to Karina for six years of meaningful program development and delivery. We have all learned so much and raised our game with Karina on our team. Wishing her all the best in her new adventures in life and work – and hoping she gets sleep some this summer!

As we have broadened our work to include cross sector work in social change, we are very pleased to have Mitty Owens join us as a Lead Process Facilitator.  Mitty is guiding and delivering the work of our Community Innovation Labs in multiple cities, which includes facilitating workshops, developing our partnerships with each city’s convening leaders and guiding small, community clusters to incubate new ways to address the identified complex challenges.  As a native Brooklynite, he’s bringing his experience with community development finance, grant-making, consulting, and his voracious appetite for art, culture, and good food!
In addition, we are always trying to evolve and grow our practice at EmcArts, and we are glad to welcome Chikako Yamauchi to join our team with this intention.  As we began our 2nd round of the Community Innovation Labs, we felt that the best way to “learn forward” was to embed a developmental evaluation manager into our own team as well as each CIL site.  We are thrilled that Chikako has taken on this evolving role as we in turn look to support the “learning forward” work of the Labs and their small group experimentation.  From Chikako’s career as a dancer, to her arts administration experience and then her doctoral research on artists who encourage shifts in understanding and transformations in thinking, she’s been invaluable in developing this meaningful, learning-ful role.

And sometimes… changes take longer to occur and some planted seeds take longer to germinate. After much searching, we are so pleased that Denise Shu Mei has joined the EmcArts team as Communications Manager.  Denise came to EmcArts from Fourth Arts Block (FABnyc) where she built much awareness and participation in the Lower East Side’s arts and culture scene.  Denise will be drawing out stories from our work in many places and contextualizing the adaptive change process work that our many partners are finding their ways through. Amplifying the work is her role – stay tuned to EmcArts.org and ArtsFwd.org and follow us on Twitter (@EmcArts/@ArtsFwd) and Facebook (@ArtsFwd/@EmcArtsInc) as the stories and insights sure are blooming again.

Melissa Dibble is the Managing Director and Lead Facilitator at EmcArts, bringing over two decades of experience in cultural administration and development of new strategies in organizational innovation within the arts sector.