Planet Princeton

Jeff Nathanson to Step Down as Head of Arts Council of Princeton at End of 2016

jeff nathansonJeff Nathanson, the executive director of the Arts Council of Princeton for the past 11 years, will step down at the end of the year.

Nathanson, 60, came to the Arts Council in 2005 after leading the International Sculpture Center and providing curatorial and project management for the Princeton University Art Museum, International Schools Services and the Princeton Public Library.

“Jeff has been an outstanding leader not just for the arts community, but for the Greater Princeton community as a whole,” said Arts Council of Princeton Board of Trustees President Ted Deutsch.

“His in-depth experience in arts program development and management helped the organization dramatically expand and improve its arts-related offerings over the past decade,” Deutsch said. “At the same time, he has kept the Arts Council focused on its historic mission to serve the local community through free, accessible and inclusive events and scholarship programs for children and families. We are grateful for his service and wish him the best in his future endeavors.”

During his eleven years the Arts Council, leaders of the group say the nonprofit accomplished the following:

-Tripled its operating budget from $450,000 to more than $1.7 million.

– Raised $10.5 million to complete a major renovation and expansion.

– Quadrupled its free community programing to serve members of the Greater Princeton community each year.

-Expanded of ArtReach, a free weekly after-school  program in partnership with the YMCA/Princeton Young Achievers and Princeton Nursery School.

-Expanded the ArtsExchange program serving students through a partnership with HomeFront of Trenton.

– Expanded programs serving the Witherspoon-Jackson neighborhood, including the establishment of the Witherspoon-Jackson Neighborhood Stories Project.

– Created a public art program that has produced murals and sculpture projects in the Princeton community.

– Created a performing arts program that has thrived on presentation of regional talent and through partnerships with the Princeton University Jazz Program, Princeton Symphony Orchestra and many others.

– Expanded the success and scope of Communiversity ArtsFest.

– Established partnerships with the Princeton Public Library, Princeton University Art Museum, Morven Museum, Historical Society of Princeton and many other organizations.

Nathanson led efforts to establish the Princeton Regional Chamber of Commerce’s Arts and Business Alliance, for which he serves as chair. He has received numerous awards for his efforts in the arts and arts education including the 2011 NJ Governor’s Award for Excellence in Arts Education and the New Jersey Arts Educator’s John Pappas Award.

He will continue to lead the Arts Council while a search is conducted for his successor.

“It has been an honor and privilege to lead the Arts Council of Princeton through a time of dynamic growth and change. I’m extremely proud of what we have achieved through the hard work and support of our staff, board, volunteers and donors during these past eleven years,” Nathanson said. “The timing is right for me to move on to new challenges, and I look forward to helping achieve a smooth transition over the next seven months.”

Krystal Knapp

Krystal Knapp is the founding editor of Planet Princeton. She can be reached via email at editor AT planetprinceton.com. Send all letters to the editor and press releases to that email address.

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