New Program to Increase Diversity in Cultural and Ethnic Arts Organizations

The Institute for Ethical Leadership announces today a new certificate program designed to engage, encourage and enable arts professionals from underserved populations to become the leaders of major performing arts, visual arts, collections-based and ethnic arts organizations.

According to James Abruzzo, co-director of the Institute and noted arts management consultant, “There are few, if any, individuals from underserved populations now running the major cultural organizations and ethnic arts organizations.  And the pipeline is sparse. This program is specifically designed to provide those senior arts and cultural managers from underserved populations who already possess the experience, and have the ambition, to become a CEO.”

The Executive Cultural and Ethnic Arts Leadership Program (CEAL) is a new, intensive on-site program consisting of classroom training, experiential learning, colloquia, site visits and team projects.  The cohort group of 15 to 18 will be composed of experienced arts professionals, with the majority drawn ideally from underserved populations, whose experience and ambitions position them to become a CEO of a cultural or ethnic arts organization. In addition to the 10-day on site program in the NY metropolitan area taking place June 17-26th, each participant will have a yearlong mentorship with a member of the faculty. The program faculty, who themselves are leaders of cultural organizations and who are representative of underserved and diverse populations, will each mentor a participant. “The knowledge gained from the program and the influence from the faculty mentorships, will produce a group of leaders and will fill the leadership pipeline.”

An applicant’s current employer or an influencer in the field will nominate the individual; the chair of the board would nominate those applicants who are already CEOs of smaller organizations.  Applicants may also self-nominate with a supporting letter of reference. “We are expecting the participants’ employers to support them by providing uninterrupted salary and time off. Participants must make a commitment to remain on site, in residence with the other participants for the entire ten-day program.  Each nominating institution and participant must make a financial commitment to the program but no participant will be prevented from attending for financial reasons.”

This Executive Cultural and Ethnic Arts Leadership Program is designed as an international program.  Arts professionals throughout North America and abroad are encouraged to participate.  CEAL is a competitive program.  A short formal application, letter of reference and interview will be required.  The application process will be announced in mid-December. For more information, contact James Abruzzo, [email protected] or 973-885-5447.


The Executive CEAL Program is led by the Institute for Ethical Leadership at Rutgers Business School (IEL) in partnership the New Jersey Performing Arts Center (NJPAC), the Institut für Kultur und Mediamanagment (IKM) at the Free University in Berlin and Rutgers School of Arts and Sciences.   The program is supported through a special Rutgers-Newark Chancellor’s Seed Grant, matching foundation funding and in-kind support from various schools of Rutgers University.

Vicki Fernandez
Rutgers Business School – Newark and New Brunswick
1 Washington Park
Newark, New Jersey 07102
[email protected]

James Abruzzo, Consultant, Consulting, Executive Search, Nonprofit Compensation, Expert Witness, Increase Diversity

Close Bitnami banner