Gerri Combs Named as Southern Arts Federation Director
Kentucky Arts Council Executive Director Gerri Combs has been named as Executive Director of The Southern Arts Federation (SAF) and will assume the position on October 1, 2005. The Southern Arts Federation, located in Atlanta, Ga., is a regional arts organization serving state arts councils and agencies from 9 member states in the southeast. This appointment concludes an extensive national search, led by Martin A. Godwin, of Anderson and Associates.
Ms. Combs, a Paintsville, Ky. native, is well known in the arts field having served as the Executive Director of the Kentucky Arts Council since 1996. With degrees from Marshall University and the University of Kentucky, she has held positions at the J.B. Speed Museum and served as Deputy Director of the Galef Institute-Kentucky Collaborative for Teaching and Learning in Louisville, Ky. Prior to that, Combs served as Executive Director of the Capitol Arts Center in Bowling Green, Ky. from 1980-1991. She has been a consultant and panelist with the National Endowment for the Arts and is the current 1st Vice Chair and Chair for Programs on the Southern Arts Federation Board.
Jack Shultz, board chairman of SAF, in speaking for the search and executive committees said, “All of us, on the search and executive committees, are enthusiastic about having Gerri take the helm of our organization. While we considered a number of extremely impressive candidates, we are firmly convinced that Gerri is the right choice at the right time. We believe that she brings to the organization precisely the set of skills, experience, judgment, and vision that the organization needs.”
The Southern Arts Federation is a not-for-profit regional arts organization that has been making a positive difference in the arts since 1975. SAF supports and promotes the arts and works in partnership with the state arts agencies of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, and Tennessee. For further information about the Southern Arts Federation, go to www.southarts.org.
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The Kentucky Arts Council is a state agency in the Commerce Cabinet that invests in programs that develop vibrant communities, provide lifelong education in the arts and support arts participation. Every $1 in grant funds awarded by the Kentucky Arts Council helps grantees secure $15 in earned income and matching funds from individuals, philanthropic sources and other levels of government. Kentucky Arts Council funding is provided by the Kentucky State Legislature and the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency, which believes that a great nation deserves great art.