Chris Mekal

Christopher Mekal specializes in strategic planning and implementation, nonprofit organizational development, and financial management. He has worked with the World Bank, Management Sciences for Health, IBM, and other organizations, facilitating strategic and tactical planning and rapid implementation. He is the former finance and operations director for Boston’s Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, where he coordinated its first strategic plan, which led to a $25 million capital campaign. At the Institute of Contemporary Art, Boston, Mekal directed the development of the Institute’s new museum, a seven-year, $50 million project. The New York Times called the new museum, which opened in December 2006, “…the most important building to rise [in Boston] in a generation.” While directing that project, Mekal also worked with Management Sciences for Health, which serves over 140 countries helping to solve pressing health problems, as well as with the Williams College Museum of Art and other organizations on strategic planning issues. Wth another consultant, Mekal also led Philadelphia’s Fabric Workshop and Museum through a strategic planning process, and worked with them to advance their planning and consideration of a new museum. He was a Center management panelist in 2009.


In December 2012, the Center welcomed Lee Rainie, director of the Pew Internet & American Life Project, who introduced the findings of a new report, “Arts Organizations and Digital Technologies.”

Questions of Practice

Hong, director of academic affairs and program development at the Getty Leadership Institute at Claremont Graduate University, looks at the opportunities presented by co-authorship through the lens of entrepreneurship.

AUX Curatorial Fellow Jamillah James lectures about her residency and introduces her recent projects and ongoing research.

The concluding performance of Jamillah James’ AUX Curatorial Fellowship includes new dance performances by New York-based choreographer and dancer niv Acosta, and Philadelphia-based choreographer and dancer Jumatatu Poe.

Grants & Grantees

The Arden Theatre Company launched a playwright residency program that gives audiences behind-the-scenes access to the creative process of a theater production.

In the first segment of a three-part conversation between Center Visiting Artist Ain Gordon and Center Executive Director Paula Marincola, they discuss Gordon’s role as a conduit between the Center and its grantees.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Kent Thompson was named artistic director of the Denver Center Theatre Company, part of the Denver Center for Performing Arts, in 2005.

Grants & Grantees

The Wilma Theater developed a new play with Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Paula Vogel and a full company of actors, charting a Marine’s complicated return home from war.

Yancey considers whether arts organizations be expected to approach their businesses with the same degree of courage and creativity that they expect of presenting artists.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Cynthia Lee is the former curator and director of exhibitions at the Museum of Chinese in America in New York City.

Grants & Grantees

FringeArts presents, develops, and commissions a range of high-quality contemporary performing and visual arts in Philadelphia.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Anne Ellegood is senior curator at the Hammer Museum in Los Angeles. Prior to this position, she was the curator of contemporary art at the Hirshhorn Museum & Sculpture Garden in Washington, D.C.