Americans for the Arts presents the 2011 Michael Newton Award to Susan Schadt, President and CEO of ArtMemphis. The award was presented on June 16th at the Americans for the Arts Annual Convention in San Diego. Given annually by Americans for the Arts since 1998, the award honors exemplary leadership skills and extraordinary dedication to supporting the arts through a united arts fund, which is a combined effort to raise money on behalf of multiple arts institutions in the community. The Michael Newton Award is presented by the Private Sector Council of Americans for the Arts.
In nine years under President & CEO Susan Schadt, ArtsMemphis has undergone tremendous transformation – becoming a dynamic, forward-thinking organization with an emphasis on attracting a diverse base of support, using innovation to improve arts organizations and promoting Memphis as a City of Choice with a vibrant creative culture. Susan’s visionary approach and unwavering commitment to advancing the arts is evident in the rebranding of the nearly 50-year-old Greater Memphis Arts Council into a more relevant, accessible ArtsMemphis, exemplified by the development of the ArtsMemphis App, a first-of-its-kind mobile device application for iPhone and iPod Touch which allows customers to search hundreds of arts events, map destinations, read and post reviews and share events with Twitter and Facebook. Another hallmark of Susan's leadership is the forging of unlikely partnerships like the fundraising initiative, Conservation Through Art, with Ducks Unlimited, a local conservation group, drawing a new set of major donors who previously had no significant ties to the arts.