(CHICAGO) December 1, 2022 – The Board of Directors of Hyde Park Art Center proudly announces the appointment of Jeannette Tremblay Chambers and Aaron Rodgers as co-Executive Directors. In their new roles, Chambers and Rodgers will work towards increasing the impact and visibility of Hyde Park Art Center on Chicago’s South Side, in the broader Chicago region, and beyond. With more than 35 years of combined experience advancing equity and inclusion in the arts and civic sectors, Chambers and Rodgers will build upon the Art Center’s community-centered work and deepen its investment in the diverse constituents it serves. Chambers and Rodgers assume their new roles today.
As colleagues at the Art Center for nine years, Chambers and Rodgers have a long-established working relationship that supports the organization’s vision to cultivate ideas, impact social change, and connect with new networks. The co-leadership model ensures the continuity of Chambers and Rodgers’ demonstrated progress toward increasing access to art and arts education, advancing Chicago artists, and presenting innovative contemporary art that elevates the voices of marginalized communities.
During their time as Deputy Director and Director of Development at the Art center, respectively, Chambers and Rodgers spearheaded the launch of Open Arts, which provides tuition-free courses in the Art Center’s core curriculum education programs. Open Arts is the nation’s first contribute-what-you-can visual art school for all ages, and ensures more equitable access to artmaking, education, and community engagement for years to come.
Chambers said, “Hyde Park Art Center has been a personal and professional home to me since moving to Chicago in 2009. It is with immense gratitude that I assume the role of co-Executive Director at the Art Center, where our community inspires and energizes my work every day. I hope to spark these feelings in all who encounter us—whether in our building, or our partner schools, or at the neighborhood farmers market or fair. I feel especially honored to co-lead and discover our next chapter as a Chicago institution alongside Aaron, who shares the Art Center’s collaborative and community-centered vision.”
Rodgers said, “The most rewarding and impactful work of my career has been the last eight years at Hyde Park Art Center, and joining Jen as co-Executive Director is beyond thrilling. I look forward to deepening my connections to the students, artists, art lovers, neighbors, and my outstanding colleagues. I am grateful to begin this new chapter with my longtime and trusted colleague Jen as we build on the legacy of art access and art excellence in the vibrant neighborhood of Hyde Park and beyond.”
Art Center Board Chair Erika Dudley co-chaired the search process with Justine Jentes (former Board Chair) and shared the work that led to this decision: “Our Search Committee vetted dozens of candidates from across the country, with priority given to experience and commitment to equity. Jen and Aaron impressed us with their exceptional institutional knowledge of the Art Center, demonstrated leadership in the field, and personal and professional commitment to anti-racism and equity. Having seen them working well together with skills that complement each other, we saw an opportunity for a co-leadership model, and the Board unanimously voted to approve.”
About Jeannette Tremblay Chambers
Jeannette Tremblay Chambers has over 15 years of experience as an arts leader, administrator, and educator, with a focus on building equity and access in the arts sector. She has served the Chicago arts community through Hyde Park Art Center for 12 years, first as an intern and teaching artist and working her way through the organization, most recently acting as Interim Executive Director. Chambers was recognized as a “national changemaker under 40” in 2019 through the American Express “NGen” Fellowship program. She is a co-founder of the White Advocates for Racial Equity Network at the National Guild for Community Arts Education, providing racial literacy and tactical training to a national network of educators, administrators, funders, and executives. She recently served on the Board of Directors at Enrich Chicago, a nonprofit consortium of arts organizations that affects structural, antiracist change across Chicago’s diverse arts ecosystem, as well as the Equity and Museum Practice Advisory Committee at the Art Institute of Chicago. Chambers holds an MA in Modern and Contemporary Art History, Theory, and Criticism from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago; an MS Ed in Urban Special Education from Long Island University in Brooklyn, NY; and a BA in Fine Arts from Hampshire College in Amherst, MA.
About Aaron Rodgers
Joining Hyde Park Art Center in 2014, Aaron Rodgers has served as Director of Development since 2016. Among his accomplishments at Hyde Park Art Center, Rodgers led a capital campaign that concluded in 2022 after raising $17.2M, exceeding the $16M goal. Before the Art Center, Rodgers worked in Special Events at the American Red Cross of Greater Chicago. He has been involved in Chicago art and culture for 20 years and has programmed and presented more than 500 events. In 2008, Rodgers founded Homeroom, an organization dedicated to presenting and commissioning arts programming around Chicago with a focus on conversation and collaboration across genre and media, where he served as Executive Director through 2017. Rodgers joined the Board of Directors of Elastic Arts in 2017. He received a BA from New York University’s Gallatin School of Individualized Study in 2002 with concentrations in philosophy and aesthetics.
About Hyde Park Art Center
Hyde Park Art Center, at 5020 South Cornell Avenue on Chicago’s vibrant South Side, is a hub for contemporary arts in Chicago, serving as a gathering, production, and exhibition space for artists and the broader community to cultivate ideas, impact social change, and connect with new networks. Since its inception in 1939, Hyde Park Art Center has grown from a small collective of quirky artists to establishing a strong legacy of risk-taking and experimentation, emerging as a unique Chicago arts institution with social impact. Today, the Art Center offers a diverse suite of programs for artists and art lovers of all backgrounds, ages, and stages in their careers including: contemporary art exhibitions in six galleries; open-access community-based school with 1,500 annual enrollments; weekly arts education to 1,000 elementary school students in public schools; weekly and summer teen programs for 100 teen artists; professional-advancement programs for artists; a local and international artist residency; and public programs that connects residents with Chicago art and artists .The Art Center functions as an amplifier for creative voices of today and tomorrow, providing the space to cultivate new work and connections. For more information, please visit www.hydeparkart.org.
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