Philly’s culture chief departing for Denver arts foundation

chief cultural officer gary steuer
Philly’s Chief Cultural Officer Gary Steuer will leave his post in October. Credit: Facebook

Philadelphia’s chief cultural officer and director of the Philadelphia Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy Gary Steuer will in October depart from Mayor Michael Nutter’s administration to helm the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation, one of Denver’s largest funders of arts and culture, the administration announced Tuesday.

“Gary has provided strong and innovative leadership of Philadelphia’s efforts to promote and invest in its arts, culture and creative economy,” Nutter said in a statement.

“His work has been invaluable and I am sorry to see him go. I know that he will be the highly respected civic leader in Denver that he has been here in Philadelphia.”

Previously serving as vice president of private-sector affairs and executive director of the Arts and Business Council for Americans for the Arts in New York City, Steuer took over as Philadelphia’s chief cultural officer in 2008.

He was selected as executive director and CEO of the Bonfils-Stanton Foundation after its board conducted a national search for a champion of the arts to engage community members and further promote cultural vitality in Denver.

“It has been a gift to have the opportunity to lead the efforts of this administration to foster Philadelphia’s extraordinary creative sector,” Steuer said in a statement.

“In the coming weeks I look forward to working with the mayor, the chief of staff and Joseph Kluger, the chairman of the Mayor’s Cultural Advisory Council, to ensure strong ongoing leadership of the Office and its’ work. I am very excited about taking on this new challenge in Denver with such a highly-respected funder of the arts.”

Nutter said the city’s search for a new chief cultural officer will begin immediately.


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