FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
West Valley Arts Council’s Executive Director, Bernadette Carroll, Steps Down
Surprise, AZ, February 6, 2020 – West Valley Arts Council’s Executive Director, Bernadette Carroll, will be stepping down on February 21st. The regional nonprofit organization enriches the West Valley by growing a vibrant and connected arts and cultural community.
Carroll worked for the Arts Council for fourteen years and served as the Executive Director for seven years. Board President, Kathy Knecht, said that Carroll has led the organization through relocation, the Great Recession, and times of rapid growth. In 2019, West Valley Arts Council celebrated its 50th anniversary and received WESTMARC’s Best of the West: Quality of Life Community Award.
“Bernadette will be sorely missed,” Knecht said. “She is part of the fabric of the West Valley and an influential leader in the arts community. We are sad to see her go, but we will build on her legacy as we write the next chapter for the organization.”
Major accomplishments during Carroll’s time as Executive Director include working with the City of Surprise to create the Arts HQ Gallery, a regional arts venue for exhibits, concerts and classes that also serves at the West Valley Arts Council’s home office; partnering with the City of Goodyear and Estrella by Newland Communities to turn a longstanding classical music festival into a major music event with national headline acts; working with local schools on arts education programs and growing a professional development program for arts and music teachers; and building a strong artist community in the West Valley, providing them venues to exhibit and perform, and hone their craft.
“I truly appreciate the opportunities I have been given during my time with the West Valley Arts Council, as well as the Board’s professional and personal guidance and support,” Carroll said.
The board’s transition plan includes the hiring of an interim director in the next few weeks who will assist with the search for a permanent replacement.
“Our amazing staff will ensure we maintain our excellent programming during this transition. The next director will have the benefit of Bernadette’s strong legacy and a board excited about the future and the endless possibilities,” Knecht said. “We’ll be looking for someone who will be an effective business leader, who also understands how important arts and culture is to our region, for our economy and quality of life, and for our hearts and minds.”
Carroll will be taking on the Executive Director position with Act One in Phoenix beginning in March.
About West Valley Arts Council:
The West Valley Arts (WVA) enriches the West Valley by growing a vibrant and connected arts and cultural community. The West Valley Arts was incorporated as the Cultural Arts Society West in 1969. WVA has been central to creating what is recognized as a “high quality of life” for West Valley residents and is the only multi-disciplinary arts organization of its type and scope in the Valley. Since its inception, the WVA has earned multiple awards including two Governor’s Art Awards. Learn more at www.westvalleyarts.org/about-us/