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July 1, 2010

Tennessee Arts Commission Announces New Officers

NASHVILLE - - During the June 10th quarterly meeting of the Tennessee Arts Commission, new officers were selected to lead the state arts agency. Effective July 1, 2010, the new officers are: Ellen M. Hays of Chattanooga, chair; Budd Bishop of Livingston, vice-chair; and Kurt Winstead of Franklin, secretary.

Kim Wood McClamroch, outgoing chair, had high praise for the Commission, its staff, and the new leadership. “It has been a privilege to serve and work with such outstanding individuals,” said McClamroch. “We are fortunate to have so much support for the arts in our state, and with the new leadership I am sure we will continue moving forward.”

Appointed to the Commission in 2007, Ellen Hays will serve as the new chair. She has worked in government, for nonprofit organizations, and in the private sector over the past 30 years as a fundraiser, lobbyist, public relations specialist and events coordinator. 

As director of external affairs at the Hunter Museum of American Art in Chattanooga, Hays oversaw the public relations, marketing, fiscal development, membership campaigns, and facility rental programs for the newly rebuilt and reprogrammed facility. This position was a reflection of her lifelong interest of utilizing art to transform and revitalize community.  She was able to further build upon this on a national scale through her work on the “Transforming Community Through the Arts” conference in Chattanooga that was sponsored by the Bruner Loeb Forum, a partnership of the Loeb Fellowship at the Harvard Graduate School of Design and the Bruner Foundation in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

 Hays currently serves on the boards of the Public Education Foundation, Chattanooga Convention and Visitor’s Bureau and the Ochs Center for Metropolitan Research. She holds a bachelor’s degree in political science from Boston University, and has completed coursework at George Washington University in their masters of public administration program.  She resides in Chattanooga with her husband Ken. 

Assuming the position of vice chair is Budd Bishop of Livingston. He was appointed to the Commission in 2006. Bishop is a visual artist who also works as an independent curator and museum consultant.  He previously served as an advisor to the Guntersville Museum in Alabama for their 2007 Andrew Wyeth Exhibition, and a guest curator for the Shey Collection of American Art at the Harn Museum of Art at the University of Florida in the Fall of 2007.

Bishop has also served as director of the Samuel P. Harn Museum of Art at the University of Florida in Gainesville ; Columbus Museum of Art in Ohio ; and the Hunter Museum of Art in Chattanooga . He has also worked as an advertising executive and as an art teacher.

Bishop received his bachelor's degree in art and philosophy from Shorter College in Rome, Georgia, and his master's degree in art history and studio art from the University of Georgia. He also attended the 1970 Arts Administration Institute at Harvard University Business School, a summer program offered by the university. He currently serves on the boards of the Outdoor Museum of Art, Chattanooga State University, Overton County Courthouse Square Committee, and the Upper Cumberland Arts Alliance.

As an artist, Bishop's work is included in many public and private collections. He has participated in many solo and group exhibitions, and has received numerous awards over the course of his career. In 1971, he received a Governor's Arts Award from the Tennessee Arts Commission.  In 1997, he received the Lifetime Achievement Museum Service Award form the Florida Association of Museums, and was named the Arts Person of the Year in 1995 by the Gainesville Sun newspaper.

Bishop resides in Livingston with his wife, Julia Crowder Bishop, who is a native of
Harriman , Tennessee.

Kurt Winstead was appointed to the Commission in 2007, and will serve as secretary.  Winstead has been an attorney for 22 years, and is a partner in the firm of Rudy, Wood & Winstead, PLLC in Nashville. His law practice is concentrated in the areas of business law and civil litigation. Since 2000, he has served as Tennessee Supreme Court Rule 31 Listed General Civil Mediator. He also serves in the Tennessee Army National Guard (1990-present) and is currently at rank of Colonel serving as Staff Judge Advocate, Joint Force Headquarters, in Tennessee. He was deployed overseas to Iraq in 2005, earning the Meritorious Service Medal as a senior Judge Advocate.  In July 2010, he will graduate with a Master of Strategic Studies degree from the U.S. Army War College, Carlisle Barracks, Pennsylvania.

Winstead’s appreciation of the arts goes back to his family background. His mother, who after formal training on the piano, was a high school band director, music instrument store owner, and public school music teacher before her retirement.

Winstead’s community involvement includes serving as chair of the Family Council (2007-2008), member of the Board of Visitors (2006-2010), and co-chair of the 2007-09 Annual Fund of Battle Ground Academy in Franklin. He is Admissions Chair of the Centre College Alumni Club in Nashville, and serves on the College Parents Committee. He is a member of Nashville City Club, and Temple Hills Club.

Winstead received his bachelor’s degree in economics and management from Centre College in Danville, Kentucky, and his law degree from the University of Richmond, School of Law in Virginia. He resides in Franklin with his wife Beth and daughters, Bridget and Mary Hannah.

“Although we face challenging economic times, I am confident our new slate of officers will continue to achieve many goals, and build upon our previous years of accomplishment,” said Rich Boyd, executive director of the Commission. “These exceptional leaders are dedicated and will work hard in promoting the arts in our state.”

Commission members are appointed by the Governor for five year terms.  The Commission meets quarterly, and meetings are open to the public.

The Tennessee Arts Commission is a state agency that funds and supports quality arts experiences that add value to the lives of every citizen, and enhances the quality of life in Tennessee communities.

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