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Essex Art Center (EAC) names new Executive Director

via Essex Art Center

Dear Essex Art Center Community,

The Board of Directors of Essex Art Center has named Monica Manoski as its new Executive Director. Manoski will oversee EAC’s mission and work to advance the Center’s education and exhibition programming and broaden its impact.

Manoski joins EAC from the School of the Museum of Fine Arts (SMFA) at Tufts University, where she served as the Assistant Director of Development and facilitated the school’s annual art sale. She is a former Teach For America corps member who taught on the South Side of Chicago and worked as a family and community advocate.

Manoski received a Bachelor of Fine Arts and Business Minor from Arizona State University, a Master of Fine Arts from Tufts University and the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, and a Master of Science in Education from Dominican University.

“It is with great excitement that we welcome Monica to our community,” said Judith Farzan, the Essex Art Center board chair. “Monica has a robust visual art background and will be an inspiring and culturally-sensitive leader, fundraiser, and community-builder.”

“I’m thrilled to join the Essex Art Center,” says Manoski. “Developing artists’ voices at every level is so important. I want EAC to serve as a venue for students to grow their ideas, for artists to tackle bold, ambitious projects, and for families to find a creative home.”

About leading an arts organization at this moment, Manoski says, “artists are uniquely positioned to frame conversations and provoke reflection around society’s challenges. I hope to foster an inclusive and equitable arts community and look forward to collaborating with other cultural organizations to spark meaningful dialogue. I can’t wait to get started!”

Manoski will take over from longtime EAC teacher, Beland Gallery Director, community outreach and youth development worker, and most recently Executive Director, Cathy McLaurin. “EAC is extremely appreciative of McLaurin’s keen vision of art, development of art programs for Lawrence artists of all ages, and for the introduction of emerging and established artists to our community,” said Farzan. Although she will be moving on to focus on her art practice, McLaurin will remain committed as a grant writer for EAC’s programs.

We wish Cathy much success with her artistic endeavors and look forward to her continuing impact on the Lawrence art community. McLaurin said, “It has been my great privilege to spend the last 23 years at EAC and to work in and with the Greater Lawrence community. The deep investment of the board, faculty, and stakeholders, as well as the commitment of the staff, will ensure the continued success of the Essex Art Center.”


Essex Art Center Board of Directors


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