President Kay Sloan Announces Retirement

For Immediate Release

Darlene Gillan, Director of Communications
tel. 617 879 7050

Kay Sloan President Katherine Sloan

BOSTON, MA – September 14, 2010 –Today, Massachusetts College of Art and Design announced President Kay Sloan will retire at the end of the 2010-2011 academic year. Dr. Sloan assumed the role as the first female president in September 1996 and during her tenure, spearheaded numerous initiatives, campaigns and collaborations that resulted in unprecedented growth and success for the institution.

“Dr. Sloan’s presidency has proved to be one of the most exciting and prosperous periods in the history of this institution,” stated Richard Shea, Chair of the MassArt Board of Trustees. “Thanks to her extraordinary leadership, unparalleled vision, and dedication to civic engagement, MassArt has become a preeminent college of art and design, and it is positioned for continued success in the coming years. The Board and the entire MassArt community are thankful for her commitment and exceptional service over the past 15 years.”

“I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to work alongside the dedicated members of the MassArt family, and I am proud of our accomplishments,” commented Sloan. “Nationally and internationally, MassArt is known for its innovative academic programs and community involvement. Together, we have developed a thriving educational environment that fuels creative thinking and professional visual arts and design practice.”

On her planned retirement, President Sloan continued, “I look forward to remaining an active member of the Boston academic and cultural communities, and I will continue to support the college in all its future endeavors.”

“President Sloan leaves us with a lasting legacy that sets the bar for future leaders of academic institutions. She is a lifelong mentor for women in leadership roles with a strong commitment to inclusion,” said Shea. “During the remainder of her presidency, we will work with her to ensure we continue to build upon the foundation she has created.”

As President of MassArt, Kay Sloan:

  • Initiated the New Partnership with the Commonwealth, a groundbreaking model for public institutions of higher education that enables MassArt to increase revenues from private sources, foster entrepreneurial activities, and grow enrollments from outside New England.
  • Played a vital role in establishing the value and necessity of the Creative Economy to the state of Massachusetts, an industry consisting of more than 14,000 businesses that employ approximately 80,000 people, injecting billions of dollars into the state’s economy.
  • Announced a multi-year $140 million comprehensive campaign for MassArt that will revitalize the campus, increase scholarship funding, and grow the college’s endowment.
  • Developed major collaborative programs with neighboring colleges through the Colleges of the Fenway and other consortia, which have expanded academic opportunities and facilities for all students and resulted in substantial cost savings for the college.
  • Strengthened MassArt’s role as a major cultural and educational resource to the greater Boston area, developing the Center for Art and Community Partnerships, a comprehensive center for civic engagement and service-learning programs.
  • Transformed the face of MassArt along Huntington Avenue by developing two new artists’ residences for housing 725 students; expanding dining facilities and campus center; renovating the Pozen Center for Interrelated Media; and launching planning and design phases for new Design and Media Center and renovations to the Bakalar and Paine Galleries.
  • Significantly increased the Annual Fund and the Annual Auction.
  • Expanded MassArt’s international relationships and global reach by increasing partnerships with art and design colleges around the world.

In addition to these accomplishments, President Sloan exemplifies civic commitment, serving on the boards and commissions of numerous national and regional educational and cultural organizations, including commissioner for the Commission on Higher Education, New England Association of Schools and Colleges; accreditation team chair and team member, National Association of Schools of Art and Design;  executive committee, Association of Independent Colleges of Art and Design; executive committee, Massachusetts Campus Compact; board member and past chair of the Colleges of the Fenway and the ProArts consortias; executive committee and past chair of the Fenway Alliance and Cultural District; member, Massachusetts Creative Economy Council; leadership committee chair and co-founder, Design Industries Group of Massachusetts; and current and founding chair, Boston Arts Academy Board.

Prior to her time at MassArt, President Sloan served as President of both North Hennepin Community College and Greenfield Community College.  She has been published numerous times and has received many professional honors, including the Commonwealth Woman of the Year Award from Massachusetts Business and Professional Women and the Maud Morgan Award for Leadership in the Arts.  She holds degrees from Carnegie-Mellon University, Purdue University, and Mercyhurst College.

MassArt’s Board of Trustees is assembling a search committee and has retained the services of executive search firm Archer Martin Associates to conduct a national search for the college’s next president. Also, in appreciation of President Sloan’s distinguished record of service, the trustees have bestowed upon her the title of President Emerita, effective upon her retirement.

Massachusetts College of Art and Design is one of the top colleges of its kind in the United States. Founded in 1873, MassArt has a legacy of leadership as the only independent public college of art and design in the country and the nation’s first art school to grant a degree. The college offers a comprehensive range of baccalaureate and graduate degrees in art and design, all taught by world-class faculty, along with continuing education and youth programs designed to encourage individual creativity. Whether at home in Boston or on the other side of the globe, the artists and designers of MassArt are dedicated to making a difference in their communities and around the world. For more information, visit