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  • AAN Announces Appointment of New Executive Director

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    August 17, 2018
    Date:                August 17, 2018
    Contact:           Nellie O’Gara, AAN Board President
                            508 228 0722
    AAN Announces Appointment of New Executive Director
    The Artists Association of Nantucket’s (AAN) Board of Directors is pleased to announce the appointment of Courtney A. Bridges as its next Executive Director. Bridges follows Cecil Barron Jensen, who recently became the Director of ReMain Nantucket.
    Bridges is well known in the Nantucket community for her non-profit management skills, having served as Executive Director of Small Friends on Nantucket for the last three years following a lengthy teaching career. Bridges and her husband, Jason, are both established Nantucket business owners, owning both Nantucket by Bike and the Handlebar Cafe.
    Bridges brings to the AAN strong leadership skills, both through her work experience and her continuing education. She recently completed a certification in Not for Profit management from the rigorous Tufts Institute of Non-Profit Leadership. She also holds both Masters and Bachelors degrees from Ohio University where her final research highlighted the connection between artistic expression and reading comprehension.
    While at Small Friends, Bridges helped the organization achieve several strategic goals, including establishing a long-term financial plan, structuring operational systems, achieving excellent standing with the state licensing board, cultivating new donors, and establishing an endowment.
    Bridges will join the AAN in the late fall. Until then Robert (Bobby) Frazier, well known Nantucket Art Historian and AAN Curator, will serve as Interim Executive Director in addition to the new position of Artistic Director of the AAN, which more accurately reflects Bobby's tremendous artistic contributions to the Cecelia Joyce and Seward Johnson Gallery, the Visual Arts Center and AAN's sizeable Permanent Collection of historic Nantucket art. 
    “Courtney’s appreciation of the role of art in connecting people will serve her well in her new role,” AAN President Nellie O’Gara said. “She has a reputation as a collaborative leader, which will be beneficial as she helps the AAN maintain and build relationships with both Nantucket based organizations like the Nantucket Historical Association, the Boys and Girls Club of Nantucket and the Nantucket Cottage Hospital, as well as off-island organizations like the Woodstock School of Arts and the Provincetown Art Association and Museum.
    We are looking forward to working with Courtney as the AAN realizes its strategic goals.”
    “Our preference from the beginning of the search [for the new Executive Director] was to identify a Nantucket based individual with a strong connection to the community who has the confidence to inspire staff, members and the Board as we move to the next phase of the AAN,” said Vice President Bruce Beni. “Courtney stood out as an individual who respects the driving force that the AAN is on Nantucket and the vital role that art plays in all aspects of our lives.”
    "As Interim Executive Director, I look forward to working with Courtney on maintaining our robust island-centric mission,” Bobby Frazier said. "I’m confident that the transition will be smooth, and that our skill sets will compliment each other as AAN approaches its seventy-fifth year." 
    For further information about the new Executive Director, please call the Artists Association of Nantucket at 508-228-0722.   To learn more about the AAN’s Gallery and the Visual Arts Center or to see a schedule of exhibitions, classes and public programs, please visit www.nantucketarts.org.

    Nellie O'Gara, AAN Board President