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2017 Statewide Arts Conference
No Time Like the Future

Conference Presenters


Note: Additional information will be posted as details are finalized.



Opening Keynote

Workshop Presenter


Elizabeth Merritt

Elizabeth Merritt

Believing that museums can change the world, Elizabeth Merritt is devoted to helping museums create a brighter future for their communities. As founding director of the American Alliance of Museums’ Center for the Future of Museums, she applies the tools of strategic foresight to the nonprofit realm.


Ms. Merritt conducts trends forecasting and scenario development for museums, sharing her work through publications, social media and presentations. She is the author of CFM’s annual TrendsWatch report and produces the weekly e-newsletter Dispatches from the Future of Museums. She frequently keynotes at conferences in the U.S. and abroad. In recent years, her work has expanded to encompass libraries, orchestras and opera as well.


She earned her B.S. from Yale and an M.A. in cell and molecular biology from Duke University, and has trained in futures studies at the University of Houston.




Closing Keynote



Jane Chu


Jane ChuJane Chu is the eleventh chairman of the National Endowment for the Arts. With a background in arts administration and philanthropy, Chairman Chu is also an accomplished artist and musician. She leads a dedicated and passionate group of people to support and fund the arts and creative activities in communities across the nation.

Chu was born in Shawnee, Oklahoma, and raised in Arkadelphia, Arkansas, the daughter of Chinese immigrants. She studied music growing up, eventually receiving bachelor's degrees in piano performance and music education from Ouachita Baptist University, and master's degrees in music and piano pedagogy from Southern Methodist University. Additionally, Chu holds a master's degree in business administration from Rockhurst University and a PhD in philanthropic studies from Indiana University.

In addition to awarding more than $240 million in grants during her tenure to-date, Chu has issued new research reports on arts participation and the impact of the arts and cultural industries on the nation's gross domestic product; has made hundreds of trips to communities across the nation to see first-hand how the arts are impacting people and places; and launched the Tell Us Your Story project that demonstrates the importance of the arts in our lives.

As part of the NEA’s 50th Anniversary, Chairman Chu launched her signature leadership initiative, Creativity Connects, to investigate the current state of the arts in our nation, and explore how the arts connect with other industries. The initiative includes a pilot grant program that awards grants to arts organizations for projects involving partnerships with non-arts organizations; a “bright spots” interactive, digital graphic that shows the mashup of arts with other non-arts sectors; and the report, Creativity Connects: Trends and Conditions Affecting US Artists, about the current infrastructure of the arts and working conditions for artists.


Chu has a deep understanding of and commitment to the arts. From 2006 to 2014, Chu served as the president and CEO of the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts in Kansas City, Missouri, overseeing a $413-million campaign to build the center. She was a fund executive at the Kauffman Fund for Kansas City from 2004 to 2006, and vice president of external relations for Union Station Kansas City from 2002 to 2004. Previously, she was vice president of community investment for the Greater Kansas City Community Foundation from 1997 to 2002.







Michaela Pilar BrownMichaela Pilar Brown


Columbia, S.C.


Michaela Pilar Brown is an image and object maker and a multidisciplinary artist using photography, installation and performance. She studied sculpture and art history at Howard University, though she has always been a maker of things. Born in Bangor, Maine, and raised in Denver, Colorado, she cut her teeth in the halls of a museum where her mother worked as a security guard and has been immersed in the culture of objects, their making and interpretation ever since.


Brown has a full-time studio practice and a new venture, Mike Brown Contemporary, a mobile exhibition and project space specializing in bringing contemporary art and arts-related programming to underserved communities.




Henry HorowitzHenry Horowitz


South Carolina Arts Commission

Greenville, S.C.


Henry Horowitz is the co-founder, principal and managing partner of Oxford Capital Partners LLC, a real estate investment firm in Greenville, S.C. and Dallas, Texas. He is a managing principal of MedProperties Holdings LLC, a private equity firm in Dallas. Previously, he served as president of RealtiCorp and in various executive management roles with Insignia Financial Group.


Horowitz is chairman emeritus and founder of Greenville’s Artisphere Festival and serves on the Bon Secours Health System Board of Directors and the Wells Fargo Bank S.C. Regional Advisory Board of Directors. He is the former chair of the Metropolitan Arts Council of Greenville and former president of the Charity Ball Board of Directors. Horowitz previously served as vice chairman for the Arts Commission.





Lori KornegayLori Kornegay

Curator of Art

South Carolina State Museum


Lori Kornegay joined the South Carolina State Museum as Curator of Art in January 2017. She previously served as Curator of Art & Public Engagement at the Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art in Charleston, S.C. Before joining the Halsey, Kornegay was Director of the Summer Study Program at Sotheby’s Institute of Art in New York, where she was responsible for directing academic standards and program design for courses covering topics in art business and contemporary art. Previous to her time in NYC, she worked in the South Carolina arts community, including teaching in the Arts Management Program at the College of Charleston and working in the visual arts department at the South Carolina Arts Commission.


Kornegay holds a bachelor's degree in microbiology from Clemson University and a master's degree in art history from the University of South Carolina with a concentration on 20th-century art.






Flavia LovatelliFlavia Lovatelli



Italian-born artist-entrepreneur Flavia Lovatelli moved to the U.S. in 1979. A consummate sustainable artist, Flavia embraced the lighter side of Dadaism, inspired by the pop and ready-made movement. Her work has morphed into an eclectic mixture of fiber tapestry-found objets d'art.


In 2011, Flavia co-founded the Art Ecologie Group with colleagues Monique Luck and Marcee Musgrove. Having all participated in the Passport for Fashion Show where they created wearable art pieces from recyclable products, they decided to organize their own Trashion Show as a means to promote creativity and bring attention to their art. Each year, Art Ecologie organizes a recycled fashion show and invites artists to push the boundaries of their comfort level in creating three-dimensional work.  Flavia’s work has been featured in a number of magazines, newspapers, blogs, including the Charlotte Observer, the Cornelius Herald, and Currents Magazine. She is a member of the Trenholm Art Guild of S.C.




Ken MayKen May

Executive Director

South Carolina Arts Commission


Ken May is executive director of the South Carolina Arts Commission, where he has served in several positions since 1985. 


He has been a panelist and site visitor for the National Endowment for the Arts; a panelist, presenter, consultant, and facilitator for national, state, and local arts organizations; and a guest lecturer in the arts administration programs at the College of Charleston and Winthrop University.  He is a member of the board and current treasurer of SouthArts serves as treasurer of the South Carolina Afterschool Alliance board, and is an active alumnus of the Diversity Leaders Initiative of the Riley Institute at Furman University.  


Before beginning his career in arts administration, he worked in the for-profit world, holding positions with ARA Services Magazine and Book Division and McGraw-Hill. Prior to his long sojourn in the realm of day jobs, he worked as a professional musician.  He received undergraduate and master’s degrees in music history and musicology from Florida State University. 




GP McLeerGP McLeer

Executive Director

South Carolina Arts Alliance


GP McLeer is the executive director of the South Carolina Arts Alliance, the only statewide organization dedicated to advocacy, leadership development, and public awareness for the arts. GP also serves on the board of trustees for St. Joseph's Catholic School, the School of the Arts Council at the College of Charleston, the board of directors for Palmetto State Arts Education, and on the Arts in Basic Curriculum Project Steering Committee.




Tabitha OttTabitha Ott



Tabitha received her Masters of Fine Arts in Jewelry/Metals from Kent State University in 2012 and her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Sculpture: Jewelry/Metals from Winthrop
University in 2008. Originally from Orangeburg, she now resides in Cayce, S.C.


Tabitha has been teaching full time in the Department of Art at Claflin University since 2014. She currently has a studio at Tapp’s Art Center in downtown Columbia, S.C.



Rodney Lee RogersRodney Lee Rogers


PURE Theatre

Charleston, S.C.


An award winning playwright and screenwriter, Rodney Lee Rogers' feature film STEAMING MILK won runner-up Best
Actor and Best Director awards at the 1997 Seattle International Film Festival and was chosen as a "Best of the Fest" of both The Seattle Times and The Seattle Post-Intelligencer. He is a two-time winner of the National/LAFF Screenwriting scholarship and received the 2010 Playwriting fellowship from the South Carolina Arts Commission. His short film DOWNTURN was awarded a South Carolina Film Commission Indie Grant.


Rodney received an MFA in Screenwriting with honors from National
University in Los Angeles and currently teaches screenwriting at the Carolina Film Institute. He also is very proud to facilitate artist development in South Carolina through Artists U and the South Carolina Arts Commission.



Doug WoodwardDr. Doug Woodward


Division of Research

Darla Moore School of Business

University of South Carolina


Dr. Doug Woodward is professor of economics and the director of the Division of Research at the Darla Moore School of Business at the University of South Carolina. He earned his Ph.D. at the University of Texas at Austin in 1986. He joined the University of South Carolina faculty in 1987.

Woodward’s primary research interests are regional economics, firm location, urban and industrial clustering, and foreign direct investment. He is co-author of a book on foreign direct investment in the United States, The New Competitors, ranked as one of the “top ten business and economics books” by Business Week and listed by Fortune as one of the books “CEOs are reading." He has published widely in academic journals, including the Journal of Urban Economics, the Journal of Regional Science, Regional Science and Urban Economics, the Journal of Economic Geography, and the Review of Economics and Statistics. His recently published papers have investigated local area labor matching and knowledge spillovers. Woodward also has ongoing research comparing regional economic cluster development across the world. He has ongoing research investigating foreign investment and economic development in Africa.

Over his career, Woodward has received numerous grants from the National Science Foundation, the U.S. Department of Education and many other funding agencies. He has testified before local, state and national government committees and has presented his research at many conferences around the world, including the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. He has often appeared in the media discussing economic development and related topics. 





About the 2017 Conference

For more information, please contact Joy Young (803-734-8203).