Florida Cultural Alliance (FCA) Board Members Listed in alphabetical order by last name
Rena Blades, secretary / treasurer of FCA
Rena Blades is President and Chief Executive Officer of the Cultural Council of Palm Beach County.She joined the Council in May 2004. Previously, she was Executive Director of The Mary Brogan Museum of Art and Science (MOAS) in Tallahassee, where she shepherded the organization from its infancy – with a budget of a few thousand dollars and one full-time staff person – to an institution with a $1.7 million budget and over 24 staff members that serves more than 100,000 visitors annually.
In Houston, Rena was Alumni Director for St. John’sSchool and owner of R M Gallery, where she managed careers for over 20 artists from the Southeastern U.S. An expert on outsider art, she was a guest lecturer on contemporary and folk art at RiceUniversity.
Rena earned a B.A. in art history from ConnecticutCollege and an M.A. in Art History from RiceUniversity. She served as President of the Florida Art Museum Director's Association and graduated from Getty's prestigious Museum Leadership Institute.
As Director of the Broward Cultural Division, Mr. Bosworth is responsible for administering and directing this local arts agency with an annual operating budget of $6.9 million and capital appropriations for public art and capital challenge grants. The Division’s primary functions include developing and strengthening art and cultural organizations and individual artists through its grants or incentive programs; marketing initiatives; arts education and advocacy efforts; public art acquisition and conservation; and cultural planning for the County.
Mr. Bosworth has more than 25 years management experience in the public and private sectors with the last 15 years devoted to arts administration. Prior to being appointed as Director of Broward Cultural Division, he served as the Division’s Assistant Director for almost seven years. While at the Division, Mr. Bosworth was responsible for policy and budget development, strategic planning and division business operations.
Mr. Bosworth also served as President of ArtServe, Inc., one of the six original arts incubators in the United States. During his tenure at ArtServe, Mr. Bosworth developed several new strategic partnerships with other nonprofits and the corporate world to assist ArtServe in carrying out its important mission for local emerging artists.
He held other posts with Broward County including Regulatory Operations Manager for Consumer Affairs and Interim Director for Animal Care and Regulation Division. Before joining the County in 2000, Mr. Bosworth served as Assistant Administrator for the Wynmoor Community Council, Inc., where he was responsible for assisting in the management of a $23 million operating budget and a staff of 180 employees. He also spent four years with the State of Florida’s Department of Business and Professional Regulation.
Mr. Bosworth has a Bachelor’s Degree in Business from Florida State University and a Master’s Degree in Business Administration from Nova Southeastern University. He currently serves as a Board Member of the Florida Cultural Alliance and has held several board positions on the local and federal levels including the U.S. Selective Service System, the State of Florida’s Community Association Advisory Board, the City of Fort Lauderdale’s Community Services Board and volunteer positions with Youth Leadership Broward and the United Way. Mr. Bosworth is also a professional musician and a published songwriter.
Jennifer McInnes Coolidge
Jennifer McInnes Coolidge currently serves as the Director of Development, College of Fine Arts, University of Florida since 2012. Coolidge has served as the Executive Director for the Museum of Florida Art (2001-2012); Executive Director for Florida Alliance for Art Education, FAAE (1995-2001); Education Coordinator for the Atlantic Center for the Arts in New Smyrna Beach, FL and served in arts positions for the Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art, Winston Salem-Forsyth County Arts Council, Sawtooth Center for Visual Art in Winston Salem, NC and others in North Carolina. She has also served as a consultant, presenter and grant panelist for such organizations as The Center for Human Rights and Civil Liberties at The University of Southern Mississippi; Arts Extension Service, University of Massachusetts; ICARE, Initiative for Cultural Arts and Education in Cleveland, Ohio; United Arts of Central Florida, Florida Division of Cultural Affairs, and Rochester Contemporary Art Center in Rochester, NY and the Arts Council of Asheville, NC. Coolidge also has worked as an art festival judge and juror for art festivals and exhibitions such as Dimensions, national juried exhibit at Associated Artists in Winston-Salem, Ocala Arts Festival, ArtWorks: Eau Gallie Fine Art Festival in Melbourne Beach, FL, Mt. Dora Festival of the Arts, Maitland Art Festival, Leesburg Art Festival, Melbourne Art Festival, Lake Eustis Art Festival, IMAGES Festival of the Arts in New Smyrna Beach, FL, Vero Beach Art Festival and many others.
Coolidge graduated with a B.A. in Fine Art from Guilford College in Greensboro, NC and completed a fellowship with the Denali Initiative on Social Enterprise in 2000 through The Kauffman Center on Entrepreneurial Leadership. Coolidge holds a Certification in Social Entrepreneurship from the H. John Heinz III School on Public Policy and Management at Carnegie Melon University. Coolidge has received such awards as an Ambassador of the Arts Award from Florida First Lady, Columba Bush, in 2005; Distinguished Service Award from the Florida Music Educators Association in 2002, and the ACE of Hearts Award from FAAE in 2001. Coolidge serves as Secretary and Past President for the Florida Alliance for Arts Education.
She currently serves as a volunteer development consultant for Mathew 25:40 supporting a K-8th grade school, Odres Nuevos Escuela providing meals, healthcare and education in Chimaltenango, Guatemala. Coolidge has previously served on the Board of Trustees for the Florida House in Washington, DC and on the Florida Chamber Foundation's Six Pillar Planning Caucus.
Dennis Edwards Dennis Edwards has been actively involved in Miami arts, health and political communities for over 30 years, and is a full-time volunteer, operating his own charitable foundation with husband Mark Steinberg, and participating in numerous community organizations. He was a founder and was President of Maximum Dance Company from 1997 – 2004. He chaired the Foundation Board of New World School of the Arts from 2006 - 2015, and is currently the Vice-President/Treasurer of Thomas Armour Youth Ballet.
He was a founding Board member of South Florida Dance For Life, and he is a former Board Member of Deering Hospital’s Ethics Advisory Board, Area Stage Company and Health Crisis Network. He was part of the Speakers Bureau for Project YES and chaired the AIDS Education Speakers Bureau for Health Crisis Network for six years. He also chaired the membership drive for Safeguarding American Values for Everyone (SAVE-Dade) for three years. Mr. Edwards was also the Marketing Manager for Miami City Ballet for two seasons and the former Director of Development with Health Crisis Network where he initiated the first AIDS Walk Miami event in 1987.
He has served on numerous local and state panels, including the Dance Discipline panel for the State of Florida and Capital Grants, Youth Arts Miami and Youth Enrichment panels for Miami-Dade’s Department of Cultural Affairs. He is the recipient of numerous awards, including the "Champions of Equality Hall of Fame" from SAVE-Dade, “Arts Advocate of the Year” from the Arts and Business Council, "Champion of the Arts" from Citizens Interested in Arts the “Leave a Legacy Award” from the Planned Giving Council, and the Dade Human Rights Foundation for community service. He was a finalist in 2014 for the "Non-Profit Board Leadership Award" from the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce for his work at New World School of the Arts. BA in Business from Michigan State University Honors College, with an emphasis in marketing, economics and philosophy.
Michael Spring, chairman of FCA
MichaelSpring is Director of the Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs with an annual budget of $24 million and a staff of 26. He also serves as the chairman of the board of the Florida Cultural Alliance, chairman of the 5-county regional arts alliance, the South Florida Cultural Consortium, and as the director of the Miami-Dade County Tourist Development Council.
In 2007, he assumed the additional responsibility of leading Miami-DadeCounty’s Art in Public Places program. He represents the Department on numerous cultural and civic committees including service as Secretary of the board of directors of Americans for the Arts, a founding board member and officer of Americans for the Arts Action Fund, a member and past President of the United States Urban Arts Federation, a past President of the Florida Association of Local Arts Agencies, and a member of the Board of Governors of the Greater Miami Chamber of Commerce.
MichaelSpring has helped build Miami-DadeCounty’s cultural community into a more than a $922 million annual industry comprised of more than 1,000 non-profit cultural groups and thousands of artists. He has been responsible for securing more than $80 million of public funds used to improve existing and build new theaters county-wide. In 2004, he helped lead the work to pass a referendum for the Building Better Communities bond program, dedicating more than $450 million for building the next generation of Miami-Dade’s cultural facilities, ranging from major new art and science museums to theaters and neighborhood arts centers.
He has a B.A. degree from the University of Miami and earned an M.A. in painting from New YorkUniversity, involving studies in Venice, Italy. He continues to paint and develop his interests as a visual artist.
In January 2012, Andrew Witt became the first Executive Director of the St. Johns Cultural Council (SJCC) in St. Augustine Florida. In 2011, the St Johns County government signed a contract with the Cultural Council to administer the Tourist Development Tax grant program for Arts Culture and Heritage programs and to prepare a Cultural Development Strategic Plan for the County and its citizens. The SJCC is the designated Local Arts Agency for St Johns County.
In April 2004, Andrew Witt was named Executive Director of the Cultural Council of Richland and Lexington Counties - the Local Arts Agency serving the metropolitan Columbia area. Through cooperative community cultural planning, grant making, public education and fundraising, the organization supports more than 130 arts-related organizations and coordinates special projects to enhance the quality of life for Midlands residents. Prior to coming to Columbia, Witt served for 16 years as the Executive Director of the Arts Council of Northwest Florida, a Local Arts Agency serving as a "chamber of commerce and united arts fund" for cultural groups in Escambia, Santa Rosa, Okaloosa and Walton Counties and other counties in the Central Time Zone. He is a past President of the Florida Association of Local Arts Agencies (FALAA), was on the Board of the Florida Cultural Alliance, and a Past President of the Panhandle Tiger Bay Club. He served on the Florida Arts Council/Division of Cultural Affairs Strategic Planning Task Force. He has also served as a grant panelist for The Big Read program of the National Endowment for the Arts and Arts Midwest, the Florida Division of Cultural Affairs and Division of Historic Resources, the Kentucky Arts Council, and several Local Arts Agencies in Florida. Prior to his work in Florida, Mr. Witt served as the Executive Director of the Arvada Center for the Arts and Humanities in Colorado, Managing Director of the Alliance Theatre Company in Atlanta, and as the Managing Director of the Fifth Avenue Theatre and A Contemporary Theatre in Seattle, and the Tacoma Actors Guild. He was a co-founder of the Washington State Arts Alliance, and the Arts Advocates of Washington State.
In Colorado, he served as Chairman of the Colorado Citizens for the Arts during the establishment of the Metro-Denver Cultural Facilities Tax District. In South Carolina, he was a member of the Advisory Board of EngenuitySC, the South Carolina Arts Alliance, and the Greater Columbia Chamber of Commerce. In June 2009, he was elected to the Private Sector National Advisory Council of Americans for the Arts, the national service organization of Local Arts Agencies and United Arts Funds. In August 2009 and again in 2010 he was invited to participate in the Americans for the Arts Local Arts Agency Executive Leadership Seminar at the Aspen Institute. In 2011 and 2012 he was invited to participate in the Local Arts Agency Executive Leadership Seminar in conjunction with the National Arts Policy Roundtable sponsored by The Conference Board and Americans for the Arts at the Sundance Preserve in Utah.
He is a graduate of Wesleyan University in Middletown Connecticut, and has a Master's Degree from the School of Drama at the University of Washington in Seattle.