National Performance Network > News > Stephanie Atkins Named
Local Program Director

Stephanie Atkins Named
Local Program Director

Posted: Monday, October 5th, 2015 at 11:48 am in News

NPN/VAN has named Stephanie Atkins to the newly created position of Local Program Director. Ms. Atkins, who has been the resource development specialist, has worked with the organization spearheading its development efforts, while also helping to shape the evolving Local Program.

Ms. Atkins’ appointment reflects her involvement and commitment to the local arts and cultural ecology. The Local Program is NPN/VAN’s connection to the community, a way for a national service organization to stay in touch with constituents and have an impact on the city in which it is located.  There are three major divisions: 1) the Local Network is a group of local organizations and artist projects that form a capacity-building, peer-learning circle with full financial services provided by NPN/VAN; 2) fiscal sponsorship provides financial and nonprofit services for short-term projects; and 3) Arts Estuary 1024 is a multi-tenant arts facility managed by NPN/VAN, which opened in the fall of 2014.

Over the next three years, NPN/VAN will deepen and expand its Local Program in order to help fulfill the needs of the local cultural community, to increase visibility for NPN/VAN and the organizations/projects that are served through the program, and to help solidify a steady stream of earned, unrestricted income. The expansion will include increasing the number of partnership organizations/projects and services to the Local Network, increasing the number of fiscal sponsorships, and expanded programming and rentals at Arts Estuary 1024.  This growth is a major step in NPN/VAN’s commitment to New Orleans. The organization moved to the city in 2000 and five years later felt the devastating effects of Hurricane Katrina. This has had a lasting effect on New Orleans, this region and our nation. The needs of our local community are great and local resources are very limited. However, New Orleans has an immense wealth of history, indigenous culture, talent and potential. NPN/VAN’s local program bolsters the exceptional cultural and social aspects of New Orleans thereby helping to sustain and bolster its unique local environment.

In her new role, Ms. Atkins is responsible for managing support services for artists and smaller art organizations, and spearheading NPN/VAN’s collaborative partnerships with other service providers. She has worked for NPN/VAN for nine years, starting as an executive assistant, and has honed her skills as a leader in the arts. She has been involved with the field for more than 27 years as a visual artist, arts educator, and administrator. Prior to working with NPN/VAN, she taught art education in the public school system operated by the Orleans Parish School Board and held adjunct positions at Xavier University of Louisiana and Southern University at New Orleans. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in visual arts from Spelman College and an M.F.A. degree in painting from the University of Cincinnati. Ms. Atkins is a Rockwood Leadership Institute Fellow. She volunteers with the New Orleans Alumnae Chapter for Spelman College (NAASC), serving as former chapter president, and at Saint Katharine Drexel Preparatory School.

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