For more information:
Mollie LaFavers



Boone to lead 2021 Growth Plans and Leadership Transition

LOUISVILLE, KY (AUGUST 24, 2020) – Fund for the Arts (FFTA) announced Christen Boone plans to step down as President & CEO at the end of the fiscal year, June 30, 2021. After seven years in this role, Boone galvanized the arts and culture sector in Greater Louisville with a unique vision driving community impact, access, and diversity, equity, and inclusion. She led the paradigm shift to an impact-driven organization, with a new focus from “How can the community support the arts” to “How can the arts best serve this community.”

In her time at Fund for the Arts, Boone focused the organization on a singular mission – to support, elevate, and celebrate the nationally renowned institutions and grassroots organizations that provide our community with world-class arts and culture, and deliver unprecedented community impact. Boone and her team launched the first Imagine Mural Festival in historic Smoketown, co-created the annual Awards in the Arts, led the creation and implementation of the Imagine Greater Louisville 2020 Cultural Plan, dramatically expanded funding to more artists and organizations, and raised more than $50 million over the last six years to ensure that more art could be experienced by more people in more places. Boone has been recognized nationally and locally for her leadership with the Americans for the Arts Private Sector Leader Award and Center for Nonprofit Excellence Nonprofit Leader Award.

Boone said, “I am proud of the work the Fund for the Arts has accomplished and am thankful for the talents of our artists, generosity of our donors, power of our cross-sector partnerships, and commitment of our community to ensure that the arts and culture sector remains strong and vibrant. Together, we continue to recognize the unique role of the arts to inspire, challenge, and connect, and the power of the arts to build our community.  I am committed to continuing this important work through this incredibly challenging time for our sector and community through the end of June.”

With a strong board and talented team, the Fund for the Arts is well-positioned for this transition. For the next 10 months, Boone will focus on updating the Imagine Greater Louisville Cultural Plan, evolving Fund for the Arts’ strategic vision, advancing equity in arts and culture, stabilizing the sector through the next stage of the pandemic, leading a successful 2021 campaign, and setting up a new CEO for success.

“On behalf of the board, I want to thank Christen for her leadership of this critically important arts and culture organization. Her legacy is that she led the Fund through a transformative change that will shape the sector and this community for decades to come.  Her incredible gift for strategy sets the organization up to be well-positioned for the future.  She has determined the time is right, for this organization and for her, and will be leading a thoughtful transition to new executive leadership for continued impact and influence.  We are grateful she has given us another year to ensure time to identify the best leader and a strong transition,” said Ja Hillebrand, CEO of Stock Yards Bank & Trust and current board chair.

FFTA will now launch a national internal and external search for her successor, led by past board chair Todd Lowe, President of Parthenon LLC, and incoming board chair Victoria Russell, VP of Diversity at Papa John’s International.  Boone will maintain President & CEO responsibilities and ensure a smooth leadership transition.  After transitioning out of her role at Fund for the Arts, Boone will leverage her 25 years of experience and work full-time as a strategic consultant to community-shaping initiatives with foundations, nonprofits, entrepreneurs, and corporations, locally and nationally, as the President and CEO of the Boone Group, founded in 2012.

About Fund for the Arts
Fund for the Arts is a regional nonprofit with the mission to maximize the impact of the arts on economic development, education, and quality of life in our community. The Fund is a convener, promoter, leader, and driver of Imagine Greater Louisville 2020, the region’s arts and cultural plan. It facilitates the largest arts grant program in Kentucky as well as conducts one of the oldest united arts campaigns in the country. For more information, visit


Share this article:

Verified by ExactMetrics