SEMAC Executive Director to retire; search begins for successor

(ABC 6 News) – The board of the Southeastern Minnesota Arts Council (SEMAC) announced on Monday a future change to the organization’s executive director position.

The board said that Executive Director, Robin Pearson, will retire at the end of the current fiscal year making June 22, 2023 her last day.

Pearson joined SEMAC as the grants/administrative assistant in January 2001. She became only the second executive director in the history of the organization in 2008.

“Little did I know when I joined the Southeastern Minnesota Arts Council that it would become such a big part of my life,” said Pearson. “I am grateful to my assistant Karen Miller and the many board members, arts advisory panelists, artists and arts organizations throughout the region that have made my time with SEMAC so enjoyable and fulfilling, but it’s time for a change. I will treasure my time with SEMAC but look forward to seeing many of you at arts events in the future as I move into a new chapter in my life.”

SEMAC board president Laura Helle said, “southeastern Minnesota has been well served by Executive Director Robin Pearson since 2008. We appreciate her efforts to support and promote the arts and artists across the region for these years, including the unprecedented demands for creativity and flexibility caused by the global pandemic in 2020. Robin will be missed. The SEMAC board is grateful to Robin for allowing time in this transition for her to share her experience and wisdom with a new Executive Director as soon as that person is hired.”

A search for a new Executive Director for SEMAC is now underway.

SEMAC is one of eleven Regional Arts Councils designated by the State of Minnesota to make decisions on the use of appropriations for local/regional arts development. SEMAC has served Dodge, Fillmore, Freeborn, Goodhue, Houston, Mower, Olmsted, Rice, Steele, Wabasha, and Winona counties since 1977 and is charged with assessing regional needs and planning and administering programs and services using its legislative allocation.

In fiscal year 2022, SEMAC disbursed $1,094,400 through 189 grants in the region.