Exploring the Field: Equity and Arts Marketing

Recorded On: 12/03/2021


About this Webinar

December 3 at 3:00pm ET

Donna Walker-Kuhne and Mark E. Smith, experienced arts marketing leaders, will offer insights into their professional journeys in the arts sector, and the path that led them to leadership roles in arts marketing. This moderated session will center their experiences as people of color navigating the field. They will discuss what it means to be an arts marketer in the performing arts and within museums, respectively, and will talk through some of the challenges and advice they have for emerging leaders interested in community engagement and marketing the arts.

Participants will walk away with:

  • A deeper understanding of what a 21st century arts marketer needs to succeed in the field
  • A broad grasp of the tools needed to advance diversity, equity, and inclusion practices in arts marketing
  • Insight into the importance of community engagement in this work 
  • Inspiration to find their personal connection to the work they do


We are pleased to be able to offer registration support for those with limited resources who wish to register for this session. Sign up for the ArtsU Support program here. 

The Arts & Cultural Equity Studio | Emerging Leaders collection provides emerging arts administrators access to tailored training aimed at helping them develop the skills needed to advance in the arts management field. ACES is a three-part professional development collection spanning all topics regarding cultural equity in arts administration and career advancement. You can register for the full collection here.

Mark E. Smith

Director of Marketing/Communications

The John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art

Smith joined the staff of The Ringling Museum of Art in November of 2018, bringing with him over 15 years of marketing experience in several diverse sectors including museum and cultural arts, hospitality, higher education, and entertainment.

Originally from Chicago, IL, Smith now resides in Sarasota, Florida. Smith spent over twenty-three years in Texas, living in Dallas, Austin, Waco, and Houston. While in Texas, Smith spent time building his professional acumen and professional business network.

Smith has a passion for volunteering and community engagement. In his spare time, he is an active participant on numerous community-based nonprofit boards and organizations including Caritas of Waco, Big Brothers Big Sisters of Central Texas, and Waco Rotary Club. Currently, Smith serves as Board Chair for Visible Men Academy and as a newly appointed Board of Directors member for Suncoast Black Arts Collaborative Inc.

Smith is a 1985 graduate of Dunbar Career Academy in Chicago, Illinois. He received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Hospitality Management/Marketing from Iowa State University in Ames, Iowa. Smith also earned his Executive Master of Business Administration degree from Baylor University in Waco, Texas.

Smith is the second oldest of four siblings (brothers) who reside in Chicago, Atlanta, and Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.

Donna Walker Kuhne

Senior Advisor, Diversity Equity Inclusion

New Jersey Performing Arts Center

Donna Walker-Kuhne is an award-winning thought leader, writer and strategist for community engagement, audience development and social justice.  She is President of Walker International Communications Group, a 30-year-old boutique marketing and audience development consulting agency. She provides consulting services to numerous arts organizations throughout the world and has generated over $22m in earned income. She is also Senior Advisor, Diversity, Equity, Inclusion at New Jersey Performing Arts Center. Currently her portfolio includes social justice initiatives and Equity Diversity Inclusion workshops. She is a veteran of over 22 Broadway productions and her nonprofit clients include Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, New York State Council on the Arts and Seattle Theatre Group. She is co-founder of Impact Broadway a multicultural project that engaged over 900 students as audience members for Broadway with the goal to empower this community to be economic drivers of new audiences for the Broadway Theater district.  

She is a lecturer and keynote presenter for international arts conferences in Moscow, Russia, Blomfontein, South Africa, and Australian Arts Conferences. She is an adjunct professor at New York University and Columbia University. She is the recipient of 50 awards including the 2019 League of Professional Theatre Women Rachel Crothers Leadership Award. Her first book, Invitation to the Party:  Building Bridges to Arts, Culture and Community, was published in 2005 and she just completed her second book, Champions for the Arts: Lessons and Successful Strategies for Engaging Diverse Audiences.  She has a weekly blog, Arts and Culture Connections that explores cultural efforts to expand diverse audiences.


Exploring the Field: Equity and Arts Marketing
Live event: 12/03/2021 at 3:00 PM (EST) You must register to access.
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