Boise State University has selected Laura Kendall as Executive Director of the Velma V. Morrison Center for the Performing Arts (Morrison Center), following an executive search process led by Arts Consulting Group (ACG). She will begin her tenure on October 7, 2019.
Ms. Kendall’s years of experience have covered a variety of fields, culminating in a multitude of skills, including marketing, ticketing, arts education, outreach, artist residencies, and grant writing. Most recently, she served as the Vice President, Programming and Education for Omaha Performing Arts in Nebraska, where she increased rental and co-promotional events by 67 percent, managed a programming budget of more than $4 million, and oversaw booking for three performance spaces, totaling over 5,000 seats. Prior to her tenure at Omaha Performing Arts, Ms. Kendall held the Director, Office of Visual and Performing Arts position at Millersville University in Pennsylvania. In this role, she managed an operating budget of more than $1 million, increased income by 50 percent over the course of her five years, and supervised more than 600 events per year. From 2009 to 2012, Ms. Kendall served as Director of Arts Programming at Cuyahoga Community College in Cleveland, Ohio. During this time, she was instrumental in the opening of the Gil and Tommy LiPuma Center for Creative Arts and booked more than 30 performances per year across three performance facilities.
Ms. Kendall is an active leader in the arts community, serving as both President and Vice President of Pennsylvania Presenters. She is a member of the International Association of Venue Managers, the Association of Performing Arts Professionals, and The Broadway League. She has spoken and served as a panelist at multiple conferences, including the Women’s Leadership Forum and The League for Innovation in the Community College. Ms. Kendall holds a bachelor of arts degree in theater with a minor in film studies and a master of arts degree in marketing, communication, and advertising from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. She also has a curatorial practice certificate from the Institute for Curatorial Practice in Performance program at Wesleyan University in Connecticut and is a graduate of the Association of Performing Arts Professionals Leadership Fellows Program.
In making the announcement, Boise State University Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Mark Heil said, “I’m so pleased that Laura is joining the Morrison Center team during this exciting time for the Morrison Center and the university. She has a proven track record of success as a business-arts leader and her enthusiasm for the performing arts is contagious.”
“I am thrilled to join the Center,” said Ms. Kendall. “I’m looking forward to working with the exceptional volunteers, staff, university leadership, and the Morrison Center Endowment Foundation to bring world class arts experiences to the Boise community—including a stellar Broadway season. The Center’s strong commitment to local arts organizations and its role as a place for students to practice their craft drew me to this opportunity. I genuinely look forward to continuing that mission and growing our outreach to our community. Boise is a vibrant, creative city and I’m excited to get involved and experience all the city has to offer.”
“Laura Kendall is an inspired choice for both the Velma V. Morrison Center for the Performing Arts and for Boise State University,” said ACG Senior Vice President Martin Bragg. “Her experience working with faculty, students, resident companies, and the community will ensure great success for both the Morrison Center and for Boise State.”