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Local Arts Administrator Selected For The Emerging Leaders Of Color: Leadership Development Program

Updated: Feb 27, 2022

[Fayetteville, North Carolina] – As a new generation of diverse arts leaders from across the region begin to emerge, the Arts Council of Fayetteville | Cumberland County congratulates its Director of Operations, Antonio Renteria, for being selected as an Emerging Leaders of Color (ELC). The ELC is a free professional leadership development program and team-building workshop for early to mid-career arts and cultural administrators of color.

Antonio will participate in professional development and leadership training offered in partnership with South Arts and the Western States Arts Federation. The ELC Program provides tools, continued learning opportunities, and networks to arts administrators of color who seek to build their capacity as leaders in the arts and culture sector. Eighteen individuals from each of South Arts’ nine-state

region were selected for the second Southern cohort of the program.

Staff, faculty, and alumni affiliated with the ELC Program selected Antonio because he exemplifies qualities in arts leadership and has the capacity to be a leader at his organization and in the broader community. With over 5 years of arts administration and event management experience, Antonio oversees community engagement for the Arts Council that serves over 500,000 individuals annually through arts education, grants, festivals, and special events. As staff liaison to the Exhibits Committee for the Arts Council’s Board of Trustees, Antonio manages The Arts Center gallery and exhibit schedules highlighting the traditional and multidisciplinary works of local, regional, and national artists.

Recognized as one of Fayetteville’s “40 under 40”, Antonio’s accomplishments include the expansion of the ArtScape Public Art Program, the annual production of large-scale events like the International Folk Festival and A Dickens Holiday, and the day-to-day operations of the Arts Council’s facilities at The Arts Center on Hay Street.

A graduate of Montana State University-Bozeman with a Bachelor of Arts, Antonio is actively involved in volunteerism and community service – serving as a Board Member to many cultural nonprofits in the area. “I am committed to building relationships with local artists, nonprofit organizations, and other community partners who make Fayetteville a vibrant and

welcoming community for artists and other creatives,” says Antonio.

Established in 2010, the ELC program promotes representative leadership and equity in the arts by:

  • Building a cohort of cultural leaders of color in the southern U.S. who are committed to the advancement of the arts.

  • Engaging diverse emerging leaders in coursework and activities designed to strengthen competencies and prepare participants for leadership positions in the field.

  • Providing opportunities for promising arts professionals to establish networks that support their careers.

  • Advocating for the cultural interests of the communities each participant represents and serves.

  • Deepening the understanding of the arts in the U.S. and how public support sustains the vibrancy of the sector.

Joy Young, Vice President of Programs at South Arts, says, “The ELC program offers course works and activities designed to strengthen leadership competencies, establish networks of support to your career and your aspirations, and engage with a faculty of national leaders in the arts.”


To view the full list of the 2022 Emerging Leaders of Color Cohort 2, visit:



The Arts Council of Fayetteville | Cumberland County is a tax-exempt 501(c)(3) organization based in Fayetteville, NC that supports individual creativity, cultural preservation, economic development, and lifelong learning through the ARTS. As a primary steward of public and private funding for arts, cultural, and historical activities in the Cape Fear Region, all affiliated programs of the Arts Council exemplify our 5 core values: Excellence, Accountability, Transparency, Collaborations, and Innovation.

Since 1973, the Arts Council has served as a link between artists, arts and cultural organizations, and the greater community by administering programs in partnership with a variety of local agencies to help advance community and economic growth, stimulate tourism, reinforce child education through the ARTS, and enhance the cultural identity of the arts and entertainment district.

Grants, programs, and services of the Arts Council are funded in part by contributions from community partners, and through grants from the City of Fayetteville, Cumberland County, and the N.C. Arts Council, a division of the Department of Natural & Cultural Resources.

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