The Arts and Education Council announced today that Curtis Cassel, Retired Principal at TR,i Architects, has been elected as the nonprofit’s new board chair. Curtis has served on the board since 2019. Officers have also been elected to the following positions: Debbie Marshall, Chair-Elect; Susan Coatar, Vice Chair; Terrance Good, Vice Chair; Dr. Jeffrey Carter, Secretary; and Neuka Mitchell, Treasurer. They will begin one-year terms on January 1, 2022.

Four new members have also been elected to the board of directors. Antionette Carroll, Duane Martin Foster, Eric Martin and Ann Scheuer were each elected to a three-year term beginning January 1, 2022.

“We are excited to welcome our new members and board leadership to the Arts and Education Council. Working together we’ll continue our nearly 60-year history of celebrating, elevating and championing the arts in our region in 2022 and for many years to come,” said Cynthia A. Prost, Arts and Education Council president and CEO.

“On behalf of the Arts and Education Council, I’m pleased to welcome new board leadership and these four individuals to the board of directors. Their unique and diverse perspectives will be incredibly meaningful as we work to keep art happening across the St. Louis region. I’m excited to see how their leadership, expertise and passion for the arts supports the mission of the Arts and Education Council,” shared incoming Board Chair Curtis Cassel.

Antionette D. Carroll is the founder, president and CEO of Creative Reaction Lab, a nonprofit social enterprise designing healthy and racially equitable communities for Black and Latinx populations through education and training programs, community engagement consulting, an online national platform and open-source tools and resources housed in the Centene Center for the Arts. Carroll is a recipient of the Arts Innovator Award at the 2021 St. Louis Arts Awards, numerous grants from the Arts and Education Council and the winner of the Arts and Education Council’s award-winning stARTup Creative Competition. Creative Reaction Lab is creating a collaborative youth-led, community-centered movement challenging racial inequities in the education, media, health and healthcare and government and public service sectors. Within this capacity, Carroll has pioneered a new form of creative problem solving called Equity-Centered Community Design. Carroll is a TED Fellow, Camelback Ventures Fellow, 4.0 Schools Tiny Fellow, Next City Vanguard, 2017 Essence Magazine #100 Most Woke Woman, Subject Matter Advisor for Rockefeller Foundation’s 100 Resilient Cities, StartingBloc Fellow and an American Express/Ashoka Emerging Innovator.

Duane Martin Foster is a native of St. Louis, Mo. and a proud alumnus of Normandy High School where he currently serves as Dean of Students and Fine Arts Department Chair for the Normandy Schools Collaborative. Foster is the recipient of numerous grants from the Arts and Education Council and was named Art Educator of the Year at the 2013 St. Louis Arts Awards. His career spans from musical theatre and opera to dance and film. He received his dance training from the Alvin Ailey American Dance Center. On Broadway, Foster originated the role of famed African American Explorer, Matthew Henson and served as the understudy for the role of Coalhouse Walker, Jr. in the Tony Award winning musical, “Ragtime”. He made his Carnegie Hall debut as the Tenor Soloist for Robert Ray's “Gospel Mass” with the New England Symphonic Orchestra.

Eric Martin is a financial services trial attorney with extensive experience at both the trial and appellate court level at Bryan Cave Leighton Paisner (BCLP) LLP. Martin has successfully served as the coordinator for BCLP’s annual workplace campaign for the Arts and Education Council. Missouri Lawyers Weekly named Martin one of the state's "Top Lawyers." He serves annually on the faculty of the National Trial Advocacy College at the University of Virginia School of Law, where he instructs students on various aspects of trial practice. Martin provides pro bono legal services to various religious, civic and charitable institutions, including Fellowship House, an addiction treatment facility. He also volunteers as a weekly tutor at a local elementary school.

Ann Scheuer is the retired president of Kensington Management Consultants in New York City. She has had long and extensive experience in the nonprofit arena, serving on the boards of the Science Accessories Corporation, Sacred Heart University, University of Bridgeport and the Roundabout Theater Company in New York. Additionally, she serves on the Repertory Theatre of St. Louis board. Scheuer has a deep love for the arts, and a desire to engage more with the local arts scene.

For more information about the Arts and Education Council and a complete board listing, click here.