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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The Fund for the Arts board of directors named Christen Boone as its new president and CEO on Tuesday. Christen Boone will take over from current president and CEO Barbara Sexton Smith.
Sexton Smith announced her decision to retire later this year. Sexton Smith plans to provide "guidance" to the fund throughout the summer until her Aug. 31 retirement date, according to a news release.
Boone will begin work with the organization beginning July 7, after the conclusion of the fund's 2014 fundraising season.
"The Fund for the Arts Board did an exemplary job throughout this process and should be held as a model for leadership transition in the Louisville community," Mayor Greg Fischer said.
Qualified candidates were interviewed for the position and asked to outline their vision for the Fund.
"Christen clearly stood out from a list that included both local and national candidates," said Jim Allen, the Fund for the Arts board president. "We were looking for someone with a vision for the arts community and a proven track record of fundraising. Christen has both in abundance."
Boone currently serves as Director of the Greater Louisville Project which studies data centered on education, jobs and quality of life. She has been involved in fundraising projects, including the $120 million campaign to complete the 21st Century Parks development of the Parklands of Floyds Fork, as well as the $13.5 million capital/endowment campaign for Actors Theatre.
"I began my career with Fund for the Arts, and in those years, I solidified my personal commitment to Louisville," Boone said, according to the news release. "The work of the fund aligns with my personal mission to create a stronger, more vibrant Louisville. I'm honored to follow in the footsteps of those who have helped make the arts a cultural anchor in the community."