Mass Cultural Council has selected Michael J. Bobbitt as Executive Director, following a national executive search process led by Arts Consulting Group (ACG). He began his tenure on February 1, 2021, becoming the most senior cultural official in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.
Mr. Bobbitt most recently served as Artistic Director of the New Repertory Theatre in Watertown, Massachusetts. Overseeing the organization’s programming, vision, and strategic goals, he helped increase ticket revenue, contributed revenue, and board giving. In addition to building an anti-racist culture within the organization, Mr. Bobbitt supported the Boston area theater scene in its race equity work, state funding advocacy, and arts leadership collaboration. In addition to serving on the board of Maryland Citizens for the Arts and Arts and Humanities for Montgomery County, he has also served as a panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts, DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities, New England Foundation for Arts, and the Boston Foundation. As Artistic Director at the Adventure Theatre-MTC in Maryland, he led a merger with Musical Theater Center, increased the organizational budget, commissioned new works by noted playwrights, transferred two shows to Off-Broadway, and built an academy. During his tenure, he earned dozens of Helen Hayes Award nominations, garnering eight wins.
A director, choreographer, and playwright, Mr. Bobbitt has received the Excel Leadership Award from the Center for Nonprofit Advancement, Emerging Leader Award from County Executive’s Excellence in the Arts and Humanities, and Person of the Year Award from Maryland Theatre Guide. He gained extensive experience in nonprofit arts management by training at Harvard Business School’s Strategic Perspectives in Nonprofit Management, National Arts Strategies’ Chief Executive Program, and Cornell University’s Diversity and Inclusion Certification Program. He has served as an Associate Professor of Theatre at Boston Conservatory at Berklee and volunteered on numerous nonprofit boards. Mr. Bobbitt holds a bachelor of music degree from Susquehanna University.
In making the announcement, Mass Cultural Council Board Chair Nina Fialkow said, “The Council’s search for our next Executive Director truly left no stone unturned. We are delighted Michael will join us in February and are eager to begin this new period together. I am confident the Agency will continue to lead and serve the Massachusetts cultural sector impactfully under his direction.”
“I’m a strong believer in the power of culture and know the arts play a vital role in bettering all lives,” said Mr. Bobbitt. “I’m extremely excited to join the outstanding team at Mass Cultural Council. In this role I will look to everyone involved: the creative community, consumers, citizens, and government partners to help the Agency catalyze growth and drive robust economic development. By joining Mass Cultural Council, I hope to broaden and amplify the beneficial impacts of the cultural sector for all who are living, working, and learning statewide.”
“ACG was honored to lead the national search process for Mass Cultural Council’s next Executive Director and we are thrilled to place Michael Bobbitt in this critical role,” said ACG Senior Vice President Wyona Lynch-McWhite. “His career in arts leadership and dedication to advancing a vibrant cultural sector will ensure that the Agency’s programs and services have an impact in diverse cultural, socioeconomic, and geographic communities throughout the state.”