August 22, 2018

Taneshia Nash Laird Steps Down From Arts Council of Princeton

By Anne Levin

After less than two years as executive director of the Arts Council of Princeton, Taneshia Nash Laird has resigned the post effective at the end of this month.

Jim Levine will step down from his position as board president to serve as interim executive director beginning September 4, while a search is launched for Laird’s replacement. Maria Evans, the artistic director of the organization, will continue to oversee programming and education.

“Our programs are strong, our staff is strong,” Levine said on Monday. “We’re looking forward to another great year. I think our basic mission of building community through the arts will remain intact.”

Laird was the Arts Council’s third artistic director when she was hired in November 2016. Prior to that position, she was co-founder and chief marketing officer of MIST Harlem, and was executive director of the Trenton Downtown Association. She is the owner of Legacy Business Advisors, a community development consultancy.

Laird succeeded Jeff Nathanson, who headed the Arts Council for 11 years. The organization’s first executive director was Anne Reeves. The Arts Council is located at 102 Witherspoon Street, which was built in 1939 as part of the Works Progress Administration. It was renovated and expanded by architect Michael Graves in 2004.

As they did when Nathanson departed in 2016, the Arts Council board will use an outside firm to help in the search for a new executive director.

“Ms. Laird has injected great energy and excitement to our programming during her tenure,” reads a statement from the board. “The Arts Council is grateful for her service to the organization and wishes her well in the future.”