Brooklyn nonprofit Pioneer Works today announced Mara Manus as its next chief executive officer. Manus was previously executive director of the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA). In her new role, which she has already assumed, she will work closely with the cultural organization’s founder and artist Dustin Yellin; founding artistic director Gabriel Florenz; and chief science officer and astrophysicist Janna Levin. Manus will be in charge of strategic organizational planning, development and financial strategy, and will spearhead a capital expansion campaign aimed at giving New York City its first-ever public observatory. She replaces former executive Maxine Dalio, whose post was filled in the interim by Jill Eisenhard.RelatedHELEN FRANKENTHALER FOUNDATION SUED FOR “DESTROYING” PAINTER’S LEGACYBMA CREATES PAID INTERNSHIPS HONORING VALERIE MAYNARD “After an extensive search, we are elated to have found a person of Mara’s caliber who is innately capable of seeing our vision through and also motivated by it,” said Austin Hearst, chair of Pioneer Works’s board of directors.
“She brings a deep level of experience in leading arts organizations through critical junctures, allowing them to scale sustainably while increasing their impact on local and national communities. As we look to accomplish some of our most ambitious endeavors in Pioneer Works’s history, her knowledge will be critical.” Manus spent seven years at NYSCA, the US’s largest state arts agency, executing its first large capital grant program and, during each of the three successive past years, securing more than $100 million in funding for the organization. She was previously executive director of the Public Theater in New York City, and before that was an economic development officer at the Ford Foundation. “Pioneer Works’s unique mission to uplift the arts and sciences as equally important parts of contemporary culture has always stood out to me,” said Manus. “I’m excited to build on the accessible pathways to the arts and sciences that Pioneer Works creates at such a critical time for the institution.
I look forward to leading the organization in realizing our ambitious vision to bring diverse communities together to generate ideas, spark curiosity, and contribute to the cultural dialogue.”.