Dr. Elizabeth Alexander

Dr. Elizabeth Alexander

President at Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

Dr. Elizabeth Alexander
By June 30, 2021 8:00 AM

After the financially perilous year that the arts industry has had those on top are surely the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, with the former chair of the African American Studies Department at Yale and acclaimed poet Dr. Elizabeth Alexander as its president. A true visionary leader who has holistically approached not just the recovery of the industry for artists, organizations, and institutions, but in many ways the building of the future of the arts industry. Recently in the news for leading the Creatives Rebuild New York initiative that will take place over three years and invest $125 million into the creative economy, allowing arts professionals, artists, and spaces to rebuild their lives and community after the pandemic art stall. Not that the Foundation wasn’t busy, Alexander was always initiating programs that kept artists working, including bubble dance troupes known as Dance Bubbles that kept 360 local New York City dance professionals working during this distant time, one small example of the tremendous work done by the Mellon Foundation. Dr. Alexander was inspired by the team bubbles of the National Basketball Association. 

When speaking with Observer about her long career, Dr. Alexander said, “I’m really proud that in my writing in various modes, in my teaching, in my philanthropy and in my institution-building with organizations such as Cave Canem, I am proud that I have stayed the course with integrity and have consistently demonstrated my support for communities, the flourishing of ideas and creativity and my reliability as an ally who is always learning. I’m proud that I have consistently shown that, and consistently shown myself to be someone that brings other people to the table as I have been brought to the table, or forced myself onto.” 

With the holistic and even healing nature of her lead at the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, those values are very clear. 

We noticed you're using an ad blocker.

We get it: you like to have control of your own internet experience.
But advertising revenue helps support our journalism.

To read our full stories, please turn off your ad blocker.
We'd really appreciate it.

How Do I Whitelist Observer?

How Do I Whitelist Observer?

Below are steps you can take in order to whitelist Observer.com on your browser:

For Adblock:

Click the AdBlock button on your browser and select Don't run on pages on this domain.

For Adblock Plus on Google Chrome:

Click the AdBlock Plus button on your browser and select Enabled on this site.

For Adblock Plus on Firefox:

Click the AdBlock Plus button on your browser and select Disable on Observer.com.

Then Reload the Page