Valencia, CA, October 28--Glenna Avila, the Wallis Annenberg Director of California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) Community Arts Partnership (CAP), is pleased to announce the appointment of Austin Beutner and Ambassador Frank Baxter as Co-Chairs of the CAP Council. Assuming their positions as CAP inaugurates its 20th anniversary year, they succeed Peggy Funkhouser who served as Council chair for eight years.
"We are thrilled with the commitment to the CAP program demonstrated by Frank Baxter and Austin Beutner," said Avila, "and look forward to celebrating CAP's 20th anniversary with them as co-chairs. The Council is a valued part of our community and we plan to work closely with the new co-chairs and the entire council, throughout our anniversary year and beyond, to strengthen programs, increase the endowment and scholarship support for CAP participants, and broaden our visibility."
For two decades, CalArts has enriched the lives of young artists through CAP which currently works with 45 partner schools and organizations throughout greater Los Angeles--many in the city's most underserved neighborhoods. This pioneering public-private arts partnership provides free college-level arts education for youth and, at the same time, offers tools for college preparedness. Comprised of educators, civic leaders, artists and patrons, the CAP Council provides advisory support for the organization's programs.
Throughout their distinguished careers, Beutner and Baxter have shown exceptional commitment to the arts, education and the betterment of young people. Leading the Council at this pivotal moment in CAP's history, they lend their expertise to envisioning CAP's next 20 years.
Baxter is the former U.S. Ambassador to Uruguay and is also Chairman Emeritus at Jefferies & Company, Inc., a global investment firm. A former director of the NASD, Baxter chaired the committee that led to the spin-off of NASDAQ and subsequently served on the board of NASDAQ as a member of the Executive Committee. His numerous civic activities have included serving as chairman of the Alliance for College-Ready Public Schools and the After-School All Stars. Over recent years, he has supported CAP on multiple levels ranging from program support to scholarships for former CAP participants to attend CalArts.
Currently the Chair of CalArts' Board of Trustees, Beutner is the retired President and Co-Chief Executive Officer of Evercore Partners, which he co-founded in 1996. He currently serves as Chairman of the Board of the California Governor's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, is Chairman of the Board of the Broad Stage in Santa Monica and is also a member of the Council on Foreign Relations. A strong supporter of the arts for young people, Beutner is the primary sponsor of the International Children's Film Festival held annually at REDCAT (Roy and Edna Disney/ CalArts Theater) in downtown Los Angeles.
CAP employs some 60 CalArts faculty members, and nearly 300 student instructors who deliver college-level instruction in fine art, photography, printmaking, graphic design, digital media, animation, video, jazz, world music, chamber music, theater, puppetry, dance, and creative writing to over 7,500 youths each year. The organization has received numerous accolades--including the John Anson Ford Human Relations Award from the Los Angeles County Commission on Human Relations in 2008, the Ovation Award for Community Outreach from the Los Angeles Stage Alliance in 2006, and in 2004, the Coming Up Taller Award--a national recognition of outstanding community arts and humanities programs that celebrate the creativity of America's young people.
CalArts is recognized internationally as a leading laboratory for the visual, performing, media and literary arts. Housing six schools--Art, Critical Studies, Dance, Film/Video, Music, and Theater--CalArts educates professional artists in an intensive learning environment founded on artmaking excellence, creative experimentation, cross-pollination among diverse artistic disciplines, and a broad context of social and cultural understanding. CalArts also operates the Roy and Edna Disney/CalArts Theater (REDCAT) in the Walt Disney Concert Hall complex in downtown Los Angeles.