Last Call from Spring Street!

Last Call from Spring Street!

The Council relocates to Minneapolis to start a new era.

Christopher H. Amundsen Photo courtesy of United Way.

Council Appoints Executive Director

The trustees of the American Craft Council have appointed Christopher H. Amundsen executive director effective May 10. The board's action was the result of an extensive search headed by trustee Susan Cummins, with the assistance of an executive recruiting firm. Amundsen succeeds Helene Blieberg, who served this past year as interim executive director.

"We are honored to have Chris at the helm, leading us through this exciting transition," said board chair Leilani Lattin Duke. "His impressive accomplishments and extraordinary leadership skills will help ensure the long-term vibrancy of the Council, as well as build on our foundation as the voice for contemporary American craft."

In his new assignment, Amundsen is responsible for strategic direction, external relationships, board and executive committee relations, membership growth and development, public relations and administration for the Council. He is overseeing the organization through its transition as it relocates offices from New York to Minneapolis this summer.

"I look forward to working with the board, staff and the entire craft community to ensure this organization has a dynamic and impactful presence not only to our own constituents, but the entire arts world," Amundsen said.

Before coming to the Council, Amundsen served from 2004 as the chief operating officer of the Greater Twin Cities United Way, the nation's third largest United Way. Named United Way of America's interim president and ceo in 2001, Amundsen led the country's largest private sector charitable system, with 1,400 local affiliates that raised $3.9 billion to improve the country's communities, and he oversaw the organization's system response and communications effort in the wake of the September 11. A Minneapolis native, Amundsen is a graduate of the University of Minnesota and has a background in public accounting and finance.

St. Paul Exhibitors Honored

At the American Craft Show in St. Paul, Minnesota, held April 16-18, Awards of Excellence were presented to James Borden (wood) of La Crescent, Minnesota, Scott McGlasson (wood) from St. Paul, Minnesota, and Beryl Schmid (fashion wearables) of Indianapolis, Indiana. The top award for booth design went to Martha Monson Lowe of Decorah, Iowa, for her basketry display. Charlie Lazor, founder of Lazor Office and designer/fabricator of the FlatPak house, was the guest juror.