After many years away, a South Carolina native is returning home to join the team at the South Carolina Arts Commission.
Ashley Kerns Brown, who grew up in Greenville, South Carolina and went on to earn a bachelor's of arts degree in theatre from Winthrop University and a master's of fine arts degree in theatre management from Florida State University, has been chosen as the commission's new education program director.
“I am overjoyed to return to my home state of South Carolina and am honored to join the passionate and dedicated team at the South Carolina Arts Commission,” Brown said. "I look forward to working with communities, schools, civic organizations, and businesses to provide opportunities for our students to learn from and through the arts as they develop into world-class citizens.”
In her new role, Brown will be tasked with management of the commission's arts education programs while working in cooperation with the commission's Arts In Basic Curriculum (ABC) partnership and artists. She will also oversee arts education grants for the commission while she builds programs and develops new ones.
Brown's resume includes stints as education and engagement manager for Opening Nights Performing Arts at Florida State University, three years at Stone Academy of Communication Arts in Greenville, South Carolina and several years at the Children’s Theatre of Charlotte in Charlotte, North Carolina. She has also worked with the Off Tryon Theatre Company, South Carolina Children’s Theatre and Brevard Music Center.
“Ashley joins us at a pivotal time for our future work in arts education and education reform in general,” Ken May, South Carolina Arts Commission executive director, said. “We are focused on responding to the findings of our 2014 Arts Education Task Force, which recommended new approaches to provide high quality arts education to students in high poverty areas. The House Education Task Force is focused on responding to the Abbeville school equity lawsuit and built into its recommendation a piece that relates to arts education. We have been involved in those discussions and anticipate having a role in carrying out any resulting legislation.”
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