Mary Schmidt Campbell
Dean, Tisch School of the Arts
B.A., M.A., PH.D.: HON.: D.F.A., D.H.L., PH.D.
Mary Schmidt Campbell was appointed Dean of the Tisch School of the Arts in 1991.
Under her stewardship as Dean, the Tisch School has become a dynamic incubator of new work and new enterprises. Student work is regularly screened at leading film festivals, mounted on stages in New York and around the world, published in leading journals and the winner of countless awards and accolades. Students and recent alumni have won virtually every major award from Oscars, Pulitzer Prizes, Tony Awards, Emmies, Golden Globes, Guggenheim Fellowships and Fulbrights.
Faculty at Tisch are among the leading artists and scholars in their fields and the school, long known for its excellence in its artistic and scholarly disciplines has become a laboratory of collaboration and innovation. During Campbell’s tenure, she has launched several new programs including: the Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music, a masters program in Moving Image Archiving and Preservation, a department in Art and Public Policy, a joint MBA/MFA in film and business. Under her leadership the School has offered advanced courses in the arts in over 20 countries and opened a degree granting campus in Singapore, Tisch Asia. She currently serves as chair of Tisch Asia.
During her tenure as Associate Provost for the Arts at NYU from 2004-2007, she launched a multi-school Game Center, that now offers an undergraduate minor in Game development and a masters degree in Game Design.
Her time at Tisch has been marked by a diversification of the School’s population and a marked growth in its selectivity. She has dramatically upgraded and expanded over two thirds of the School's facilities and is currently leading Tisch in a $70 million capital campaign to build a new performing arts center in the middle of lower Manhattan’s theater district.
In September of 2009 Dean Campbell was appointed by President Barack Obama as the Vice Chair of the President’s Committee on the Arts and Humanities which is a non- partisan advisory committee to the President of the United States on cultural matters.
Previously, she was New York City Commissioner of Cultural Affairs from 1987-1991 in the Edward I. Koch and David Dinkins administrations. She came to city government after having served as executive director of the Studio Museum in Harlem from 1977-87. Prior to that she was guest curator and assistant curator at the Everson Museum of Fine Arts in Syracuse, NY, contributor to the Syracuse New Times and co-founder of the Community Folk Art Center in Syracuse, New York. Dean Campbell was also the Chair of the New York State Council on the Arts from 2007-2009.
She is a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and sits on the boards of The Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, The Public Theater/New York Shakespeare Festival and the Harlem School of the Arts. She holds honorary degrees from The College of New Rochelle, Colgate University, City University of New York, Pace University, Maryland Institute College of Art and Swarthmore College. She has given numerous lectures, authored many papers and articles, and is co-editor of Artistic Citizenship: A Public Voice for the Arts, (New York: Routledge, 2006) and co-author of Harlem Renaissance: Art of Black America (New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc., 1987) and Memory and Metaphor: The Art of Romare Bearden, 1940-1987 (New York: Oxford University Press & The Studio Museum in Harlem, 1991). She is currently working on a book on Romare Bearden for Oxford University Press, (2012 expected publication date).
Campbell received a B.A. degree in English literature from Swarthmore College, an M.A. in art history from Syracuse University, and a Ph.D. in humanities, also from Syracuse.
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