ORLANDO, FL – (February 1, 2016) – The City of Orlando’s Downtown Arts District has elected business and civic leader Shanon M. Larimer, Principal at Baker Barrios Architects, as its Chairman of the Board at the annual election of officers.  Larimer succeeds David Wheeler, who has served as Chairman since 2013.  Tiffany Sanders, SVP and Chief Marketing Officer for JHT Inc., was elected Vice Chairman; Eva Krzewinski, Founder of Pearls for Women, was elected Secretary; and Jacques Blais, Partner at Vestal & Wiler, CPA’s was elected Treasurer.


Larimer will serve as chairman through 2017 and will oversee the executive director, senior leadership team, and governance of a 22-member board.  Larimer will guide the overall vision and strategic direction of the organization, champion public/private partnerships, support fiscal stewardship, and oversee operations of two historic visual and performing arts centers. Larimer served as the organizations Executive Director from 2008-2011, and as an executive officer since 2011. 


“The Arts District continues to strengthen Downtown’s competitiveness in the global marketplace and plays a significant role in building and sustaining our community’s economic vibrancy,” said Larimer.  “It is my personal mission as Chairman to continue to reinforce strategic partnerships between the arts, businesses, government and foundations as we continue to grow and move forward as an organization.” 


As Vice Chairman, Tiffany Sanders will provide governance leadership and strategic fundraising support for the organization and its operations of CityArts Factory and the Gallery at Avalon Island.  Sanders will succeed Larimer in 2017 as Chairman of the Board.   Eva Krzewinski will serve as the organization’s Secretary and will play a critical role in fostering communication and diligence through proper management and utilization of important records and the organization’s bylaws.  Jacques Blais will continue to serve as Treasurer and Chair of the finance committee and will oversee the annual budget and financial stewardship of the organization.


The Downtown Arts District is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to advancing the arts and economic development in the City of Orlando.  Established in 2000, the Arts District represents and serves the arts community by leading the monthly Third Thursday Gallery Hop and provides promotional support to arts and cultural venues, public art projects, and signature events.  In addition, the Arts District funds, manages and operates CityArts Factory – a 20,000 square-foot visual and performance arts center located in the historic 1916 Phillips Theater landmark building attracting more than 100,000 visitors annually from around the globe.  The Art District also manages the Gallery at Avalon Island – a contemporary art café, gallery and independent film cinema located in the historic Queen Anne Rogers building built in 1886. 



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