Margie Johnson Reese has a 30-year portfolio as an arts management professional, leading a broad range of large-scale projects in West Africa, Los Angeles, and Dallas in addition to consulting across the United States. She has contributed to public policy in areas of the arts, community development, arts education and cultural planning. Margie has extensive experience in managing and developing major cultural facilities aligned with community input and creative placemaking strategies. Her career accomplishments include serving as director of the City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs, general manager of the City of Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs, program officer for the Ford Foundation in their Office for West Africa and executive director of the Wichita Falls Alliance for Arts and Culture.
Ms. Reese is an emeritus board member for Americans for the Arts, a national arts service organization based in Washington, D.C., and chaired the board’s Equity and Diversity Task Force. Under her leadership, the board adopted a national statement on cultural equity aimed at increasing public participation in the arts nationwide. Margie is a fellow of the Salzburg Global Seminar on Heritage Preservation in Austria and has been a presenter at the World Summit on Culture in Johannesburg, South Africa.
Margie formed MJR Partners, LLC in 2010, and provides professional arts management services and guidance to communities for cultural planning and policy development. Her clients have engaged her services to assist in stimulating interdisciplinary and strategic partnerships between neighborhoods and communities, the cultural sector and government agencies. Her most recent clients have included The Office of the Mayor, Houston, Texas; The City of Alexandria, Virginia; One Columbia for Arts and Culture, Columbia, South Carolina; and the Sacramento Metropolitan Arts Council.
Margie has a strong understanding and knowledge of the intersections between cultural policy analysis, project development and implementation. She has served as the lead analyst and spokesperson for local and national government agencies helping identify the convergence of equity and inclusion with regards to the role of arts and culture within the broader fields of cultural enterprise and economic development.
Margie is a graduate of Washington State University in Pullman, Washington and earned a master’s degree in fine arts and theater from Trinity University in San Antonio, Texas.