Sharon Maidenberg Named Executive Director of Contemporary Austin

by Christopher Blay February 22, 2020

Sharon-Maidenberg-Th-New-Director-of-Contemporary-AustinThe Contemporary Austin has announced  that Sharon Maidenberg has been named as its new Ernest and Sarah Butler Executive Director and CEO, following an international search. In the announcement from Valerie Armstrong, President of the Board of Trustees of The Contemporary, Maidenberg will begin her role as Executive Director in Austin on September 1.

Maidenberg was previously the Chief Executive at Headlands Center for the Arts in the Golden Gate National Recreation Area, north of San Francisco. At The Contemporary Austin, she succeeds Louis Grachos, who left the institution in June of last year.

“On behalf of the full Board of Trustees, I am thrilled to make this announcement, ushering in the next chapter for The Contemporary Austin,” states Armstrong. “Sharon brings great energy and deep experience working with living artists, along with strong values-driven organizational leadership and mission-driven strategic thinking. I look forward to seeing what she will accomplish here in Austin.”

Maidenberg has worked with San Francisco Bay Area nonprofits for the past 20 years, including Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Southern Exposure, and New Langton Arts. Via The Contemporary: “She has also supported more than 700 artists through artist residencies and awards, exhibitions, and public programs, including the launch of a thematic residency program, which brings artists and non-arts experts together to address the most pressing issues of our time.”

States Maidenberg: “Like the Bay Area, Austin is one of the most innovative places in the country, and it’s clear that culture, community, and creativity are deeply valued. I look forward to applying my experience and perspective to The Contemporary’s already strong programs, and to working with the great staff and Board to write the organization’s next chapter.”

For more about The Contemporary Austin, please visit its website here.


As Austin’s only museum solely focused on contemporary artists and their work, The Contemporary Austin offers exhibitions, educational opportunities, and events that start conversations and fuel the city’s creative spirit. Known for artist-centric exhibitions and collaborations, The Contemporary invites exploration in both its urban and natural settings-downtown at the Jones Center (700 Congress Avenue), lakeside at the Laguna Gloria campus (3809 West 35th Street), and around Austin through the Museum Without Walls program.



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Elizabeth February 24, 2020 - 10:31

Welcome to Austin, Sharon Maindenberg. See you in September!

Bridget February 25, 2020 - 14:38

It appears, judging from the Museum’s press release and twitter feed, that she goes by sharon maidenberg.


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