Power of Culture Blog
Dean of the UMass Amherst College of Humanities and Fine Arts and Notable Historian Sworn in Today
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On May 17, Governor Charlie Baker appointed Che Anderson, a resident of Worcester, to serve on the governing body of the Mass Cultural Council.
The Mass Cultural Council is an independent state agency charged with bolstering the nonprofit cultural sector through a wide portfolio of grants and services, thereby elevating a rich cultural life for all residents and visitors to Massachusetts. The Agency is governed by a 19-member board of private citizens, collectively referred to as “the Council.”
As directed by state law, Council members are appointed by the Governor and have demonstrated scholarship or creativity in, or distinguished service to, the arts, humanities, interpretative sciences, or local arts. Council members serve staggered, three-year terms and reside in every region of the Commonwealth.
“We are so pleased to welcome Che to the Council,” said Nina Fialkow, Chair, Mass Cultural Council. “His passion for public art, building community, and public service will bring valuable input and expertise to the Council’s deliberations.”
Che Anderson is the Assistant Vice Chancellor for City and Community Relations at the University of Massachusetts Medical School where he serves as a human bridge between the institution and external stakeholders.
Before joining UMASS Medical School, Che served as the Deputy Cultural Development Officer for the City of Worcester where he focused on public art, special events, and cultural equity. An avid lover of street art, Che has led efforts to increase Worcester’s public art, most notably serving as co-founding Director of POW! WOW! Worcester, an annual placemaking festival that brings internationally acclaimed muralists, illustrators, and installation artists to Central Massachusetts to activate vacant and underused spaces, promote diversity and stimulate dialogue in the City of Worcester. Che’s recent endeavors include serving on the Rose Kennedy Greenway Public Art Advisory Group and Food and Convo, a storytelling platform that explores the intersectionality of culture and cuisine through the lens of diversity with a focus on creatives, makers, innovators, and entrepreneurs.
Under the leadership and direction of Executive Director Michael J. Bobbitt, Mass Cultural Council is developing the Agency’s first Race Equity Plan. Diversifying the membership of the Council — so that decisionmakers represent all who live, work, and participate in the state’s cultural sector — is an important goal of this work.
“I am thrilled Che has joined the Council,” said Bobbitt, “and so very thankful that our partners in the Baker-Polito Administration heard our call for new BIPOC voices on our board. Che’s dedication to cultural equity work will help steer the Agency’s efforts to ensure diversity, equity, access, and inclusion are always considered and prioritized when programs and services are developed throughout the cultural sector.”