Oliver Switches Jobs – Stays in The Arts


Brianna Gibbs/KMXT
The Kodiak Arts Council is getting a new director in the coming months, and it’s someone many Kodiak residents already know. Katie Oliver is currently the executive director of the Baranov Museum and will say her goodbyes to the organization in late November when she’ll join the Kodiak Arts Council as executive director.
Oliver has worked at the Baranov Museum for about ten years and said the change is definitely bittersweet, but she is excited for new challenges


— (Arts Director 1 :42 “Well I applied for the position mostly because I believe very much in the Kodiak Arts Council mission. And as a long standing nonprofit in Kodiak it’s an organization that has had a profound and positive impact on me and my life and I had the opportunity to work as a staff member for the arts council in the past and serve as a board member on the board of directors and I believe very much in the good work they’re doing. On a personal level I felt the timing was right for a career change and I felt very good about the work that is being done here at the Baranov Museum and that it would b e a good time to take on new leadership here at the museum as well.”)

Wes Hanna was chair of the search committee for the arts council. He said the vacant position with the arts council generated many well-qualified applicants, both locally and from afar.

— (Arts Director 2 :34 “We began the search for a new executive director somewhere around the end of August and we put advertisements both in the local newspaper here in Kodiak and also on the statewide job service website. And we got a lot of response. It was really great to see the response. We got resumes from people as far away as Illinois. But the nicest thing for our search committee was the fact that we were able to get so many great local candidates that wanted to be part of the Kodiak Arts Council and leading and directing it.”)

He said Oliver’s extensive background in grant writing and leading other non profits definitely helped in choosing her for the position. Oliver said she is excited to interact with the arts community on a different level than she has in the past.

— (Arts Director 3 :46 “Well I’ve had the good fortune through my position at the museum to work closely with individual artists and with arts groups over the years and I’m continually impressed by the diversity and sophistication of artistic works and innovation that’s happening here in Kodiak. I have some ideas about funding programs to pursue, because I inhabit the world of grant writing for arts and culture organizations in Alaska. But I also think it’s really important to spend some initial time in the first few months having conversations with artists and arts council members and donors and stakeholders about their ideas for the future of the arts council. ”)

Oliver said her last day with the museum will be on November 30. She said she will start with the arts council shortly thereafter. Her departure from the Baranov is more than a month away, and Oliver said she plans to continue to work diligently for the organization she feels grateful to have been a part of.


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