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Community/Arts Development

Maryo Gard Ewell worked for more than 20 years in arts administration, in Connecticut, Illinois and Colorado; her special field during most of that time was the symbiotic relationship between arts programs and community development.

Since her retirement in 2003 from the Colorado Council on the Arts, she has worked as a consultant, conference organizer and speaker in community-and-arts development, in Idaho, South Dakota, Georgia, Ohio, Arkansas and her birth-state of Wisconsin, as well as in Colorado.

What some of Maryo's colleagues say about her:

I have had the great privilege to work with Maryo over the last thirty years. I know her as a top level thinker, a terrific facilitator, a valuable board member and strategist, and a superb human relations analyst and problem slover. Maryo is a truly creative leader in professional development training work, in helping boards and staffs maximize their potential, in finding the ability and nurturing that ability in all the individuals she works with. I am fortunate to still be able to call upon Maryo as a valued resource for our work at Americans for the Arts.

--Robert Lynch, President and CEO, Americans for the Arts, Washington, DC

I describe Maryo as America's community arts tradition keeper. If I say she is the historian of the community arts movement, that is true, but suggests that she's just looking back. She also is a visionary who has defined community arts development in a way that is continuously contemporary. It is not possible to overstate the impact of her work, her writing, and her inspired example upon the practice of arts in communities nationally. Maryo is my mentor and hero.

--Craig Dreeszen, Ph.D., Dreeszen & Associates, and former director, Arts Extension Service, University of Massachusetts Amherst

Maryo Ewell is the person that the Community Resource Center (CRC) turns to for outside consulting and training services on Colorado's Western Slope. She consistently receives rave reviews for her training and one-on-one work with nonprofits. Maryo has helped CRC dramatically increased our ability to serve nonprofits in Western Colorado and is our most trusted partner.

--Steve Graham, Executive Director, Colorado Resource Center, Denver

For Maryo, the vitality of the community is central to her vision. Whether one defines community by geography or more broadly as shared interests, Maryo coaxes each of us to engage in creating a rich tapestry in our community life. Arts and culture serve as essential but not exclusive elements in her successful work with communities throughout the United States. It is a joy to be with Maryo if only to hear her generous stories that continue to give meaning, and a sense of urgency, to our work on behalf of the arts and culture in our communities.

--Barbara Neal, Executive Director, Colorado Council on the Arts (1987-1994)

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