2023 NW MI Arts & Culture Summit


Connections, Capacity, Communications


Tuesday, 5/9/2023  – 8:30am-3:30pm

Mallory-Towsley Center for Arts Leadership
at Interlochen Center for the Arts 

Schedule      Speakers     Resources

Download Schedule pdf (to come)

Artists, culture bearers, and creatives of all disciplines, arts and cultural organizations, creative businesses, and community builders are invited to join the 2023 Northwest Michigan Arts & Culture Summit.

The regional summit is a professional development day held annually to learn, strengthen relationships, share resources and continue collaborating to build the ten-county network.

Panel discussionss will explore: Leading Together: Connecting Champions, Collaborators, Creators & Communities, Programming in the New Normal, and Power Networking. Breakout sessions share hands-on tools and strategies with tracks for individual artists as well as organizations. Topics include: Work of Art, The Money Pie, Volunteer Management, AI & Chat GPT, Cultural Tourism, & Sharing Panels.  Speakers include more than 20 regional artists, arts and cultural leaders, community project directors and creative sector advocates, in addition to state leaders from Michigan Arts & Culture Council, Americans for the Arts, Michigan Presenters Network and Interlochen Center for the Arts.

Summit registration is a benefit of Network Membership.
Non-members welcome. Scholarships are available.
Contact arts@nwmiarts.net with questions.

Presentations, tools, research, links, publication and other resources used during this and prior Summits are available to review or download in Summit Resources page. This page will be updated as resources, transcrips and recordings are available.  


Summit Schedule

The 2023 Northwest Michigan Arts & Culture Summit will be presented

at Interlochen Center for the Arts. Zoom options available for remote participation.

Scroll Below for Schedule & Speakers Bios

Morning Welcome & Panels

Prelude – 8:15-8:45am

Registration & Networking
Continental Breakfast
Sharing Table

Members artwork and music will be on display and woven through the day.

Gather & Greetings – 8:30am

Trey Devey
President, Interlochen Center for the Arts

Mary Bevans Gillett
Convener, Northwest Michigan Arts & Culture Network
Gary Gatzke
President, Northwest Michigan Arts & Culture Network
Associate Director of Continuing & Community Education, Interlochen Center for the Arts

State of the Arts for Arts & Culture

There are new faces and new forces in Lansing and across Michigan. What are the key trends impacting arts and culture
and, i
n particular, what is the impact on funding, promotion, advocacy and artist support here at home? 

Alison Watson
Director, Michigan Arts & Culture Council

Creativity: Superpower to Success

Creativity infuses arts and culture … and powers our communities.
Let’s kick off our first sessions by connecting the dots andcelebrating the role creativity plays
in building success across all sectors and all players.

Jamie Gallagher
President, Faber-Castell USA

Panel 1 – 9:00am

Leading Together: Connecting Champions,

Collaborators, Creators & Communities


We each play a role in creating and furthering arts, culture and community vibrancy.
Artists, culture bearers, organizations, leaders, visionaries, connectors, advocates. Let’s build on the strengths the arts bring to our region and our state … and envision a resilient post-pandemic landscape fueled by collaboration, creativity and connections across all sectors. This interactive discussion with regional, state and national leaders looks at the trends, issues, challenges, and opportunities to join together to support a strong creative economy.


Alison Watson
Director, Michigan Council for Arts & Cultural Affairs
Nikki Devitt
President, Petoskey Chamber of Commerce
Co-Chair, Northern Michigan Chamber Alliance

Jamie Gallagher
CEO, Faber-Castell USA
Founder, 4 the Win Partners


Deborah Polich
Executive Director, Artrain & Creative Washtenaw
Michigan Advocacy Captain, Americans for the Arts

Anne-Marie Oomen
Author, Poet, Playwright, Artist

Trey Devey
President, Interlochen Center for the Arts


Short Break

Panel 2 – 10:30am

Programming & Performing in the New Normal

Join this panel of performers and programmers in an interactive discussion on the trends, challenges, strategies and new opportunities many are facing in building new audiences, promotion and programming for events, gigs, festivals and seasons. What’s working in “the new normal?”


Kassia Perpich
Associate Director, Great Lakes Center for Performing Arts
Anna Rudnitsky
President, Michigan Presenters Network
Programming Coordinator, Midland Center for the Arts

Brett Wrobel
Director of Interlochen Presents, Interlochen Center for the Arts

Megan DeWindt
President, Crooked Tree Art Center-Petoskey
Kristi Wodek
Vice-President, Crooked Tree Art Center-Traverse City

Musician – TBA

Peter Payette
Executive Director, Interlochen Public Radio


Session 3 – 11:30am

Power Networking

Let’s keep thinking creatively & collaboratively. IPR staff will facilitate a fast-paced session to find common ground and see if 2+2 might make 5. Maybe your next great event will be conceived here!


Peter Payette
Executive Director, Interlochen Public Radio


Break for Lunch

LUNCH – 11:50 PM

Sandwich & Salad Buffet

Continue ‘speed dating’ and discussing. Enjoy lunch with participants and presenters. Mix it up. Meet new colleagues and renew relationships. Brainstorm. Share ideas, experiences, questions and best practices.



Questions for Michigan Arts & Culture Council?
Alex Flannery, MACC Operational Support Program Director is available to discuss & answer questions.

Move to Breakouts – 12:55pm

Afternoon Breakout Sessions

Breakouts A, B, C – 1:00-1:55pm
– Short Break –
Breakouts D, E, F – 2:00-2:55pm

Breakout A
Artist Track

Work of Art


Brett Sinclair
Raven & Lotus



Breakout B
Capacity Building

Volunteer Management
Megan Holtrey
Dennos Museum Center
Amy Gilliard
Harbor Springs Festival of the Book

Breakout C

Tourism Work Table


Breakout D
Artist Track

Artists Roundtable
Michelle Bien
Artist + Community
Brett Sinclair
Raven & Lotus

Breakout E
Capacity Building

The Money Pie: Memberships, Grants, Donors
Interlochen Center for the Arts Development


Breakout F

AI & Chat GPT
Troy DeShano
Michigan Legacy Art Park

Next Steps & Send-Off – 3:10-3:30pm

Join us to recap the breakouts, the day and celebrate our work.


Trey Devey

Trey Devey

June 12, 2017, marked Trey Devey’s first day as the eighth president of Interlochen Center for the Arts. Devey is responsible for advancing the institution as a global leader in arts education and a high impact, financially sustainable non-profit, which includes Interlochen Arts Academy, Interlochen Arts Camp, Interlochen College of Creative Arts, Interlochen Presents, Interlochen Online, and Interlochen Public Radio. Devey began his tenure working toward the completion of the Sasaki ...
Alison Watson

Alison Watson

Alison Watson is the Executive Director for the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs. MCACA serves to encourage, develop and facilitate an enriched environment of creative and cultural activity in Michigan. The Council envisions a Michigan where every citizen celebrates the state's cultural treasures and arts and cultural experiences are accessible to all its citizens.  Watson has numerous years of expertise in Michigan’s arts and cultural sector and has held ...
Jamie Gallagher

Jamie Gallagher

After growing up in Pittsburgh, PA and graduating from the University of Notre Dame, Jamie Gallagher began what is now a 40-year career in the creative products industries. For sixteen years he was a key sales and marketing executive with LEGO working both in the US and Canadian markets. He then continued the trend of working with high quality, privately held toy brands by serving as President of Playmobil USA. In 2003, Jamie assumed the role of  President and CEO of Faber-Castell USA, ...
Michelle Bien

Michelle Bien

Michelle Bien is an visual artist, arts educator and the executive director of Art & Connection in Elk Rapids.
Troy DeShano

Troy DeShano

Troy DeShano is an experienced nonprofit professional and independent visual artist based in Traverse City.
Alex Flannery

Alex Flannery

Alex Flannery is the Operational Support Grant Program Manager at Michigan Arts and Culture Council (MACC).  


Thank you to the sponsors whose support makes the Summit possible.


Resources from Past Summits


The Northwest Michigan Arts and Culture Summit is held annually at Interlochen Center for the Arts. This convening brings together artists of all disciplines, arts & cultural organizations, creative entrepreneurs, community builders, planners and stakeholders together with state arts leaders to explore best practices, timely topics, network tools, sector challenges, funding strategies and partnering opportunities as we continue shaping the network’s future. Hallmarks are the rich range of local, regional and state speakers and the high level of interactivity, connectivity and strengthened relationships among attendees. The regional arts and culture summit is an annual springboard to new relationships, opportunities, mentors and ideas.

Resources from past summits are available below. 
The May 2020 Summit was cancelled due to COVID-19. 

Let’s Connect

Please join the Northwest Michigan Arts & Culture Network on social media. Promote your events, announcements and creative work by posting or sharing to the Network sites. Join the private Facebook group to discuss with colleagues. Invite others to join, like, support and engage!



Northwest Michigan Arts & Culture Network





Northwest Michigan Arts and Culture Network