KENDRA WHITLOCK INGRAM
President + CEO, Marcus Performing Arts Center
Wednesday, January 26, 2022
She’s a nationally recognized performing arts leader and the first woman to serve as the Marcus Performing Arts Center’s President and CEO. Kendra Whitlock Ingram took the helm of the world-class performing arts theater in December of 2019 and steered the organization through the pandemic that closed their doors and reduced annual income by nearly 75%. But the show must go on! Without the usual crowds, Kendra and her team made renovations and technological enhancements to the space, allowing audiences to see shows virtually. In fact, some productions saw an audience boost of 400% because of streaming and on-demand programming.
Kendra has also been forging new partnerships and started diversity and inclusion programming that will expanding the audience, volunteer-base, and on-stage talent pool for years to come. Help us welcome Kendra to Milwaukee and learn more about what she’s learned in her career and how she thinks the arts will continue to shape Milwaukee for the better.
Kendra most recently served as Executive Director of the University of Denver’s Newman Center for the Performing Arts, where she was nationally recognized for the caliber of new programming, the depth of community engagement and the financial health of the organization. During her tenure, the organization increased subscription packages by 200% and achieved budget surpluses every year. Prior to her work at the Newman Center, she was Vice President of Programming and Education at the Omaha Performing Arts Center. She has also held leadership roles with the Shenandoah Conservatory, Baltimore Symphony Orchestra, Detroit Symphony Orchestra, Phoenix Symphony Orchestra and Tulsa Philharmonic.
Ingram holds a Master in Business Administration from the University of Nebraska Omaha and a Bachelor of Science in Music Education from Duquesne University. She is also an alumna of the League of American Orchestras’ Orchestra Management Fellowship Program. Ingram has served as a grant review panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts, the Michigan Council for Arts and Cultural Affairs, and Colorado Creative Industries. In 2021, Ingram was named to the Milwaukee BizTimes Notable Minority Executives List.
Ingram’s volunteer work includes service on several national arts industry boards including the Board of Governors for The Broadway League as well as the Board of Directors for Arts Midwest and National Arts Strategies. Ingram is a member of the Association of Performing Arts Professionals, Women of Color in the Arts, Rotary Club of Milwaukee, TEMPO Milwaukee, Milwaukee Women, Inc., and is a Full Tony-Voting Member of The Broadway League.