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John McCann, President



John McCann has more than 30 years of experience in helping leaders work more effectively.His clients have ranged from the American Association of Retired Persons to the New York Youth Orchestra.

In the area of innovation and strategy, McCann has worked with more than 300 of the nation’s leading cultural institutions including the Association of Arts Presenters, Dance/USA, National Alliance for Musical Theatre, Martha Graham Center of Contemporary Dance, Chicago Opera Theatre, New Jersey State Council on the Arts, and the National Symphony Orchestra. His clients within the philanthropic community have included the Wallace Foundation, Bush Foundation, Maryland State Arts Council, Grantmakers in the Arts, Grantmakers in Education, and the National Endowment for the Arts.

McCann has assisted in the formation of unique partnerships and strategic alliances including Latino New South, a coalition of the Levine Museum of the New South, Atlanta History Center, and Birmingham Civil Rights Institute; and the Global Artist Network involving the Museum of International Folk Art, International Folk Art Alliance and leading folk artists from Rwanda, Afghanistan, Ghana, and seven other nations. Both projects are initiatives of the Innovation Lab, a program of EmcArts, Inc. He has also facilitated the discussions leading to the merger of Tribeca Film Institute and Renew Media; Company of Fools and the Center for the Arts; and of the Bill T. Jones/Arnie Zane Dance Company and Dance Theater Workshop to form New York Live Arts.

For ten years he directed the graduate program in Arts Administration at Virginia Tech, and then for five years taught the capstone course in the graduate program in Arts Administration and Museum Leadership at Drexel University. He currently teaches non-profit management at Duke University Continuing Education. He has delivered guest lectures at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and the Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan.

He designed and now co-directs the Community Arts Education Leadership Institute (CAELI), now in its 11th year; designed and directs Rising Leaders a program for young arts professionals for the Michigan Council for Arts and Culture, and designed and serves as lead faculty for the Emerging Leaders Program for the League of American Orchestras. Since 2012 he has facilitated Creating a Learning Organization, Team Learning and Leader as Facilitator across the intelligence community including the Central Intelligence Agency, Office of the Director of National Intelligence and the Defense Intelligence Agency.

His pro bono work includes engagements with the Clinton Global Initiative, New Orleans Recovery and Rebuilding Coalition, and the Women’s Regional Network (Afghanistan, India, and Pakistan).

McCann is co-founder and currently a Board member of EmcArts, a nonprofit social enterprise for learning and innovation in the arts; and he serves on the Board of Directors for the Pauli Murray Center for History and Social Justice at Duke University.

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Exciting News!!

Join us for a conversation about scenario building, a timely, informed and efficient way to craft bold visions and useful strategies for moving forward in uncertain times. Times of disruption are also times of significant innovation. John will lead a 90-minute engagement around the four step scenario building process. Click here for more information and to register!

Meghan Martin (Rising Leaders 2019) appointed Executive Director of the Arts Council of Greater Lansing! Find out more about Rising Leaders!

Rachel Lappen (Emerging Leaders 

Program 2020) heads to the Jewish Federation of Cleveland as their Chief Development Officer. Learn more about ELP!

Noah Bloom (CAELI 2013), named as the Executive Director of the Neighborhood Music School in New Haven, CT. Congratulations Noah!

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