di Rosa announces Andrea Saenz Williams as Director of Education and Civic Engagement
di Rosa is pleased to announce the appointment of Andrea Saenz Williams as Director of Education and Civic Engagement to oversee di Rosa’s education and public programs, interpretive projects, docent tours, and visitor services. Williams will join the organization in January.
Williams brings over 15 years of experience in art education and outreach at major museums, including an expertise in creating partnerships and programs that connect art with multiple disciplines.
“Developing a fresh roster of public programs for di Rosa while also increasing civic engagement with new constituents will be my top priorities,” Williams said. “You can expect to see programs that access the site, collection, and exhibitions through various lenses such as environmental science, literature, design thinking, and mindfulness.”
Since 2013, Williams has been Museum Educator for School and Teacher Programs at the Blanton Museum of Art at the University of Texas in Austin, where she redesigned the museum’s school programs, resulting in a 24% increase in student attendance, developed a pioneering model for bilingual co-teaching, established an early childhood literacy program, and created numerous online teaching resources using the museum’s collection.
Prior to her tenure at the Blanton, Williams held education positions at the North Carolina Museum of Art and the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and acted as the Director of Arts and Humanities for the YMCA of Orange County, California, where she established the first fine arts program for the chapter. She also served as a board member of the Contemporaries for the Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles. Williams holds an M.A. in Art Education from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and a California State bilingual teaching credential from the University of San Diego.
Williams’s hire marks a year-long search for the new position at di Rosa, created in response to the organization’s renewed commitment to public engagement. “Andrea’s experience working with a broad range of audiences makes her an ideal fit for designing programs that respond to the needs of a region as diverse as the Bay Area,” said Executive Director Robert Sain who joined di Rosa in January 2016. “We are very fortunate to have someone of her caliber join our team, especially at a time when civic engagement is more important than ever.”
Williams’s move to Napa Valley will be a homecoming of sorts for the Southern California native. “I am eager to return to my California roots and delve into the rich history of the Bay Area’s art and artists as well as immerse myself in supporting new and emerging artists,” she said. “My long-term vision for di Rosa is that it serves not only the Napa Valley and Bay Area, but that it becomes a destination and catalyst for unique and thoughtful engagement with contemporary art and culture.”
ABOUT DI ROSA
A nonprofit contemporary art center, di Rosa presents dynamic exhibitions and programs for all ages and houses the largest collection of contemporary Bay Area art in the world. A wide range of styles, media, and subject matter provides an overview of the creative energy and freedom to experiment that characterize this region of California. di Rosa features three galleries, a sculpture park, and a 35-acre lake, all located on 217 scenic acres in Napa Valley’s famed Carneros region. For more information, visit www.dirosaart.org.