United Arts President Departs & Interim Leader Named 

Today is United Arts President Charles Phaneuf’s last day before he leaves to assume the role of Vice President of Strategy with South Arts, a regional organization with a mission of advancing Southern vitality through the arts.  

The board of directors and staff thank Charles for his leadership during the pandemic which enabled United Arts to pivot and continue the mission of building better communities through support and advocacy of the arts. Some of the organization’s accomplishments under his leadership over the past 21 months include launching the first-ever Triangle-wide fundraiser for the arts (Big Night In for the Arts) with WRAL/WRAL.com, partnering with Wake County on the $1 million Wake County Nonprofit Arts Relief Fund, working with the Wake County Board of Education to proclaim that Arts ARE Education, and offering its first-ever Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion training for nonprofits in partnership with Tru Access and the support of the Bank of America Foundation. United Arts was also recently named a winner of a Corporate Philanthropy Award from the Triangle Business Journal. 

“I’m grateful to the board, staff, donors, partners, and elected officials who’ve stepped up during these challenging times to invest in the arts, and I’m constantly amazed by the resilience and adaptability of our creative sector. I look forward to spreading the news of how amazing our Raleigh and Wake County community is throughout the Southeast and supporting this continued growth and evolution in my new role,” said Charles. 

Due to this work and the strength of the board and staff, United Arts is well-positioned for the future. Ragen Carlile, Vice President for Education and Community Programs, will assume the role of Interim President on November 3, 2021. Ragen joined United Arts in 2012 to manage the Artists in Schools program and was promoted to vice president in 2014. During her tenure, she has designed and executed new programs for students and educators, revamped grant opportunities for artists and organizations, and was instrumental in distributing pandemic relief funding to the arts community.  

The United Arts board and staff also want to thank you for your continued support of the arts as we build on our foundation and grow under new leadership. We will be in touch with updates on the search process as it progresses.