United Arts is pleased to announce that Charles Phaneuf will be the organization’s next president, succeeding current president Eleanor Oakley who is retiring after 18 years at United Arts. Charles currently leads Raleigh Little Theatre (RLT) as the Executive Director. A Raleigh native, he has over 15 years of experience in arts management. His career began in management at the Shakespeare Theatre in Washington, D.C. before serving as the Managing Director at Joe’s Movement Emporium in Mount Rainier, Maryland and then at RLT as Executive Director since 2012.
“I’m thrilled for this opportunity because we’re at a unique point in time to build on this organization’s rich history and think boldly about the future of the arts in Wake County,” Charles said. “As someone who grew up in Wake County Public Schools, I know that this organization transforms the lives of young people each and every day. I believe that the arts can also be a powerful tool to attract and retain the best talent to our region and be a partner in efforts to make this community more equitable and inclusive.” Charles will assume the presidency of the United Arts Council on February 6, 2020.
Charles is admired across the Triangle arts community for his leadership, vision, commitment and participation. “Over the past eight years, Charles has proven himself to be a leader in the arts community,” said Georgia Donaldson, RLT’s Past Board President. “One of his greatest strengths has been the relationships he has built with our volunteers, donors, staff and other members of the arts community. Whenever I say I work with Charles, the response is, ‘I know Charles, he’s great!’ All of us at RLT wish him much success at United Arts, as he moves from the small stage of a community theatre to this larger role as an arts advocate.”
The United Arts Council’s Board of Directors Chair Mark Steward added, “After a thorough, extensive search, the Board of UAC is thrilled to have Charles Phaneuf step into leadership for our organization. Charles brings many assets to his new position including having a strong grasp of the arts community in Wake County and leading one of the oldest established community theatres in the state. Also, as a product of the local school system and arts community, he understands the impact the organization has on the lives of the citizens of Wake County. Charles comes to UAC with a strong commitment to and passion for the arts and will be an amazing leader.”
Please join United Arts staff and Board of Directors in welcoming Charles to his new role in the arts community. His experience and dedication to the arts in Wake County make him uniquely qualified to lead United Arts to even greater success.