The Rockport Center for the Arts (RCA) recently announced the appointment of Karol Stewart as Director of Development and Membership Relations.

Stewart was born and raised in Illinois.

She graduated with a Master’s Degree in Non-Profit Arts Administration from Indiana University–Bloomington’s School of Public and Environmental Affairs, with coursework in fundraising from The Fund Raising School at Indiana University, Purdue University in Indianapolis, as well as a Bachelor of Fine Art from the University of Illinois at Urbana–Champaign.

For the past five and a half years, Stewart managed the Marketing, Public Relations, and Membership departments for the Art Museum of South Texas (AMST), affiliated with Texas A&M University–Corpus Christi.

“I was given the amazing opportunity to work among a passionate team of coworkers and museum members on many great projects at AMST. Many of these projects pushed the boundaries of the museum field and continue to bring awareness to contemporary Texas artists and our community’s art scene,” said Stewart as she reflected upon her time in the Coastal Bend.

She was a part of two AMST teams honored with prestigious industry accolades in 2018 – The Mountain Plains Museum Association’s Exhibit Technology First Place Award for the 2016 retrospective exhibition, The Color of Being/El Color del Ser: DOROTHY HOOD (1918-2000) at the AMST; and Gold Medal recipient in the category of Best Event Campaign for the AMST’s ARTBALL event from the local chapter of the American Advertising Federation (AAF) Awards.

“We first became aware of Karol’s many talents in 2017 when we worked closely with her during the Birds in Art public relations campaign,” said RCA Executive Director Luis Purón. “A marketing and media plan was already fully in place—then Hurricane Harvey occurred. The Art Museum of South Texas canceled a planned show to help us host the traveling Birds in Art, and Karol was instrumental in connecting us in new markets, including Corpus Christi.”

Birds in Art had a 54-day run and was viewed by 16,000 visitors. One of the scheduled exhibits for the year 2022 is a new edition of the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum’s Birds in Art.

Beyond the museum, Stewart’s current professional affiliations include serving on the Board of Trustees for the AAF–Corpus Christi Chapter, the Marketing Committee for Visit Corpus Christi Texas, and President of the Board of Trustees for Court Appointed Special Advocates of the Coastal Bend.

“I want to be a part of Rockport Center for the Arts’ next chapter. My experience and education will help set the direction and ensure the financial health of the organization,” said Stewart. “In this role, I will become a part of a team of passionate arts professionals. What better way to be a part of the Art Center’s next chapter than to share Rockport’s vision for the future.”

Stewart resides in Portland with her husband Jeffrey Sartain. Her passions include sculpting, knitting, cooking, and museums—as well as following the Green Bay Packers and Chicago Cubs. She will be introduced to the community on Saturday, June 22 at an opening reception at Estelle Stair Gallery.

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