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Meet our new Executive Director, Carl Sylvestre!

Carl Sylvestre
Carl Sylvestre

Where did you grow up? I was born in Haiti and immigrated with my family to Brooklyn, NY when I was 11. On and off, I have been based in Brooklyn ever since. 

Where did you work before joining the Arts Ignite team? I was the Director of Development for Theatre Forward, a membership organization providing fundraising and artistic/education programs for a network of 19 major regional theatres. For many years prior to that I worked as a fundraising and management consultant to many cultural, social service and education organizations including Friends of the High Line, St. Ann’s Warehouse, the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, NYC Mission Society among others.  

What is your connection with the arts? The arts have always been part of my life. I am a “culture junkie,” so I attend a lot of cultural events in New York and around the world whenever I can. I enjoy the theatre, opera, museums, classical music and pop concerts and I am a big movie fan. I also have a Master of Arts in Theatre History and my published MBA dissertation was one of the first to analyze how corporations used the arts to leverage their investments in various communities.  

What is the most challenging and/or rewarding part of your work? The challenge and rewards are the same, which is connecting as many people as I can to enjoy, connect with and support all forms of arts.  

What about working at Arts Ignite are you most looking forward to? Making sure that we expose as many young people as we can to the arts. It is an important gift that we can give to them as those experiences will last a lifetime no matter what they do in their professional and personal lives.

What song best encapsulates your working personality?  “Imagine” by John Lennon. It is about thinking of possibilities and working to make them possible.  

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