MassArt president resigns; interim named

Massachusetts College of Art and Design (MassArt) President Dawn Barrett resigned her position last month for personal reasons. Executive Vice President Kurt Steinberg is serving as acting president.

Barrett had led MassArt since 2011.

“I am grateful for having had the opportunity to serve as the 11th president of this institution, and to lead so many talented, dedicated and committed faculty and staff members, students and volunteers,” Barrett said in a press release. “I am confident that MassArt will continue the advancements made in institutional efficacy and accessibility during my tenure, and will sustain the current momentum for outstanding achievement and recognition in visual arts education.”

According to MassArt, some of the achievements of Barrett’s tenure included: accreditation of the professional master of architecture degree program; the six-year graduation rate of MassArt’s students reaching an all-time high of 74 percent; and fundraising efforts leading to unprecedented levels of financial aid scholarship in excess of $5 million.

“On behalf of the Board of Trustees, we support Dawn and her family during this time. We are grateful for her tenacious spirit and vision, and thank her for her commitment to the college,” MassArt Board of Trustees Chaiman Richard Marshall said.

“Kurt has already demonstrated great leadership in his capacity as executive vice president…He is passionate about MassArt’s mission and with his extensive background in government and far-reaching community ties this will be a smooth transition. Under Kurt’s thoughtful direction MassArt’s many initiatives will move forward,” Marshall said in a statement.

Steinberg has held various leadership positions at MassArt since 2006, most recently serving as the executive vice president since 2011.

In this role, Steinberg has focused on completing a $120 million campus transformation that included the building of the tower at Huntington Avenue and Vancouver Street; increased institutional financial support for students; increased number of students living on campus from 22 percent to 38 percent; and started an architectural transformation including the modernization of student life and academic program space.

Steinberg’s previous positions at MassArt include chief operating officer and chief financial officer.

MassArt’s website is

MassArt Acting President Kurt Steinberg. (Courtesy Photo)

MassArt Acting President Kurt Steinberg. (Courtesy Photo)

Former MassArt President Dawn Barrett. (Gazette File Photo)

Former MassArt President Dawn Barrett. (Gazette File Photo)

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