Jaime Dempsey

Executive Director, Arizona Commission on the Arts

In 2017 Jaime Dempsey was named Executive Director of the Arizona Commission on the Arts, having served as its Deputy Director since 2006. The agency provides leadership, services, and grants supporting a statewide arts and culture sector.

During a period of significant volatility in public funding, Jaime has been instrumental in reimagining the Arts Commission’s programmatic, communications, and organizational strategies to increase community engagement and expand the agency’s range of services.  She is also the architect of Next50, a visionary planning initiative “designed to unleash the power of the arts in realizing Arizona’s brightest future.”

Prior to joining the Arts Commission, Jaime developed community programs and partnerships as the first program manager at the Virginia G. Piper Center for Creative Writing at Arizona State University, where she also taught courses in arts leadership and nonprofit arts management.  Previously, Jaime managed arts education programs for the nexStage theatre and coordinated programs for the multidisciplinary Sun Valley Center for the Arts in Sun Valley, ID.

Jaime recently completed a term on the board of directors of Phoenix Pride, providing visibility and support to Phoenix’s LGBTQ communities, and she is an active contributor to creative sector and community development initiatives across Arizona.  In alignment with her passion for public policy and community empowerment, Jaime completed a fellowship with the Arizona Center for Civic Leadership’s Flinn-Brown Civic Leadership Academy in 2013. Her primary public policy interest is focusing governmental investments in future prosperity, particularly in the areas of education, infrastructure, and innovation.

Jaime studied theatre and anthropology at Arizona State University.