Tom Finkelpearl (MA ’83) Is NYC’s New Cultural Affairs Commissioner
Hunter alumnus Tom Finkelpearl, president and executive director of the Queens Museum, has been appointed cultural affairs commissioner by Mayor Bill de Blasio.
A trained sculptor, Finkelpearl earned his master's at Hunter after receiving his undergraduate degree from Princeton. He was an administrator at Long Island City's P.S. 1 Contemporary Art Center and Maine's Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture before being chosen to lead the Queens Museum in 2002.
Reporting on the new appointment, The New York Times called it "in keeping with the new administration's emphasis on the disenfranchised," and noted that in Queens, Finkelpearl "hired community organizers to professionalize outreach efforts and emphasized the diversity of the local immigrant population."
The Times went on to quote Mayor de Blasio as saying, "Tom believes that art is for everybody, and has developed an exceptional record of fortifying the city's cultural institutions across all five boroughs. That's exactly the kind of energy, leadership and creativity that we want."