Arts institute names new president


SANTA FE, N.M. – The Institute of American Indian and Alaska Native Culture and Arts Development, a fully accredited, four-year degree-granting college, has named Cassandra Manuelito-Kerkvliet its president.

Manuelito-Kerkvliet, a 51-year-old Navajo, was the first female president of Dine’ College, located in the Navajo Nation community of Tsaile, Ariz.

“I am deeply honored and humbled to be selected as the next president of the Institute of American Indian Arts. I come with great enthusiasm to help the board of trustees to meet new visions and goals, and to put IAIA in an international light. With my previous experience, I am able to ‘hit the ground running,’ with lobbying efforts on Capitol Hill and within the IAIA community.

“I am very excited to be back in the Southwest, and look forward to working with everyone in the IAIA community,” she said.

IAIA Board of Trustees Chairman Jeanne Givens said, “It is my pleasure to announce that Dr. Cassandra Manuelito-Kerkvliet has been chosen as the new president of the Institute of American Indian Arts. President Manuelito-Kerklvliet comes to us with skills essential to leading IAIA into the future. She brings a commitment to students, academic excellence, and a devotion to the contemporary Indian Art Movement.

“On behalf of the board of trustees, we warmly welcome her into our family to work hard and meet our collective futures. She will be available to us on a limited basis until July 1st, when she will begin her presidency. She is currently in Washington, D.C., helping IAIA to strengthen financial support by meeting members of Congress on behalf of IAIA.”

The IAIA is a congressionally-chartered, multi-tribal center of higher education dedicated to the preservation, study, creative application and contemporary expression of American Indian and Alaska Native arts and cultures. IAIA aims to achieve its mission through a program of higher education and outreach to students, tribal communities and the public. IAIA is committed to offering high quality education programs through an individual-centric approach designed to enrich the career opportunities enjoyed by all its students.