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Walker Contemporaries: Introducing the Advisory Council

We’re excited to introduce the inaugural Advisory Council for the Contemporaries, which consists of emerging leaders at Twin Cities– based companies: Melanie Full of Leonard Street and Deinard; Ben Hertz of Nolan Company; Carolyn Sleeth of Medtronic; Jon Engel of Cassidy Turley; Anne Cook of Best Buy; Matt Thell of General Mills; Eric Norman of Ameriprise Financial; Jori Miller of Minnetonka Moccasin; Chris Cook of Target; and Matthew Hawkins of W Minneapolis–The Foshay/Le Méridien Chambers. The council will help expand the Walker’s audience of young art patrons by sharing one of the best-known secrets in town—that Contemporaries members enjoy intimate access to the very best of the local art scene.

Established in 2010, the Contemporaries group was formed to introduce young professionals to the Walker’s interdisciplinary programs and to cultivate the next generation of Walker supporters. Through a series of exclusive events, members explore all facets of Walker programming while meeting other young professionals looking for a deeper connection with the institution.

Rooted in providing experiences that are both educational and social, past Contemporaries events have offered a variety of opportunities, including touring Le Méridien Chambers’ art collection with drinks at the Ice Bar; a behind-the-scenes look at the Merce Cunningham Dance Company Collection acquisition; a tour of the General Mills corporate art collection; and a private reception and screening of the British Arrows Awards, the Walker’s annual holiday celebration featuring the best of British advertising.

This spring, members are planning to visit the studio of local artists Nate Young and Caroline Kent and participate in a preshow reception with choreographer Kyle Abraham. Another highlight of membership is worry-free Rock the Garden access with the opportunity to purchase presale tickets. In addition to all basic membership perks, Contemporaries members are eligible to participate in the Walker’s Film Society, allowing them to take advantage of priority reservations and exclusive premieres such as the recent advance screenings of Cloud Atlas and On the Road.

Through these benefits and exclusive opportunities, the Contemporaries help the Walker build a stronger sense of community among young professionals who are committed to the success of our local arts institutions. Joining is easy: simply visit members.walkerart.org, and for $175 a year, take advantage of the special opportunities the Walker provides to members.

More about Walker Affinity Groups

Walker Contemporaries Advisory Council

left to right, first row: Matt Thell, Anne Cook, Chris Cook; second row: Ben Hertz, Melanie Full, Matthew Hawkins, Eric Norman; third row: Jori Miller, Jon Engel; top row: Carolyn Sleeth