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Bellavance Named New Kendall College of Art and Design President

Posted March 19, 2015 in Campus

Kendall College of Art and Design of Ferris State University (KCAD) is pleased to announce that Leslie Bellavance has accepted the invitation to become its next president. Her appointment as KCAD president will begin on July 1.

Ms. Bellavance is currently dean, director of graduate programs and professor at the School of Art and Design in the New York State College of Ceramics at Alfred University. She brings to KCAD 35 years of experience in higher education including 24 years with the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where she was director of graduate studies in the Department of Visual Art, interim associate dean of the Peck School of the Arts and professor of Visual Arts. Preceding her work in New York she was director of James Madison University’s School of Art and Art History and professor of art. 

Leslie Bellavance

She is very active nationally in the arts, serving on the Board of Directors for the College Art Association, the National Association of Schools of Art and Design, and the National Council of Arts Administrators.

KCAD’s next president is also an accomplished artist. Her extensive list of professional achievements include fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the Wisconsin Arts Board, among others. She has exhibited her work widely including solo exhibitions at the Milwaukee Art Museum, the Center for Creative Studies in Detroit and the Randolph Street Gallery in Chicago. Her work has also been featured in more than 40 group and invitational exhibitions, including in international venues. In addition she has numerous publications and has curated exhibitions in Chicago, Milwaukee, and Alfred, New York.

Leslie Bellavance earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from Temple University’s Tyler School of Art, and her Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Chicago with photography and drawing as her major areas of study. She also studied at St. Mary’s College in Notre Dame and Rome and at the University of Rhode Island in Wakefield.

In expressing her passion for the value of art and design to a community, Bellevance said, “First and foremost, the value of art and design is its power. It is the power to inspire imagination, to convey complex ideas, to instruct, to model solutions to problems, to provoke, to amaze, to heal, to grieve, to invent, to communicate, to activate. Its power can be used for diverse purposes and we ignore its potential at our peril.”

More information about KCAD’s next president is available on her website, www.lesliebellavance.com