Shelby County mayor announces first-ever arts and culture liason

Shelby County’s first arts and culture liaison
Shelby County’s first arts and culture liaison(Shelby County’s Mayors office)
Published: Sep. 13, 2022 at 12:16 PM CDT

MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WMC) - Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris announced an experienced non-profit agency leader as the first-ever arts and culture liaison for Shelby County Government.

Nykesha Cole will be responsible for fostering relationships with local arts and cultural organizations and the county government.

In addition, Cole will help develop new systems that expand the impact of arts and culture organizations within Shelby County.

She served as the executive director of Mustard Seed, Inc., a social services nonprofit organization. Cole has an extensive background in the nonprofit and public sectors including the One Step Initiative, the Memphis and Shelby County Division of Planning and Development, and the Greater Memphis Chamber.

Mayor Harris established the committee last year to bring together representatives from over 150 nonprofit organizations to establish a committee that would strategically align the work they do, identify barriers by providing services, and formulates concrete solutions to problems.

It’s four subcommittees: Children, Youth, and Education; Health and Human Services; Workforce Development; and Arts and Culture.

“The arts are a huge part of Memphis and Shelby County’s DNA. We are surrounded by beautiful art and talented artists who bring Memphis music, dance, theater, film, and visual arts to the world,” said Harris. “From our ‘901 Student Passport’ program to our support for various local arts organizations, Shelby County Government is working diligently with our arts community to make sure we invest in this proud legacy. “We are happy to now have Ms. Cole on board as she works to build on these efforts and cultivate collaborative relationships between the arts community and our local government.”

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