Walter E. Massey Elected AICAD Board Chair

The Association of Independent Colleges of Art & Design (AICAD) welcomes the New Year with a new team of officers leading its Board of Trustees. Leading the Trustees as Chair is Walter E. Massey, President of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and highly esteemed physicist and academic. Joining Massey as officers of the Board are: Vice Chair Denise Mullen, President of the Oregon College of Art & Craft; Treasurer Sean Buffington, President of the University of the Arts; and Secretary Ron Burnett, President of Emily Carr University of Art & Design.

"I am excited to take on this leadership position among my peers," says Massey. "Independent colleges of art and design are an important segment of the higher education landscape, educating tomorrow's creators and visionaries. AICAD serves a critical role in connecting all of us and creating a unified voice for the value of a specialized art and design education. I look forward to working with the staff and my fellow board members to move the organization forward."

Massey was appointed President of the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2010. Previously, he was President of Morehouse College in Atlanta for more than a decade and Senior Vice President and Provost of the University of California system. Massey, a noted physicist, in other roles has served as Vice President of Research at the University of Chicago, Director of Argonne National Laboratory, and Director of the National Science Foundation under President George H.W. Bush. He began his career as a professor and researcher at institutions including the University of Illinois, Brown University, and the University of Chicago. In the corporate arena, Massey was previously Chairman of Bank of America and is currently a Board Director of McDonald’s. In the nonprofit sector, he has served on the Boards of the Mellon Foundation, the Smithsonian Institution, and the Salzburg Global Seminar in addition to a number of other organizations committed to the advancement of science and technology, diversity in education, and the arts and culture. Massey has been recognized with more than 30 honorary degrees from institutions such as Yale, Northwestern, Amherst, and Ohio State.

The Association of Independent Colleges of Art & Design (AICAD) is a non-profit consortium of 43 leading art schools in the US and Canada. Founded in 1991, its mission is to help strengthen the member colleges individually and collectively, and to inform the public about these colleges and the value of studying art and design. AICAD colleges educate more than 50,000 undergraduate and graduate students each year, plus many thousands more in summer and continuing education programs. Our students are drawn from all 50 US states and more than 60 foreign countries. Over 70% of these students receive financial aid to support their education. All members of AICAD are BFA and/or MFA granting institutions, accredited by the National Association of Schools of Art and Design, and by the appropriate regional accrediting agency.

AICAD Media Contact: Deborah Obalil, 401.270.5991,

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SAIC President Walter E. Massey. Photo: Yoni Goldstein

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