Incoming Executive Director Kimberly Motes brings more than 25 years of senior leadership experience within the performing arts and higher education in Minnesota and Washington, DC. Since 2016, Motes has served as the Managing Director of the Tony Award-winning Children’s Theatre Company (CTC), the nation’s largest and most acclaimed theater dedicated to serving multigenerational audiences. With a budget of $13.1 million, the Minneapolis-based company employs over 400 people and serves 250,000 community members annually. Her tenure has been defined by demonstrated successes in financial management and revenue growth, increasing philanthropic contributions and achieving the organization’s highest-ever ticket sales. During her tenure, CTC has produced 46 plays and musicals including 15 new works, transferred productions and co-produced with the Alliance Theatre, Chicago Children’s Theatre, the Old Globe Theatre, Penumbra, Seattle Children’s Theatre, the New Victory; partnered with several commercial producers including Kevin McCollum and Universal Theatrical Group; and toured a production to South Africa and throughout the United States. She led two strategic planning processes, increased the theater’s equity, diversity, inclusion and justice efforts to eliminate barriers to participation for those underrepresented in theater, and forged many meaningful community partnerships.
In addition to her expertise in finance, fundraising, strategy, producing, branding, and operations, Motes possesses a proven track record for driving impactful programming in classrooms and communities, which aligns with Chicago Shakespeare’s core values and compliments the Theater’s artistic strengths. Additionally, Motes has served the Twin Cities arts communities as the Managing Director of Theater Latté Da, and the first Executive Director of the Cowles Center for Dance and Performing Arts, where she led the efforts to build, develop, and actualize this new arts center.
Motes began her career in Washington, DC at the Washington Ballet. She then spent five years at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, where she was responsible for adult arts education programming and created a national ballet training program with legendary ballerina Suzanne Farrell. Motes was the Director of Development at Arena Stage at the start of Artistic Director Molly Smith’s tenure, where Motes produced Arena’s 50th Anniversary Gala and reversed a five year downward trend in giving.
Motes also spent five years in higher education senior leadership. As the Senior Vice President for Institutional Advancement at the University of St. Thomas, she led a comprehensive re-branding of the university and as the Vice President of Institutional Advancement at the College of Saint Benedict, she produced the Centennial Celebration year for the college. An active community member, she currently serves on the board of directors of the Minnesota Women’s Economic Roundtable (where she chairs the membership committee) and Meet Minneapolis. She is a member of the Women Presidents Organization.