Loft Literary Center names Arleta Little new executive director

·1 min read

Dec. 8—The Loft Literary Center in Minneapolis launched a national search for a new executive director and found her in their own backyard.

Arleta Little was announced Wednesday as the winning candidate for the director's position. For the past eight years, Little has directed the McKnight Artist Fellowships, a nearly $3 million program providing unrestricted support for artists and culture bearers across 15 creative disciplines in Minnesota.

In a prepared release, the Loft cited Little's successful tenure at McKnight, including growing and diversifying McKnight's fellowships program, building strong community with McKnight's fellowships program partners, including the Loft, advancing racial equity within the organization's arts team and in coalition with philanthropic and arts partners, as well as managing relationships and making funding recommendations for $9 million in grants to nearly 200 organizations per year.

Prior to her time at McKnight, Little served as executive director of the Minneapolis-based Givens Foundation for African American Literature and worked for 15 years as an organizational development consultant to Minnesota organizations..

Little is a poet and writer. Her essay "Life and Death in the North Star State," published in Water~Stone Review, was nominated for the Pushcart Prize. Her work is included in the anthology "We Are Meant to Rise: Voices for Justice from Minneapolis to the World."

She earned a bachelor's degree in English and psychology from Penn State University, a Master of Social Work from the University of St. Thomas/University of St. Catherine, and a master of public affairs from the University of Minnesota Humphrey School of Public Affairs.

Little, who replaces six-year director Britt Udesen, will begin full-time in March.

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