Deborah Obalil

Deborah Obalil has over twenty years experience as a leader in the national arts and culture industry, having led multiple highly-acclaimed organizations and served as a well-regarded management consultant to the field. She was appointed the Executive Director of AICAD in June 2012, and then President in fall 2015 . As President & Executive Director she leads the organization in achieving its mission of strengthening and connecting its members schools, thus advancing art and design education.

Prior to her appointment with AICAD, Deborah operated a successful boutique arts management consulting firm, Obalil & Associates, for four years. The firm provided consultation and facilitation in strategic planning, marketing research and planning, and board development for non-profit arts organizations, independent artists of all disciplines, and creative for-profit ventures.

Deborah’s career within arts organizations placed her most recently as the Executive Director of the Alliance of Artists Communities, an organization dedicated to the advancement of America’s creative vitality through supporting the field of artists’ communities, based in Providence, RI. The Alliance acts as the collective voice of the field while providing a variety of advocacy services and educational programs. During her six-year tenure as Executive Director, the Alliance’s membership grew by more than 20%, the annual budget tripled, and new relationships developed with the Ford Foundation, the James Irvine Foundation and the Joyce Foundation directed more than $2 million of re-granting funds through the Alliance. She also served on the board of directors of Res Artis, the international association for artist residency programs.

Deborah received a Bachelor of Arts from Illinois Wesleyan University in History and Dance, and a certificate from the Executive Program for Nonprofit Leaders – Arts at the Stanford University Graduate School of Business. She lives in Lincoln, RI with her husband Jim and son Connor.