My Arts Story: Josie Greenwald

Development Manager at The ACGG

I’ve never really considered myself an artist. Music has always been an important part of my life, from being a Swiftie to pursuing a degree in music performance, but the label of “artist” never felt quite right. Most people define artists by their finished products or performances, rather than the process of collaboration with others. From my background in music to my work at The ACGG, this is my artistic medium and the unifying thread of my artistry – Connection. It has opened unlimited doors to collaborate, learn, and grow with others.

I’m originally from Arizona and stumbled into music starting piano lessons at eight years old. I later picked up the cello and began private lessons at the age of thirteen. Although I found myself behind my peers on the “professional track”, I quickly fell in love with the instrument and the power of music. Playing just felt right. I love how easily you can see your progress and constantly grow on in your work; whenever there is a problem it opens a new opportunity to learn and grow.

Pursuing a degree in music was something I felt like I needed to do. Despite the risks and judgment from others, I knew that this was my chance to hone my skills. I moved to North Carolina, earning a degree at The North Carolina School of the Arts as a Kenan Scholar.

I had incredible opportunities to learn and perform, but the most important aspect of my education was my mentor, Brooks Whitehouse. When I realized that I did not want to pursue a career in performance, he supported me wholeheartedly and helped me get an administrative position at Eastern Music Festival. What started as a summer job turned into a career in arts administration.

Arts administration has allowed me to continue my creative practice without the pressure of performance while positioning myself as an arts advocate in my community. Today, I am the Development Manager at The Arts Council of Greater Greensboro which allows me to connect with the Greensboro community in a myriad of ways. The ACGG’s mission and values deeply align with mine and I strive to help further accessibility for the arts in our community.

Today, I increasingly consider myself an artist, because I have learned that the arts encompass so much more than performing. The arts create pathways, break boundaries, and connect us all.