Sherburne Laughlin

Sherburne Laughlin holds an MBA from Yale University and is a cum laude graduate of Davidson College. Her nonprofit management and philanthropic career spans over 20 years of executive director and program director experience. A full-time professor since 2007 at AU, she has pioneered top-ranked courses in strategic planning, fundraising, grant writing and governance. Her consulting work focuses on issues of governance, organizational development and strategic planning and serves all types of nonprofits, arts and non-arts, large and small, national and local. She has served on many arts panels, including the DC, Montgomery and Fairfax County Arts Council panels and the national VSA arts panel. She is currently serving on the City Fund, which is awarding $15 million over 3 years to the arts and workforce development in the District of Columbia. Until recently, she was a member of the Advisory Board of Round House Theater and for 16 years served on the Board of Trustees and Executive Committee of Davidson College. Laughlin co-chaired the national conference of the Association of Arts Administration Educators and chaired the Graduate Standards Committee, which recently published the revised Graduate Standards in Arts Administration Education. She is the Immediate Past President of the Association of Arts Administration Educators, the leading international scholarly association of the field. Her work on governance was recognized in her selection as the author on US arts governance in the path-breaking book International Cultural Governance published by Palgrave McMillan in 2019. She chairs the Americans for the Arts’ task force on Higher Education in the Arts, which crafts the congressional legislative platform on the arts in higher education.


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American University
Katzen Arts Center
4400 Massachusetts Ave NW
Washington, DC 20016
United States