Director of Arts & Culture
Jennifer Erickson has worked at MAPC since 2009. She leads MAPC’s Arts & Culture Department and specializes in community planning, visioning and strategy development with expertise in creative community development and cultural planning. As Arts & Culture Director, she leads a team of cultural planning, creative placemaking, and public art experts that is engaging in research, planning, and policy work to facilitate a more vibrant, livable, and inclusive metropolitan Boston region.
Prior to establishing the Division, she managed MAPC’s Technical Assistance Program and served as a regional planner in the Land Use Department, where she staffed over 20 interdisciplinary municipal and regional planning projects in the areas of community visioning, neighborhood planning, housing, economic development, transit-oriented development, and arts and culture. Her planning work been recognized with awards from the American Planning Association (APA) Massachusetts Chapter. Ms. Erickson wrote and produced the MAPC Arts & Planning Toolkit, which won an APA Outstanding Planning Project Award in 2016 and managed and produced the Salem Point Neighborhood Vision and Action Plan, which won an APA Social Advocacy and Public Engagement Award in 2013.
Ms. Erickson has extensive experience working with arts and culture and community development organizations. Prior to joining MAPC, she worked as grantmaker and consultant with several foundations making investments to organizations and institutions working to advance the quality of life in the Commonwealth in the areas of community development, youth development, human services and arts and culture. She has also served on grant panels for local and national funders including ArtPlace America, the National Endowment for the Arts, and the New England Foundation for the Arts.
Ms. Erickson frequently serves as a session organizer, moderator, and presenter at local, regional, and national conferences on topics pertaining to community development, equity, and arts and culture. She is a co-founder of the national APA Arts and Planning Interest Group and has also served on the APA’s Diversity Task Force and People and Places Task Force. Her research has also been published in the Journal for Planning Education and Research.
Ms. Erickson is trained in facilitative leadership from the Interaction Institute for Social Change. She earned a Master of Arts in Urban and Environmental Policy and Planning from Tufts University, where her research examined civic innovations at the intersection of arts, culture, and planning. She also holds a Bachelor of Science in Global Studies.
Areas of Expertise: Cross-sector collaboration, community planning, creative community development, creative placemaking, cultural planning and policy, visioning and strategy development, equity and inclusion, facilitation, project management, program development