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'Emerging Leaders in the Arts' kicks off

Anyone under 40 who works or is interested in working in the arts sector is invited to the launch of Buffalo's chapter of "Emerging Leaders in the Arts" at 7 p.m. Wednesday. The event, organized by Arts Council in Buffalo and Erie County's Lauren Albrecht, aims to create a local community of current and aspiring arts professionals.

The event, which takes place at Sample Restaurant in Allentown, will be facilitated by Kimberly Billoni, the chief executive of SPLiCE, a product licensing company.

The text of a release about the event follows after the jump.

--Colin Dabkowski

A release from the Arts Council in Buffalo and Erie County:

The Arts Council in Buffalo & Erie County is organizing a new local Emerging Leaders Network. The Americans for the Arts Emerging Leader Program works to identify and cultivate the next generation of arts leaders in America. It is an ideal way for new leaders to share their interests with others as they continue to develop their skills and their commitment to the arts. The Emerging Leader Program targets professionals who are either new to the arts field, with up to five to ten years of work experience in the arts, or are 35-40 years of age or younger. Our goal is for this to be a relaxed, interesting and productive meeting that anyone interested is welcome to attend. We would like to thank SAMPLE, a modern restaurant with an innovative twist, for hosting the first of these networking events. SAMPLE’s distinct portion sizes allow guests the opportunity to try a wide variety of offerings from its contemporary seasonally-inspired menu.

Kimberly Billoni, Chief Executive of SPLiCE, will facilitate a discussion about your personal leadership in the arts, local priorities, what we hope to get out of our local gatherings and identify goals we can work towards in 2010. The goal setting conversations will be in an effort to present Buffalo/Western New York’s first Creative Conversation in October 2010. Creative Conversations are local gatherings of emerging leaders in communities across the country and are part of a grassroots movement to elevate the profile of arts in America during National Arts & Humanities Month each October. This local tool empowers emerging leaders to take a leadership role in their own community by both designing programming and galvanizing their peers to connect professionally.

Kimberly Kociencki Billoni is a homegrown Buffalonian. Kimberly attended Buffalo State Collage for her MS in Change Leadership, Creative Studies. In her current role, Kimberly leads Fortune 500 companies in community building around brand protection within the licensing industry. Kimberly resides in North Buffalo with her husband Tony (Artist & Models) and two daughters Bianca and Jianna.

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