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BENNINGTON — Bennington College President Laura Walker announced Thursday that Shelton Walker (no relation) has been appointed to a newly created role of chief of staff and vice president for strategic initiatives at the college.

Shelton Walker will assume the position Jan 18. She comes to Bennington from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, where her position carried the same title.

“Shelton brings with her years of experience and a passion for higher education,” said Laura Walker in a news release. “In this new role, Shelton will serve as a member of the cabinet, and will be responsible for creating and operationalizing the systems, processes and infrastructure necessary for meeting the college’s strategic imperatives and goals, among other duties. She has the breadth and depth of experience and personality that will lend itself well to this new role, and we are so thrilled to welcome her to the Bennington community.”

Shelton Walker expressed her excitement to be joining Bennington in the new year, stating, “At Bennington, you can feel the propensity for looking widely and purposefully. I am truly excited to join such an extraordinary institution and become part of the creative community that will imagine together a continued, radical future.”

At the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Shelton Walker co-chaired a community-driven strategic planning process, and played a role in overseeing communications, including most recently, the university’s COVID response planning.

She has also managed a number of university centers and special projects, including the relaunch of both the historic Philadelphia Art Alliance — the nation’s oldest multidisciplinary art center — and Lightbox Film Center, an experimental and international cinema house. She oversaw the ongoing work of the university’s long-standing Rosenwald-Wolf Gallery, and the creation of the Center for Immersive Media, a research center devoted to the exploration and understanding of new and emerging technologies. She advocated for and oversaw the Office of Diversity, Equity & Inclusion.

Shelton holds a Master of Fine Arts from Glasgow School of Art and Bachelor of Fine Arts from Pratt Institute.


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