Mayor Hamilton appoints Holly Warren as Interim Director of Economic and Sustainable Development Department

BLOOMINGTON – Bloomington Mayor John Hamilton announced today that Holly Warren will serve as Interim Director of the Economic and Sustainable Development Department (ESD) effective August 7, succeeding current ESD Director Alex Crowley, who stepped down effective August 4.

Holly Warren

Warren has served as ESD Assistant Director for the Arts since 2019, where she champions the making of art to inspire creativity and civic engagement. Primary among her duties as Assistant Director for the Arts are funding artists and arts organizations to produce art locally and making art affordable and accessible to all. Warren has overseen several arts grants cycles and public art installations. She supervised the renovation and reopening of the John Waldron Arts Center in Spring 2022 and managed the subsequent transition of its management to Constellation Stage & Screen. She facilitated the City’s 2022 Arts Feasibility study and has taken the lead in manifesting several initiatives recommended by the study, including planning a web-based arts resource platform for local artists and creating new opportunities for emerging artists to make and exhibit their work. Warren is also a curatorial partner for the 2023 Exhibit Columbus architecture biennial Public by Design. Holly has an MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and has worked at several art institutions, including the Logan Center for the Arts at the University of Chicago, the Block Museum of Art at Northwestern University, and the School of Visual Arts in New York.

As Interim Director, Warren will serve as the City’s primary liaison for all economic development and sustainability matters between the City and its constituents, including the local business community, arts organizations, other units of government, and City residents. Warren will also lead a team of six professional staff. She will earn an annual salary of $70,000.

“Holly Warren has done an exceptional job in developing and advocating for public art in the City,” said Mayor John Hamilton. “I am pleased that she will lead the Department of Economic and Sustainable Development during this pivotal time. I look forward to the significant contribution Holly will bring to our team of talented departmental leadership in the City.”

Crowley has served as Director of ESD since September 2016. During his tenure, he oversaw the development of the city’s first-ever Sustainability and Climate Action Plans; managed more than $2 million in recurring, annual climate action investments; managed and supported priority public investments, including the development of the Mill, Trades District, Hopewell neighborhood, new structured parking, the Waldron and Buskirk Chumley Theatre arts facilities, and others totaling more than $100 million in public funding; and implemented more than $2.5 million in municipal arts funding to advance Bloomington’s arts and performance assets.

Mayor Hamilton said, “Alex has delivered an enormous contribution to the vitality and economic health of our community for the last seven and a half years. He has tirelessly worked to better the lives of all residents of Bloomington and improved the City’s relationships within the community. I am so appreciative of his unwavering commitment to public service during that time and wish him the best as he starts his new venture.”

Crowley stated, “Working at the City has been a highlight of my career.  I want to thank all of my colleagues here at the City, especially my colleagues in Economic and Sustainable Development, for their enthusiasm and support, their dedication and public service, and all the hard work they put in every day to make Bloomington such a great place to live and work.”