March 23, 2017

Dynamic leader brings wide-ranging national experience to the Minneapolis cultural district

Mark NerenhausenMINNEAPOLIS— The Hennepin Theatre Trust Board of Directors announces today that Mark Nerenhausen is the new president and CEO of Hennepin Theatre Trust. He will begin his new role on April 3, 2017.

Nerenhausen is the Founding Director and Professor of Practice of the Janklow Arts Leadership Program at Syracuse University. He previously served as president and CEO of the $354 million AT&T Performing Arts Center in Dallas. While there, he secured AT&T as a naming sponsor, raised more than $4 million in the first year of operations, created a governing board and instituted an integrated business information platform.

He also brokered strategic partnerships with regional and national organizations, initiated the Jazz Roots series and expanded programming with an emphasis on diversity and inclusion.

“Mark joins the Trust with an impressive record of success that spans the performing arts, fundraising, education and cultural development,” says Ann Simonds, board chair and interim president and CEO. “He has long admired our work and brings his own flair for innovation, partnership and excellence that builds on the success of our historic theatres, and our leadership in the West Downtown MPLS Cultural District (WeDo™).

“We are thrilled to have found a Midwesterner who looks forward to reconnecting with his roots. We feel truly energized by Mark and this moment for the Trust, and we’re excited to have him with us as we realize the possibilities of our new home at 900 Hennepin.”

Nerenhausen led the Performing Arts Center Authority in Fort Lauderdale from 1998-2009, with responsibility for managing the multi-venue Broward Center and five other performing arts venues. During his tenure, the Broward Center’s main concert hall consistently ranked in the world’s top 10 venues for ticket sales, according to Pollstar and Venues Today magazines, and became a catalyst for tourism, economic development, education, industry innovations and cross-cultural exchange.

“Hennepin Theatre Trust has established itself as an imaginative and entrepreneurial arts organization that is helping to drive cultural and economic vitality through the arts in Minnesota,” says Nerenhausen. “I’m incredibly honored to add to that strong legacy and team up with the board, staff and community members to bring their passion and energy for the Trust to life.”

Nerenhausen has held other major positions at the Maui Arts and Cultural Center in Kahului, Hawaii (1993-98); the Oshkosh Grand Opera House in Wisconsin (1990-93); the Bijou Theater Center in Knoxville, Tenn. (1987-89); the Milwaukee Performing Arts Center in Wisconsin (1985-87); and the Tennessee Performing Arts Center in Nashville (1983-85).

His academic experience includes faculty positions at Florida International University in Miami; Nova Southeastern University in Davie, Fla.; and Florida Atlantic University in Fort Lauderdale.

A sought-after keynote speaker and consultant, Nerenhausen serves on the boards of the Bluegreen Corp. in Boca Raton, Fla., and a number of nonprofit arts organizations. He has an undergraduate degree in Russian and East European Studies from the University of Wisconsin – Stevens Point, and a master’s in business in arts administration from the University of Wisconsin – Madison Graduate School of Business.

Nerenhausen succeeds Tom Hoch, who stepped down as president and CEO after more than 20 years in February 2017. Before Hoch left, he successfully completed the purchase of 900 Hennepin, formerly the Solera Restaurant, as the new home for Trust staff members with room for new programming possibilities.

Ann Simonds, board chair, has been serving as the interim leader since February. The board of directors partnered with Schall Executive Search, a boutique firm based in downtown Minneapolis, to find the Trust’s new president and CEO.

Nerenhausen, along with his wife Martha, will move to the Twin Cities this summer. Their two daughters attended college in Minnesota, and one is a current resident. Until the move, Nerenhausen will commute between Minnesota and New York, which allows him to complete the academic year at Syracuse University.

Hennepin Theatre Trust is a nonprofit organization that creates positive change through the arts by bringing together people, businesses and organizations in WeDo™, the West Downtown MPLS Cultural District. We serve the community through our four theatres – the Orpheum, State, Pantages and New Century – and our unique arts, culture and education programs. Learn more at HennepinTheatreTrust.org and wedompls.org.