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Kansas Commerce Department Hires New KCAIC Director

Aug 21, 2023

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TOPEKA – Lieutenant Governor and Secretary of Commerce David Toland announced today Curtis Young has been named Director of the Kansas Creative Arts Industries Commission (KCAIC). Young is an experienced arts administrator who has spent the past nine years with the Florida Department of State, Division of Arts & Culture, most recently as Assistant Division Director and Operations Manager.

“The Kelly Administration has made supporting the arts a priority since day one and I am thrilled to welcome Curtis to our Commerce team,” Lieutenant Governor and Secretary of Commerce David Toland said. “His passion for the arts and its role in community life will help take KCAIC to the next level.”

Young has two degrees in Fine Arts, earning his master’s at Florida State University and bachelor’s at the University of Memphis. He said he accepted this position because the Department of Commerce understands the value of the Kansas arts community and wants to support it.

“Art is hard work,” incoming KCAIC Director Curtis Young said. “Placing the state arts agency within Commerce shows that the people who do it work, and contribute to our economy and quality of life. The creative arts are truly an industry, and Kansas recognizes that.”

Young said he grew up in a small Tennessee town that always had a vibrant, thriving arts and culture community. He said sometimes society can overlook the quality and quantity of art that’s happening all the time in rural communities.

“I’m excited that so much of Kansas is rural,” Young said. “I can’t wait to find out what’s happening in places across the state, and to do everything I can to support it.”

Young’s first day will be August 21, when he will take over the reins from KCAIC Interim Director Kate Van Steenhuyse. The Department of Commerce will promote Van Steenhuyse to KCAIC Assistant Director at that time.

For more information about KCAIC, click here.