Annual Conference


The 58th Annual Conference of International Council of Fine Arts Deans 
The 49th Annual Conference of National Council of Arts Administrators
Thursday and Friday, October 6 - 7, 2022
with arts and cultural immersion opportunities on Wednesday and Saturday

Addressing issues of place, migration and cultural identity
in the binational region of San Diego, California and Tijuana,
Baja California - Mexico
with San Diego State University,
University of San Diego and The University of California San Diego

San Diego has an energetic art scene with a diverse range of influences — from Spanish and Mexican roots, to a long tradition of seafaring, through current strengths in science and technology.

Our Conference hotel will be the Manchester Grand Hyatt, with a nightly room rate of $224. Here is the link to make your hotel reservations online. Here is a list of nearby restaurants.

Download a printable flyer.

Please click here to register. If your institution prefers to pay by check, please enclose this PDF Registration Form with your check. 

San Diego Museum Council welcomes all conference registrants to enjoy the museums of Balboa Park and beyond with its San Diego Museum passport, which will be provided upon arrival at the Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego. Museums that are members.

Kids Free San Diego offers more than 100 deals on activities, attractions, meals and more for unforgettable family memories in San Diego in October. Bring the family!

Wednesday, October 5 and again Saturday, October 8, 2022
Optional pre- and post-conference arts and cultural immersion experiences: 

  • Exploring Liberty Station Arts District (offered at 9 a.m. both mornings; $30 includes transportation and a short program at three arts venues)
  • Conversations with Arts Administrators and Time in the Museums of Balboa Park (offered at 12:30 both afternoons; $45 includes transportation, short programs at several museums, museums’ entrance)
Wednesday Afternoon

  • Ignite Sessions (1:00 – 2:30 p.m., a regular feature of NCAA Conferences, with ICFAD members invited)
  • Case Studies (2:45 – 4:00 p.m., a regular feature of NCAA Conferences, with ICFAD members invited) 

Wednesday Evening

Enjoy sunset (6:28 p.m.) and dramatic panoramic Pacific Ocean and downtown city views while re-connecting with colleagues on your own and perhaps at Top of the Hyatt on the conference hotel’s 40th floor. Afterward, join us at the 4th floor’s outdoor cinema for a 6:45 p.m. introduction to Fandango at the Wallby the team that produced the film about music without borders. The project is inspired by the annual Fandango Fronterizo Festival, which unites people on both sides of the Tijuana – San Diego border. A 7:00 p.m. showing of the 1 hour and 40-minute film will follow. Popcorn will be available alongside a cash bar.

Fandango at the Wall, Bringing the United States and Mexico Together
Rooftop Cinema Club Embarcadero on the 4th floor Sport Terrace, Harbor Tower
Manchester Grand San Diego Hyatt
proudly sponsored by 


Thursday, October 6, 2022

6:30 – 7:15 a.m.
Walk along San Diego’s Waterfront
Meet friends and colleagues at a side entrance of the Seaport Tower on the lobby level, near Brew 30 and the Market

7:45 – 8:30 a.m.
Breakfast and Early Bird Session: Your Successes with Adaptive Leadership
Facilitated by Peg Faimon, Founding Dean, Eskenazi School of Art, Architecture + Design, Indiana University and Eileen Strempel, Inaugural Dean, The UCLA Herb Alpert School of Music
proudly sponsored by 
Reflective space and sharing opportunities for what arts deans and administrators have learned during the previous two years of navigating changes and opportunities in the arts and higher education. What have we learned? What new strategies and programs are we going to keep? How do we manage the many shifts on campus and in expectations? How do we mitigate and push through burnout?

8:45 a.m.
Welcome to the binational region of San Diego, California and Tijuana, Baja California - Mexico

9:00 – 9:45 a.m.
Place & Space: Breathing Art into a Binational Region
Roxana Velásquez, the Maruja Baldwin Executive Director and CEO of the San Diego Museum of Art explores the role of art in advancing the understanding of cultural identity in the San Diego/Tijuana binational region. From the blank canvas of a cement wall to the potent fusion of tradition and innovation, Ms. Velasquez shares insight on how art and cultural expression allow us to revisit previous concepts, challenge prejudices, and amplify ideas. 

Roxana Velásquez, Executive Director and CEO, San Diego Museum of Art
proudly sponsored by

9:45 – 10:50 a.m.
The Promise and Possibility of the Arts in Crossing Borders
Demonstrating great humanity in situations of complex border-related political challenges, cultural and artistic dialogues addressing this multinational region abound. This morning’s panelists are playing leadership roles in these important conversations.

How have artists explored creativity through the lens of the contemporary megalopolis and community integration? Interfacing with issues of artistic identity, borders, crossings, and place, we will explore the history of geopolitically charged projects and the contemporary circumstances that motivated them. With heartfelt consciousness and revelation, the work of regional artists and art administrators makes things vivid with intention and action, while highlighting the impacts of movements, migrations and “in-betweenness” on contemporary creative practices of the Americas.

Facilitated by James Brown, Lecturer of Interior Architecture, School of Art and Design, San Diego State University, coordinator of “Build that Park” campaign, panelists will include:

  • Norma Iglesias-Prieto, Professor Emerita, College of Arts & Letters, San Diego State University
  • Arturo O’Farrill, Associate Dean for Equity, Diversity & Inclusion and Director, UCLA Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra, Herb Apert School of Music, UCLA, producer of Fandango at the Wall
  • Sally Yard, Professor, Art History, College of Arts and Sciences, University of San Diego

10:50 – 11:05 a.m.
Morning Break
proudly sponsored by

11:05 – 11:45 a.m.
Becoming Us: Creating a Mission Driven Identity
The Museum of Us, known for decades as the San Diego Museum of Man, is an institution with deep colonial roots. It is housed in a monumental structure that quite literally pays homage to the colonial past of California. Over ten years ago, the Museum began a journey of decolonizing and antiracism work, but its outward identity didn’t match this change. This session will examine the journey of the Museum as it built an outward identity to match its mission-driven work.

James Haddan, Senior Director of Development & External Communications, Museum of Us, San Diego, California.
proudly sponsored by

Noon – 12:50 p.m.
Lunch Presentation: Award for Arts Achievement and Excellence

Josephine S. Talamantez, Chicano Park Museum & Cultural Center Board Chair, Co-Founder of Chicano Park and Chicano Park Steering Committee
proudly sponsored by

Historically, the Chicano community in Logan Heights had thrived as a small, self-reliant neighborhood. Mexicanos had always been part of the community and between 1910-20 many more moved, escaping the Mexican revolution. 

After World War II, the city, with complete disregard for the residents of Logan Heights, rezoned the neighborhood to allow the influx of industry, junkyards, metal shops and other toxic businesses incompatible with a residential community. By the mid-1960s, under the law of eminent domain, Logan Heights was bisected by the construction of Interstate 5 and the Coronado Bridge. Homes were destroyed and people were displaced-a population of 20,000 dwindled to nearly 5,000. The residents and business leaders, wanting to maintain a sense of community, began asking city officials to build a park in the barrio. 

On April 22, 1970 (launching of national Earth Day), the community stood up against the City of San Diego and the State of California to stop the building of a California Highway Patrol station and began to build their own Park as an act of Self Determination.  That evening they formed the Chicano Park Steering Committee to direct the community effort to build a park. Activists demanded that the property under the bridge become a community park where Chicano culture could be expressed through art. The occupation/Park Takeover of Chicano Park lasted twelve days. People of all ages worked together to clear the land and plant it. Finally, an agreement was reached between the Chicano community and the city to build the park.

Since then, Chicano Park has received international recognition as a major public art site for its commanding monumental mural paintings of Mexican and Chicano history. The Park was recognized as a San Diego Cultural Resource by the San Diego Historical Society in 1980; and was listed on the California Register of Historical Resources in 1997 and on the National Register of Historic Places in 2013. In December 2016, it was designated as a National Historic Landmark.

There is no end to the story of Chicano Park. It is a living history. As long as the community takes responsibility to preserve and defend the park, it will survive and thrive.

12:50 – 1:10 p.m.

1:10 p.m.
Please meet at a side entrance of the Seaport Tower on the lobby level, near Brew 30 and the Market
Board buses for a 1:15 departure to Chicano Park.

1:45 – 2:25 p.m.
Reflective Space and Time at Chicano Park
Mural artists will tell their stories.
proudly sponsored by

Turning Wheel Mobile Classroom was designed as both a classroom and creative space where history and culture come alive through the telling and presentation of community story and history. Housed at the Department of Ethnic Studies at University of San Diego, and with us this afternoon, Turning Wheel is part of USD’s Strategic Initiative, drawing from the arts, literature, poetry, music, oral history and sciences to make knowledge relevant to the lives of the community it serves.

2:30 p.m.
Depart Chicano Park for Balboa Park

2:45 – 3:30 p.m.
Reflective Space and Time at Museum of Us

Formerly known as the San Diego Museum of Man, the Museum of Us has been operating under its new name since August 2, 2020. This new name is a commitment to equity, access, and our decolonizing/anti-racism work. The Museum was founded in 1915, and for decades was the epitome of a 20th century anthropology museum, a place defined by the encyclopedic display of its ethnographic collections. Today, the Museum is a place for the diverse stories that define us all, especially those stories that have long been overlooked or silenced by dominant cultural narratives. 

Featured exhibits include:
Hostile Terrain 94 – The exhibit is a participatory installation featuring a wall map organized by the Undocumented Migration Project. The map is comprised of over 3,200 handwritten toe tags with identifying information about the migrants who died crossing the Sonoran Desert of Arizona, between the mid-1990s and 2019. The narratives around these statistics are further expanded using cultural materials, performance art, and through an examination of the policies that have created this humanitarian crisis.

Race: Are We So Different? -  First created by the American Anthropology Association and the Science Museum of Minnesota in 2007, this exhibit helps visitors better understand systemic racism through three lenses: biology, social history, and personal identity. The exhibit’s goals are to raise awareness, build community, and positively impact the ways in which we treat each other.

3:30 – 5:30 p.m.
Self-guided Exploration of the Museums of Balboa Park

5:30 – 7:00 p.m.
Celebrate the Arts Reception
proudly sponsored by

7:00 p.m.
Buses return to Manchester Grand San Diego Hyatt 

Friday, October 7, 2022

6:30 – 7:15 a.m.
Walk along San Diego’s Waterfront
Meet friends and colleagues at a side entrance of the Seaport Tower on the lobby level, near Brew 30 and the Market

7:30 – 8:20 a.m.
Committee Meetings
ICFAD’s Committees and their leaders welcome the participation of new members. Please feel welcome to attend any of these meetings that may be of interest to you. Coffee will be available in the meeting space.

  • Creative Collaborations / chaired by Carmenita Higginbotham / board liaison Sarah Bay-Cheng
  • Equity, Diversity & Inclusion / chaired by Rubén Graciani / board liaison Eileen Strempel
  • Global Connections / co-chaired by Amir Berbic and Royce Smith / board liaison Royce Smith
  • Leadership Development / chaired by Peg Faimon / board liaison John Scheib 

8:30 – 9:15 a.m.
Tables will be reserved for people who wish to continue discussion relevant to the conference theme or engage in discussion with architecture, dance, theatre, and visual arts affinity groups about institutional identity and who have worked through the change process at their respective institutions.
proudly sponsored by

9:30 – 10:45 a.m.
Leveraging the Power of Arts in Higher Education to Catalyze Change, Growth and Transformation in the binational region of San Diego, California and Tijuana, Baja California - Mexico

Most communities face complex challenges that require interdisciplinary solutions and arts leadership. The San Diego / Tijuana region is no different.

Partnerships across sectors deeply engage the San Diego community and involve artists and designers in advancing local economic, physical, and social change -- ultimately laying the groundwork for systems change. Indeed, creative placemaking draws on all artistic disciplines and has been successfully deployed as a strategy addressing a wide range of community issues -- from public health and safety to the high cost of housing to immigration demands.

Hear more about regional initiatives showcasing how social innovators and artists are transforming society -- affording everyone respect and giving people agency over their sense of identity; portraying the socioeconomic effects of globalization on marginalized communities; celebrating the strength of the human spirit. They are uniquely addressing civic challenges and community issues through the arts in higher education, thus increasing the impact of our work and demonstrating the role that the arts play in building vibrant and resilient communities.

The role of arts in higher education in community life has expanded and offers new ways of looking at and addressing persistent challenges. Our arts leaders are engaged and innovative partners in the social sphere. This panel will be moderated by Martin Camacho, Dean, J.T. & Margaret Talkington College of Visual and Performing Arts, Texas Tech University

  • Gail F. Baker, Vice President and Provost, University of San Diego
  • Heather Canary, Interim Dean, College of Professional Studies and Fine Arts, San Diego State University
  • Elizabeth Simmons, Executive Vice Chancellor, Academic Affairs, University of California San Diego 

10:45 – 11:00 a.m.
proudly sponsored by

11:00 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
Roundtable Presentations
proudly sponsored by 

“The richness of being a dean can’t be overstated.”  
- Nancy Uscher, ICFAD President-Elect

12:30 – 1:30 p.m.
Lunch and separate Annual Meetings of International Council of Fine Arts Deans and National Council of Arts Administrators
proudly sponsored by

including an election of officers and a vote regarding a proposed amendment to association bylaws as noted here.

1:30 – 1:50 p.m.
Moments to return things to your room, freshen up and put on comfortable walking shoes

1:50 p.m.
Please meet at a side entrance of the Seaport Tower on the lobby level, near Brew 30 and the Market. Board buses for a 2:00 departure for LaJolla

2:00 – 2:40 p.m.
Transfer to Conrad Prebys Performing Arts Center

3:00 – 3:45 p.m.
Tours of Conrad Prebys Performing Arts Center

3:50 - 4:10 p.m.
Transfer to La Jolla Playhouse

4:20 - 5:20 p.m.
The Future of Theatre: Cultivating Diverse Voices, Stories, and Storytellers in Theatre
A dynamic panel of UC San Diego faculty members and representatives of La Jolla Playhouse will discuss how they cultivate and mentor underrepresented voices, stories, and storytellers in the academic area and through the unique partnership with the world-renowned La Jolla Playhouse. 

University of California San Diego's Department of Theatre and Dance highly rated Theatre and Dance MFA program is renowned for accomplished faculty and alumni, including Tony Award and Academy Award recipients. Part of this acclaim is due to the unique partnership with La Jolla Playhouse.

proudly sponsored by

5:20 – 5:30 p.m.
Transfer to Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego

5:30 – 7:00 p.m.
Closing Reception
Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego (MCASD)
with music proudly sponsored by 

Saturday, October 8, 2022

9:00 – 10:15 a.m.
ICFAD Board of Directors and Committee Chairs Meeting

10:15 – 11:00 a.m.
ICFAD Board of Directors Meeting