Annual Conference

Join us for our 59th Annual Conference
International Council of Fine Arts Deans

The Arts as Inspiration
for Social Transformation and Resilience

San Juan, Puerto Rico
Thursday and Friday, September 28th - 29th, 2023
Pre-Conference workshops on Wednesday, September 27th, 2023

 Conservatorio de Música de Puerto Rico
 Universidad de Puerto Rico Rio Piedras 
Universidad del Sagrado Corazón

Founded in 1521, San Juan is the second oldest European-founded city in the Americas but is home to much more than just history. Only 15 minutes from SJU airport, San Juan blends elements (cobblestone streets and colonial architecture) with all the amenities of modern urban life (craft cocktails, contemporary dining, amazing shopping, and vibrant nightlife). Plan to immerse yourself in the culture and explore the wealth of art, food, adventure, and beauty that is waiting to be discovered as part of ICFAD’s 59th Annual Conference. 

Registration will be open soon. Here is a printable Registration Form. 

Here is a link to make your hotel reservations at the San Juan Marriott Resort & Stellaris CasinoReservation dates between and including Sept 26 - 30, 2023 can be made using the link. To include additional nights earlier or later, please email [email protected] or call her at (787) 289-6028, with your confirmation number handy.

San Juan is one of the most important cultural centers of the Caribbean, both for its homegrown culture and the healthy influx of visiting artists that the local population supports. The city hosts the Puerto Rico Symphony Orchestra, the world-renowned Pablo Casals classical-music festival in winter, and an annual series of opera concerts. Many hit plays in New York and other large markets get produced locally, and there are often three or four other local theatrical productions taking place on any given weekend, many of them downright adventurous. The vast collection at the Museo de Arte de Puerto Rico offers a wonderful overview of the evolution of island art, while the Museo de Arte Contemporaneo de Puerto Rico holds a peerless collection of modern Caribbean works. 

San Juan is the second most populous metropolitan area in the Caribbean, and while there are historical sites such as the Cathedral of San Juan Bautista, the city is worth visiting just for its architecture. Cobbled streets take you past a succession of brightly colored houses, each more charming than the last. The city’s dynamic art forms animate the city.

Please click here if you would like to share a printable PDF of our ‘save the date’ information.


Thursday and Friday, September 28 and 29, 2023
with three pre-conference programs on Wednesday

Tuesday Evening, September 26
Reception for Mentors and Participants of ICFAD’s Leadership Development Workshop

Wednesday, September 27
a half-day Advancement Workshop 

  • Capital Campaign Practices and Strategies for Institutions of All Sizes
  • Foundational Philanthropy Success Stories
  • Current Dynamics in Advancement

a full-day program for ICFAD’s new affinity group for curators, directors and professionals who are responsible for fulfilling educational missions through artistic exhibitions

  • Planned to be a half at the hotel and a half at one or two museums in San Juan, this workshop will include conversations about contemporary issues in curating and leading campus museums and galleries, with possible presenters including Marina Reyes Franco - Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Puerto Rico; Marcela Guerrero - The Whitney; Carla Acevedo Yates – Museum of Contemporary Art Chicago

a full-day session of the hybrid and on-going Leadership Development Workshop
proudly sponsored by

  • Leading Strategic Innovation; Leading Cultural Transformation; Afternoon Program with Advancement Officers; Personnel Matters; the Language of Ongoing Regard 

Wednesday Evening, September 27

Welcome Reception on the Oceanfront Terrace at the San Juan Marriott Resort & Stellaris Casino

Thursday, September 28

8:00 – 9:00 a.m.
Breakfast and Early Bird Session or Facilitated Discussions
Advancement Officers and Gallery & Museum Directors Breakfast and Roundtable Discussions

9:15 a.m.
Welcome to San Juan, Puerto Rico

9:30 – 10:30 a.m.
Opening Keynote Speaker

Advancement Officers are invited to attend this program as the conclusion of their workshop.

10:30 – 10:45 a.m.
Morning Reflection Break

10:45 - Noon
North American Museum Curators who have Recently Featured Art from Puerto Rico
Facilitated by Ramón H. Rivera-Servera, panelists will include: 

  • Carla Yates / MCA Chicago
  • Marcella Guerrero / Whitney Museum
  • Mariana Reyes Franco / Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Puerto Rico

Gallery and Museum Directors are invited to attend this program as the conclusion of their workshop.

12:15 - 1:30 p.m.
Lunch Presentation: Award for Arts Achievement and Excellence

2:00 departure to Instituto de Cultura Puertorriqueña in Old San Juan

2:45 – 4:00 p.m.
How Community Partnerships Inspire Degree Programs

  • Agnes Bosch Irizarry, Dean of the Faculty of Humanities, University of Puerto Rico
  • Javier Hernandez Acosta, Dean, Escuela de Artes Diseño e Industrias Creativas, La Sagrada Corazon

4:00 – 5:30 p.m.
Explore Old San Juan on your own

5:30 p.m.
Dinner at various restaurants in Old San Juan as pre-registered groups. Here is a list of restaurants, sharing what will be served, pricing and a map, for your review prior to registering for the conference. Dinner reservations will be for 6:00 p.m.
Vegetarian and vegan options will be accommodated by request, at the moment of registration.
Or dinner on your own
Your administrative assistant or you will be asked during the registration process to please select a restaurant for dinner. Please reference this printable PDF to make your restaurant selection prior to registering.

Friday, September 29, 2023

7:30 – 8:15 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.
Breakfast and Facilitated Discussions

9:15 – 9:30 a.m.
Morning Reflection Break

9:30 – 10:30 a.m.
A Case Study in the Arts through a Social Transformation Lens

“Music has to be recognized as an…agent of social development in the highest sense, because it transmits the highest values - solidarity, harmony, mutual compassion. And it has the ability to unite an entire community and to express sublime feelings.” - Jose Antonio Abreu

  • Manuel Calzada, Chancellor, Conservatorio de Música de Puerto Rico
  • Ernesto Ramos, Associate Dean of Academic and Student Affairs, Conservatorio de Música de Puerto Rico
  • Carlos Torres, director of El Sistema-inspired program, Música 100x35

10:30 – 10:45 a.m.
Morning Reflection Break

10:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.
Roundtable Discussions

Roundtable Discussions have been sponsored by Theatre Consultants Collaborative since 2013. 

12:30 – 1:45 p.m.
Lunch and Annual Meeting of International Council of Fine Arts Deans

2:15 departure to Universidad de Puerto Rico – Rio Piedras 

2:45 – 5:00 p.m.
Concurrent programs on campus:

  • Film: Rompeformas
  • Inhabiting the Impossible: Dance and experimentation in Puerto Rico
  • Pioneers of the Puerto Rican Theater

5:30 – 6:30 p.m.
Closing Reception

Saturday, September 30, 2023
8:30 – 11:00 a.m.
ICFAD Board of Directors Meeting with Committee Chairpersons in attendance through 10 a.m.