Mourning A Loss

art3-1.jpgOne of the Philadelphia region’s leading advocates for the arts has died.  Peggy Amsterdam passed away Saturday night, December 26th.  She had fought with cancer in a way that was a typical of who she was.  She was a quiet, kind but confident leader.  She was not one to demand the spotlight and would often try to deflect it, but that self-effacing demeanor only served to make her more influential and effective and someone others wanted to follow.  Peggy served since 2000 as President of the Greater Philadelphia Cultural Alliance, an umbrella arts advocacy organization representing more than 300 arts and culture organizations.  Peggy was sought out throughout the U.S. by policy makers deciding issues related to the arts.  She was recently named one of Leadership Philadelphia’s “101 Key Connectors.”  Previously, she had served as Director of the Delaware Division of the Arts from 1993-2000 under then-Governor Tom Carper.  I interacted with Peggy mainly in my capacity as a relatively new member of the Alliance Board of Directors.  I can only imagine the depth of loss felt by her family and by her friends and colleagues who have enjoyed a longer association.  Her impact was monumental; her passing devastating.

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