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Harlem School of the Arts CEO Yvette Campbell: Community and education advocate

Yvette L Campbell Headshot-HiResPhotoByLisaHancockPhotography

In the two-and-a-half years since Yvette L. Campbell was appointed president and CEO of the iconic Harlem School of the Arts, she’s been the driving force behind notable changes and improvements, including raising over $9 million, renaming the school The Herb Alpert Center after the music legend; and partnering with Disney, American Ballet Theatre, The Harlem Children’s Zone; securing Twyla Tharp, Christopher L. Huggins, Arturo O’Farrill and the Afro Latin Jazz Orchestra, among others, as artists in residences.

Campbell believes communities get out what they put in. Taking her leadership role seriously, she encourages her team, students and school supporters alike to respect and protect the community gem that is HSA.

Here, learn more about Campbell.

What inspires you to show up at work every day?
The kids we serve. Their faces and how happy they are with what we’re doing and the great services that we are providing encourages me to show up to work each day.

How did you determine your career path?
The career path chose me! Opportunities arise, I say yes or no and they generally are the right choices. I was a dancer and this came after that.

How do you evaluate your success?

I write lists of things to do every day, prioritize them and I check off the top five to evaluate success and whether I’ve achieved my goals.

Name your favorite role models for success in two industries.

Reynold Levy, the President of Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts and Katherine Farley, of Tishman Speyer who is one of the top women in her field of construction.

Names three books that changed how you saw life.
Reynold Levy’s book Yours for the Asking, Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell, and Susan Fales-Hill’s One Flight Up are all very inspirational.

Describe why life long learning is important to you.
We can always evolve, we can always be better. We can’t assume that we know everything. We are never finished learning!

Describe the voice of success that you hear in your head.
You can do it!

What software or technology apps have made the biggest difference in your life?

PowerPoint because you can do slide shows, you can insert movies, you can design very quickly and all can open it.

If you could change one thing about the world, what would it be?

That people thought more about their community than about themselves.

Photo Credit: Lisa Hancock Photography