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Executive Director of Des Moines Arts Festival® Stephen King elected Chair of the International Festivals and Events Association World Board of Directors

December 14, 2015

Stephen King, Executive Director of the award-winning Des Moines Arts Festival®, has been elected to serve as the 2017 Chair of the World Board of Directors for the International Festivals & Events Association (IFEA). Stephen will serve as Chair-elect beginning January 1, 2016.

"It's a privilege and frankly humbling to be tapped to lead an organization I am passionate about and has been so instrumental in my professional growth. IFEA is a network of hundreds from around the globe who spend each day inspiring us all to build better communities," Stephen said. "There is no better organization in the world empowering those in my profession to achieve the highest standards."

Stephen was elected to the World Board of Directors in May 2014 and to the IFEA Foundation Board of Directors in February 2012. Since then, he has been involved with a number of initiatives to raise awareness and the profile of the organization, as well as contribute to its educational mission. Stephen is a frequent speaker at the annual IFEA Convention and Expo and serves as an instructor and mentor for the IFEA/National Recreation & Park Association (NRPA) Event Management School at Oglebay. Entering his 10th year as executive director of the award-winning arts and cultural festival, Stephen has been a member of IFEA for over 20 years having represented other organizations before taking the Des Moines leadership helm in 2006.

"We are very excited to have Stephen in line as the 2017 Chair of the IFEA World Board. As a professional in our industry, Stephen is highly regarded by his global peers and his dedication and commitment to our common industry is unparalleled. The power and success of the IFEA and the events our industry represents is built upon a foundation of positive relationships and no one understands that better than Stephen.  He is the ideal candidate to further the visions of our first 60 years." — Steven Wood Schmader, President & CEO International Festivals & Events Association (IFEA)

Stephen recently completed serving two terms on the national board of the National Association of Independent Artists and is currently serving locally on the board of Bravo Greater Des Moines.  

Under Stephen's leadership, the IFEA recently awarded the Festival the prestigious Gold Grand Pinnacle Award at its 60th annual convention in Tucson, Arizona. This marked the second consecutive year the Festival received this award and the third time since 2010. Since 2007, the Festival has won a remarkable 205 Pinnacle awards. Additionally, the Festival was honored in 2012 with Bravo's Encore Award and has been voted Best Cultural Event by Des Moines' Business Record eight consecutive years.

Contact: Liz Adelman
(515) 802-0603

About the Des Moines Arts Festival

The Gold Grand Pinnacle Award-winning Des Moines Arts Festival® is a free annual three-day arts and culture Festival the last weekend in June.  The Festival invites you to 'go where it takes you…" by engaging with 180 invited professional visual artists, emerging Iowa artists, the cutting-edge Interrobang Film Festival, live music, performing arts, interactive arts activities, award-winning community outreach programs, live artist demonstrations, artisan food, and beverages for every taste.  For more information please visit us online at desmoinesartsfestival.org or socialize with us on Facebook at facebook.com/DesMoinesArtsFestival, twitter at @DMArtsFestival and Instagram at desmoinesartsfestival. #GoWhereItTakesYou #DMAF2016

About the International Festivals and Events Association

Headquartered in Boise, Idaho, the International Festivals & Events Association (IFEA) is The Premiere Association Supporting and Enabling Festival & Event Professionals Worldwide. In partnership with global affiliates under the umbrellas of IFEA Africa, IFEA Asia, IFEA Australia, IFEA Europe, IFEA Latin America, IFEA Middle East (MENASA), and IFEA North America, the organization's common vision is for "A Globally United Industry that Touches Lives in a Positive Way through Celebration." The Association offers the most complete source of ideas, resources, information, education and networking for festival and event professionals worldwide.