Niki Ciccotelli Stewart joined the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art team in 2008, three years before opening to the public. As a member of the opening team, she took the museum concept from idea to reality, building the physical site, operations, and programming. In her role, Niki oversees three areas—each at the center of the museum’s mission: education, exhibitions, and interpretation. Niki leads the team that creates all educational programming for adults, families, children, students and teachers—a team that serves more than one-third of the museum’s guests each year. She also manages all aspects of the museum’s exhibitions program and permanent gallery installations, and oversees all interpretive materials from brochures and labels to audio guides and tours.
Overall, Niki has worked in the arts for twenty years, as an artist, educator, and administrator. Prior to joining Crystal Bridges, Niki worked at the John and Mable Ringling Museum of Art in Sarasota, Florida; and in Florida public schools. She also spent nearly a decade with The Walt Disney Company, working in entertainment, costuming, and educational programming. She was part of the opening team of The Disney Institute, and helped build and launch the second ship in the Disney Cruise Line’s fleet: The Disney Wonder.
Niki holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Ringling School of Art and Design in Sarasota, Florida, where she majored in Illustration and minored in Photography. She has studied at Johns Hopkins University, The College of New Jersey, and Moore College of Art and Design. She lives in Bella Vista, Arkansas, with her husband Paul, and son Max.