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Gantt Center Welcomes Sophia Matthews Partlow as Vice President of Communications + Technology Innovation

The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture recently named Sophia E. Matthews Partlow as their new Vice President of Communications + Technology Innovation. Partlow, who started in the role on December 1, is charged with leading marketing, public relations, and communications planning for the Gantt. She will also expand technology offerings to enhance the visitor, donor, and shopper experiences for in-person and virtual guests.

"Initially, we fielded for the communications and technology positions separately, but we were so impressed with Sophia's capabilities that we merged the functions," said David R. Taylor, President & CEO of the Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture. "More fundamentally, Sophia's vision aligns perfectly with the Gantt Center's. I am confident in her ability to reposition our organization as the preeminent touchpoint for the African-American community."

Partlow, a Charlotte native whose family boasts a long history of local civil rights activism, is a 16-year marketing veteran. Her previous employer was Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools, where she worked for seven years in the Communications Department, most recently as their Director of Digital Outreach. Partlow was responsible for curating the award-winning CMS social media platforms, developing innovations such as the podcast and mobile app, as well as taking the reins on website transitions. Partlow holds a Bachelor's in Marketing, an IT Management Certification, and a Master's in Informatics, all from UNC Charlotte.

"They say luck favors the prepared. I feel as if I have been preparing my entire life for this very opportunity, and still, the incredible luck of being accepted to this remarkable team is not lost on me," said Partlow. "I look forward to hitting the ground running and doing whatever is within my power to support the Gantt Center's mission. I truly believe that our work can positively impact how our children, including my own little girl, are viewed and view themselves."

One of Partlow's highest priorities is growing the Gantt Center's Initiative for Equity + Innovation, a powerful collection of efforts seeking to address unconscious bias, discrimination, and social injustice. In the current climate of increased, unconcealed, and aggressive racism, cultivating this initiative is more critical than ever. Partlow will be the Gantt's primary media contact.

About Harvey B. Gantt Center for African American Arts + Culture

The Harvey B. Gantt Center for African-American Arts + Culture is a multi-disciplinary arts institution located in the heart of Charlotte, North Carolina. Founded in 1974, the Gantt Center’s mission is to present, preserve and celebrate excellence in the art, history and culture of African-Americans and those of African descent through visual and literary arts, dance music, film, educational programs, theatre productions and community outreach. The Gantt Center features fine art exhibitions from around the world and is home to the nationally celebrated John and Vivian Hewitt Collection of African-American Art, which was generously donated by Bank of America, and is accessible online.

Named for Charlotte civic leader and former mayor Harvey Bernard Gantt, the Gantt Center is housed in an inspired and distinguished award-winning structure designed by architect Philip Freelon, co-designer of the new Smithsonian National Museum for African American History and Culture (NMAAHC). For more information about the Gantt Center and the Initiative for Equity + Innovation, visit

Posted on Monday, December 07, 2020

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