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Strathmore President Receives AU Alumni Achievement Award

By Carolyn Supinka

Monica Jeffries Hazangeles, CAS/MA ’96. Photo by Kirsten Beckerman.

Monica Jeffries Hazangeles, CAS/MA ’96. Photo by Kirsten Beckerman.

Monica Jeffries Hazangeles is leading the way for arts and cultural leaders. 

She received the American University Alumni Achievement Award on October 18, 2014, for her accomplishments as a forefront leader in the arts. She will be returning to campus on October 25 as a speaker for the Alumni in the KNOW Distinguished Alumni Speaker Series. This event will be presented as part of the Arts Management Program 40th Anniversary ceremonies. 

A Leader in the Arts 

In 2010, Jeffries Hazangeles was appointed president of Strathmore, the renowned arts organization in Bethesda, Maryland, where she has worked for the past 20 years. Strathmore offers a wide variety of arts programming and educational experiences, ranging from art exhibitions to musical and theater performances. 

“As president, in service to Strathmore’s mission, my goals are to see what others don’t, to say what others won’t, to boldly explore future possibilities, to fearlessly drive Strathmore where it’s not always comfortable to go, to influence and inspire, and to enable the success of each and every member of my team,” said Jeffries Hazangeles about her new role. 

In 2011 and in 2013, Jeffries Hazangeles was named one of Washington’s 100 Most Powerful Women by Washingtonian magazine for her work managing Strathmore’s performances and education programs. 

“She runs one of the most important arts organizations in the greater DC region, and really embodies a lot of the principles our program is funded on,” said Arts Management Program Director Ximena Varela. “Strathmore is deeply committed to cultivating cross-cultural understanding, and to promoting diversity in its audiences and programming.”

Back To Class 

Jeffries Hazangeles, who graduated from AU’s Arts Management Program in 1996, credits the program for providing her with the skills that helped her to pursue her passion for the arts. 

“The program helped me understand the breadth of the arts management field and the vast opportunities open to those wanting a career in arts management,” said Jeffries Hazangeles. “I was immediately connected to individuals with deep knowledge and experience, and organizations where I could gain hands-on skills.” 

AU’s Arts Management Program stood out from the rest to Jeffries Hazangeles when she was looking for a place to begin her studies and career as a leader in the arts. 

“It is the only program of its kind that includes an internship, comprehensive exams, and a thesis,” she said. “This academic rigor, combined with the program’s connections to arts institutions of all types, in the nation’s capital, distinguished the program from its peers.” 

She has maintained close ties with faculty and the AU campus, inviting current AU students to tour behind the scenes at Strathmore, and has acted as a guest speaker for several classes. 

“She is generous with her time, sharing her expertise both through her advisory council work with us, but also through workshops and serving on a number of important arts boards. She has served on our advisory council for several years,” said Varela.

Alumni In the KNOW, October 25 

Jeffries Hazangeles will share insights from her experiences at Strathmore as a distinguished alumni speaker for AU’s upcoming Alumni in the KNOW series. 

Her speech will take place on Saturday, October 25, at noon in the Katzen Arts Center Rotunda, as part of the 40th anniversary celebration for the Arts Management Program. 

Jeffries Hazangeles is looking forward to sharing perspectives from her career with students. Her advice applies to aspiring arts managers as well as students interested in pursuing a leadership position in any organization. 

“Say yes, more often than no,” she said. “Pursue joyful exhaustion in your work, and look for leadership that happens from within.” 

For more information, visit the Alumni in the KNOW series website or the anniversary website.