Seona Elizabeth Reid
21 January 1950 –
Dame Seona Elizabeth Reid DBE FRSA is a Scottish arts administrator who was director of the Glasgow School of Art from 1999 to 2013, and former director of the Scottish Arts Council from 1990 to 1999.
Reid was appointed director of the Glasgow School of Art in September 1999 and retired in September 2013. Previously she served as director of the Scottish Arts Council for nine years, and before that assistant director (Strategy and Regional Development) of Greater London Arts; director of Shape; head of public relations Ballet Rambert; press and publicity officer at Northern Dance Theatre; business manager, Lincoln Theatre Royal and a freelance arts consultant working with the Arts Council of Great Britain and the London Contemporary Dance Trust.
She is deputy chair and Scottish chair of the Heritage Lottery Fund, Scotland’s Fulbright Commissioner, chair of the National Theatre of Scotland, trustee of Tate, and chair of Cove Park, an artist residency centre in Scotland. Until recently she was a member of the Knowledge and Evaluation Committee of the Arts and Humanities Research Council; a member of Universities Scotland Executive Committee; a commissioner on the Scottish Broadcasting Commission; vice chair of the Lighthouse Centre for Architecture, Design and the City and on the boards of the Arches and Suspect Culture Theatre.
Reid's directorship at the Glasgow School of Art was focused on delivering the School's Estates programme, in particular the Mackintosh Conservation and Access project, the associated campus redevelopment and the selection of American architect Steven Holl with JM Architects to design the Phase 1 building to be called the Seona Reid Building. She has been successful in securing funding from a variety of sources to public and private sources to conserve and make more accessible Charles Rennie Mackintosh's Glasgow School of Art building, its collections and archive, Scottish Funding Council funding for the Phase 1 building and increased core funding from Scottish Funding Council recognising the diseconomies of scale for small, specialist institutions, the GSA's distinctive studio-based educational model and the GSA's research standing as recognised in the UK-wide Research Assessment Exercise.
She is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, was awarded the honorary degree of Doctor of Arts from Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen in 1995, became an honorary professor of the University of Glasgow in 1999, received an honorary degree of Doctor of Letters from the University in 2001, received an honorary Doctor of Letters from Glasgow Caledonian University in 2005 and from University of Strathclyde in 2009, all for services to the Arts in Scotland.
She was appointed CBE in the 2008 New Year Honours and DBE in the 2014 New Year Honours, both for services to the creative industries. Other awards include Institute of Directors, Scottish Public Sector Director of the Year 2013 and People Make Glasgow Inspiring City Awards 2013 for education.
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