Joseph Pensak is the new executive director of River Arts in Morrisville.

“We are very excited about a future with Joseph in the leadership position,” said Nan Carle Beauregard, chair of the board of trustees.

Joseph replaces Dominique Gustin, who came to River Arts 12 years ago as program director and accepted the role of director in 2016. She is heading to the Vermont Arts Council.

Pensak brings 18 years of experience in grant writing, development work and community building to the position.

He served as the director and head curator of New City Galerie in Burlington, an art gallery with attached artist in residence studios since its founding in 2011.

Beyond New City, he brings almost 20 years of experience in New England connecting communities to rich encounters with the arts. He spent three years in Cambridge, Mass., working with the Brazilian community through ESL Boston, a unique collaboration that incorporated music, food and storytelling into English language classes for all ages. In seven years of community building work at the University of Connecticut, he developed the Signs of Life music series, a collaboration with Paste Magazine to bring touring acts to the campus community.

He is a sacred harp singer and musician and has played drums and guitar in various bands since college. He’s married and has three daughters.

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