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Matt Ewalt named Vice President, Emily and Richard Smucker Chair for Education

Chautauqua Institution President Michael E. Hill announced the appointment of Matt Ewalt to the position of vice president and Emily and Richard Smucker Chair for Education, effective Sept. 24. Ewalt has served Chautauqua in various capacities since 2006, most recently as chief of staff. 

In his new role, Ewalt continues to lead the Institution’s 10:45 a.m. Amphitheater lecture platform, and now also oversees education, youth and literary arts programs. The change comes as part of a leadership reorganization to, in part, better resource the lecture platform and work related to developing the weekly program themes for Chautauqua’s summer season.

“I’m so pleased to recognize Matt’s immense contributions to Chautauqua with this appointment, and I look forward to continuing our work together to grow the Institution’s role in national thought leadership,” Hill said. “Matt has been an integral partner to me since I arrived here in early 2017, and his deep understanding of Chautauqua, our work and this community is an essential resource and inspiration for the entire Institution staff.” 

In addition to overseeing the Institution’s signature Amphitheater lecture platform, theme development and strategic program partnerships, Ewalt’s administrative leadership responsibilities include youth programming, including Children’s School and Boys’ and Girls’ Club; the Special Studies continuing education program; the Smith Memorial Library; the Institution Archives; and a comprehensive literary arts program that includes the Chautauqua Literary and Scientific Circle (CLSC), Chautauqua Writers’ Center, Chautauqua Writers’ Festival, and two national literary prizes, The Chautauqua Prize and the Janus Prize.  

Prior to serving as chief of staff, Ewalt served the Institution as associate director of education and youth services, and before that as director of communications and editor of The Chautauquan Daily. He previously was a reporter and editor with the Times Observer in Warren, Pennsylvania. Regionally, Ewalt is a member of the board of the United Way of Southern Chautauqua County and a past president of the Chautauqua Leadership Network. He is a graduate of the master’s program in literary and cultural studies at Carnegie Mellon University, where he also earned his bachelor’s degree. He resides in Jamestown with his wife, Trish, and their son, Connor.

“It’s a tremendous honor to continue my work at Chautauqua in this role, standing on the shoulders of so many who’ve built the reputation and capacity of this place as a forum for important national conversations and intergenerational experiences,” Ewalt said. “I’m excited to again work with this talented Education team as we continue to evolve and grow our programs to meet the call for Chautauqua to play an essential role in American life.”

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