Michael Wilkerson

Senior Lecturer

(812) 856-2370
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  • M.F.A., Fiction Writing, The Johns Hopkins University, 1980
  • Non-degree graduate work in English (30 hours), Indiana University, 1977-82
  • B.G.S., Humanities/Writing with High Distinction, Indiana University, 1977


  • Arts Marketing Fundamentals
  • Art Worlds: Management, Markets, and Policy
  • Organizational Behavior and the Arts


Michael Wilkerson, on leave until January 2020, is a lecturer in arts administration at the O’Neill School. He served as director of the Arts Administration Programs from  2015-18. His professional interests include organizational behavior, board relations, and arts and public policy. He grew up in Indiana and worked in high school and college as a journalist. Wilkerson became a creative writer, publishing short stories and teaching at the University of Wisconsin-Madison for three years before joining the IU administration as a speechwriter and policy assistant in academic affairs, diversity, and research in 1980. Over the next two decades, he taught classes in writing, literary interpretation, arts administration, and other subjects at IU, American University, DePauw University, University of Wisconsin, and the School of the Art Institute in Chicago. 

Wilkerson has served in several capacities for arts organizations across the country including Executive Director of the Fine Arts Work Center in Provincetown, Massachusetts, and for the Ragdale Foundation Artists' Residency Program in Lake Forest, Illinois, as well as Coordinator of University Arts Initiatives at IU.

Wilkerson is founding chair of the Alliance of Artists' Communities and the founding editor of the literary magazine Indiana Review. In Bloomington, Wilkerson has served as founding board president of Cardinal Stage Company and the Buskirk-Chumley Theater, coordinator of ArtsWeek, and board member of the Lotus Education and Arts Foundation. Michael is an elected member of the Board of Directors of the Association of Arts Administration Educators and has presented research at several AAAE conferences.


  • Board of Directors, Association of Arts Administration Educators
  • Assistant Professor of Arts Management, Department of Performing Arts, American University
  • Critical Writing Award First Prize, Arts Indiana (1988)
  • Director, Ragdale Foundation Artists' Residency Program, Lake Forest Illinois
  • News Writer/Editor, The Bloomington Herald-Telephone

In the News

Selected Works

  • “Using the arts to pay for the arts: A proposed new public funding model,” The Journal of Arts Management, Law and Society, 42 (3): 103-115 (2012).
  • “Ephemeral perpetuity? Transforming endowments into annuities,” Blog entry in Stanford Social Innovation Review, March 8, 2012.
  • “Action-oriented retention research,” (with E. P. St. John; Editors’ notes) New Directions for Instiutional Research (2006)
  •  New Territory (with D. Galyan). Bloomington, IN; Indiana University Press, 1990.
  • The New Nixon, chapbook, Matchbooks (1990)
  • At War, chapbook, Matchbooks, (1989)
  • Can This Story Be Saved? chapbook, Story County Books, (1984)
  • The Landlocked Heart: Poems from Indiana (with R. Thomas).Bloomington, IN: Indiana Writes Press (1979)

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