Murray leaves District 12 Community Council post

By Scott Carlson

After a nearly six-year stint as executive director of the St. Anthony Park District 12 Community Council, Kathryn Murray has left that post to become the creative placemaking specialist for the city of Bloomington,

“I’m excited to work alongside the talented and innovative team there,” said Murray, who resigned on Nov. 1 and whose last day with District 12 was Nov. 15. “Serving community through the arts has been a longstanding passion of mine.”

Looking back at her time at District 12, Murray said one of the best parts of her job was making partnerships with the Creative Enterprise Zone, St. Anthony Park Community Foundation and other district councils.

“The people behind these organizations made me want to be better,” she said, noting she was as proud of behind-the-scenes work to improve District 12’s financial operations as she was of higher profile events such as cleaning up Kasota Ponds.

In the end, however, Murray contended, “A lot of the successes were not my own. I was fortunate to work with some great people on the board and committees—knowledgeable, passionate, hard-working individuals who made me look good.”

A native of Iowa, Murray moved to the Twin Cities to attend the Minneapolis College of Art and Design. After graduating with a degree in photography, she joined the City of Lakes AmeriCorps.

During her service year, Murray developed an interest in nonprofit administration. She returned to school and earned a master’s degree in arts and cultural management from Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota.

While living at the Carleton Artist Lofts, Murray started a nonprofit, creating pop up galleries in vacant buildings during the construction of the light rail Green Line in St. Paul. She was chair of the St. Paul Art Crawl and organized events in CAL.

Next, Murray worked as program assistant at Springboard for the Arts, serving other artists by providing resources and professional development opportunities. After leaving Springboard, Murray joined the District 12 Community Council, first working as a communications and outreach coordinator. She became District 12 executive director in 2018.

“The nearly six years since have been a whirlwind filled with everything from development projects and public meetings to murals and ice cream socials,” Murray told the Bugle.

As a former SAP resident and board member, Murray said she was interested in making District 12 a better and more equitable place. 

Scott Carlson is the managing editor of the Bugle.

Kathryn Murray resigned in November as executive director of District 12 Community Council to join the city of Bloomington as creative placemaking specialist. Photo courtesy of District 12 Community Council.

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