Founder & Artistic Director, Boston Art & Music Soul (BAMS) Fest
Director, Arts & Creativity, The Boston Foundation
Catherine T. Morris is a proud mother, entrepreneur, and visionary, who works at the intersection of arts, culture, spatial justice and movement building. Over the last 20 years, Catherine has spent her career in supporting BIPOC artists by producing shows, creating platforms as well as mobilizing and engaging local audiences to experience the arts from a Black perspective.
Currently, she is the Director of Arts and Creativity at The Boston Foundation, where she leads the strategic thinking, evaluation and implementation around grantmaking and the ways in which Foundation can best serve artists, communities and arts-supporters-at-large.
Ms. Morris is also the Founder and Artistic Director of Boston Art & Music Soul (BAMS) Fest, Ms. Morris has led this nonprofit organization toward becoming a cultural movement that breaks down racial and social barriers to arts, music and culture for communities and artists of color across Greater Boston and beyond. Since 2015, BAMS Fest has employed, supported and presented 700+ local artists, provided 600+ jobs to creative entrepreneurs, activated (40+) public spaces and has attracted over (70,000+) attendees to their programs.
Catherine is the former Director of Public Programs at the Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum, where she diversified programming that welcomed audiences and artists of color; led strategic thinking, planning and collaboration across departments, and increased access and visibility for local and national BIPOC artists, collaborators, entertainers and audiences including Jill Scott, Phonte Coleman, Oompa, Paloma Valenzuela, OJ Slaughter, and Mumu Fresh.
Ms. Morris has been a presenter, panelist and moderator with SPARK Boston, Podcast Garage, Berklee College of Music, Emerson College, Northeastern University, Simmons University, the Emerald Necklace Conservancy, the Esplanade Association, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and the Museum of Fine Arts. She is a 2021 National Art Strategies Forward Thinking Fellow, a 2018 National Art Strategies Creative Community Fellow (The Barr Foundation), The Boston Neighborhood Fellowship (The Boston Foundation), and has served on grant review panels for Live Arts Boston, City of Boston Artists in Residence, Cambridge Arts Council, and The Lewis Prize for Music.
Catherine is an alumna of Temple University School of Sport, Tourism and Hospitality Management in Philadelphia, PA, and received her Masters of Science from Simmons University (Boston, MA). It is Catherine’s hope that BAMS Fest becomes a pipeline to Boston’s arts and culture ecosystem and creative economy in a manner that minimizes implicit bias, closes the racial wealth gap, inspires hope, and positively impacts the livelihoods of future creatives.