AmySue Mertens is Director of Public Affairs at Ingenuity, Chicago's single hub of arts education information, advocacy, strategy and partnerships, where she drives marketing, outreach, policy, and advocacy for both the sector and within Chicago Public Schools at the national, state, and local levels.
Prior to Ingenuity, Mertens worked for CPS' Office of Family and Community Engagement where she was focused on the district's strategic initiatives including the Full School Day which added hours of instruction to K-12 schedules; CPS' historic labor negotiations; and school actions which encompassed the closing of 49 schools.
She has spoken at national and local conferences including Americans for the Arts (AFTA) and Arts Education Partnership (AEP), and has served on numerous education and community boards of directors and committees. Mertens currently serves as President of the Chicago Area Public Affairs Group. She earned her BS and MS from The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
"The arts have a crucial impact on our economy and are an important catalyst for learning, discovery, and achievement in our country."
- Paul G. Allen, American philanthropist and co-founder of Microsoft
GET THE FACTS: On average, 96% of CPS elementary school students had access to arts instruction in the 2015-16 school year.