Governor Dayton appoints Dr. Anton Treuer to Minnesota State Arts Board

** Release courtesy of the Minnesota State Arts Board

Governor Mark Dayton has appointed Dr. Anton Treuer, professor of Ojibwe at Bemidji State University, to a four-year term on the Minnesota State Arts Board. The board’s eleven citizen-members are appointed by the governor with the advice and approval of the Minnesota Senate. The board is a state agency that stimulates and encourages the creation, performance, and appreciation of the arts in the state. Its $60 million biennial budget is appropriated by the Minnesota State Legislature; funds are used to provide financial assistance and other programs and services designed to make the arts more available to all Minnesotans.

“I am very honored to serve the citizens of Minnesota in this capacity. The arts embrace people of every culture, gender, and nationality and offer one of the greatest tools available to unite us, and not just in struggle, but in appreciation for the beautify of natural world and human experience,” said Treuer.

In addition to his teaching duties, Treuer is editor of the only academic journal of the Ojibwe language and author of eight books including: The Assassination of Hole in the Day and Ojibwe in Minnesota, which was named “Minnesota’s Best Read for 2010” by The Center for the Book in the Library of Congress. Treuer has championed Minnesota’s traditional indigenous art forms and worked tirelessly to expand the definition of arts to include oral narrative and story performance, especially as they intersect with the Ojibwe language. His dedication to preserve, revitalize, and educate others about Ojibwe language, culture, and artistic heritage have earned him over 40 prestigious awards and fellowships from many organizations, including the American Philosophical Society, the MacArthur Foundation, the Bush Foundation, and the John Simon Guggenheim Foundation.

Treuer earned a PhD and a MA from the University of Minnesota, and a BA from Princeton University.

Treuer is one of four new members that Governor Dayton has appointed to the board; others include:

● John Gunyou – As city manager for the City of Minnetonka, Gunyou is responsible for managing the day-to-day operations of one of the state’s largest suburban communities. He was the State of Minnesota’s longest-serving finance commissioner under Governor Arne Carlson; and he was the first finance director for the City of Minneapolis under Mayor Don Fraser. Gunyou was honored with the United States Conference of Mayors’ Financial Leadership award, and was named the best City Finance Officer in the country by City and State Magazine. Gunyou is a graduate of the United States Air Force Academy, where he earned a degree in economics. He went on to earn masters’ degrees in economics and public administration from UCLA (Los Angeles, CA) and the University of Colorado (Boulder, CO).

● Sean Dowse – For 22 years, Dowse has served as executive director of the Sheldon Theatre in Red Wing. In that role, he leads a team responsible for presenting more than 100 events each year, maintaining and improving a century-old performing arts facility, and creating a community-wide cultural center. Dowse serves on numerous arts and civic boards and commissions including: Minnesota Citizens for the Arts; Minnesota Presenters Network; Andersen Center for Interdisciplinary Studies; Minnesota Music Coalition; Goodhue County Parks, Trails, and Recreation advisory board; and the City of Red Wing Bicycle and Pedestrian Master Plan advisory committee. Dowse earned a MFA in directing from the University of Utah (Salt Lake City, UT).

● Ardell Brede – Brede was elected mayor of Rochester in November 2002 and is serving his second four-year term. Previously, he had a 43-year career in the finance department and the admissions and business services department at Rochester Methodist Hospital/Mayo Clinic. He serves on the advisory board of the United States Conference of Mayors, is past chair of the League of Minnesota Cities, and has served on many civic boards including the United Way, Rochester Community & Technical College Foundation, Rochester Civic Music, and Rochester Area Alumni & Friends of the University of Minnesota. Brede has an associate’s degree from Austin Junior College, and completed additional coursework at the University of Minnesota and Brigham Young University (Salt Lake City, UT).

The Minnesota State Arts Board is a state agency dedicated to ensuring that all Minnesotans have the opportunity to participate in the arts. It enriches the quality of life in Minnesota by making the arts accessible to all citizens, nurturing creative activities, encouraging the development of innovative forms of artistic expression, and preserving the state’s diverse artistic heritage. It provides grants and services to individual artists, arts organizations, schools, colleges and universities, communities, and other organizations that sponsor arts activities. Funds for Minnesota State Arts Board programs are provided through general fund and legacy fund appropriations from the Minnesota State Legislature, with additional funding from the National Endowment for the Arts. For more information on the Arts Board, its funding programs, and services, contact the Arts Board by telephone at (651) 215-1600, (800) 866-2787, Minnesota Relay 7-1-1; by e-mail at; or at