Creative City Project Announces New Executive Director

As we continue to celebrate Women’s History Month, Creative City Project recently announced that Heide Evans will serve as their new Executive Director starting April 4, 2022. 

Founded in 2012, Creative City Project began as a group of artists performing on street corners and in plazas around Downtown Orlando.  Then in 2017, the event was renamed IMMERSE with a mission to “cultivate a thriving arts community in Central Florida, to nurture a deeper sense of ownership of and care for Orlando amongst its residents and to shape the global perception of The City Beautiful as one known for innovation and creativity.”

Creative City Project also works hard to make sure the community has access to creativity. This is achieved through the release of their “This Week In Art” video series which highlight interesting arts events happening across Central Florida each week. Creative City Project also hosts a weekly podcast called “Artrepreneur” focused on helping artists make creativity their career. 

As the incoming Executive Director, Evans will focus on strategy, fundraising and development for the organization. She brings more than 15 years of advocacy and community development to the position, with a concentration in fundraising, organizational strategy, marketing, and public relations. 

Evans spent the last three years on the founding team of Bonnet Springs Park in Lakeland, Florida as Director of Development. During that time, she worked on a capital campaign raising over $20 million dollars for the park’s 168-acre construction phase. 

Prior to that, Evans served as Executive Director for Florida Symphony Youth Orchestras for eight years, where she transformed the organization into an international force for youth music education.

“I’ve watched Creative City Project grow over the last decade, and I am honored to accept the role as Executive Director and work alongside the amazing team that has built a beautiful foundation of meaningful arts experiences and community impact under the leadership of Cole,” Evans says.

She takes the place of founder and former Executive Director, Cole NeSmith, who will assume the role of Artistic Director of Creative City Project.

 “Starting and leading this organization has been such a gift,” NeSmith says.  “It’s exciting to see Creative City Project continue to grow.  Adding a talented leader like Heide to our team will allow us to accelerate our growth and ensure long-term stability.  This change will also allow me to be more focused on the artistic direction of the organization.  I’m so proud of the unique programming we have created here in Orlando, and I can’t wait to focus more of my time and attention to ensuring our team brings to life more one-of-a-kind artistic experiences for the residents of and visitors to Orlando.”

Board Member Eric Jacobsen says the entire board is thrilled to welcome Evans to the team.

“We all unanimously felt that this would be such a good fit for the organization as we strategically look forward to building and engaging audiences,” says Jacobsen. “Heide’s enthusiasm and work ethic will ensure that the future of Creative City Project is full of incredible music, creativity and community engagement.”

 For more information on Creative City Project visit


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