On Friday, April 21, 2023, Governor Katie Hobbs announced key appointments to the Arizona Commission on the Arts. According to the press release, “these appointments will enhance the work of the [commission] by bringing new voices to the table… and helping our arts community thrive.”

The Arizona Commission on the Arts is an agency of the State of Arizona whose mission is to create opportunities for all Arizonans to participate in and experience the arts. They deliver grants and support to cultivate sustainable arts communities and promote statewide public access to arts and cultural activities. The fifteen-member Commission is appointed by the Governor, with a charge to represent communities across Arizona.

The Governor appointed two Arizonans to vacant seats on the Commission: Monica Buckle of Camp Verde and John-Peter Wilhite of Tucson.

Monica Buckle is an Arizona Humanities Scholar and the Executive Director of the Verde Valley Archaeology Center and Museum in Camp Verde, the official non-profit partner of the National Park Service for Montezuma Castle National Monument and Tuzigoot National Monument. She is also a board member of the Mesa Verde Foundation. She received her BA from Lynn University and her MA from the Sotheby’s Institute of Art. She is an enrolled member of the Cherokee Nation.

John-Peter Wilhite is the director of Partner Engagement at Social Venture Partners Tucson, and was previously the Director of Donor Relations at the YWCA Southern Arizona. He received his BFA from the Pratt Institute and his MA from Texas State University at San Marcos.

“Monica has extensive experience, having worked all over the Southwest with indigenous art and artifacts, while John-Peter has over 20 years in the Tucson arts community,” Governor Hobbs said. “I look forward to seeing how they increase public access to arts and cultural activities.”