Who We Are

Artist as Innovator

Lead With Arts founder, Amanda Whitworth is often referred to as the “gas pedal”; a person who propels projects forward.  She uses her experience as a teaching artist with an M.Ed. in Integrated Arts Education from Plymouth State University to lead and consult on interdisciplinary projects in technology, design, wellness, business, and public education.

Growing up in metro Detroit, Amanda was surrounded by music, art, education and athletics as modeled by her parents and extended family. Her passion for dance performance carried her to New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts where she received a B.F.A. in Dance. Traveling and performing as a dancer, Amanda was inspired by the power of collective art experiences to ignite action in communities. Since moving to central New Hampshire in 2006 she has prioritized arts and culture as a way of life.

In March of 2020, with the support of the NH State Council on the Arts, Amanda was nominated by New Hampshire Governor Chris Sununu and confirmed by the Executive Council as the state’s eighth Artist Laureate, and first dancer to receive the honor. Her two-year appointment will be chronicled through the Lead With Arts blog. Amanda is energized about bringing visibility to New Hampshire’s rural spaces and people using the arts.

Most proud of the “extended family” she has garnered through her teaching and service in higher education, Amanda is the Director of Dance at Plymouth State University where she has integrated interdisciplinary thinking and collaborative performance into the curriculum. She has spearheaded networks of growth, service and advocacy across New England through innovative cross-sector partnerships.

Named one of NH’s “40 Under 40” young leaders by the NH Union Leader in 2019, and awarded a Vermeil Medal from the Academy of Arts, Sciences and Letters in Paris, France, Amanda, under the alias Tributary Dance or Lead With Arts, continues a rigorous practice of dance making, working as a performer of dance and physical theatre nationally and internationally.

Forever “wearing many hats”, she continues to study and engage in board service.  Amanda has completed the New Hampshire Institute of Art’s Certificate in Creative Placemaking and is a certified Standardized Patient Training Educator. She serves on the steering committee for the NH Creative Communities Network and is on the board of the Arts Alliance of Northern NH and the American College Dance Association. She is proud to have had a hand in founding the current New Hampshire Dance Alliance 501(c)(3) of which she was President for an extended term.

Passionate about equity, care and healing for all people, Amanda, alongside C. Robin Marcotte, MFA and Bobby Kelly, MD, MPH, founded the organization ARTICINE, which uses the performing and creative arts as a means to improve people’s health, both at the patient and healthcare provider level.

Association with Artists

At Lead With Arts we know that the creative workforce drives the 21st century. Engaging our creative workers in collaborative processes increases the ability of our programs and projects to have impact.  Together we can empower communities through arts and culture, cultivate creative workforce and make art with IMPACT!