Deanna Cummings

Chief Executive Officer


Masters of Public Administration // Harvard University, 2009
Started at JXTA in 1995


DeAnna Cummings creates authentic opportunities for people to exercise leadership and pursue self-sufficiency through hands-on engagement in the arts. She is the CEO and co-founder of Juxtaposition Arts (JXTA) a youth-focused cultural development center founded in 1995 in North Minneapolis, an area of Minneapolis that is younger, lower income, and populated by more people of color than the city at large.

In 2004, she led the effort to relocate Juxtaposition Arts operations to a fledgling commercial street in its neighborhood. Over the last ten years, the organization has proceeded with a staged development of it’s four formerly vacant buildings encompassing one city block, transforming them into cultural activity centers for youth and artists and new amenities for residents. There has been more than $70M in development investment by private, government and nonprofit stakeholders in the blocks surrounding Juxtaposition since the organization moved in.

Under Cummings’ leadership, JXTA has created a social enterprise business that trains and employs local youth as a springboard to higher education and careers in art and design. Since 2010 more than 400 youth have worked alongside professionals in JXTA’s screenprinting, graphic design, contemporary art, fashion design, and urban design studios. They design pocket parks, interactive public art, screen printed apparel, logos and other products for clients that generated $200K of the organizations $1.7M budget in last year. 3,000 youth and 10,000 other people participate in programs at JXTA annually.

Cummings has recently given talks to diverse audiences at the United Nations, New York University, Texas A&M University, Allied Media Conference and the Walker Art Center. She is a 2016 Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal Women in Business Awardee. Minnesota Public Radio named her a 2013 Arts Hero. She is the current Vice Chair of Archibald Bush Foundation’s board of trustees. Cummings holds a Master of Public Administration from Harvard University.