Michael Orlove

Director of State, Regional & Local Partnerships, and International Activities

Michael Orlove currently serves as the director of Director of State, Regional & Local Partnerships. In that capacity, Orlove provides direction concerning NEA funding and other assistance to the 56 state and jurisdictional arts agencies, the six regional arts agencies, and local arts agencies across the country. Additionally, Orlove manages the agency's international activities programs. He was the NEA's director of Artist Communities and Presenting & Multidisciplinary Works from 2012 to 2019.

A native of Chicago, Orlove spent 19 years as senior program director for the Chicago Department of Cultural Affairs. His tenure with the department led to nearly two decades of innovation, creativity, and passion for public service with the City of Chicago. Orlove helped transform the Chicago Cultural Center into a prime downtown performing arts venue, as well as launched Chicago SummerDance and World Music Festival: Chicago, two staples in the summer festival season. Orlove also served as the director of music programming in Millennium Park since its grand opening in 2004 and helped establish many of the program series in that venue. 

As a testament to his international expertise, Orlove was named one of the 'Seven Samurai’ at the prestigious WOMEX (World Music Expo) 2009 Conference in Copenhagen, Denmark. In addition, he has been a guest speaker at numerous national and international conferences such as the 2010 Performing Arts Market in Seoul, South Korea, and the 2003 Sacred Music Festival and Conference in Fez, Morocco. Honors include being named one of the 'Chicagoans of the Year' in music by the Chicago Tribune in both 1999 and 2009, as well as one of Chicago's 'Global Visionaries' by Chicago Public Radio WBEZ and the Chicago Matters: Beyond Burnham series.

He has a BA in history from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and an MA in performing arts management from Columbia College Chicago.