Art, Politics & Community with Sheila Lewandowski

Sunday 09 October 2022, 11:00 - 13:00 hrs.
Adyen Rokin 49
Rokin 49
1012KS Amsterdam

Lecture: Sunday October 9th 11.00h-13.00h. Location: Adyen office @ Rokin 49 / Want to join? Please email to

In the lecture series ‘Entrepreneurship’ of the master DAS Creative Producing in collaboration with Adyen, Sheila Lewandowski will give a lecture about her work at The Chocolate Factory Theater and her political engagement as a creative producer in New York City on Sunday, October 9 at 11.00h-13.00h @ Adyen office Rokin 49. In this October lecture we will focus on art, politics and community. How do you advocate for artists and how do you influence the creative field on a policy level? Can artists and creative producers be the driving force of local decision making? (lecture is in English)

Sheila Lewandowski is Executive Director and co-founder of The Chocolate Factory Theater, where she successfully worked with the City of New York to acquire a building for the theater to have a permanent venue in Long Island City. The Board and leadership team has launched a capital campaign along with major renovation plans. Sheila has over 30 years of non-profit management and financial experience. In addition to her work at The Chocolate Factory Sheila is a community organizer and advocate for artists, and works to increase awareness of the importance of the arts in policy making in everything from education to housing to economic development and in regards to labor on a local, regional, state and national level. Sheila has received recognition for her activities most recently as a Business Person of the Year by the Queens Chamber of Commerce and as a Community Leader in and for the arts by the Queens Council on the Arts in 2018. Prior recognition includes the Elizabeth Coleman Visionary Leadership Award from her alma mater Bennington College, Woman of Distinction by New York State Senator Michael Gianaris and proclamations from the New York State Assembly and New York City Council for her work in and for her local community. Sheila serves on Community Board 2 in Queens and chairs the Transportation Committee. She is a member of the Policy Leadership Council of Nonprofit New York after eleven years as an active Board member.

Sheila has been a guest professor at the Academy of Theater & Dance in Amsterdam and Marymount Manhattan College in NYC. She has been a guest speaker and panelist on topics ranging from Nonprofit Management to community organizing and development for Van Alen Institute, Dance NYC, LIC Partnership, WNYC among others.

This lecture is in collaboration with Adyen. The company Adyen was founded in 2006, in the city center of Amsterdam, by a group of Dutch entrepreneurs. Adyen is a payments platform that processes for leading companies around the world. Currently, the organization has more than 2000 employees and 27 offices around the world. In 2021, Adyen opened additional office space at the Rokin, in the same city center where the companies’ journey began. To engage with, and give back to, the city of Amsterdam, the company opens up its offices for Amsterdammers in collaboration with the Academy of Theatre and Dance. Within its education, the academy explores the ways in which art can contribute to shaping the world, based on a firm belief that art can set people and realities in motion and has, for some time, wished to present themselves outside the university walls.