avatar for James Miles

James Miles

Executive Director

James Miles worked as an educator in the New York City public schools for almost 20 years prior to moving to Seattle in 2016. An Assistant Professor at Seattle University, James is also the Executive Director of Third Stone, the non profit that operates the beloved Bumbershoot Arts and Music Festival in Seattle. In addition to running the day to day operations, fundraising, and administrative duties, James will also be launching the Bumbershoot Workforce Development Program training 17-25 year olds from low income, BIPOC, and/or LGBTQAI+ communities, the technical, creative, and business aspects of concert and event promotion. 

James previously served as the Chief Executive Officer of MENTOR Washington and the Executive Director of Arts Corps, prior to that.  Originally from Chicago, Miles has worked internationally as an artist and educator, and his work has been featured in magazines, books, on podcasts, in newspapers. A former accountant, model, actor, and adjunct professor at NYU, Miles has facilitated workshops and designed curriculum for the New Victory Theater, Disney Theatrical Group, Village Theatre, Arts Impact, Denver Performing Arts Center, Impact Schools, and others. Miles is a Mayoral Appointee to the Seattle Arts Commission, and on the advisory board of SXSW EDU. His acclaimed TedXTalk focuses on his mission is to narrow achievement gaps using the “arts as a tool to navigate the systems of educational inequity. Learn more about James at www.freshprofessor.com