Rick Kinsel has worked to conceptualize and administer the philanthropic programs of the Vilcek Foundation since the philanthropy’s founding in 2000, first as a member of the board of directors, and since 2003 as the executive director. In 2016, he assumed his current position of president.
Mr. Kinsel brings to the foundation experience in both the corporate and nonprofit sectors. For Coty Inc. in New York, he served as director of cultural affairs, directing all cultural and educational programs for the corporation and its global subsidiaries from 1997 to 2003.
Mr. Kinsel’s first task upon joining Coty was to build new corporate art collections for the company’s offices in New York, Paris, London, and Moscow. He then went on to oversee a number of other key cultural initiatives, such as the creation of an annual design award; the raising of scholarship dollars to support students at Parsons School of Design in New York; and was part of a team that developed an innovative alliance with the National Air and Space Administration (NASA) whereby Coty developed personal care products suited to counter the dry atmosphere of the International Space Station.
Before and during his tenure at Coty, Mr. Kinsel provided marketing and management counsel to such organizations as the Greentree Foundation (Mrs. John Hay Whitney Estate) and the Puerta Vallarta Arts Festival in Mexico. Mr. Kinsel has also advised the New York State attorney general’s office on various issues related to confiscated art objects.
Mr. Kinsel began his career at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York in 1989. There, as cataloguer in charge of acquisitions, he was responsible for the accessioning of all objects acquired by the museum (more than 4,000 objects per year).
During his tenure at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, he earned an M.A. in the History of the Decorative Arts, Design, and Culture from the Bard Graduate Center in New York. He completed undergraduate studies at Sinclair College in Dayton, Ohio, and at Ohio State University in Columbus. Mr. Kinsel also pursued non-degree coursework in museum studies at the L’Ecole du Louvre in Paris and in nonprofit management at Harvard Business School.
Mr. Kinsel has served on the board of directors of Sheeba Records, based in Toronto, and the International Perfume Bottle Association. As a specialist in the decorative arts, he is a member of the International Association of Professional Art Advisors (IAPAA).
In 2013, Mr. Kinsel was selected by the Museum of Arts and Design as the recipient of the MAD Visionaries! Award for outstanding leadership and creativity in the arts. He was a juror for the Hawaii International Film Festival’s Golden Orchid Awards in 2008, and has served as a visual arts curator for Pen + Brush since 2015. He is a founding member of the Friends of Arms and Armor group at the Metropolitan Museum of Art; a member of the Collections Committee of the Philbrook Museum of Art in Tulsa, Oklahoma; and in 2016, he was honored by the Theatre Communications Group at their annual gala, for his work in promoting diversity, inclusiveness, and equity in American theatre.