Senior Director of Arts Policy

Americans for the Arts


Marete Wester is Senior Director of Arts Policy and the National Initiative for Arts & Health in the Military (NIAHM) at Americans for the Arts (AFTA) where she advances and develops cross-sector policy issues and strategic alliances nationally and internationally. Among her primary current focus areas include arts and military/Veterans issues, international engagement, as well as public health and healthcare. During her tenure, she has helped develop and launch several of Americans for the Arts’ signature policy forums, including the annual National Arts Policy Roundtable in partnership with the Sundance Institute. She helped initiate and now facilitates and manages the National Initiative for Arts and Health in the Military—an effort that brings all branches of the U.S. military in collaboration with civilian agencies to advance the policy, practice, and quality use of arts and creativity as tools for health for all active duty military, staff, family members, Veterans and their caregivers. She is currently serving as Americans for the Arts’ Creative Forces Project Director for the Creative Forces: NEA Military Healing Arts Network project, funded through a cooperative agreement with the National Endowment for the Arts. An experienced administrator of cross-sector collaborations and initiative development, she is responsible for managing major strategic alliance relationships, including stewarding formal Memorandums of Agreement with the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs and Veterans Health Administration, and collaborations with diverse national service organizations and public agencies.