Power 100: Deborah Rutter


President, Kennedy Center

Three years into the job, Rutter has put her stamp on what many regard as the nation’s biggest culture complex, with its multiple performing areas, opera company, resident orchestra and ballet group. The sound of many top Kennedy Center executives from the old management slamming the door as they departed raised some eyebrows in establishment Washington, but Rutter wanted her own team in place to advance her plans for making the iconic center flourish in uncertain times. Big name performers including cellist Yo-Yo Ma, soprano Renee Fleming, world class conductor Gianandrea Noseda, jazz trumpeter Terence Blanchard and rapper/ producer Q-Tip (if you can believe it) add their luster, and the opening later this year of the $120 million extension will add flexibility to the Center in the form of smaller performing areas and more rehearsal space.

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