Taller Puertorriqueño Announces the Appointment of Nasheli Ortiz González, MFA, As Its Next Executive Director

Ortiz González will assume the role held by Dr. Carmen Febo San Miguel

October 13, 2021 (PHILADELPHIA, PA) Today, Taller Puertorriqueño (Taller) announced that Nasheli Ortiz González, MFA, has been appointed the organization’s next Executive Director by its Board of Directors.  Ortiz González will join Taller from Moore College of Art & Design (Moore) where she currently serves as an Associate Professor and Former Chair of the Fashion Design department. She will assume this role from Dr. Carmen Febo San Miguel who announced her intention to retire in March 2021, after twenty-two years as Taller’s Executive Director. 

As a native of Puerto Rico, a respected academic leader, and a creative entrepreneur committed to social justice, Ortiz González brings a unique set of skills to the Executive Director role at Taller. In her roles as Associate Professor and Chair of Fashion Design at Moore, Ortiz González developed a department that pairs a humanistic approach with a cutting-edge global vision. Students in this department enjoy a 98% employment rate upon graduation. She also oversaw the transition of all fashion design instruction to a remote model due to the Covid-19 pandemic, successfully managing and supporting both faculty and students during Moore’s extended closure.  Furthermore, Ortiz González has been successful in securing competitive grants for Moore including a 2020 grant from the Pew Center for Arts & Heritage.

In addition to her role at Moore, Ortiz González is a highly sought-after fashion designer who serves as the principal owner of Nasheli Juliana (NJ), an apparel company focused on social justice, as well as co-founder and principal of 22 studio, a women-led transdisciplinary design practice that operates between the United States and Puerto Rico. She is also a founding Board Member of the Philadelphia Fashion Garment and Industry Task Force, a group for professional and business development, education, trade events, supply chain and local manufacturing, social impact and sustainability in the city. Her fashion designs have been shown at Paris, London, New York, and Miami Fashion Weeks, to name just a few. Ortiz González’s work has been featured in Vogue, Harper’s Bazaar, GQ, and Forbes, among other prestigious publications.  In 2020, she was featured in the Netflix series “Next in Fashion,” and was named as one of Al DÍA News’ 40 Under 40.

“We are delighted to welcome Nasheli Ortiz González as Taller’s next Executive Director,” said Ellie DiLapi, Chair of Taller’s Board. “While the Search Committee was impressed with the quality of all the candidates considered throughout our national search for a new Executive Director, Nasheli absolutely shone through. Her academic and real-world experience in fashion and the fiber arts, coupled with her incredible passion for diversity, equity and inclusion, gave both the Search Committee – and ultimately, the Board – great confidence in her ability to lead Taller. More, her deep awareness for the historical and complex relationship between the United States and Puerto Rico is undeniable. Nasheli is the perfect candidate to assume this role and a worthy successor to our long-time and much beloved Executive Director, Carmen.” 

“Taller is justice… it is a powerful incubator… it is home,” said Ortiz González. “I am honored to be named the Executive Director of this historic organization and to help shape its story as we begin a new, exciting chapter. My love for the arts began in Caguas, Puerto Rico, at the Departmento de Desarrollo Cultural, which was a project with a similar mission as that of Taller. It created the educational and cultural foundation on which I have built my life and as I take this step forward in my career, I am humbled by the opportunity to help create similar foundations for those who engage with Taller. I strongly believe that my multidisciplinary approach to leadership and my entrepreneurial skills and spirit will serve Taller well, allowing us to expand our impact in Philadelphia – and nationally. I look forward to working with Carmen, the Board, and the staff during this important transition period.”

Ortiz González will assume the role of Executor Director on December 27 at the conclusion of Moore’s Fall semester.  Although initially set to retire on November 1, Dr. Febo has graciously agreed to remain with Taller until then to ensure a seamless leadership transition for the organization. 

“The Board of Directors established an excellent process for identifying Taller’s Executive Director and I am very happy that this process brought us to Nasheli Ortiz González,” said Dr. Febo. “Nasheli is an extraordinary artist, academic, and leader. As I watched her engage with the Board and our staff during this process, I knew she was the right person to lead the organization not simply because of her outstanding qualifications but because of her heart. Taller is known as the ‘The Cultural Heart of Latino Philadelphia’ and I have no doubt that Nasheli will lead it as such.”