For Immediate Release

Former Varnum LLP leader joins Grand Rapids Art Museum’s Advancement Team

Carroll Velie joins GRAM as its Manager of Fundraising Events

GRAND RAPIDS, MI, May 31, 2019 — The Grand Rapids Art Museum (GRAM) is pleased to announce that Carroll Velie has joined its staff as Manager of Fundraising Events. In this position, Velie will play a key role in overseeing the GRAM’s annual fundraising events, including Live Artfully and Gala.

Velie joins the Museum from Varnum LLP, where she held leadership positions for more than 30 years, as Director of Human Resources, and most recently, as Director of Professional Development.

The Grand Rapids Art Museum is thrilled to welcome Carroll Velie to the Advancement team,” commented GRAM Director of Advancement Elly Barnette-Dawson. As a strategic thinker with a detailed eye for creating engaging donor experiences and a strong dedication to our community, she will be an essential asset to our fundraising staff.”

A longtime resident of Grand Rapids, Velie brings her passion and expertise in building community connections to her role focused on stewarding, cultivating, and growing excitement and attendance at GRAM’s large-scale fundraising events.

Velie is well-known in the Grand Rapids community, where she has served on numerous boards and committees. She currently holds positions on the Goodwill Foundation Board and the Ebony Road Players Board and is active with the Grand Rapids Children’s Museum Feasibility Committee and Michigan House SXSW 2019.

I have long been impressed with the intentional commitment to inclusion evidenced through the diversity of exhibitions, welcoming programming, and mission of the Grand Rapids Art Museum,” added Velie. GRAM provides a cultural platform to attract and retain talent in the West Michigan community, and I look forward to contributing to the important efforts of this amazing organization.”

Velie is a graduate of the University of Michigan. She is the recipient of the West Michigan Hispanic Center’s Building Bridges” and the Association of Legal Professionals Legal Professional of the Year” awards, was named one of the 50 Most Influential Women of 2012 by the Grand Rapids Business Journal and received the Heart of Varnum award in 2018.

About the Grand Rapids Art Museum
Connecting people through art, creativity, and design. Established in the heart of downtown Grand Rapids, the Art Museum is internationally known for its distinguished design and LEED® Gold certified status. Established in 1910 as the Grand Rapids Art Association, GRAM has grown to include more than 5,000 works of art, including American and European 19th and 20th-century painting and sculpture and more than 3,000 works on paper. Embracing the city’s legacy as a leading center of design and manufacturing, GRAM has a growing collection in the area of design and modern craft.

For GRAM’s hours and admission fees, call 616.831.1000 or visit

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