Paula S. Wallace

Paula Wallace is the president and co-founder of the Savannah College of Art and Design, an accredited, nonprofit, degree-granting university established in 1978. Today SCAD is the largest, most comprehensive nonprofit arts university in the nation, awarding degrees in more than 40 areas of study. Before her appointment as president in 2000, Wallace served as vice president, academic dean and provost of SCAD.

During her tenure as president, the university has expanded to include: SCAD Atlanta, SCAD Hong Kong, SCAD Lacoste and SCAD eLearning.

As a senior administrator at SCAD, Paula Wallace has initiated many of the university’s most innovative academic outreach programs and signature events, including Art Educators’ Forum, the Rising Star pre-college program, Summer Seminars, shopSCAD, Working Class Studio, the Sidewalk Arts Festival, SCAD Style, deFINE ART, and the annual SCAD Fashion Show, featuring student work and honoring legendary designers with the AndrĂ© Leon Talley award. She also oversees the SCAD Museum of Art, which recently won top honors from the International Interior Design Association and the Congress for New Urbanism.

Wallace founded the Savannah Film Festival, the longest running university film festival in the country. This annual event attracts an audience of more than 40,000 people and features an independent film competition, screenings of new major films, and lectures by some of the world’s most well-known actors and filmmakers – Michael Douglas, Sir Ian McKellen, Lily Tomlin, Sydney Pollack and Oliver Stone, among many others.

Wallace has advanced the SCAD legacy of historic preservation and the university’s commitment to renewing urban landscapes through an impressive series of restoration projects in the medieval village of Lacoste, in Midtown Atlanta, in Savannah’s historic center, and in the Sham Shui Po district of Hong Kong. Major adaptations include a 19th-century synagogue, an abandoned turn-of-the-century hospital, several historic public school buildings, a Queen Anne mansion, an antebellum railroad depot and a midcentury Chinese magistracy building, each transformed into thriving homes for SCAD academic programs. Wallace’s commitment to the building arts has earned SCAD awards from the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the American Society of Interior Designers, UNESCO and the American Institute of Architects, among others.

Wallace has also authored children’s and interior design books, including “A House in the South” (Random House), co-authored with Frances Schultz and “Perfect Porches” (Random House).

Wallace earned a B.A. degree from Furman University, and M.Ed. and Ed.S. degrees from Georgia State University. When not leading SCAD, Wallace spends time with her husband, Glenn, and her four children: Marisa, John Paul, Madison and Trace.

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