Karim Baer is the Director of the State of the South Program. In collaboration with the Director of Learning and Development, he curates the program to bring policymakers, academics, and artists into dialogue to identify policy pathways to create equity and uplift marginalized communities in the thirteen Southern states. He also engages in research and policy analysis in the same aim.
Karim has a Master’s in Public Affairs from the Goldman School of Public Policy at the University of California-Berkeley. He also completed a three-year fellowship in arts leadership at the University of Maryland. Prior to joining MDC, he served as the Associate Director of Engagement at Stanford Live and Executive Director to Piedmont East Bay Children’s Choir and Alonzo King LINES Ballet. For over a decade, he served as the Director of Public Programs & Performances for California Institute of Integral Studies in San Francisco where he built a well-known arts and ideas program dedicated to personal and social transformation. He is passionate about using arts and scholarship as a vehicle for approaching social issues. Having grown up primarily in Arkansas with brief periods in Tennessee and Mississippi, Karim is overjoyed to return to the South to work with MDC.