Tony Karman has been active in the civic, business and cultural communities of Chicago for over 30 years. Working with select institutions, associations, government organizations, producers of special events and corporations, he has guided numerous projects from concept to conclusion. Currently, he is President | Director of EXPO CHICAGO, The International Exposition of Contemporary & Modern Art at Navy Pier, September 13-17, 2017.
Karman’s past work includes: Vice President | Director, Art Chicago, Merchandise Mart Properties, Inc.; Principal, KARMAN Projects Inc. – providing sponsorship acquisition, strategic brand development and marketing coordination for international clients; Director of Marketing and Development for the Auditorium Theatre Council; Associate Director, Department of Cultural Affairs, City of Chicago; Managing Director of Arie Crown Theatre–Metropolitan Pier & Exposition Authority; Legislative Associate for Vice Mayor David Orr, City of Chicago–Committee for Special Events and Cultural Affairs; Associate Director of the League of Chicago Theatres; and Managing Director with the Lakeside Group, producers of the Chicago International Art Exposition.
Originally from Rock Island, Illinois, Karman attended Augustana College and Kansas State University, where he obtained a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree. He was recently awarded a Chevalier des Arts et des Lettres from the French Government and an Honorary Doctorate from Columbia College Chicago. He has traveled extensively and establishing numerous professional alliances and relationships throughout the world. He is a long-time resident of Chicago, where he lives with his wife Sondra. Karman currently serves on several civic committees including the Municipal Marketing Advisory Council – City of Chicago, Cultural Tourism Commission – Choose Chicago, The Cooperative – Chicago Ideas Week, the Advisory Committee – Chicago International Movies and Music Festival, the national board for Artadia: The Fund for Art and Dialogue and the Chicago Artists Coalition.